If you’re a fan of cocktails, Luxardo is a name you should already know. If you’re not, chances are you’ve had a cocktail—especially a really good old-fashioned—with a Luxardo maraschino cherry. Luxardo is more than an elegant, dark red cocktail garnish. Founded in 1821 by Girolamo Luxardo, the family-owned and operated company also produces various spirits, liqueurs, and flavorings. Now 200 years later, it is getting into the canned cocktail game.
And why not? The rise of hard seltzers has also given ready-to-drink cocktails a boost. According to CNBC, between 2019 and 2020, the premixed cocktail category grew by 50% in the United States, according to industry tracker IWSR. Bank of America Securities forecast that the category will reach $3 billion to $4 billion in revenue over the next few years.
The company invited me to sample three flavors—Apertivo Spritz, Bianco Spritz, and Sour Cherry Gin & Tonic. I also took part in a virtual picnic to learn more about the Luxardo company, its history, product line, and more about the new canned cocktails, along with some food to pair with the cocktails.
Not all canned cocktails are created equal. I have tried several and usually end up altering them in some way for my taste. Not that they were bad per se, but I always felt something was off. I was quite pleased to find that these were definitely to my liking straight out of the can, especially the Sour Cherry Gin & Tonic.
If you’re a fan of spritzes, you will love these from the start. Well, they say spritz right on the can, after all. In all seriousness, Luxardo has created a crisp and bright drink that stimulates the palate with refreshing flavor and finishes smooth. Read more about each premium canned cocktail below.
Aperitivo Spritz (10% alcohol by volume; 250ml per can; $19.99 SRP per 4-pack)—Long before the orange drink took over Instagram — approximately 200 years before — Italians were enjoying Aperitivo hour with a timeless Spritz. Aperitivo Spritz’s refreshing botanical and citrus flavors make it the perfect companion for a sunny brunch spread. Luxardo’s canned Aperitivo Spritz contains Luxardo’s Aperitivo liqueur with sparkling water and natural flavors. Tasting notes: orange zest, refreshingly sweet.
Bianco Spritz (10% alcohol by volume; 250ml per can; $19.99 SRP per 4-pack)—Drier, lighter, and more bitter, Luxardo Bianco Spritz creates a an innovative take on the classically Italian Spritz. The Bianco Spritz is a celebration of rediscovered classics. The canned Bianco Spritz contains Luxardo Bitters with sparkling water and natural flavors. Tasting notes: grapefruit zest, a touch of sweetness, bitter finish.
Sour Cherry Gin and Tonic (10% alcohol by volume; 250ml per can; $19.99 SRP per 4-pack)—For the connoisseur of classics, the sour, fruity aroma of marasca cherries mixed with notes of juniper adds a pleasantly sweet aftertaste to the standard Gin and Tonic. The simplicity in ingredients lends itself to innovation, poolside or on the go— and this canned recipe of Luxardo Sour Cherry flavored Gin and sparkling water stands as proof, among thousands of others. Tasting notes: rich cherry, vibrant juniper, sweet finish.
Luxardo canned cocktails, produced by Hotaling & Co., are available in 4-packs and can now be purchased exclusively at select Whole Foods and Total Wine locations within the U.S. in the following states: Calif., Texas, Ariz., Colo., Conn., Minn., Mo., Mass., Md., N.J., La., Nev., Wash., Ky., Mich., Ill., Ind.
Samples were provided, but as always, opinions are my own.