At the end of last year, we were done with hard seltzers—too many brands were trying to throw their hats in the ring of a drink that more often than not turns out to be mediocre—but maybe we were wrong to decry every canned, carbonated cocktail because White Claw left a bad taste in our mouths. Instead, we should gently nudge the industry toward the direction of a much superior drink: the wine spritzer.
Spritz Society is the latest brand to prove this. They sent Takeout HQ some samples to celebrate the brand’s arrival in Chicago, with PR that reads “Spritz Society was founded on the idea that taste matters. Taste helps us make the most of the moment—and life is too short for drinks you don’t love.” And while we’re always skeptical about a box of seltzer that lands on our doorstep, these were superior, not only because of the taste but the white-wine base.
Starting off with wine is automatically going to give more depth to the taste of these drinks, but it’s in the added flavors where each variety really shines. It makes them taste almost juice-like (the secret ingredient for many a successful canned cocktail), perfectly cut from being too sweet by the addition of carbonated water.
As of now, Spritz Society offers four different flavors sold for $17 for a four-pack (slightly pricey, but worth it for an occasional worthwhile treat). Each variety has its merits and its perfect time and place.
- Blood orange: Tart with a slight bitterness, this flavor is reminiscent of a negroni or aperol spritz. Few seltzers have mastered canning the aperitif, and while this isn’t marketed as that in particular, it nails the taste. This is your late night variety, great with a meal or as a refreshing nightcap.
- Grapefruit: This may be, dare I say, the perfect breakfast seltzer. Light, crisp, and perfectly fruity, tag this can in as your mimosa replacement next time you brunch.
- Lemon: Carbonated lemonade may be the most underrated drink of our time, and if you don’t believe me, take a sip of this one. Out of the four, this one highlights the taste of the white wine the most in a beautiful way. This is your new go-to afternoon front porch sipper.
- Pineapple: Making a pineapple drink taste like anything but sunscreen is a tough feat. This flavor manages to not only avoid being compared to lotion, but has a tropical flavor without being too sweet. Grab a four-pack on your way to the beach.
The first time I topped my glass of Pinot Grigio with some San Pellegrino, my life changed. It was a hot day, but I still wanted a little buzz—and this option not only allowed me to keep the party going, but provided some hydration and bubbles along the way. It’s likely the reason cocktails like the Aperol Spritz have seen popularity during the summertime in recent years. Once unfairly maligned as being “uncool” or only for a certain demographic of middle-aged women, the spritzer is primed to have its well-deserved comeback this summer.
Unlike the White Claws of the world, which seem to exist purely to get you wasted beyond recognition, canned spritzers like the ones from Spritz Society are served in smaller doses (just over 8 ounces) with less alcohol than wine. Pour it over some ice, and you get an even more refreshing taste while remaining at least a little bit hydrated in the process. And add in those bubbles from the carbonated water (again, hydration!), well, you can capture that champagne feeling without the headache later.
Move over, seltzers. It’s the spritzer’s time to shine.