It's the Summer of Pop-Tops

Warm-weather drinking should be all fun, and no stress. Fancy a change from sugary, summery cocktails and bottles of rosé? These five canned libations are an easy and equally tasty alternative. Find our favorite wines and spiked, sparkling waters below!

When we're planning the ultimate picnic or day spent poolside, the last thing we want to do is worry about bottle openers, cocktail shakers, and breakable glassware. But when the sun is shining, and you're surrounded by good company, the inspiration for a boozy beverage will certainly strike.

Beer will always hold a spot in our coolers, but a newer crop of surprisingly high-quality canned wines and alcoholic seltzers offers lighter, sparkling, and equally refreshing alternatives.


Here, find the Sweet-approved canned drinks that are poised to conquer summer. They taste great (hey, someone had to test them)—and all the cool packaging certainly doesn't hurt, either.

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Top Notes: Originality, Oregon Wine Heritage, and Cool, Minimal Design

Oregon-based Union Wine Co. were one of the pioneers that blazed the trail towards canned quality wines when they launched the Underwood line back in 2013. "We wanted to come up with a product that embodied our company's philosophy of making great craft wine minus all the fuss," says owner and winemaker Ryan Harms.

Harms points out that all of the Underwood canned wines—rosé, pinot noir, pinot gris—are specifially chosen because they're young and fruit-forward, which is a requirement for the packaging choice. "I would expect the canned wines to remain fresher and show less change from canning to consumption than wines closed in screw-cap—and certainly less than wines closed in cork."

unionwinecompany.com

Top Notes: Pool Parties, French-Inspired Packaging, and Trips to the Beach

While even a discerning wine drinker couldn't guess Underwood came straight from a can. Pampelonne, on the other hand, is a brand more concerned with keeping it fun and festive. Their sparkling wine cocktails, rosé lime and red sangria, are made by blending wine from the Loire Valley in France with natural fruit juices and sparkling water. We wouldn't exactly drink these with dinner, but we'd certainly pop one open on the beach.

enjoypampelonne.com

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Top Notes: Pairs with Everything, Cape Cod in a Can, and Losing Track of How Many You Had

The rise in popularity of hard seltzer (think La Croix, but more fun) fills a void for health-minded consumers who still want to have a good time. And after one sip of Connecticut-based SpikedSeltzer, you'll understand why the trend has found its legs. With flavors like Indian River Grapefruit and West Indies Lime, the sparkling beverages are incredibly light and refreshing, but they still pack the same amount of alcohol by volume that beer does, roughly six percent. (This boozy seltzer begs to be a cocktail ingredient, too.)

spikedseltzer.com

Top Notes: Warhol-Approved Cans, Splashy Scene-Stealers, and Tasting as Good They Look

Lila's bright, Pop Art-inspired cans win in terms of eye-catching packaging, but don't worry—Lila Wines encompasses both style and substance. When co-founder Kevin Mehra was toying around with the idea of launching a line of premium wine in a can, he found himself coming back to craft beer: "Some of the best beers in the world are sold in a can," he says, "so why can't the same be true for wine?"

Mehra goes on to explain that Lila's eco-friendly cans are designed with an internal coating, thicker wall, and a unique lid that maintains the quality of what lies within. Lila currently offers three styles of wine: Provence Rosé, Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, and Italian Pinot Grigio. Similar to Underwood, Lila chooses the particular blends carefully. "We think people will quickly recognize the convenience of wine in a can, then realize that it doesn't affect the quality of wines that don't need to age," says Mehra.

lilawines.com

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Top Notes: Adult Picnics, Too Easy to Drink, and Where Have They Been All Our Life?

If you need more evidence of alcoholic seltzer being everyone's outdoor drink of choice this summer, consider the cheekily-named Nauti Seltzer. The company was launched this March by New England's Wachusett Brewing Company as a healthier alternative to their range of beers. You would think their award-winning brewer Ned LaFortune could create a boozy, sparkling seltzer in his sleep, but Lafortune has said that getting the clear malt liquor base absolutely perfect was one of the most technically challenging processes he'd ever undertaken. The trial and error proved to be worthwhile, because Nauti Seltzer has become one of the big players in this burgeoning segment of the industry.

nautiseltzer.com

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