Move out of the way, rosé — low calorie, low ABV and low sugar options are leading the summer. Breweries like Bale Breaker, Omission and Deschutes are all breaking into lighter offerings, but the producers below are finding new opportunities by going straight into hard seltzers.
Now say what you will about hard seltzers, but it’s one of the fastest growing beverages in the market for many, many reasons. The ready-to-drink category appeals to the health-conscious, especially as moderation continues to become more important to consumers. It’s marketed as a lighter, healthier way to catch a buzz.
Hard seltzers are usually lower in alcohol, gluten free and no more than 100 calories per can. They are not too sweet, but infused with various fruits and botanicals.
They’re inexpensive, ready-to-pack (and drink upon opening) and oh-so-versatile. Drink it as is. Add ice, fruit or various mixers and finish it with a straw. Bulk the ABV back up with some sparkling wine or vodka, and voilà! You have yourself a spritzer. However, these are all things you likely won’t be doing with your IPA or your glass of Merlot.
Here are some sparkling sippers from the Northwest to try out for yourself.
Day Fade Huckleberry | No-Li Brewhouse
In early 2019, No-Li launched two hard seltzers to push the craft beer envelope in Spokane, Washington. Both seltzers are an ode to flavors of the Pacific Northwest — Rainier Cherry and Huckleberry. The effervescence of Huckleberry brings sweet berries on the nose, with only a modest 100 calories per can.
Delightful Cherry Blossom | Pacific Sparkling
Pacific Sparkling a fruity, botanical extension of Ninkasi Brewing in Eugene, Oregon, who introduced the brand earlier this year. The small-batch, seltzer brand echoes the same love for the outdoors as Ninkasi, showcasing the Delightful Cherry Blossom as an inspiration of springtime in the Northwest.
Rosé | Sound Craft Seltzer
Of course, we didn’t mean it when we told rosé to “move out of the way.” We love rosé, and thankfully Seattle’s Sound Craft has an option to satiate our pink, fizzy desires. This seltzer is fermented on organic, fresh-pressed blackberries to give it its natural color. Sound Craft is also the sister company of Two Beers Brewing and Seattle Cider, joining an extensive portfolio of craft beverages in Seattle’s SoDo neighborhood.
Key Lime + Mint | SeekOut Seltzer
Just fruit and an apple wine base are involved for this 2 Towns Ciderhouse brand from Corvallis, Oregon. SeekOut seltzers have no refined sugar added to their process like many of the major national brands, fermenting only sugars that are derived from NW apples then blending with fresh natural ingredients like Key Lime + Mint. And with other seltzers like Raspberry + Meyer Lemon and Cucumber + Juniper, SeekOut is keen on pairing their fruit flavor with very aromatic botanicals.
Pure | San Juan Seltzer
This Seattle-made seltzer is by far the lightest drink to grace this list with zero sugars, 4.2 percent ABV and only 85 calories per can. Pure is the flavorless seltzer in the San Juan lineup, produced by beer sibling Schooner Brewing, but it’s bubbling with possibility. This is a seltzer you can play around with — add some fruit, herbs or citrus to spice it up.