First there was White Claw, a vodka-soda in a can (basically) made in a slightly more complicated fashion in order to skirt hard liquor regulations. Then, once it was clear there was money to be made, every brewer and their mom decided to release a hard seltzer. There was craft hard seltzer. There was kombucha hard seltzer. There was mead hard seltzer. There was hard-hard seltzer, which defeats the whole low-ABV, low-cal purpose of the thing, but who even cares anymore.
Now there is wine hard seltzer, because of course there is. We live in a time of polarized extremes, so inevitably while the rest of the industry is honing in on its biodynamic skin-contact orange wines and pét-nats, Barefoot Wine has announced that it will release a series of wine-based hard seltzers this February. Each 8.5 oz. can contains 4% ABV, 70 calories, and comes in flavors like Cherry & Cranberry and Strawberry & Guava.
“With Barefoot Hard Seltzer, we wanted to create a delicious and light-bodied, wine-based hard seltzer that can be enjoyed at home, on the go, or with family and friends,” said Anna Bell, Vice President of Marketing at Barefoot in a press statement.
What’s interesting is that Barefoot Wines, started in California by Jennifer Wall, already has a line of wine spritzers in cans with 5.5% ABV. While hard seltzers are typically fermented beverages, “wine-based hard seltzers” are literally wine, seltzer water, and additional flavorings, meaning the only real distinction between the two products is a hit of “Pineapple & Passion Fruit.”
All this marketing is enough to make us reach for a hit of non-alcoholic hard seltzer. You know, water.