What's hitting the shelves? New beverage launches
Bud Light Chelada Fuego
The Bud Light Chelada portfolio is introducing a spicy variety: Bud Light Chelada Fuego (pictured above).
“Tapatio is a Mexican-American hot sauce, known for its loyal fan base and spicy flavor, giving Bud Light Chelada Fuego a first-ever spicy option to enjoy for any occasion that calls for a refreshing michelada,” says the brand.
“Receiving the seal of approval from our friends at Tapatio that it tastes just like their well-known hot sauce, this new offering, gives the iconic Bud Light Chelada family an option that carries an extra kick.”
Bud Light Chelada Fuego is available across the US as of this week.
Pepsi Apple Pie
PepsiCo is providing ‘a little slice of (unexpected) enjoyment and tradition’ with the launch of Pepsi Apple Pie cola in time for Thanksgiving in the US.
According to Pepsi, the drink tastes just like an apple pie – with warm notes of cinnamon, the taste of a buttery crust, and the crispness of a fresh apple.
The cinnamon-y and creamy aroma is designed to evoke the nostalgic feeling of an apple pie on a chilly fall night.
“Pepsi is recognizing the amateur bakers who, despite the best intentions, can’t seem to get their family recipe right, and are setting off a fire alarm or two in the process," says the brand.
“Pepsi Apple Pie invokes a sense of comfort and nostalgia - and with just the twist of a cap, it’s a lot easier to enjoy than baking a homemade apple pie from scratch!”
SOLO Coffee has launched ‘the UK’s first coffee cordial’, offering instant, barista grade coffee at home when mixed with water or milk.
SOLO Coffee Concentrate – or ‘squash for adults’ – is a new espresso-strength cold brew coffee using a Brazilian and Columbian blend with a medium roast profile and is the brainchild of baristas Alex Foss Sims and Theo Garcia.
The pair launched SOLO in 2018 after seeing a gap in the market to create a perfectly brewed, speciality grade coffee that was convenient and accessible.
“The versatile and cost-effective cold brew coffee can be used to make several drinks and even desserts. Just add water to the bold, rich & sweet concentrate and you have a café quality ‘Americano’, or just add milk to create an ‘Iced Latte’.
"Pour over ice for a ‘Cold Brew on The Rocks’ or drizzle over a scoop of vanilla ice cream to effortlessly create your very own ‘Affogato’,” says the brand.
“SOLO Coffee Concentrate comes in a 1L Tetra Pak containing 40 shots of cold brew espresso and unlike a lot of coffee products, it contains no sugars, is vegan friendly, 100% arabica and importantly for all Espresso Martini fans, creates the perfect foam with no foaming agents.”
SOLO Coffee Concentrate is available to buy for £9.95 (equivalent to 25p per shot serving). SOLO will be donating 12.5% of profits of the new concentrate to The Drinks Trust until the end of the year.
Gusto vitamin drinks
UK soft drinks Gusto is launching ‘the world’s first grab-and-go, super strength, vitamin drinks to bolster the immune system’.
High in antioxidants, Super DC contains a ‘mega dose’ of Vitamin D (200% RI) and Vitamin C (2500% RI): along with Vitamins A, K, Zinc and Folic Acid. It comes in two flavors: Super DC Blood Orange and Super DC Blackcurrant & Elderberry.
"These delicious plant-based drinks contain a high percentage of real fruit juice, are low in calorie at less than 60 calories a can and created with the finest botanical ingredients such as Elderberry, White Mulberry, Blackcurrant and Acerola Cherry," says the brand.
"This immune-boosting formula is high in anthocyanins that fight free radicals and bring a wonderfully diverse flavor.”
Super DC is available in 250ml cans via Amazon and natural trade retailers in the UK with a RRP of £1.99.
Founded by Craig Sams - the entrepreneur behind chocolate brand Green & Blacks - and Will Fugard (CEO and alchemist in chief), the Gusto brand’s existing organic, fairtrade and refined-sugar-free drinks are available in international markets.
Australian hard seltzers
A new drinks company, Honeysuckle Distillery, is launching with two RTD lines: including hard seltzers tailored for the Australian market.
The team has coined the term ‘hard soda’ for the first 4.4% ABV line: which launches in natural lime and natural berry flavors.
Meanwhile, a 4.8% ABV spritz range is designed with cocktail hour in mind with paradise gin spritz (gin, blood orange and cinnamon), splendid gin citrus (gin, yuzu), and tropical vodka crush (vodka mango, coconut spritz).
Based in Victoria, the distillery takes inspiration from the exotic bird of paradise which it uses in the brand’s artwork. The bird takes its name from the honeysuckle plant, the company’s namesake, and epitomises a ‘wild nature and thirst for adventure’.
The drinks are available from Honeysuckle’s website and will shortly roll out across selected retailers in Victoria and New South Wales.
Sea Buckthorn gin
Amber Beverage Group continues to expand its premium gin portfolio with a limited edition gin, Cross Keys Gin Sea Buckthorn.
The 37% ABV gin draws on its provenance and the craftsmanship of the Baltic States; and is bottled in a distinctive orange clay bottle. The gin takes its name from two crossed keys – an ancient symbol of urban hospitality in Latvia and part of Riga’s heraldry.
Cross Keys Gin Sea Buckthorn is a contemporary twist of the four key ingredients of Juniper, Rosemary, Chamomile, and Linden blossoms, now enriched with Sea Buckthorn flavours. This gin brings a ‘subtle harmony of sweetness, sourness and bitterness with a fresh sea buckthorn berry aroma layered on top’.
“Over the last few years, we have seen a significant rise in orange-coloured spirits, may they be fruity soda drinks, twists on the booming spritz and even orange wine. To stay true to our main priority – helping to unlock the true taste of the Baltic States – we have decided to offer a bouquet of flavours and aromas typical of this region, as well as promote this unique and versatile berry – sea buckthorn,” said Māris Kalniņš, Global Brand Director of Cross Keys Gin.
"Our blackcurrant gin that we launched last year was a great hit, so we continue to diversify our assortment of Baltic flavours. Dozens of bartenders around the globe have highly appreciated our unique take on pink gin, and we are confident that this magical golden sea buckthorn berry will bring us great results.”
Sea Buckthorn gin launches in the Baltic States and plans to expand to the UK, Australia and Italy at the beginning of 2021.
Sparkling Ice Spiked Hard Seltzer
Sparkling Ice is moving into the hard seltzer category with Sparkling Ice Spiked.
Available as of this month, Sparkling Ice Spiked hard seltzer is made with zero sugar and combines sparkling water, real fruit flavor, and 4% alcohol made from cane sugar.
With 80 calories per 12oz can, Sparkling Ice Spiked offers a “full-flavored ready-to-drink hard seltzer” in four flavors: Cherry Lime Cooler, Lemonade Refresher, Ruby Fizz, and Strawberry Citrus Smash.
Sparkling Ice Spiked is based in Preston, Washington, with products available at select retail locations nationwide.
CEO of Sparkling Ice Spiked, Chris Hall, said: “With full flavor and zero sugar, we’re confident that the new Sparkling Ice Spiked will satisfy your hard seltzer cravings and quickly become your go-to beverage for everyday entertaining, outdoor grilling, and weekend escapes.”
Koia fruit smoothies
Plant-based brand Koia is launching new RTD Koia Fruit Smoothies, which it believes have the lowest sugar and net carb levels on the market.
“Koia Fruit Smoothie, which contains only 9 grams of total sugar per bottle, compared with the leading smoothie at 53 grams of sugar,” says the brand.
“Given the smoothie category is expected to grow by $10.14bn now through 2024, this product introduction plays a major role in achieving that goal.
“64% of the grab-and-go beverage cold cases are dedicated to high sugar items. Our company's goal is to establish a leadership position and renovate the space with its low sugar products that don't sacrifice on taste.”
There are four flavors: Magic Mango, Rise & Shine, Straw-nana Dream, and Tropical Passion. The smoothies have 80% less sugar than leading fruit smoothie brands, says Koia. They also contain prebiotic fiber in the form of baobab powder and chicory root; plant protein (pea protein); and coconut.
Koia Fruit Smoothie is available at Whole Foods Market across the US. The new launch joins Koia’s line of Protein and Keto shakes, Elevated Coffees, and Thrive, all of which are low-sugar/low net carbs, plant-based, dairy-free, soy-free, gluten-free, and Non-GMO Project Verified.
Tolago hard seltzer
New hard seltzer Tolago has launched in California.
Tolago is based on all-natural ingredients, including ethically sourced fresh fruit juices, purées, and natural botanicals from Southern California, as well as fair-trade certified 100% organic agave nectar from Mexico.
Clean of chemical taste, gluten-free, and at 5% ABV, the flavors include Ginger Pear, Guava Mango, Cherry Rose, and Agave Lime. Available in recyclable printed standard cans from Ball, the seltzers are premium priced and come in 6-, 12-, and 24-can cartons, with SRPs of $12.99, $24.99, and $49.99 respectively, or $1.99 per single.
The packaging has been designed by co-founder and fine artist Matt McCormick, whose work draws inspiration from the gritty reality of downtown LA, as well as the homestead towns, gold rush bonanzas, and 1920s Hollywood glamour that captivate popular imagination.
Others within the 32-member owners’ collective include brand director Stevie Dreher, photographer Sandy Kim; skateboarder Louie Lopez; singer Omar Apollo; surfer Mitch Coleborn; and 2x Winter Olympian snowboarder Elena Hight.
Premium UK soft drinks producer Nix and Kix brings to market a new Raspberry Rhubarb Flavour, while also unveiling a brand and packaging redesign.
“Raspberry & Rhubarb reflects a change in the market in consumer tastes, with pink drinks becoming part of the top drinks trends of 2020 and raspberry as a flavour growing by 10%," says the brand.
"Customers in the 30+ age bracket in general are also looking for less sugary, more complex drinks products. They want a healthy, tasty, quality alternative to what’s currently on offer and Nix and Kix has always aimed to fill this void, which is no longer niche and has mass market potential.”
The new flavour is now available in 441 Tesco stores. It joins the Nix and Kix product mix, which includes: Mango Ginger, Blood Orange Turmeric, Watermelon Hibiscus and Cucumber Mint.
Vita Coco Boosted
Coconut water brand Vita Coco is launching Vita Coco Boosted: a beverage blending coconut water and MCT oil.
“Unlike its competitors, Boosted provides much-needed energy without a large list of artificial ingredients and sweeteners: 40mg of caffeine from tea for natural energy, B vitamins for additional energy and mental clarity and electrolytes from coconut water to keep you hydrated and replenished, unlike other caffeinated beverages,” says the brand.
Vita Coco Boosted is available for purchase on Amazon in three café-inspired flavors – vanilla latte, coconut chocolate and chai – and will hit US retail stores in January 2021.