Hard seltzer had been A Thing for a while prior to the start of the summer of 2019, but for some reason, the space absolutely exploded over the span of a few months where White Claw managed to move more cans than basically every single craft beer brand on the planet.
It didn’t take long for almost every company in the alcohol industry to scramble to get a piece of the action, as shelves were eventually inundated with an overwhelming number of offerings whipped up by a variety of producers who harnessed a number of different strategies in an attempt to set themselves apart from the immensely crowded pack.
We were subsequently treated to the veritable arms race that saw competitors gradually ramping up the ABV before Four Loko dropped the hard seltzer equivalent of an atomic bomb. The folks at White Claw did eventually answer in the form of the 8% “Surge” offering, although it was arguably too little and too late when you consider the boozy seltzer bubble had already started to deflate when it debuted.
Over the past year or so, it’s become increasingly clear that hard seltzer made with hard liquor (as opposed to the beer-adjacent malt liquor that serves as the basis for the most popular brands) is likely the next frontier. High Noon has already reaped the benefits of that approach and inspired Truly to follow in its footsteps—and now, it looks like White Claw is getting in on the action.
According to VinePair, the brand is gearing up to introduce the world to an offshoot dubbed “White Claw Spirits” with the upcoming release of a vodka that’s slated to roll out in March. The 40% ABV line will feature Pineapple, Mango, Black Cherry, and unflavored varieties derived from a “Triple Wave” filtration process that involves using charred coconut shells instead of the carbon most vodka producers rely on to remove impurities.
It’s currently unclear if White Claw is planning to roll out pre-canned vodka sodas in conjunction with the new product, but based on how things are trending, it seems pretty safe to assume it’s only a matter of time.