Thursday, 24 April 2014

Cocktails in Cans: Matt Does a Taste Test

Recently, now that the weather has been improving slightly, Freddy and I (yes, we live together) have been enjoying the occasional Gin & Tonic, Bourbon and coke; you name it we have been drinking it. Not only has this been a chance to take our minds off of our W.S.E.T Diploma exams but has also made us realise how much we love mixers.

With this in mind, I thought I would review something a little out of my comfort zone. Whenever I have cocktails or mixers I like them prepared fresh, with good quality spirits and mixers and fresh lime, cucumber or whatever goes best with the tipple you're tipping. I have therefore NEVER tried a cocktail in a can. This seems a bit of a shame. I have always just assumed they are a lesser, designed version of their more personal, adjustable brethren. 

So I have purchased a selection of known brands from the local supermarket (Asda and Tesco must make a fortune from my drinking habits) to see if they can have the Ronseal stamp of approval. Just for the record, I am not adding anything to these drinks. 

Picture taken from Quimby under the C.C. Act
Pimm's has always been a tricky one for me. Perfect Summer drinking. Light, fruity and tasty. Yet every time I drink it I get far too drunk. For this reason I tend to stay away from it. Tonight however, #YOLO.
On the whole, it is pretty bloomin' similar. Sweet, a bit of spice, you can taste the Pimm's over the lemonade and it tastes just how it would if you have bought a bottle and mixed it yourself.

However, to me it tastes a bit flat. Like the Pimm's has rather nullified the lemonade. And I don't know about you but when I make Pimm's and lemonade, I want a good 35-40% of the drink to be Pimm's (maybe that's why I'm always so clattered), so at 5.4% it does taste a bit weak.
Also, £1.90 for 250ml of Pimm's? Get a hold of yourself, man! At 2 for £3 it is reasonable I guess. 

The big one for me. One of my favorite drinks. Again, it tastes great. Crisp, refreshing with typical hints of juniper and a touch of bitter pepper from the tonic. But yet again it tastes weak and flat. That being said, as with the Pimm's, if you're going to a garden party and don't want to be drinking a whole bottle of gin, this is a brilliant option. Its easy, its alcoholic and it tastes great. And at £1.90 a can you can forgive it a bit more for being a tad dear. 

To be honest, I have never really liked Southern Comfort. To me it is about as comfortable as a bed of nails balanced over a cliff. I will soldier on however.

To me the tinned version tastes incredibly sweet, far sweeter than the normal one was. It's almost like orange sherbet once it has dissolved in your mouth. It's also extremely pale and anemic which isn't too attractive.
However, I am sure for those that like this particular beverage (mainly teenagers and sweet-toothed singletons) it is a dream come true. 

Picture taken from Flickr under the C.C. Act
Now the biggie, and at 330ml I mean 'biggie'. Although it is only 5% you do feel a bit more bang for your buck.

Jack Daniels Tennessee Bourbon is probably the most overtly flavourful of our choice of mixers this evening so right off the bat you feel you're not only getting the best value for money but also the closest alternative to what you would get in a bar. 

So all in all I have been pretty impressed with the mainstream selection I have chosen. They are brilliant for what they are - convenience drinks. If you went to a bar and asked for a G&T or a JD and coke and they pulled out a can from the fridge, poured it into a glass and asked for £6, you would probably punch them in the face. But if you were at a friends house and they were having a BBQ and said 'help yourself to something from the fridge', they would probably be the first thing you would grab. 

But what about more 'indie', premium alternatives? Watch this space...


  1. Haha I'm not sure what it is about Pimms but it always makes me super drunk as well! I think it's because I love the taste and tend to drink it at barbeques/ day drinks and just get a bit carried away! I do like these cans for convenience but they're pretty overpriced and also way weaker than what I'd make them haha!
    Touchscreens & Beautqueens

    1. It's way too easy to drink, that's why! :-D Spending a whole day drinking it is bad enough, but spending a whole day drinking ones as strong as we do... that's just asking for mischief. ;-)
      Still... I ain't mad at it...