From gut-healthy tonics to poolside libations, these refreshing local concoctions are all made in California
Words by ANUSH J. BENLIYAN
There’s something undeniably satisfying about cracking open a cool can on a warm day, be it at home, on the go or at the beach. But as the canned wine and La Croix fads begin to fade, a noteworthy crop of Californian companies are rethinking aluminum (the most recyclable material) with inventive, thirst-quenching new offerings that nourish the body, mind and spirit — and in some cases, all three.
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Every can of BRIGHTER includes 20 grams of raw, organic apple cider vinegar.
How Do You Like Them Apples?
Apple cider vinegar’s health-boosting properties — live prebiotics and antimicrobial acetic acid — have long been used to address gut inflammation, but the natural remedy, though powerful, is not necessarily a culinary craving. Enter Brighter, a new range of refreshing sparkling tonics that are slightly sweetened with maple syrup and boast 20 grams of raw, organic ACV in each can. Founded in Santa Monica by longtime C contributing writer and editor Elizabeth Varnell and her husband, natural foods veteran Danny Olivas, the line recently debuted with three mouthwatering, plant oil-infused flavors: lemon ginger turmeric, blood orange and lemon lime. Serve it chilled in the 8-ounce aluminum can or pour it over ice for a post-workout or midday pick-me-up. $35/12-pack.
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CANN’s beverages are crafted with natural ingredients and micro-doses of THC and CBD.
Available for delivery in L.A., the Bay Area, Sacramento and Humboldt, the cannabis-infused social tonics from Cann pack an energizing light buzz sans the repercussions of a hangover. The micro-dosed beverages, including lemon lavender, grapefruit rosemary and blood orange cardamom, are each crafted with aromatic natural ingredients and packed with 2 milligrams of THC and 4 milligrams of CBD. Their newest flavor, pineapple jalapeño — a sweet and spicy blend ideal for margarita enthusiasts — is available in two versions: a limited-edition 12-ounce “Hi Boy” can with 5 milligrams of THC (the company’s first THC-only offering); and the stronger, original 8-ounce size. $24/6-pack.
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Hard kombucha by JIANT comes in three flavors and features 4.5 percent alcohol by volume.
Mother May I?
The crisp hard kombuchas from Jiant are ushering a new generation of libations by marrying the ancient gut-healthy elixir with a kick of alcohol. The young, L.A.-based company meticulously crafts each 16-ounce can with jun kombucha, which they ferment in small batches in an open-air setting with a SCOBY (symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast). The brewed concoction of whole-leaf dragonwell green tea, water and acacia honey is then fermented again, this time with the addition of a yeast and cane sugar to naturally produce alcohol — 4.5 percent, to be exact. The gluten-free, buzz-inducing drink is available in three invigorating flavor profiles: The Original (elderflower and jasmine); Hicamaya (grapefruit and hibiscus); and Gingerly (ginger and lemongrass). $12/4-pack.
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ANGELENO SPRITZ is made with VENTURA SPIRITS’ signature Amaro Angeleno bitter liqueur.
California’s answer to Italy’s ever-popular Aperol Spritz is finally here: the SoCal-inspired Angeleno Spritz, the first-ever canned offering from Ventura Spirits. Known for its beautifully packaged California spirits — including the botanical Wilder Gin, the La Paloma agave spirit, Opuntia Prickly Pear cactus fruit brandy and Limoncello, all of which are distilled, aged and bottled in Ventura — the craft distillery’s new Angeleno Spritz comes in a petite 200-milliliter can and is made with its signature Amaro Angeleno bitter liqueur, soda water and a dash of grapefruit. In other words, a recipe for a perfect afternoon aperitivo. $20/6-pack.
Feature image: BRIGHTER flavors include lemon ginger turmeric, blood orange and lemon lime.
Sept. 15, 2020
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