What Is Hard Seltzer? A Beginner’s Guide

Glasses of hard seltzer with lemons and cherries on table

If you’ve gone out recently, chances are you’ve noticed patrons enjoying a concoction called hard seltzer. If you’ve never experienced one of these delicious beverages, you may be wondering, what is hard seltzer, anyway? At Columbia Distributing, it has always been within our vision and values to educate our customers on the products we carry, including hard seltzers. Here, we offer a guide to hard seltzers and suggest some of the top brands newcomers can try responsibly.

Hard Seltzer 101

To put it in layman’s terms, hard seltzer is simply an alcoholic version of carbonated water. Most options available on the market today contain some form of natural fruit flavor, which adds a refreshing summer taste. These types of alcoholic beverages tend to range from 4% to 5% alcohol by volume (ABV).

Hard seltzers have seen a rise in popularity largely due in part to their low calorie and carb counts. These ready-to-drink cocktails are a perfect choice for health-conscious individuals or those who enjoy the refreshing taste of fruit but with a little kick to it.

How Hard Seltzer Is Made

One thing consumers have grown to love about hard seltzers is their minimal ingredients. If you were to pour this trendy beverage into a glass, you would notice there isn’t much to the fizzy drink. It is usually clear in color and features tiny bubbles from carbonation. The ingredients that make up hard seltzers include water, sugar, yeast, and fruit flavoring.

While the ingredients are simple, putting them together to create a delicious mix is anything but. Hard seltzers can be made in a variety of ways depending on the brand and style. Generally, the process starts with fermenting cane sugar. Other times, these light beer alternatives can be brewed from malted barley, comprised of vodka, or even be made gluten-free.

Benefits of Choosing Hard Seltzer

Compared to other alcoholic beverage choices, hard seltzers are lower in calories and sugar, making them an extremely popular choice. A typical can of hard seltzer will have just 100 calories and 2 grams of sugar. In comparison, the average can of beer contains at least 150 calories and 11 grams of sugar. Even if you stick to light beer, those calories can really add up over multiple cans! If you opt for a hard seltzer instead, you’ll feel less full yet just as satisfied.

While it is a major selling point, being a healthier beverage choice is not the only benefit of choosing hard seltzers. Other advantages include:

  • Possibility of fewer stomach aches: Beverages with high amounts of sugar can upset your stomach because your gastrointestinal tract may have difficulty breaking them down. The lower amount of sugar in hard seltzers means a lower chance of getting an upset stomach from drinking.
  • Light yet potent: The bloodstream absorbs carbonated beverages much faster than non-carbonated beverages. This can result in consumers being able to feel the effects of hard seltzers much quicker than other alcoholic drinks. This also means one will consume fewer cans than they would a light beer.
  • Help ditch the nasty hangover: Overpowering hangovers are caused by a variety of factors such as dehydration and too much sugar consumed the night before. Selecting a hard seltzer over other alcoholic beverages can help consumers avoid any unpleasant aftereffects.

Get Your Hard Seltzers from Columbia Distributing

Whether you’re looking to try hard seltzers for the first time or want to stock up for warmer days, Columbia Distributing has a great selection to choose from. We proudly supply these types of alcoholic beverages and a variety of more to businesses in the Pacific Northwest, ensuring that their shelves are stocked and their customers are happy. For more information about us and the products and brands we carry, contact us today.