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This Utah distiller puts premium vodka and bourbon in a can

Simplicity Cocktails in Salt Lake City is believed to be the first distillery in the U.S. to package spirits in resealable aluminum cans.

(Photo courtesy of Simplicity Cocktails) Simplicity Cocktails in Salt Lake City is believed to be the first distillery in the U.S. to package spirits in resealable aluminum cans.

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A Utah distillery may have just made the liquor flask obsolete.

Simplicity Cocktails in Salt Lake City started selling bourbon and potato vodka in 12-ounce aluminum cans.

Co-founders Chris Weed and Chad Linville say they are the first distillery in the U.S. to package premium spirits in resealable containers. (A company in Ireland, Two Stacks Irish Whiskey, sells its Irish whiskey in a can.)

“This really targets the outdoor enthusiasts,” Weed said, pointing out that the canned spirits are easier to take camping, hiking or boating than heavy, breakable glass bottles.

The smaller container also eliminates the mess of pouring booze into a flask for travel — although it’s not as easy to hide in a suit pocket.

While there are many distillers in the U.S. — and Utah — producing ready-to-drink cocktails, David Ozgo, the chief economist with the Distilled Spirits Council of the United States, said he did not know of another distiller canning spirits.

When he heard about the Simplicity innovation, he was surprised and impressed. “It’s a wonderful solution that the distiller has come up with for the people of Utah.”

Simplicity’s vodka — made with Idaho potatoes — is $12 a can; while its North Carolina-distilled bourbon costs $15.99. Two of the 12-ounce cans equals slightly more than a standard 750 ml bottle. The products can be purchased at Simplicity’s store, 3679 W. 1987 South, Salt Lake City.

Weed said the distillery is working with the Utah Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control to get the products into state liquor stores.

Simplicity also sells is potato vodka and bourbon into larger glass bottles.

Weed and Linville launched the distillery in 2018, selling only a premixed Moscow Mule and gin and tonic. Today they have 11 ready-to-drink cocktails including a Margarita, a bourbon mule and several vodka sodas.

And, said Weed, more canned cocktails are in the works.

Ready-to-drink cocktails have been growing in recent years as busy consumers look for more convenient ways to enjoy their favorite alcoholic beverages, said Ozgo. With canned cocktails, they spend less time buying and mixing ingredients, and the recyclable cans are easy to pack for picnics, concerts and other outdoor activities.


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