The hard seltzer trend is booming bigger than ever. As more drinkers begin to give this drink its respect, a recurring question is asked: which drink is better? Truly or White Claw?
Truly vs. White Claw: The Breakdown
Both drinks come in 5% ABV slim cans. That’s about as much alcohol as a Budweiser. The alcohol used in hard seltzer is usually made from fermented cane sugar.
Aside from flavors, the main difference between these two drinks is their nutritional profiles, although both include just a few simple ingredients, including citric acid and sodium citrate. Both drinks are relatively low in calories, which is a huge appeal in the hard seltzer market. Both drinks contain just 100 calories and two grams of carbs, and they tend to come in slimmer 12 oz cans to differentiate them from beer.
However, these drinks differ in their levels of sugar: Truly’s only contains 1g sugar per can, while White Claw’s contains two grams per can.
Recently, White Claw released a new version of their seltzer called “70” that contains fewer calories, zero carbs, and zero sugar. The rest of their seltzers still abide by their standard nutritional profile.
Hard seltzer is a relatively new product in the alcohol industry. Only in the past few years have seltzers begun to be accepted by drinkers worldwide, but now they are widely lauded for their taste and convenience.
While some companies have attempted to release spiked seltzers in the past, none have gained as much traction as Truly or White Claw. Now, seltzer is a legitimate competitor in the field, and tons of brands are racing to hop on the bandwagon.
Truly and White Claw Flavors to Look Out For
Part of what makes these seltzers so popular is the abundance of flavors that they come in. Everyone seems to have a favorite way to sample that hint of fruit, but new delicious styles always seem to sell like hotcakes. The iconic fruity tastes are usually said to come from a mixture of natural flavors and artificial flavors, but all we know is that they taste great.
Both brands are gluten-free and contain no artificial sweeteners.
Iconic Truly flavors include:
- Citrus Squeeze
- Watermelon & Kiwi
- Black Cherry
- Passion Fruit
- Wild Berry
- Blueberry Acai
White Claw Flavors
Refreshing styles from this hard seltzer brand include:
- Ruby Grapefruit
- Cranberry (only available in White Claw Surge)
A Spike in Spiked Seltzers
The spiked seltzer industry generated about $3 million in 2015. By 2018, that value had risen to $550 million. Now, in 2021, some analysts have projected the spiked seltzer industry to reach $2.5 billion.
This kind of explosion is rare for any new product, let alone an alcoholic beverage. What is even more peculiar is that about half of those sales have come from just one brand: White Claw. Another 35% of those sales are dominated by Truly.
The popularity of these drinks has been spurred on by the use of hashtags and memes on social media. Both brands have been able to go viral online, getting thousands of people to share their products.
White Claw is owned by Mark Anthony Brands, the owner of Mike’s Hard Lemonade, while Truly is owned by the Boston Beer Company. Even before these brands had released their wildly successful seltzers, they were both established names in the alcohol industry.
Even beer is starting to lose market share to healthier, less alcoholic options like seltzer. As a result, nearly every major beer brand in 2021 has put out at least one hard seltzer on its product line.
A Brief History Lesson on Seltzers
The first major hard seltzer appeared on the scene in 1993, when Coors introduced a new drink called Zima. At the time, Coors was trying to compete with a budding wine cooler industry.
The drink was actually pretty successful, raking in high sales and making its way to major distributors around America.
Coors spent about $50 million in its first year marketing Zima. Their campaigns had persuaded nearly half of all American alcoholic drinkers to try the drink.
However, it was also met with criticism. Old-school drinkers laughed at the idea of drinking seltzer with alcohol in it. Many people viewed it as a drink for younger people who didn’t have much experience drinking. Even David Letterman ridiculed Zima, using it in parody skits as a drink designed for feminine men.
The widespread mockery of this drink was enough to plummet its sales. Zima was discontinued in 2008. Despite a brief comeback in 2017, the drink isn’t in production anymore. You can still buy it in Japan, however.
A new wave of hard seltzers appeared in 2013, led by the Boston-based brand, SpikedSeltzer. This company was started by two men who were inspired by their wives’ affinity for sparkling water.
SpikedSeltzer sold over 250,000 cases of their hard seltzers in 2015. By the following year, it had been bought out by Anheuser-Busch. Since then, the company has been rebranded as Bon & Viv.
Health Benefits of Seltzer
There has been a shift in the food and drink industry toward more health-conscious products. In the past few years, you’ve probably noticed tons of new low-calorie drinks on the shelves of your local grocery store.
Every year, more Americans are letting go of sugary soft drinks like soda, and many of them are going to be looking for a healthy alternative. This is where seltzer comes in.
From 2012-2017, seltzer sales had risen 42%, and it only keeps growing. This rise in popularity has been driven by increased media attention, especially in food and drink publications.
Seltzer has become a favorite in offices, so much so that it has almost become a stereotype that office workers always keep the fridge stocked with La Croix. It tastes better than water. And it has almost the same amount of calories, with little to no sugar. As an everyday drink, seltzer isn’t a bad option.
The nutritional profile of seltzer is what has allowed brands to market their products adjacent to wellness drinks. Millennials are a major segment of wellness consumers, which explains why so many young people are drinking seltzer nowadays.
Other Brands to Try
With how many brands are getting in on the seltzer craze, it can be overwhelming to try and pick one.
Obviously, Truly and White Claw make some of the best hard seltzers in the world, but there are also other brands that offer quality seltzers.
Smirnoff makes the best-selling vodka in the whole world. But what do they know about making seltzer? Apparently, a lot! The company jumped into the hard seltzer industry in 2016, branding their drink as Smirnoff Seltzer. They offer several different flavors, including orange mango, raspberry rosé, and berry lemonade.
Henry’s Hard Sparkling Water has been one of the most prominent hard soda brands in the market for many years. Their sparkling water is a lightly flavored drink with subtle fruit notes and strong acidity. The product is created by MillerCoors.
The brand carries a variety of fruit flavors like strawberry kiwi, blueberry lemon, lemon-lime. Their sparkling waters are made with barley malt liquor, as well as corn syrup. Keep in mind that these drinks are not gluten-free.
Other notable brands include Cape Line, Pura Still, Seekout, and Oskar Blues Brewery. And there seems to be a new hard seltzer beverage company every day.
Recently, PBR announced its Stronger Seltzer, an 8% ABV drink. Four Loko also announced their own spiked carbonated drink, called the Sour Blue Razz.
Natural Light even got in on the action, with a seltzer that has its own GIFs on Instagram Stories. One of them hilariously displays a White Claw pouring itself into a dumpster. Bud Light and Corona also have released lighter, fruitier versions of their flagship drinks; Bud Light with their Ritas Spritz and Corona with their Refrescas.
There are also plenty of lesser-known brands, like Crook & Marker, which makes a coconut-pineapple flavor, and
Long gone are the days of hard seltzers being laughed at. Nowadays, you might even find yourself judged for drinking something other than a Truly or White Claw. Hard seltzers are truly a one-of-a-kind drink. They’re easy to consume, very tasty, and most importantly, somewhat healthy; emphasis on the “somewhat.”
All jokes aside, hard seltzers are a much more viable option as an everyday drink than any other drink. A hard seltzer a day may not keep the doctor away, but it’s certainly better for you than religiously guzzling down beers.
Don’t be surprised if hard seltzer sales one day overtake the beer industry. The growth of this market is absolutely insane. Don’t get left behind!
If you’re looking for some quality hard seltzers, take a trip over to the Saucey site! We carry hundreds of different hard seltzers from a ton of different brands. And we deliver it straight to you.