With bars closed, you’re left with two options when cocktail hour rolls around: shake up your own or pick up premixed canned cocktails. Yes, there are a lot of mediocre, overly sweet premade cocktails, but these six manage to make convenience delicious and sophisticated.
This crisp and effervescent beverage is the brainchild of Harvard & Stone alum Aaron Polsky, and marries the best parts of a Moscow mule and paloma. Made with Ventura Spirits vodka, it’s punctuated with extracts and organic acids of oroblanco grapefruit, kumquat, jasmine, and ginger. LiveWire’s Heartbreaker, $6 at Bar Keeper, 614 N Hoover St., Silver Lake, livewiredrinks.com, and elsewhere.
Matt Bostick and David King, the team behind this award-winning old fashioned made with proprietary bitters, dreamt up the idea of bottling this classic when they were running their now-closed Baldoria restaurant and bar. It’s best poured over ice, and if you’re feeling extra fancy, add an orange twist. B&K Classic Cocktail Co.’s Old Fashioned, $7.50 at Everson Royce, 155 N. Raymond Ave., Pasadena, bkclassiccocktails.com, and elsewhere.
This floral, fruity, and herbaceous cocktail created by an organic L.A. distillery elevates the classic Italian Aperol Spritz with notes of rose hips, lavender, jasmine, lemongrass, cardamom, and orange bitters. Greenbar Distillery’s Hibiscus Spritz, $20.99 for a 4-pack at Erewhon, 15285 Sunset Blvd., Pacific Palisades, greenbardistillery.com, and elsewhere.
Perfect for an afternoon picnic, this smooth, bubbly, and aromatic libation crafted by a women-led business is punched up with vodka and natural essences of elderflower and pear. Two Chicks’ Sparkling Vodka Fizz, $3.99 at Mission Wine & Spirits, 13654 Burbank Blvd., Sherman Oaks, twochickscocktails.com, and elsewhere.
For a heady cocktail made with fresh cold-pressed orange and lemon juices, this high-rye bourbon sour created by local barman Jason F. Yu becomes a complete drink once you twist and shake the bottle to combine the juices and alcohol separated by different compartments. It’s complemented by bitters made with sassafras, nutmeg, cinnamon, and molasses — and is lovely over ice. Drnxmyth’s Bourbon Sour, $9.99 for delivery at drnxmyth.com, and elsewhere.
Developed by four friends, including local bartender Hope Ewing, Vervet manages to squeeze a craft cocktail experience into its colorful cans. All four flavors are winners, but we especially love the Angelicano, which features red bitters and white vermouth and drinks like a sparkling Negroni. Vervet, $5.50 at Bar Keeper, 614 N Hoover St., Silver Lake, $58 for eight at drinkvervet.com/store.