Welcome to the summer of 2019, when people from all walks of life are taking a break from drinking beer on patios to drink hard seltzer on patios. Photo by MacKenzie Chase

Down here in the crypt, the freaks and geeks of the Masters of Brewtality staff actively partake in pretty much any form of degenerate activity that happens to tumble down the drains. This month, we’re diving into that whole hard seltzer craze that’s been blowing up the internet lately. Thankfully, it’s come at the perfect time, too. This is that magical zenith of the summer when the weather has been perfect long enough for all of us to have picked up a nice little beer gut from the porch, patio and camping day drinking. It happens every year, but we’re ready to imbibe a lower calorie option, and the hard seltzer seems to be a hot ticket, so we’re taking a little break from craft beer to see what it is all about.

Initial impressions

We immediately wondered what kind of depressive alcoholic nonsense this was. Why in the Dark Lord’s name would anyone need to booze up their water? Can’t you just take a shot or pound a beer like a regular person? But, that first taste—it’s cool, it’s refreshing and it’s got slightly more flavor than La Croix, which every serious drunk we knew used as a beer substitute for a bit when it got popular before leaping screaming back into the bottle. We sampled both Truly and White Claw for the research and, frankly, they’re pretty much the same. Someone shouted, “Lemon!” behind a closed door and that about sums up the flavor. Still, they’re enticing.  

As the night goes on

Do people actually get drunk off of these? Honestly, how many of these does a person have to drink to catch even a slight buzz? After six, we’d be confident to perform open heart surgery after a single YouTube tutorial. It seems like the perfect way to extend an evening of drinking though, if you’re going beer/seltzer/beer/seltzer. We’ve all been there when you’ve had three strong beers before 9 p.m. and you’re so hammered you think you might die. We pondered as to whether or not hard seltzers were keeping us hydrated and even asked the internet, but it seems the jury is still out. Livestrong.com said the fullness associated with the bubbles may impede athletes from getting enough actual water, so there’s that. But, according to our research, the target demographic of folks in their 20s are moving toward hard seltzers as they don’t give the same bloated feel that beer does. We’ve found just opening the floodgates and pissing every hour has roughly the same effect, though.  

The hype

Let’s be honest, the best part about hard seltzers is the memes. The humor that’s sprung up around this is incredible. Someone said they’re like Four Loko if Four Loko went to private school. Down here in the crypt, however, we’re old enough to remember not remembering the couple years when Four Lokos had caffeine in them and, trust us, that was a collectively dark time for everyone. You’re not going to have a great night on hard seltzers and wake up with strangers shooting up in your bathroom. They say the caffeine-free Lokos were a different beast, yet they still manage to black out the entire MOB crypt halfway through a can every time, so after a 12-pack of Truly, we’re not sold on the comparison. As the internet is a sordid place where all grim dreams come true, it seems there are a few people out there who have also gotten “There’s no law drinkin’ the Claw” tattoos. It’s a bold, lifelong move to celebrate what will probably be a fad that lasts another few months. The ghosts and ghouls here at Masters of Brewtality commend those brave souls for keeping tattoo artists who specialize in cover-ups in business.  

Final summation

There most certainly is law when drinking the Claw, as the very nice police officer informed us when we tried to steal his car. In all seriousness, though, for a summer break from beer, they’re pretty OK. It takes a hell of a lot to rage with these, but if you’re trying to keep the party going all night, they’re a perfect break from beer. Grapefruit and lime seem to be the winners from both Truly and White Claw every time. The orange was absolutely terrible, and lemon is just a placeholder for the two favorites. Rumor is the Green Room is serving up a DIY version on tap, which will undoubtedly catch on elsewhere, and is just beyond weird to us. In conclusion, the above-ground that normal humans live in is a strange place. 

Cheers! Until next month.

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