LCBO predicts the hot drinks for summer

TORONTO, May 26 /CNW/ - As summer swings into high gear, LCBO predicts mixed drinks made with simple, lighter ingredients, classic combinations and retro flavours will be this season's favourites for uncomplicated ways to entertain at home or at the cottage.

During its summer promotion, Ready Set Summer, LCBO is featuring a diverse line-up of new products, including flavoured vodkas, retro-inspired one-pour cocktails, as well as low calorie and classic coolers. The promotion, which runs until July 17 in all 613 stores across Ontario, showcases cocktails and ready-to-drink products as host-friendly entertaining solutions.

"Because staying home is the new going out, our customers want to be 'in the know' when it comes to stylish, casual entertaining," says Bob Downey, Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing, LCBO. "To make it easy for them we are showcasing the hottest trends in summer beverages, including new flavoured vodkas, classic mixed drinks like Jack Daniels and Cola, and cocktails made with retro flavours like root beer."

LCBO is introducing five new flavoured vodkas available exclusively for summer - Burnett's Sweet Tea, Hound Dog Sweet Tea Peach, Sweet Carolina Raspberry Sweet Tea, and retro-inspired Three Olives Bubble (a fusion of tootie fruity fruit flavours) and Three Olives Root Beer. In addition to these releases, new offerings such as Finlandia Grapefruit Fusion Vodka, Smirnoff Twist of White Grape and Absolut Berri Asai Vodka will be available year-round.

As consumers find themselves more pressed for time than ever, ready-to-drink products, such as cocktails-to-go, coolers and one-pour-cocktails, have become popular choices as hosts only have to "chill, pour, serve" when entertaining. This season's products include blasts from the past, like Jack Daniels and Cola, Vex Electric Lemonade (blue Curacao and lime), Captain Morgan Long Island Iced Tea and Bacardi Classic Cocktail Strawberry Daiquiri. Retro flavours also make an appearance with Woody's Sasparilla and Woody's Refresher (cream soda-flavoured.)

And for the health and calorie conscious consumer, the trend is to mix spirits, like vodka, rum, whisky and gin with soda, resulting in a tasty drink that is approximately 65 calories. LCBO is also introducing a selection of low calorie ready-to-drink options (under 100 calories) including Smirnoff Ice Light, Mike's Hard Lemonade Light and Woody's 99 Orange.

Customers can discover how to create simple and refreshing mixed drinks in the Ready Set Summer Guide to Sensational Summer Drinks, available free in LCBO stores with the purchase of any spirit or ready-to-drink product while quantities last. This 30-page booklet features 24 simple summer drink recipes and information on new trends, one-pour cocktails and other ready-to-drink products.

LCBO will also be featuring these new recipes on its Cocktail Lounge, a permanent online destination for cocktail and mocktail recipes, bartending tips and entertaining ideas, at www.lcbo.com. The Cocktail Lounge provides an ever-expanding recipe database, timely event listings and product information.

Customers can also take part in various tasting events in LCBO stores across the province. See www.lcbo.com for details.

For more information about LCBO's Ready Set Summer promotion, entertaining ideas and responsible hosting tips, call the toll-free LCBO Infoline at 1-800-ONT-LCBO (668-5226). In Toronto, call (416) 365-5900 or visit your nearest LCBO store. The TTY number for the deaf and hard of hearing is 416-864-6898 or 1-800-361-3291.

LCBO reminds consumers to please drink responsibly and to never consume alcohol when driving or boating. Also, bring a reusable bag when shopping at the LCBO and return empty beverage alcohol containers (large and small glass bottles, PET plastic, Tetra Paks, bag-in-box and cans) to The Beer Store for a full deposit refund.

Note: Recipes and corresponding images are available upon request.

SOURCE LCBO

For further information: For further information: MEDIA CONTACTS: Trina Hendry, Media Relations Consultant, Marketing and Customer Insights, Tel. (416) 864-6803, Cell: (416) 358-0357, E-mail: trina.hendry@lcbo.com; Chris Layton, LCBO Media Relations Co-ordinator, Tel. (416) 864-6772, Cell: (416) 587-3729, E-mail: chris.layton@lcbo.com


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