“It tastes like all the bad decisions you’ve made in your life inside of a can”: White Claw is on its way to Aotearoa

by | Apr 5, 2024 | Drinks, News, Opinion

The people are excited. The people are very excited. Or at least that’s what DB Breweries Senior Marketing Manager, Cormac van den Hoofdakker would have you believe. And what are you so excited about? You, my basic friend, are excited about the launch of White Claw in Aotearoa.

It all started when, according to DB: “eagle-eyed Kiwis spotted the iconic white and black White Claw cans in the hands of well-known New Zealanders including pro surfer Ricardo Christie, singer Paige Tapara and pro Kiteboarder Marc Jacobs – but with no confirmed stockists in Aotearoa – an influx of enquiries, comments and questions began to flood the brand’s inboxes.” Or, to put it more simply, DB have convinced some minor slebs to shill for them and now for phase two of the fizzy-pop-piss hype-machine…

“We have underestimated the excitement and speculation the arrival of White Claw would cause amongst New Zealanders. While we’re not in a position to launch White Claw nationwide for another month or so, as a gesture of goodwill to fans of the brand we’ve committed to launching our ‘First Wave’ concept store in Newmarket,” parps a breathless Cormac in his press release. How very nice of them to think of us.

Lingering questions? Yeah, we do.

Despite your understandable excitement upon hearing the news, you may still have a lingering question or two like: “What is White Claw? Is it the name of a semi-feral Canadian sled-dog who would just as soon rip your throat as look at you? An albino bear? A nasty infection going around the local kennels? A magical sword for hobbits?”
It is in fact a brand of hard seltzer that has been taking the US by storm since 2019 and is now washing up on our shores aided and abetted by afore-mentioned booze behemoths DB. In the US White Claw accounts for 50% of the hard seltzer market and has become, according to Harvard Business School, the “Kleenex of hard seltzer”. Which is a weird thing to say.
Hard seltzer differs from other RTDs in that the alcohol is derived from a brewing proccess rather than distillation (you can read an explainer of how it is made here if that takes your fancy) which means technically it has been classed as a ‘beer base’ overseas. Apparently not here – you won’t be seeing it in supermarkets here, strictly liquor stores only. Once it’s available, of course.
Because we here at The Feed couldn’t actually get our greasy little hands on a can (no samples were provided with the press release, just an invitation to try them at the pop-up launch store), we had to call up American brewer and hard seltzer aficionado Tyler Rubin of Flow Brewery in Taipei to give us his thoughts on the White Claw. He says, rather diplomatically: “I do think it will be successful as long as they get past the first hurdle of getting people pay for something with very little flavour that they could make themselves…”

Real people reviews:

Not really findng that sufficiently mean we turned to Reddit. Here are some sample reviews:

“It tastes like TV static with someone shouting the name of a fruit in the next room”

“Cheap alcohol and artificial flavorings in some carbonated water”
“It tastes like all the bad decisions you’ve made in your life inside of a can”
“It’s like putting your tongue on a 9 volt battery”

Believe the hype, New Zealand.



About the Author

David Wrigley

David is a writer and musician from Kemureti/ Cambridge. He has been published in Noble Rot, Nourish Magazine, Turbine|Kapohau, New Zealand Poetry Yearbook, and is currently working on his first novel. He has done his time in restaurants in Aotearoa and the UK. Oh, yes. He has done his time.

Related Posts

New reports highlight food recall system at work

New reports highlight food recall system at work

A new report by New Zealand Food Safety (NZFS) identifies Salmonella in imported sesame seed-based products as the most significant food safety event of 2023, resulting in 14 recalls affecting 65 food products. The Consumer-level Food Recalls Annual Report for 2023,...