Serious Eats: Drinks

We Try the New Bacardi Light Strawberry Daiquiri

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[Photo: Maggie Hoffman]

I have nothing against strawberry daiquiris. When made right, they can be delicious: start with a real, old-school daiquiri (that is, fresh lime, light rum, a little sugar). Muddle some strawberries in. Heck, I think you could probably just throw all that stuff in a blender—even using frozen strawberries—and it would be good. Rum is good. Strawberries are good. Lime and sugar are good.

But the bottle of new premixed ready-to-drink Bacardi Light Strawberry Daiquiri that arrived at my doorstep the other day? Well, it had rum. The other stuff was a bit more unclear. "Natural flavors, certified colors, and artificial sweeteners." The color: an orangey glowing pink. The scent: strawberry bubble gum and cotton candy. Forgive me for being fearful.

Premixed cocktails are tricky to do right. Citrus flavor often comes out oily and lacks the bright acidity that is needed to cut through sweetness. Artificial sweeteners are even harder to make delicious.

But Bacardi does an ok job. The premixed cocktail, poured over ice, has more tartness than I expected, moving it toward balance. The berry flavor even almost-works: I could believe that it's not that far off from what you'd get with frozen strawberries. But then there's the hit of alcohol (at 25 proof, you taste it more than you should) and the lingering weirdness of artificial sweeteners. The aftertaste is similar to sugar-free gum, and if you don't mind that, you won't mind this. But I have to believe there's probably a tastier way to drink your 34.2 calories for 1.5 fluid ounces.

Have you tried the premixed Bacardi cocktails? Are any of the Light options worthwhile?

About the Author: Maggie Hoffman is the editor of Serious Eats: Drinks. She lives in San Francisco. You can follow her on Twitter @maggiejane.

Sample provided for review consideration.

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