Retro cocktails are making a major comeback for summer, reflecting a post-pandemic desire for fun experiences. Topping the list as the hottest cocktail is the Pina Colada.
Invented in a luxury hotel bar in Puerto Rico in the 1950s for wealthy tourists looking for a taste of the Caribbean, the Pina Colada is now one of Australia’s most popular cocktails in the on-premise.
It’s also gathering momentum online. Sophisticated Cocktail Co founder Vicki Lyon said sales data for the past month across the company’s online store has shown a sharp increase in the purchase of Pina Coladas and a demand from retailers to stock them.
“With people stuck at home and dreaming of travel the past two years, the humble Pina Colada, reserved for tropical holidays and being caught in rain, has had a major resurgence,” Lyon said.
“As the generation of boomers have started enjoying the resurgence of cocktails, they they are bringing back the cocktails they enjoyed once enjoyed in the 70’s, 80’s and 90’s, and with that bringing them back to the fore and introducing the younger generation to these cocktails as barman and drink companies capitalise on the trend and come up with new and exciting ways to reintroduce them.
“The often-colourful concoctions with a vintage feel are also attracting the Instagram crowd who are emulating the retro fashion aesthetic and matching that with their drinks.”
A survey by Drinks House 247 found the Pina Colada was most popular among those aged between 25 and 44, and 55 and over.
“We have partnered with the Goodrop who make a mocktail version of the pina colada with fresh pineapple and lime juice from their East Coast farm in central NSW and added our special blend of dark and silver rum and a dash of coconut puree and falernum to bring the flavours of the Caribbean to the drink,” Lyon added.
“All batched in our eco-friendly pouches and ready to pour straight from the bag and enjoy! Add a dried pineapple and Marciano cherry and you will be transported to the dunes of the Cape!”
The cocktail is available online at www.sophisticatedcocktailco.com.au or Dan Murphy outlets in NSW and other independent retailers across the country.
Australians can’t get enough of Pina Coladas
The Pina Colada was pronounced Australia’s third most popular cocktail according to recent research by soft drink and mixer producer Fentimans.
Fentimans created a global index of the hottest cocktail picks around the world, by looking at the number of hashtags associated with each cocktail on both Instagram and TikTok.
The mixer master also used a Twitter sentiment analysis tool to understand more about the positivity rating of each cocktail. A score was attributed to each metric, which allowed Fentimans to determine an overall score.
CGA’s OPUS report puts the classic drink among the hottest cocktail picks among Australian on-premise visitors. It follows a close second behind Mojitos and Margaritas, with 22% of Australian cocktail drinkers ordering the serve.
Drinks companies are eagerly adding Pina Colada-themed releases to their line-ups, including Poor Toms Pina Colada Gin. The re-released cult classic was originally produced in 2020 as an escapist treat at the beginning of the pandemic, with the innovative gin sold out of 5000 bottles within 72 hours.
After endless requests for its return, the team reimagined the spirit and have released it as a main stay to the Poor Toms product range. And this time around it’s also been joined by a Pina Colada Gin Spritz in RTD can.
Queensland hard seltzer brand Hard FIZZ also released a new limited edition Pina Colada flavour in May; while FELLR hard seltzer announced it was releasing a Pineapple & Coconut flavour for spring.
FELLR Co-founder Andy Skora said: “At FELLR we’re huge on innovation, and have always been looking at where we can take FELLR next. Knowing that Aussie’s have a love of coconut, and with it being relatively new in the alcoholic seltzer space, we decided to try something different and unique, tapping into retro Pineapple & Coconut cocktail trends that are seeing a resurgence.”
Mr Black even created a love child between the Espresso Martini and the Pina Colada at the launch of Mr Black COCONUTS! Rum and Coffee Liqueur last week.
The Cafe Pina Colada featured Mr Black COCONUTS! Rum & Coffee Liqueur, Bundaberg Small Batch Reserve Rum, pineapple juice, coconut puree and lime.
And it was unexpectedly delicious!