“It’s the one we talked about first and inspired the pathway to the rest,” Rodbell said.
Canned cocktails in the past often have been syrupy sweet and artificially flavored and preserved. Most were made with malt beverages, rather than being spirit-based, due to regulations regarding government-mandated sizes and liquor taxes.
Rodbell has 20 years of experience in marketing and product development with Coca-Cola Co., Georgia Pacific and Cartoon Network. Co-founder Charles Sain is a self-described serial entrepreneur in e-commerce and finance. They set out to fill a void in the market for a ready-to-drink, bar-quality cocktail. “Our approach is recognizable cocktails as effortless and accessible as beer and wine,” Sain said.
“We want to hit all sensorial cues,” Rodbell added.
Transparency and authenticity are important to the duo. “We can disrupt the category with a product that is real,” Rodbell said. The focus is on quality ingredients. They use 100% real citrus juices, carefully matched bitters and distilled spirits, and imported liqueurs.
Their Hemingway daiquri includes two ounces of different rums, real lime juice, cane sugar syrup and a maraschino liqueur imported from Italy. "You can't cut corners on that," Rodbell said. "This is how we want to drink our drinks."
He said they worked with mixologists to make sure they had the right balance. Biltong Bar Beverage Director Sean Gleason was a consultant for the line of canned cocktails. “It was an interesting challenge, with the limitations of canning a product — definitely not what I am used to,” Gleason said. “I’m happy with the final products.”
Post Meridiem’s Westside manufacturing facility has a custom-built canning line for filling the 100-milliliter steel cans. Steel protects the beverages’ flavors, and stores well.
It’s easy to set up a bar when all you have to do is shake a can and serve. A double old-fashioned at a bar would cost more than twice the $3.99-$4.99 price tag for a can that includes 3 ounces of bourbon, bitters, demerara syrup and orange zest oil.
Post Meridiem's lineup currently includes five cocktails, but more are being developed.
Credit: courtesy Post Meridiem
Credit: courtesy Post Meridiem
There currently are five cocktail flavors (47-74 proof): real lime juice margarita, double old-fashioned, Hemingway daiquiri, lemongrass vodka gimlet and that first thought, the 1944 mai tai. They debuted this spring, and each medaled at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition.
There are lots of ideas on the horizon, and “robust plans for venues,” Rodbell said. The founders have charitable organizations like Atlanta’s Giving Kitchen in mind as well, saying they want to be good stewards of the community that is the company’s hometown.
Post Meridiem Spirit Co. 1303 Logan Circle NW, Atlanta. postmeridiemspirits.com.
$3.99 - $4.99 per 100-milliliter can.
Peachtree Road Liquor Store. 1895 Peachtree Road NE, Atlanta. 404-355-4990, peachtreeroadliquor.com.
Sprayberry Bottle Shop. 2692 Sandy Plains Road, Marietta. 770-973-7073, sprayberrybottleshop.com.
Tower Beer, Wine & Spirits. 2161 Piedmont Road, Atlanta. 404-881-0902, towerwinespirits.com.
Westside Beverage. 3310 Drew Campground Road, Cumming. 470-695-7627, wsbeverage.com.
Read more stories like this by liking Atlanta Restaurant Scene on Facebook, following @ATLDiningNews on Twitter and @ajcdining on Instagram.