Cheers! Boulevard Brewing goes beyond beer with canned cocktails, using local spirits

Thirty years after bringing modern craft beer to the Kansas City market, Boulevard Brewing Co. says it still has that entrepreneurial spirit.

So it has created Boulevard Beverage Co. to launch Fling Craft Cocktails, its first line outside of beer.

Initially, it will offer four low-calorie, low-carbohydrate varieties of the all-natural, ready-to-drink cocktails in 4-packs of 12-ounce cans.

The flavors are Blood Orange Vodka Soda, Cucumber Lime Gin and Tonic, Margarita and Mai Tai. The 4-pack will cost $12.99 and the line will be sold in grocery stores, liquor and convenience stores throughout the metro.

Jeff Krum, president of Boulevard, said the company will “always remain first and foremost a craft brewer.” But even as beer lovers, sometimes they want a cocktail instead.

The brewery has the facilities, equipment and expertise to get into the new spirit-based segment of the alternative adult beverages.

They also tapped local vendors — 360 Vodka from Holladay Distillery in Weston; Builders gin from North Kansas City’s Restless Spirits Distilling Co.; and American Agave from Mean Mule Distilling Co. in the Crossroads. But for rum they used a Virgin Islands company.

Boulevard will debut the canned craft cocktails at Kauffman Stadium for the Kansas City Royals’ opening day on March 28. It will begin regional distribution in early April, and roll out the line nationally throughout 2019.

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Joyce Smith has covered restaurant and retail news for The Star since 1989 under the brand Cityscape. She appreciates news tips.