Molson Coors Beverage Company is at it again.
The company said today it is partnering with spirits innovator CKBG on a distribution deal that will bring Superbird, a tequila-based ready-to-drink cocktail, to markets across North America.
Superbird is a canned, carbonated, 5.9% alcohol-by-volume take on a Paloma made with natural grapefruit juice, agave nectar, sparkling water and 100% blue agave tequila harvested from plants grown and processed in Tequila, Mexico.
It has no added sugars or artificial ingredients and is slated to launch this spring in 10 U.S. markets and expand nationally in the months ahead.
The drink is the first spirits-based cocktail in the Molson Coors portfolio and represents the latest in a flurry of partnerships inked by Molson Coors in recent months as part of the company’s continued march to diversify from its core beer business.
“We found Superbird and fell in love with the brand, and then we tasted it. Our team has spent a lot of time sampling, and this is one of the drinks that really stuck out from a taste perspective,” says David Coors, vice president of next generation beverages at Molson Coors. “CKBG created a delicious cocktail. Superbird is an authentic, super-premium brand made in Mexico with the highest quality ingredients, and it’s part of a category that is exploding."
Developed by beverage innovator and tastemaker Richard Betts in partnership with media and advertising mogul Joe Marchese, Superbird is the second product of two-year-old CKBG, which also makes a luxury tequila brand.
Betts, a former Master Sommelier who co-founded the wine labels Betts & Scholl and Scarpetta, and founded Sombra Mezcal, says with Superbird, he “made the drink I wanted to drink.”
“I’m a big believer in working at the intersection of enthusiasm and opportunity. If I do what I love – and make what I love – I’ll do it better,” Betts says. “And with Superbird, we see a big opportunity to make something good and make a lot of it. It’s easy to make a good drink, but to make something great and scale it, that’s special.”
Superbird is the first of what Betts calls a “flock of birds,” a line of tequila-based ready-to-drink canned cocktails that will roll out over time via the Molson Coors distribution network.
His company’s partnership with Molson Coors covers all U.S. distribution channels and is “structured for the long-term” to “bring the best of what both companies have to offer in this fast-growing ready-to-drink cocktail space,” Betts says. “We’re deeply honored with this partnership because the Molson Coors network is the best in the business” and is uniquely positioned to “best disseminate the Superbird message to the world."
David Coors says the move to add Superbird helps Molson Coors establish its capabilities in the ready-to-drink cocktails space, which booked 142% growth in 2020 and will be worth an estimated $1.2 billion in 2021, per Nielsen.
“There’s more to come,” Coors says. “We are serious about this space, and this is the first of many products in the wine and spirits category you can expect from Molson Coors. Our goal is to become a meaningful, scaled player.”