Steel Reserve introduces Tiki series, a tropical ‘cocktail in a can’

Steel Reserve is betting consumers are ready to savor more flavor as it unveils its new Tiki Series of high-gravity flavored malt beverages

Already known for the fruit flavor-packed lineup in its Alloy Series, Steel Reserve’s new Tiki Series dials up the flavor even more with Strawberry Daquiri and Island Punch, which launched this month across the U.S.

Sold in single-serve, 16-ounce cans, the new Tiki Series flavors check in at 10% alcohol-by-volume, up a notch from its Alloy Series, which weighs in at 8% ABV.

“The more we talked to consumers, they often call out how balanced Steel Reserve beers are, with great flavors and the elevated ABV they’re looking for,” says Justine Stauffer, director of economy brands for Molson Coors Beverage Company.

Priced in line with competitors such as Clubtails, the Tiki Series is seeking to appeal to a growing segment of consumers looking for more potent options, Stauffer says. Research conducted by the brand found that the market for beverages in the 10% ABV range and higher has grown more than 30% over the last three years.

Additionally, spending is up versus last year in small-format retailers, such as convenience stores and bodegas, despite the pantry-loading last year during the pandemic. 

“Clearly, there’s something there. Consumers are beginning to reach for higher ABV products,” Stauffer says.

On top of that, she says, this same group of consumers also is looking for bolder flavors and more premium options, even in the economy segment.

“We found there was really no other player that was leaning into the ever-popular ‘island’ vacation flavors,” Stauffer says “We wanted to take that idea to the next level. These are vacation flavors and that’s what we’re leaning into: a vacation cocktail in a can.”  

While the Tiki Series is part of Molson Coors’ economy portfolio, its pricing and positioning reflect the company’s intent to premiumize its product mix, Stauffer says.

Along with the Steel Reserve Alloy Series, the Tiki Series will play a crucial role in Molson Coors’ recently revamped economy strategy, which streamlined the company’s portfolio to focus on its strongest and fastest-turning brands, including Miller High Life, Keystone Light and Icehouse.