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Ryan Seng, 41, had been a bartender his entire adult life, most recently at Sacramento’s Grange, until he worked himself out of a job. He recently began producing a line of small-batch, canned cocktails called Can Can Cocktails. It’s not that the product has killed the demand for a good mixologist; Seng had to step down. Under California’s so-called “tied house” laws, he’s not allowed to bartend while manufacturing and wholesaling alcoholic beverages.
Why cocktails in a can?
“I just love cans. There’s something really great about a nice, cold can—especially if there’s a cocktail in it.”
Does the art of mixology translate to a can?
“There’s kind of a snobbery about cocktails,” Seng admits, “but it’s still math, and the nice thing about small batch is the ability to taste, tweak, and get it exactly where I want.” Seng says he became accustomed to mixing up batches of cocktails while at Grange. “It’s the same way we make our Old-Fashioned at Grange: in a big jar, and I add orange peels and bitters and let it sit for about a week. I just infuse instead of muddling.”
Where will Can Can be available?
“Golden 1 Arena is my first client, which is huge, and it’s totally freaking me out. It’s a place where people want high quality but want speed. Eventually, I want to sell four-packs at places like Raley’s.”
What’s the lineup?
Seng’s first cocktail, The 120, is made with vodka, raspberry, mint, lemon and soda. By the end of the year, he also plans to release cans of Boar’s Bourbon Root Beer, White Linen, Old-Fashioned and his favorite drink, gin and tonic.