Can Hard Seltzer Get Skunked?

Many people have experienced the consumption of hard seltzer. It is famous in the United States, the UK, and Japan and is one of the most controversial drinks you will find on the market.

Hard seltzer is the name for an alcoholic soda (seltzer means carbonated water) that comes from cane sugar or barley. Even though it has the same primitive ingredients as beer, it has a totally different taste.

Barley and cane sugar ferment to produce alcohol, and that is why hard seltzer has at least a concentration of 5% and gives you an optimal buzz. You can find hard seltzer in many brands like the following that share more than 80% of the US market:

  • White Claw
  • Truly
  • High Noon Spirits
  • Bud Light Seltzer
  • Bon & Viv

Most hard seltzer drinks have additions of fruit juice or extracts. That offers them a better taste and makes it easier for you to drink them, and covers the taste of alcohol.

Today we will talk a little more about how can hard seltzer skunk when you perish under the sun or any other adverse temperature condition.

What Is a Hard Seltzer?

As mentioned before, hard seltzers are nothing more than spirits with 5% alcohol or even more sometimes. They have active carbonated water inside to resemble normal soda.

With hard seltzer, you may easily get drunk, so you need to consume it responsibly. Even though it has some of the basic beer ingredients inside, it certainly doesn’t taste like a beer.

How Can a Drink Get Skunked?

A drink can get skunked in many ways. First, we need to identify what skunk means.

It’s the definition of funny taste that establishes in any drink being left for much time under adverse temperature and pressure conditions. Especially excessive temperature is liable for skunking any drink that contains fermented barley.

Hard seltzers are no exceptions and can easily get skunked when you leave them for a long time under the sunlight.

That’s why many supermarkets place them in mildly heated and dark spaces to ensure they will keep their freshness and taste for a long time.

Are there any Beer Hops in the Hard Seltzer?

Fortunately, there are not any beer hops in the hard seltzer drink. However, there is still a chance for hard seltzer to go off and skunk even when you have taken all the protective measures.

That could happen because you decided to expose it to sunlight or, even worse, to higher temperatures. When you listen to the inside of a hard seltzer boil, it’s time to realize it has got skunked.

Additionally, a skunk can happen when you freeze and re-warm the hard seltzer. The ingredients inside the hard seltzer are quite sensitive to temperature fluctuations, and even though no beer hops are present, skunking may always happen.

What Protective Measures Does Hard Seltzer Have?

Hard seltzer manufacturing companies have taken several measures to deal with skunking. Here are some of them:

  • Aluminum cans: These cans protect the hard seltzer from sunlight. They can be more protective when they are in multiple containers, and that’s why selling hard seltzer isolated is rare.
  • Higher ABV: Some hard seltzers may have a higher ABV. The excessive alcohol concentration may protect the hard seltzer from skunking and give you more chances to have a properly tasted-drink.

Even though some protective measures are there, it’s always better to keep your hard seltzers in the best possible shape. Keeping them away from heaters and the sunlight is the best protection against skunking.

Is it Dangerous to Drink a Hard Seltzer that Got Skunked?

Even though hard seltzers that have gone skunked taste funny, you will have no health issues if you decide to drink them.

They continue to be mixtures of alcohol with carbonated water and fruit extracts, but they have some spoiled compounds inside, giving them a funny taste.

Apart from the funny taste, you may easily decide to have hard seltzer and get the optimal buzz you need when you are out.

Skunked hard seltzer will not cost you more than the normal one, but you better mention it to the bartender to have a free drink later!

Does Heat Affect the Quality of Hard Seltzer?

Heat is the number one enemy of the hard seltzer drink. You can be sure that if you leave a hard seltzer in higher-than-normal temperatures for more than an hour, it will surely get skunked.

That happens because heat makes flavor compounds dissolve in the mix and get unified with sulfuric molecules.

The latter is responsible for the bad taste and lower quality of hard seltzer. Even if you don’t know what’s inside a hard seltzer, it’s better to buy them from responsible retailers.

Do Open Hard Seltzers Go Bad?

When you open a hard seltzer, you must consume it within a few hours. Otherwise, it will not be carbonated anymore, and there is a chance that it will get skunked.

Opened hard seltzers can give you a chance to unite with others and even share the container with your friends.

When you drink alone, it’s preferable not to forget that the hard seltzer is open for many hours as it will surely get a funny taste.

Believe it or not many people have experienced how a hard seltzer that is skunked tastes. But you don’t need to have such an experience yourself.

Final Words

Hard seltzers are some of the best drinks made from barley and cane sugar, containing alcohol in lower concentrations. They are the best alternative to traditional beer, plus they offer a refreshing fruit taste that will make you a lot keener with alcohol when you go out with friends.

With hard seltzers, you need to take measures when you get them from the liquor store for home use. Make sure you keep them deep in your kitchen cabinet storage space because any sunlight exposure could make them get skunked.

Enjoying the best hard seltzer quality is your right, and you need to reserve it!



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