In the wake of Bud Light’s massive backlash against trans influencer Dylan Mulvaney for their sponsorship of an Instagram post, a new alcoholic beverage brand has launched a canned vodka soda called Gay Water. The drink is named after a colloquialism used to describe the popular mixed drink of vodka and soda ordered at bars by members of the LGBTQ community. Launched by queer influencer Spencer Hoddeson—who has 120K followers on TikTok, work experience posting socials for Yahoo corporate, and a long list of marketing positions under his belt—the brand is aiming to fill in the gap for more LGBT+ representation in the alcohol industry.
Currently available in lime, watermelon, peach, and grapefruit flavors, Gay Water boasts just 80 calories and 4% ABV per can. The beverage has been formulated with only three ingredients and is gluten-free and sugar-free. Hoddeson teamed up with a queer designer to create the brightly colored packaging, which draws inspiration from ’90s Nickelodeon shows and pop art. The drinks will be distributed to a wide range of liquor stores, bars, and restaurants in the US.
The founders of the company hope that their queer mission-driven brand will help reclaim the word “gay” and remind people that its earliest definition once meant happy. As a result, the brand is committed to being visible for the LGBTQIA+ community 365 days a year—by making sure its colorful cans are seen at local bars, restaurants, liquor stores, grocery stores, and of course, people’s homes.