By Jenn Harris
This post has been updated. See details below.
8:00 PM EDT, April 21, 2014
Imagine mixing your own cocktail without using a cocktail shaker, or pouring any liquor. That's the idea behind Palcohol, a new powdered alcohol product that could be headed to a store near you this fall.
There are six varieties, which according to the website, include V, made from vodka distilled four times; R, made from Puerto Rican rum; Cosmopolitan; Mojito; Powderita (the Margarita version) and Lemon Drop. Each individual pouch of powder is the equivalent of one shot of alcohol.
"Imagine a regular margarita on a counter," said Palcohol founder Mark Phillips, who is the author of the book "Swallow This: The Aggressive Approach to Wine." Now imagine if you could snap your fingers and the margarita turns into powder. That’s what Palcohol is ... without the magic."
The powdered cocktails are meant to be mixed with water to create a cocktail and the V and R can be combined with a mixer such as cola or orange juice for a traditional mixed drink.
Both Lipsmark, the company that owns Palcohol, and Phillips are remaining mum on the details behind producing the product until they secure a patent, but the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB), part of the U.S. Department of Treasury, approved Palcohol this month, reported Bevlaw.com.
[Updated April 22, 8:52 a.m. PDT: Palcohol has released a new statement on its website regarding the approval of its product labels: "We have been in touch with the TTB and there seemed to be a discrepancy on our fill level, how much powder is in the bag. There was a mutual agreement for us to surrender the labels. This doesn't mean that Palcohol isn't approved. It just means that these labels aren't approved. We will re-submit labels. We don't have an expected approval date as label approval can vary widely."]
"It is a great convenience for the person involved in activities where weight and bulk are a factor, like hiking, backpacking, etc.," said Phillips. "One package weighs about an ounce and is small enough to fit into any pocket."
The powder can also be added to food. The company has experimented with adding the Powderita powder to guacamole and the Cosmopolitan to salad, but Phillips admits he's never tasted the powder on its own.
Concerns regarding people snorting the product and smuggling it into areas where alcohol is not allowed are addressed with a simple statement. "Our concern is to promote the responsible and legal use of the product," said Phillips.
The product is expected to be released nationally this fall, but Phillips says he can't release any pricing information just yet or comment on any other products in the works.
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