Covers Products: Elderflower-Lime, Ginger-Orange, Rhubarb-Hibiscus
Betera is a line of zero-proof sparkling botanical cocktails that are packaged in 12 ounce glass bottles. The line features three flavors: Elderflower-Lime, Rhubarb-Hibiscus and Ginger-Orange.
The products have 8 calories per bottle and are sweetened with 2 grams of cane sugar. The flavor comes from both a custom blend of botanicals (one for each flavor) and natural flavors.
In terms of taste, these products are light, slightly bitter, crisp in finish and have only a touch of sweetness to them.
Rhubarb-Hibiscus has the most bitter and fully bodied flavor, with cinchona bark (quinine), hibiscus, grapefruit peel, rosehips and hibiscus notes. This tastes like a classic blend of bitter liqueur and soda or tonic water and is also the closest to the other bitters flavored non-alcoholic beverages that are presently on the market.
Elderflower-Lime has a more floral edge to it thanks to the elderflower. Added lemongrass and kaffir lime leaf help the product have a citrus note to the otherwise bitter finish.
Finally, there’s Ginger-Orange, which is made with ginger, turmeric, sweet orange peel, bitter orange peel, rose hips and vanilla bean. This is less obviously a cocktail style flavor, but it’s good nonetheless. You can taste each of the ingredients and they come together into something that has depth and balance.
As far as the packaging is concerned, Betera has a minimalist appearance that doesn’t look like your typical product in cocktail or zero-proof space. It utilizes a 12 ounce soda bottle and a small mostly clear label that features the Betera logo (a letter B with illustrations of flowers covering it) and a few lines of text.
Our first impression was that this was a premium carbonated soft drink, which is what the product looks like. The words “zero-proof cocktail,” which are found beneath the logo, are simply too small to be seen without very close examination. The small text continues on the back, with an ingredient list that’s almost unreadable.
From our perspective, we think there’s a really fine line between this product being a credible zero-proof cocktail and a product that people will consume every day. To expand on this, we think that calling out the word “cocktail” on the label might, despite being zero proof, end up with the product having a very narrow use occasion. We think there’s an opportunity for this product to have a broader audience with those consumers who are looking for unique and/or low sugar carbonated beverages.
While we think that they will face some challenges with positioning, they are typical of any brand in a nascent category.
Ultimately, we think that Betera is a really enjoyable product that delivers high quality flavor in a clean package. They’ve done a superb job of creating thoughtful and well-executed flavors and we like the overall direction of the brand.