Are you too lazy to mix your own drinks at home? If so, the Anheuser-Busch and Keurig Dr Pepper-backed startup Drinkworks has the gadget for you: Home Bar, a device that’s essentially a Keurig for booze.
The company’s cocktails–and beer and cider–come in individual pods, premixed in its factory with what Drinkworks describes as “premium alcohol and ingredients.” Plug one into the company’s $299 machine, and the device chills the ingredients and spits them out into a glass or mug (or straight into your open mouth, if you must). When the cocktails call for it–like a Gin & Tonic–it injects carbonated water into the mix. Other drink pods, which cost $4 a pop, include “classics” like Cosmopolitans, White Russians, and Moscow Mules, as well “paradise collection” drinks like Margaritas.
On its website, the company says that each individual plastic pod can be returned to Loop Industries, the plastics company, which will recycle the materials into virgin plastic for other consumer products–in other words, they aren’t reusable. The user experience itself does away with the glamor and ritual of cocktail making at home, in exchange for a chilled drink in a minute or less. The thinking, I suspect, is that this is a device for people who may be attracted to the idea of a Mad Men-esque cocktail hour but not the tools and learning that go into making an Old Fashioned from scratch.
The Home Bar isn’t available just yet–the company will launch in Missouri and then in California and Florida next year–so it remains to be seen whether it will prove popular. It’s the latest in a long line of startups attempting to disrupt at-home beverages, a category that includes Keurig and Sodastream, but also Juicero, the Silicon Valley startup that squeezed pre-made packets of juice into a cup.