People just can’t get enough of Bethenny Frankel, the ambitious and single entrepreneur on The Real Housewives of New York City who became a fan-favourite for her policy of telling it like it is, no matter the drama. (In fact, the drama’s why we love her!) Bethenney has made a brand out of being outspoken, recently landing a plum TV talk show gig for basically saying what everyone else was already thinking.
I love Bethenny’s bluntness. But what really draws me in are her emotional rawness and imperfections. Which explains why I can’t get enough of her new Housewives spin-off, Bethenny Ever After, where we get to follow her day-to-day life as a wife, mother and healthy living entrepreneur. It also includes her step-by-step building of her Skinnygirl health empire, part of which is her very popular alcohol brand.
Late last month, TV personality of Canada’s Got Talent and Breakfast Television hosted the summer kick-off event for Skinnygirl Cocktails at Toronto’s Drake Hotel. Though Bethenny was not able to attend, 200 women and a few lucky men were treated to red-hot manis and swishy Skinnygirl ponytails à la Bethenny. The appetizers supported the health and nutrition theme, with bites of sushi, cucumber slices with feta, and mini cake pops.
Bethenny’s new low-cal Skinnygirl Cocktails line features flavoured vodkas, wine, sangria and other pre-mixed cocktails, in addition to the already successful Skinnygirl Margarita. Just go easy on the heavy pour, as the White Peach Margarita is 100 calories only when you stick to a 125 ml serving. It’s not so skinny if you drink the whole bottle!
So what should you expect? The cocktails and the margarita are not overly sweet and taste much better than your typical syrup-filled fizzy cooler. The coconut-flavoured vodka was a favourite, subtle in taste and refreshing when mixed with soda water and a twist of lime. The pre-mixed cosmo cocktail tasted like straight vodka to me — which could be a good or bad thing, depending on how you look at it.
And really, it’s no surprise that Bethenny and her parent company, Beam Global, have expanded the Skinnygirl line. The margarita alone was the #1 selling ready-to-serve cocktail in 2011 and catapulted Ms. Frankel to the super-millionairesse level when she sold the brand to Beam for $8.1 million in March of that year. (At the risk of being Real Housewives–catty, I’ll mention that there’s a vast difference between 8 mill and 120, the latter of which was being thrown around in the gossipsphere for quite a while.)
Still, millions are millions. And since that original Skinnygirl sale, Bethenny has launched lines for Skinnygirl shapewear and Skinnygirl daily health supplements, not to mention nutrition bars, a skincare collection, a workout DVD and an online workout portal. And she’s written a novel, and just launched a talk show with Ellen DeGeneres as her producer! Clearly, when it comes to commercializing success, Bethenny is the Survivor of any/every Real Housewives series!
What do you think of Bethenny’s Skinnygirl cocktails? Will you be trying them out, or any of her other products? What about her new talk show — interested? Let us know in the Comments!
Lisa Ng is the Editor-in-Chief of The Hip + Urban Girl’s Guide, a lifestyle website that blogs daily about food, travel, fashion and events. When she’s not chasing after the best taco or donut somewhere around the world, you can find her in Toronto sharing her finds online.