SAN ANTONIO — Topo Chico fans – listen up. There's a shortage of one of Texas' favorite beverages at the moment.
The popular sparkling mineral water is harder to find in glass bottles these days. That's because there's a glass shortage as many bars and restaurants are reopening after pandemic closures forced them to stop operating.
Topo Chico comes in two other forms though: plastic bottles and cans (if you buy their hard seltzer).
It's been sourced exclusively from Cerro del Topo Chico in northern Mexico since 1895 and comes in several varieties: Original, Twist of Lime, Twist of Grapefruit and Twist of Tangerine flavors.
The company, which is owned by Coca-Cola, has told some media outlets it is experiencing extremely strong demand, coupled with a shortage of raw materials.
For serious Topo Chico consumers, one way to bypass the shortage may be to order online. The company is selling a limited-edition 12-pack of mineral water (in glass bottles), which can be shipped anywhere in the contiguous U.S. The box is designed by renowned Mexican artist Bosco and also includes a limited-edition bottle opener showcasing one of four collectible illustrations by Los Angeles-based tattoo artist Gustavo Jaimes.
The description on Topo Chico's website says it's "the first of many true original artist collaborations."
The deal is only offered online and for a limited time only, while supplies last.
There's no word on when the glass shortage may subside. Restaurant industry experts say it's not the only item causing problems. Items like silverware, food ingredients and parts for kitchen equipment are taking far longer to arrive. Add to that staffing shortages and it's been extremely challenging for restaurants everywhere.
A Bureau of Labor Statistics report in June estimated that the leisure and hospitality industry was facing a shortfall of more than two million jobs compared to pre-pandemic levels.