War on Four Loko Over; Battle of the Blast Begins

|

When Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley isn't ruining peoples lives or blowing Senate races, she's attacking social problems that don't exist—like the latest teen trend of drinking huge cans of pomegranate flavored malt liquor. Sure, no one is actually drinking "Blast," Colt .45's new and obviously disgusting flavored beer, but Coakley and 18 other AGs suspect that children will go mad for giant, "brightly colored" cans of the watermelon brew.

Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley, along with 18 other Attorneys General, today called on Pabst Brewing Company to stop selling or alter its new malt drink beverage, Blast by Colt 45, because of its high alcohol content and marketing tactics. The drink, known as "binge-in-a-can," offers the equivalent of five beers in one serving.  The Attorneys General also are concerned that the product is being marketed and packaged in a way that targets underage youth.

Earlier this month, Pabst introduced its Blast by Colt 45 as a flavored malt beverage in fruit flavors of grape, strawberry lemonade, strawberry watermelon, and blueberry pomegranate, with an alcohol concentration of 12% in brightly colored 23.5 ounce single serving cans.  This means that each single serving contains the equivalent of nearly five servings of alcohol.  Anyone who consumes a can of Blast within an hour will have engaged in binge drinking as defined by The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Ban it! And while you're at it, Martha, why not ban flavored vodka? Or Godiva liqueur? After all, kids love chocolate. And kids also love Snoop Dog, who signed on as Blast's spokesman.

The press release claims that the drink is "known as binge-in-a-can," though the only reference I can find to this clunky sobriquet  is from …Martha Coakley who, as quoted in the very same press release, moans that "the promotion of this 'binge-in-a-can' is aimed at the youngest of drinkers as well as underage youth."

Reason on the (successful) war against Fourloko.

NEXT: Phil Dick Tells Punks About Secession

Editor's Note: We invite comments and request that they be civil and on-topic. We do not moderate or assume any responsibility for comments, which are owned by the readers who post them. Comments do not represent the views of Reason.com or Reason Foundation. We reserve the right to delete any comment for any reason at any time. Report abuses.

  1. Has the Snoopz hairline always been that high?

    1. He’s pushing 40. Or, if you cut your hair short enough you’d look bald too.

      1. I don’t need a haircut to make me look bald thankyouverymuch.

    2. Wearing cornrows that much promotes baldness.

    3. The Snoopy Snoopy Poop Dog man is beginning to show his age.

    4. Snoop Dogg reppin’ LBC! But no that’s not his hairline. That’s the indicator on his “high-o-meter”. I think it is stuck at maximum.

  2. Yesterday I was on the Pabst website going through their various brands (I was looking for logo ideas to steal) and when I clicked on the Colt 45 page it was all about this crap rather than the original, sophisticated Colt 45. Immediately I thought, “How long until somebody tries to ban this?” Didn’t think I’d get my answer in less than 24 hours.

  3. flavors of grape, strawberry lemonade, strawberry watermelon, and blueberry pomegranate

    Is there any market for this? Any? Who would drink this?

    1. See “purple drank” for the expected market demographic.

      1. I think drinking even codeine-free cough syrup would be better tasting and deliver a more rewarding altered state than this stuff.

        1. First time I got smashed I was fifteen and it was toxic mix of Absolut and….Grapefruti-flavored Mad Dog 20/20. Best anti-alcohol abuse class I ever had.

          So if there’s a market for grapefruit flavored MD-20/20, this shit has a market.

          Fitting that Pabst makes it, too.

          1. “”Fitting that Pabst makes it, too.”‘

            Indeed.

    2. Their biggest mistake was leaving out a menthol flavor in the lineup. THAT at least would’ve been safe from the banhammer.

      1. Colt has, in the past, made a “menthol” (mint) version of Colt 45. I kid you not.

        1. I’ll be damned.

          They really passed up a rockin marketing tie-in with Kool, didn’t they? “Taste The Kool”, “Kool Colt, flavored with real Kool cigarettes!”

          1. I found out about it in college when I asked a friend who was going to the liquor store to grab some 40’s for a party (it was common to do a Centurion with malt liquor). He came back, hands me the bottles, and I look at the labels, which he clearly failed to do. I went “WTF?!?”

            People drank it anyway. I tried it. It was…fucking disgusting.

            1. I once threw a party in college where we ran out of our two kegs, and all of our various liquor. All that remained at one point was dry vermouth.

              I checked a half hour later and all the dry vermouth was gone. Fucking college kids will literally drink anything they can get a buzz off of.

              1. Almost anything. On two separate occasions I left a fifth of everclear (the 190 proof) in an undefended freezer at a party. Both times I was able to go and collect it the next day

                1. I did the same, the leaving it in the freezer, that is.

                  I went to school in North Carolina. We had some mountainfolk attend the party. And then I had no everclear.

                  1. Also, to respond to Epi’s original amazement at what fruit-flavored liquor people will drink, one of the mountain guy’s trademark recipe was this:

                    – one part Kool-Aid mix
                    – two parts Aristocrat vodka

                    Stir.

                  2. That’s the saddest thing I’ve read today.

                  3. hey . . . I remember that bottle.

                    1. WHAT?

                      The guy’s name was Alan. No kidding.

                      The Kool-Aid/Crat cocktail above was also called That Shit That Alan Drinks.

                    2. I’m not a drinker, but if I were, kool-aid and vodka sounds like a good mix.

    3. Malt liquor? Grape flavored? Endorsed by Snoop Dogg? Yeah, the target market is a mystery.

      1. At least you didn’t say “watermelon flavored”.

        1. I know what you mean.

    4. I suspect it might be an attempt to limit teen drinking – 23 oz of that in an inexperienced drinker is quite likely to be coming back up pretty quickly.

    5. College age. Four loko had the same crowd RIP

    6. Episarch, there’s already stuff like this out there that’s popular. Look at Wild Blue, the blueberry “malt beverage” that clocks in at around 8% ABV. Then all of the fruit wheat beers out there (both craft and macro).

      1. I realize there are fruit beers and that they’re popular. But those make sense. These just seem disgusting, like the Colt 45 “mint” that I mentioned above.

        1. Yeah, they aren’t good. But they are functional. Broke college kids wanting a real fast/cheap pregame, or just for the hell of it.

        2. I see this as just the canned version of the giant punch bowls of kool-aid/juice and everclear/vodka that was always popular around the young and poor drinking set. Cheap, alcoholic, sweet, and fruity (NTTAWWT-as long as I don’t have to drink it).

      2. I liked Champale Pina Colada, but they stopped making it.

        1. Clarif’n: it was one of the Champale Coolers (malt liquor-based).

    7. Yes, they’re called college students.

  4. So, if i drink a whole 750ml bottle of wine, a meager 3 glasses, or about 2fl more than a can of Blast, which also has 50% higher ABV, that’s binge drinking? Gimme a fucking break, CDC.

    I guess when I crack open a 1-1.5L bottle, I should also bust out the cigarette holder and sunglasses, and make for bat country, because I’m into something real serious then.

    1. *2fl oz more

    2. Because wine is the drink of the sophisticated elites, who are capable of discerning what is good for themselves. Blast is only imbibed by the underclasses and/or children, they are too stupid to think for themselves and need the someone to tell them what to do.

      1. Blast is only imbibed by the underclasses and/or children minorities/colored people, they are too stupid to think for themselves and need the someone to tell them what to do.

        FTFY

        1. Children, Niggas, Tomato, Tomahto, let’s call the whole thing off.

        2. It’s the modern White Man’s Burden.

    3. If you drank it in an hour, it is binge drinking by some stupid definition. I’ve always thought that a binge really needs to last more than one day to really count.

      Speaking of wine, have these people never heard of Franzia or Boon’s Farm? Cheap, fruity, 12% alcohol beverages are not a new thing.

      1. Tour de Franzia!

    4. Blast has 12% ABV according to the article.

      Do you only drink wines with 8% ABV? That’s weak shit.

  5. You can sum up the ideology of the left by the following: people are inherently stupid, and hence need Big Brother to watch over them.

    1. Other “people are inherently stupid, and hence need Big Brother to watch over them.”

      FTFY

      1. Other “people are inherently stupid, and hence need Big Brother ME and others like me to watch over them.”

        1. I accept this correction.

    2. Excluding college-educated progressive whites, you mean.

  6. Anyone who consumes a can of Blast within an hour will have engaged in binge drinking as defined by The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

    Now that’s what I call efficiency.

    1. What sort of pussy milks one drink for over an hour?

  7. Wait, 12% abv makes five beers? The can is slightly less than twice the size of a typical 12oz beer. A quick check shows my Blue Moon is 5.4% abv. So that makes Blast only about four of what I’d call a medium abv beer.

    I’m also going to guess it tastes awful.

    1. 12%*23.5oz/5%(typical beer ABV)/12oz=4.7

      I’ll give them credit for doing their math right. Unfortunately everything else is still wrong.

      1. PBR has 4.74% ABV. That comes out to exactly 5 12oz. beers == 1 23.5 oz. can of Blast.

        Nevertheless, all this nanny state hyperbole is getting … well, hyperbolic.

        1. Assuming your math is right, that’s funny (since the product is made by pabst). I wonder if that was deliberate.

    2. Bust out some Stone Arrogant Bastard IPA. I’ll take the Pepsi challenge with Colt and that Arrogant shit any day.

      And what about Spaaten’s Optimator? More alcohol than Colt in the bottle, and it tastes like fucking mud.

      Weird the way we pick and choose what’s ‘bad.’

      1. Optimator tastes like mud? I may not be Arrogant Bastard, but I’d drink it waay before fruit flavored malt liquor.

      2. What????

        First of all, Arrogant Bastard isn’t an IPA. And second, if you think Optimator tastes like mud, I think you’ve been drinking too much Colt 45. I don’t care if you don’t like it, but with all the flavors in that beer I don’t know how it comes off tasting like mud to you.

        1. I don’t dislike Optimator at all. Its quite good actually, but in texture, flow, it is like mud. Especially compared to something like the ‘typical’ Bud Light water-beer.

          But that’s what I mean by the strangeness of how things get banned. Why not ban Optimator? From a booze-perspective, its every bit as devastating as Colt anything. And has the cachet of being a fancy-lad brew, ‘from Germany!’ after all is a selling point for beer stateside.

          Just bizarre how someone like Coakley finds what to hate and what to not hate. I guarantee if she knew Optimator existed, she’d be trying to ban it. Would probably want an ‘investigation’ into these peculiar turbo-charged products…also known as ‘real’ beer.

          1. . . . in texture, flow, it is like mud.

            OK, that makes more sense. I thought you were talking flavor, which is why I was so confused.

            Yeah, you’re absolutely right about the inconsistent view of ABV. It’s just your typical nanny-state bullshit. (Oh, and for the record, I’m not much of an Arrogant Bastard fan myself; the only Stone beer that has totally blown me away is their Imperial Russian Stout… another beer that should get Coakley all worked up.)

            1. As you can tell, I’m down on my Stone trivia at this point. When I lived in San Diego I would eat at their brewery restaurant about once a week. Sample everything, crawl home.

              Their beer-fest was a blast though. You’d spend all day standing in lines in a field under the SoCal sun drinking heavy-hitter after heavy-hitter from all these little micro-brew outfits, admiring all the tail going by…and chasing some to boot.

              Yeah, Coakley should ban that too. Too much damn fun.

              1. I’ll probably regret saying this, but as f’ed up as California is, at least we don’t have Martha Coakley.

            2. The nannies don’t get worked up about them because of the pricepoint and the demographics. If MD 20/20 was a newly introduced product it would be banned.

        2. And yeah, Arrogant isn’t an IPA. My bad.

        1. Wassa matter? Squirrel got your tongue?

          1. Internet ate my post 🙁 I said I love arrogant bastard but it’s a little over priced – and to toss some barley wine my way

      3. I can’t bring myself to pay $10 for a six-pack. Stone Brewing is tasty but there are so many equally good beers out there in the $6 range.

        1. Like their slogan says…

          Its not too expensive, you’re too cheap

        2. I think Lagunitas gives you pretty good bang for your buck (and, as a bonus, they are–or at least were–reason.com advertisers).

          1. Lagunitas is awesome. Lagunitas, Mendocino, Full Sail, Indian Wells, Deschutes, and (locally for me) Four Peaks, San Tan, and Nimbus all have comparable beers at better price points. $10 for a sixpack? Give me a break.

  8. If we don’t ban this, underage girls will be too drunk to remember that they have an inviolable Constitutional right to an abortion!

  9. Who thinks 12% ABV is high? You people need to start drinking Belgian beer.

    1. Dude, people who drink Bud Light are used to 4%. I tend to average around 8%.

    2. No one who is a wine drinker is fazed by the “OMG 12%” arguments. I can get a case of Big Kahuna for $30 at Fresh and Easy, which is enough to keep me shitfaced for at least a week.

    3. I usually stay clear of imports. They tend to not get handled real well and by the time they get here…skunk! But I too am in the 7-9% range. Good enough.

      1. Usually, the higher the ABV the better they hold up, so you should have better luck with high-gravity Belgian imports than, say, most German imports (which sucks for me since I LOVE German beer).

        1. I came across a great video that explains why beer gets skunked, and specifically why the bottled heineken we have stateside probably tastes nothing like what it actually tastes when its brewed (due to the amount of light let through the glass).
          I’ll try to dig it up but it explained that the skunking process actually changed the chemical composition and transformed into something that was literally the same make up as a skunks scent or something along those lines

          1. Yeah, green bottles=bad. Clear is even worse (see, e.g., Corona).

            1. And yet, I love Newcastle. Never had a bad one, even though it’s in a clear bottle. Twilight Zone.

              1. I’ve definitely had bad Newcastle. I always get it when I see it on tap, though.

      2. In my experience the Belgian Abbey beers seem to hold up quite well (and I have had many of them out of barrels in Belgium).

  10. So, the plan of the Martha Coakley type nannies is to play whack-a-mole, banning iteration after iteration of fruit flavored drinks similar to Four Loko, which keep getting created because there is a market for these drinks and thus money to be made?

    1. God forbid that people get significantly buzzed while drinking something they enjoy at a price they are happy to pay. We must rid the world of such vile things.

      1. Getting buzzed is inherently evil because it causes one to neglect their duties to The Social Contract. One’s time is better spent laboring to increase the collective wealth.

        Love,
        Progressive Prohibitionists

      2. The Beastie Boys told us what needs to be done, but few takers.

        1. Fight for our right to paaaaaarrrrrrrttyyyyyyy?!?!?!

    2. Yes. Yes it is.

    3. I think her plan is to get her name out there as much as possible, and championing the causes of overprotective, hyperventilating, cowardly, responsibility-fearing morons is an easy way to do it.

  11. You just drink it and drink it and drink it and drink it and don’t even worry about it because you’re having a good time and getting wild and drinking it.

    1. That’s what you used to do with wine coolers, right, dude? Or was it just Zima?

      1. Purple Passion FTW!

        1. I just had the Seagram’s Wine Coooler commercial featuring Bruce Willis pop into my head.

      2. Zima, because zhit happens.

  12. i’m sorry this seems more like a tasty alternative for the Steel Reserve drinking folks of the world than a marketing ploy to lure kids into drinking shitty malt liquors.

  13. As an aside, I used to live in North Adams, MA, and harbor a great affection for the scrappy old mill town. I can’t help noticing, however, that it loosed both the execrable Martha Coakley and Arizona’s mini-Arpaio, Paul Babeu, on the world. Now my 3 kids mostly grew up there, and they seem just fine, but you still have to wonder.

  14. Coakley has ordered her sunday morning raid operatives to move on from plucking cloves from Easter hams ,to keep the scent from inciting kretek smuggling, and to begin seizure of Rainbow Unicorn paraphernalia believed to lead to underage fermented mare’s milk drinking.

  15. Fuckin’ Mississippi.

  16. It doesn’t really make sense to target a beverage at teenagers specifically – teenagers will literally drink any alcoholic beverage they can get their hands on. The only unifying element of what I drank when I was underage was that I could get it without having to provide a valid ID.

    1. Seriously. I used to collect little bits out of any bottle that was around until I had enough to get trashed. That is a taste I will never forget. Good times.

  17. Martha Coakley is a really, really bad lawyer.

    She is the one who personally blew Melendez-Diaz before the Supreme Court. She poached the argument from people who had worked the case for years; failed to foresee even the most immediate and inevitable questions at orals; and her office is still whining (I kid you not) about the fallout she caused.

    A completely incompetent hack.

    1. It seems whenever she is left to her own devices in some way involving accountability – court cases, elections – she falls flat on her ugly face.

    2. Who’s Melendez-Diaz and why was he getting blown at the Supreme Court?

  18. Strongly disagree. Motives may be on question, but this is product and advertising addresses the u-21 crowd, including under-agers who are most susceptible. Binge drinking is not good. I hv a teenager about to enter college. Bad product.

    1. Binge drinking is not good.

      FAAAAAAAAAAAG

    2. Do you seriously think that removing this product from the market will keep your teenager from binge drinking in college? You better hope nobody at your teenager’s college has ever heard of products like “vodka,” “rum,” “tequila,” etc.

    3. What law are they breaking?

    4. Binge drinking is not good.

      Therefore, the correct response is to use state force to ban it.

      If I were to also state that having gay sex is not good, shall we use the same solution?

      1. shall we use the same solution?

        Meh, as solutions go, it’s not Final enough.

  19. Is Martha Coakley actually stupid enough to believe that kids who are into brightly colored packages are the same age as the ones who are going to be drinking underage?

  20. I remember drinking “Boone’s Farm” when I was 16. It was very fruity tasting and was brightly colored. I rather would have had beer, but it was available and the girls liked it. I don’t remember any calls to ban it even though it know2n as something teens liked because it was so cheap.

  21. Whar is Earth Day Thread? Whar?

  22. Wine is usually, what, 11-14% alcohol? And it comes in a 750 ml bottle. Using a can of Wasserbier Bud Light (4.2%) as an example, that can be:

    14% * 750ml / (4.2% * 12oz * 29.6ml/oz) = 7.04x

    And that bottle of wine is now seven cans of beer.

    How is that not a “binge in a bottle”?

    Also, for those unaware, Snoop Dogg selling grape- and watermelon-flavored malt liquor while is not targeting children:

    http://blackamericanmoney.com/…..snoop2.png

    The distinction, of course, is irrelevant to AGs and most of the Democratic Party.

    1. It can be up to 20% for fortified wines like Port, which is about as strong as some weaker liquors.

  23. Jerk Doggy Dog is doing the commercials.

  24. I want to ban those liars Hilary Swank and Tony Goldwyn. I don’t want that Conviction movie showing in my state.

  25. The discussion of the demographic factor reminds me of what a black acquaintance who for several years was a public school teacher in a minority district once told me. For a little background, he taught in the early 80s up to the mid 90s until he was suspended after having to spend a little time in prison for selling a little weed (so that’s how a teacher gets fired!). Almost on the first day of his teaching career a candy sells rep paid him a visit. Offered him a monthly kickback to give out L*ffy T*ffy to his class. He accepted the offer. It wasn’t long until that particular candy got associated with that specific demographic.

  26. New Entry for the Merriam-Webster Dictionary

    Coakley (K?k-lee)

    noun
    1. A train wreck involving toxic materials or other seriously aggravating factors
    2. A`massive debacle
    “EPA officials intend to investigate a Coakley outside Jefferson City this morning on the Kansas City Southern line.”

    verb
    3. The occurrence of a Coakley
    “In the film ‘The Fugitive’ Dr. Richard Kimball escapes execution when the bus taking him to prison Coakleys with a train on a river bank.”

    historical
    4. (Martha b. 1953) A Massachusetts politician of the early 21st Century

Please to post comments

Comments are closed.