The “new age” of alcohol beverages is the talk of the industry with hard seltzers, hard kombucha and other innovative drinks seemingly all the rage. Like a race to be the “next new style” of beer created grapefruit IPA’s, Hazy this-and-that and other esoteric flavors, will we now see a surge in “off-flavored” alcoholic beverages? My guess is yes. And look what just popped up; Pabst Blue Ribbon Hard Coffee, a chocolate-flavored malt beverage (FMB) with Arabica and robusta coffee beans, milk, and vanilla.
“Pabst Blue Ribbon has always been a brand that pushes boundaries and celebrates those who experiment and try new things,” Pabst Blue Ribbon Brand Manager John Newhouse said in a release. “Hard Coffee is an opportunity for us to pioneer a delicious and fun new drink, and give America something unique. We hope everyone loves it as much as we do.”
I guessing that state and federal regulatory agencies won’t like it as much as Newhouse does. The product does contain caffeine, which has been banned in the past in alcoholic beverages, most notably the caffeinated beer brand Moonshot which was shut down by the FDA. Other states such as California have taken a dislike to packaged caffeinated alcohol drinks.
PBR Hard Coffee is only selling in test markets, where it might just stay.