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Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Great or Gross?: Bud Light Lime Mojito

Welcome to a new series I'm starting, called Great or Gross? As a marketing person in my professional life, I'm interested in how food is marketed and sold. We have access to cuisine from all over the world, and as new trends emerge in our consumption, so do new products marketed to meet those emerging needs and wants. It's continually evolving, non-stop sales engine. At best, it's interesting to watch and an opportunity to be exposed to new things we never would have found on our own. At worst, it's exposure to GMOs, nasty ingredient lists and underhanded manipulation. How will we know which is which? That's what I'm hoping to find out here. Which lead me to the liquor store to purchase my first product to undergo this analysis: Bud Light Lime Mojito.

Each entry will be assigned a certain number of pros and cons for taste, level of marketing ridiculousness, audacity of claims and offensive/impressive ingredient list. Okay? Okay.

I bought these because they sounded okay and maybe kinda refreshing. Also, I bought them because while most people have fairly developed tastes by the time they're in their 30s, I do not. I am a human goat, I will eat a tin can if it's on the table long enough and I have the palate refinement of a toddler with burned taste buds. I'm no food snob and can almost find the good in any product. I had heard that these things were terrible so I wanted to see if even I thought they were bad.

I poured some BLLM into a glass with a sliced key lime. Bottom's up:

Here's my analysis:

+ 1 PRO for the first sip actually being refreshing. But this could have had more to do with the fact that it's 34 today and I walked from Main street to the West End in the heat. At noon. However, it was not particularly cold, but still refreshing. The lime and mint seemed to be hinted at rather than an integral part of the beer. As someone who likes beer with lemon and beer with tomato/clamato juice, I thought it was good.

+ 1 CON for the second sip being revolting. A LOT more mint the second time around. I like the flavour of lime and think most others do as adding citrus to beer is common, but mint and beer? I couldn't really taste the lime (and I even added my own) because the mint is overpowering. Hoppy mint? Weird.

+ 1 PRO for the alcohol content making it a true light beer: 4%

+ 1 CON for realizing via this stuff there is an ongoing issue I was not aware of: There is no nutitional information or ingredients list required for alcohol. Here is an interesting article on the subject from a stateside perspective. Further investigation to follow.

+ 1 CON for its commercial:

Creative in a someone-put-peanut-butter-in-my-chocolate-someone-put-chocolate-in-my-peanut-butter kind of way. That is to say: Not really. And beer commercials need to get a little more creative. The obligatory girl in a bikini? Yawn.

+ 1 CON points for its tagline: "ARE YOU IN?". In what? In trouble? Incensed? Yes. I am. Because I exchanged money for this product.

+ 1 CON ultimately this product reminded me of a menthol cigarette. I'm a former smoker, and most smokers present and former agree the only time you bust out the menthols is when you're sick. Otherwise, tobacco and mint just don't really mix. Same principle applies here.

+ 1 PRO for creativity. This is an interesting idea and although I don't think it could really be marketable long-term in a pre-bottled format, I think some kind of combo on this level (WAAAAAAAY less mint) might work.

Final Analysis:  MOSTLY CONS. Skip these. Unless you're going to a housewarming of someone you don't like. Then bring 'em



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