Zima, the clear adult beverage that falls somewhere between a beer and a wine cooler, is back for the summer. In fact, many of you may have already tried it.
Those who are old enough remember Zima as a hip product of the '90s, like JNCO jeans or frosted tips. MillerCoors embraces the drink's status as a nostalgia icon in a recent ad campaign, which includes a website seemingly built by Geocities.
But its heyday was 1994, where it sold an impressive 1.3 million barrels. Two years later, those numbers dropped to 403,000 barrels.
The sharp decline was likely due to the taste - the citrus malt beverage worked better as a cocktail mixer even though it was advertised as a standalone beverage. In the U.S., savvy mixologists combined it with schnapps to create Nox-Zima. In modern-day Japan, many drink it with a touch of cassis or yogurt liqueur.
Another reason is that despite being marketed toward men in their 20s, Zima ended up being more popular among young women. Social stigma kept men away from the drink, fearing that they would be seen as "girly" with a bottle of Zima in their hands.
After spending nine years off the shelves, MillerCoors is finally bringing the drink back, this time marketed as a blast from the past rather than a manly drink for cracking one open with the boys.
Zima will be available until Labor Day. Please drink responsibly.
MillerCoors provided a 6-pack of Zima to sample for this piece.
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