1. Bacardi Breezer:
Many an under-21’s first foray into the dark world of buying booze with a fake ID, Bacardi Breezer “wine coolers” had roughly a 0.005% alcohol content, but damn, were they delicious. Teens’ days of pretending to be wasted off of two of these bad boys have been over since at least 2009, though — in the U.S, anyway. They’re still sold in the U.K., Europe, and Canada as “rum refreshers” or “rum beverages.”
2. Four Loko (with caffeine):
Perhaps the most publicized booze death of recent times, Four Loko still exists, but merely as a shell of the drink it once was. Sans caffeine since 2010, it’s basically just super-sugary, poison-y tasting malt liquor. A number of deaths and accidents were said to be associated with Four Loko, though, so it’s probably for the best.
4. Sparks — and my personal favorite, Sparks Plus — with caffeine:
Arguably the most tragic casualty of the great “energy malt beverage” eradication, Sparks was the OG, and it didn’t try to entice youths with a palate-insulting fruit-juice(ish) flavor. You loved Sparks for what it was, and what it was proud of being: a drink that tasted like poisonous Red Bull and simultaneously got you wasted and provided effects similar to cocaine for under $3. Caffeine was removed from the product in early 2009, so now it just tastes like poison and gets you wasted, which is still kind of cool, I guess.
As of 2008, we’ve been mourning this brave pioneer of the “alcopop” beverage. Zima was all the rage in the mid- and late ’90s, and a favorite amongst hard liquor-phobic youth; a gateway beverage, if you will. Also it was super ~ kewl ~ because it was CLEAR, you guys. If you have an upcoming trip to Japan, though, you might be able to get your grubby little mitts on a bottle of this, since it’s still sold there.
7. Miller Chill:
Don’t even try to front: This lime-flavored light beer was refreshing and you know it — but Bud Light Lime showed it who was boss, and parent company MillerCoors decided to pull the plug in November 2013. RIP, pretty OK lime-flavored beer.
8. Jack Daniel’s Hard Cola:
Basically a Jack and Coke in a beer bottle, this drink was snatched off the shelves in 2005, to mixed reactions. Regardless of whether this actually tasted any good, it’s pretty damn hard to forgive the discontinuation of hard liquor in an easy-to-tote form.
9. Skyy Blue
Man, being a “flavored malt beverage” in the mid-’00s was tough. This drink was a product of Skyy vodka and had a delightfully refreshing citrusy taste. It was no match for the Mike’s Hard and Smirnoff Ice craze that would soon overshadow this diamond in the rough, though, and it left us circa 2004.
Tequiza went te-kaput in 2009 — another lime-flavored, sweet-tasting beer by Anheuser-Busch, this baby was plucked from our thirsty little hands far too soon. Despite its deceptive name, there was nothing tequila about it, though it was sweetened with blue agave nectar.
13. Silver Thunder, Big Bear, and Coqui 900
It’s hard to differentiate amongst the three Pabst malt liquor casualties of 2013, and they weren’t marketed very widely, but we salute you anyway, soldiers of our street corners. Hold on tight to your Old E, buddies — you never know what the future might hold.
14. Bud Dry:
This beer had a pretty good run, from 1989–2010. It was a light lager that really wasn’t much to write home about, but hey — it made us drunk and happy, so let’s not fail to pay our proper respects.
15. Woody’s Vodka Coolers:
These refreshing lil’ guys saw their heyday in the early aughts and were basically the poor man’s Smirnoff Ice, available in, like, 12739821 flavors. (The internet lends little information as to when these were pulled off the shelves in the U.S., but I do have photographic evidence of throwing these back with my degenerate friends circa 2002–3.) Like all things angelic, Woody’s can still be found in Canada, though.
16. Thermal Bite Aftershock:
A favorite amongst amateur drinkers, Aftershock liqueur is best taken in shot form — and has a tendency to turn the worst of the worst gatherings into the BEST PARTIES EVER, bro. The green “Thermal Bite” aniseed flavor was discontinued in 2009, much to the dismay of frat bros across the country.
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