Zima Is BACK Right Now For A Limited Time Only, In Case You Wanted To Remember What The ’90s Tasted Like
Do you remember what the ’90s tasted like? Lucky for all us aging millennials and Gen Xers, Zima — the ultimate ’90s drink — is back! Earlier this year rumors began to circulate about the return of Zima, one of the first malt liquor alcopop beverages to hit the market back in 1993. After being heavily marketed and experiencing its best years in the early ’90s, Zima was discontinued from the Miller-Coors family in 2008 as competitors like Smirnoff Ice and Mike’s Hard Lemonade took over the space. But at it’s peak, in 1994, 1.2 million barrels of the beverage were sold. It was huge! Like… Bigger than Mark McGwire’s arms on steroids huge.
It’s still huge in Japan. Because of course it is.
In a pure powerplay of ’90s marketing genius a la the return of Surge and DuckTales, Zima has finally made it’s triumphant return to shelves around the United States. It’s only for a limited time only this summer, so throw on Limp Bizkit’s Woodstock ’99 set and grab a bag of watermelon Jolly Ranchers to *actually* make it taste good.
via Ad Week:
Coors first introduced its “citrus malternative” in 1993, and its popularity peaked the next year, when it sold 1.3 million barrels in its first year of national distribution. According to a Slate, Coors spent around $38 million promoting the brand that year, more than its flagship brand, but sales fell to 403,000 barrels two years later. Soon, it seemed Zima was more common as a punchline than a beverage, although it took until 2008 for Coors to finally stop producing it.
Zima’s return comes as the alcopop category has had a resurgence in recent years, with brands including Small Town Brewery’s Not Your Father’s Root Beer, AB InBev’s Best Damn Root Beer and Best Damn Cherry Cola and MillerCoors’ Henry’s Hard Orange and Henry’s Hard Ginger Ale (although some differentiate hard soda brands from coolerlike forebears such as Zima).
For many Gen Xers and millennials in their 30s like myself, the Sprite-flavored hard beverage is the nostalgic throwback to the era of TRL, 56k dial-up modems, Slick Willy Bill Clinton jokes, and the Phil Jackson-era Chicago Bulls.
Personally I hope Zima sticks around long-enough for some sort of ironic “Icing”-like craze. No idea what that is yet, but could see Zima-ing take the nation by storm in the summer of 2017.