Vendors of specialty "ethnic foods" have already pushed us Americans pretty far. I mean, we're scarfing down pad thai and falafel like there's no tomorrow, deliberating between tikka masala and spring rolls, and, of course, squirting limes in our beers (heresy!). But they just can't stop. The latest thing to hit a supermarket shelf near you - michelada mix.
Mexican brewers offer variation on regular beer
Companies hope to make inroads in U.S. market with spicy ‘michelada'
In it's simplest form, a michelada is a ton of lime juice with beer, served ice cold with a salted rim. However, it's even better if you also throw in chile, worchestershire sauce, maybe some hot sauce and even some soy sauce or tomato juice (see former blog entry: Q: Why is Mexican beer so crappy? A: Just add chile").
Americans are lazy, so ready-to-go "Michelada Mix" could be genius - if you can get Americans to drink chile in their beer which I think is the rub of the whole enterprise. I've got some marketing ideas:
1. Employ the edecanes from the Automotive Show. I think they could probably sell men just about anything. For the women, your options are pretty much Antonio Banderas or Enrique Iglesias.
2. Target frat boys. They´re all about novelty (watermelons laced with vodka, jello shots, beer popsicles). A girl commenting, "Eeeeewwww...you drink chile in your BEER?!!!" is a great conversation starter almost guaranteed to lead to a hook-up ("I guess it IS kind of manly to put hot sauce in your beer. How can you handle it, it's so SPICY....").
3. Do not refer to a michelada as "Beer lemonade" or worse, "beer limeade."
4. I suggest marketing materials employ the word, "Caliente." Americans think it means spicy, and, as we noted with the "Yo quiero Taco Bell" campaign, we learn more Spanish from commercials than high school language class. I can already imagine millions of Americans sidling up to the bar and saying, "A Corona, please. Make mine caliente." "Baby, you are as caliente as a michelada." I'm sure for a modest sum, you could get Paris Hilton to change her tagline to "That's caliente." C'mon - it would be hilarious!