Thursday, April 3, 2008

Diet Beer: Miller 64

I made it to Owl Club the other night with several friends, our feeble attempt at recapturing our old Friday night tradition. The club is doing well it seem, and with the change in ownership things are really looking great in there - new paint, clean bar, super-friendly staff and, in turn, super-friendly patrons. If you're in the area, it's worth giving another look - it's miles ahead of where the club was when Bill ran the place (into the ground).

While we were there enjoying our pint of Racer 5 the "Miller Girls" walked in, two gorgeous women in short shorts, tights shirts and way too much make-up. Their shirts read "64" over the breast, which in itself seemed a bit odd, and I seemed to be the only person in the room who knew what they were there for and what they were selling. For those of you not familiar with this diet beer, here's the important information:
  • 64 Calories in one 12-ounce bottle
  • 2.6 grams of Carbs
  • A "Miller Genuine Draft" product
The girls were nice, I mean nice to talk to, and in so doing I learned they both have day jobs in the corporate world (where I imagine their coworkers have no idea) and each has her own ambitions. They're pro pushers, and that's not a put-down, I just don't have any better way of communicating their role when they're on the MGD job. They did seem a bit out of place, however, as the conversation was steered toward the target audience for the product they were promoting.

According to them, MGD 64 is targeted to women, drinking age to the mid/early 30's, those who are concerned about their weight and overall appearance. When I pointed out they were appealing to another audience, specifically of another gender, they simply shrugged it off. Perhaps I was incorrect in that assessment? Do hot young women dressed in tight clothing have a specific appeal to the young women of our society? Perhaps, who knows, that wasn't really where this post was going.

I had to try the beer, you know that. We all had to try the beer. It came in that clear glass that really turns my stomach. I was once told by a woman that she finds men who drink Corona from the bottle to be sexy. How on this green earth can that be true? I don't really need to tell you how bad pale yellow beers look in clear bottles, do I? There's nothing sexy about them. The MGD 64 was a far cry from attractive in its presentation.

I believe we made a mistake in pouring the beer from the bottle to a pint glass, its aroma being that of musty and stale pantry products. Now, keep in mind, we were pretty sure we weren't going to be big fans of the beer, but we seriously wanted to give it a fair shake. We didn't set out to blast it, but seriously... the taste was repulsive. I took a big mouthful of the beer and that musty quality only got worse. There were no hops, no bitterness and nothing short of a watered down sweetness with carbonation. Someone in attendance said, rather insightfully, that it reminded him of weak and old green tea. If that's diet beer, count me out.

Back to target audiences for a minute. I assume there's a hope that the MGD crowd will be drawn to a low calorie version of their product, but really? If you're the MGD guy, wouldn't you just taste this and wonder who watered your beer down - and why? Clearly I don't understand this beer, the intended audience or even the product's benefits.

There's just nothing redeeming about this beer. It didn't taste good, we all agreed we'd rather have fresh brewed iced tea over this, if we were looking for a low calorie option. When looking for a beer, however, this simply doesn't have anything we'd wanted. We tried it though, and if you want to discover for yourself the joyless 64, look for it in select markets.