April 17/Chicago -- Mike's Hard Lemonade Co. is rolling out entries into new categories, beer and cider, and providing new ways for consumers to enjoy their favorite mike's hard lemonade flavors. Innovations from the brand, which has consistently owned the summer season with 43% of all 2012 flavored malt beverage sales in grocery , include:
-- mike's authentic shandy hard lemonade and lager -- a blend of real mike's hard lemonade and crisp golden lager
-- mike's hard Smashed Apple Cider -- two naturally fermented ciders made with crisp Washington apples
-- mike's hard lemonade frozen -- four favorite flavors, frozen for the coldest mike's ever
-- mike's hard blood orange -- an unconventional, hard take on orange-flavored beverages
"Mike's is synonymous with innovation and an unrelenting drive to create best in class products. We are constantly looking for new ways to delight consumers' and satisfy their ever evolving tastes across many different drinking occasions," said Kevin Kotecki, president, Mike's Hard Lemonade Co. "This year, we are proud to introduce our very first beer, mike's authentic shandy. I believe it is simply the most refreshing beer ever brewed. In addition, we are entering the cider segment with mike's Smashed Apple Cider, so delicious that consumers prefer it three to one versus the leading cider. Lastly, the number one brand in the flavored malt beverage segment, mike's hard lemonade, will now be available in frozen pouches featuring mike's superior flavors, smooth texture and non-sticky pouches."
Making a stirring debut in the world of beer, mike's authentic shandy starts with real mike's hard lemonade then adds crisp golden lager to make the world's most refreshing shandy, a perfectly blended, sessionable beverage experience. Rather than adding lemon flavoring to beer, mike's mixes in its very own hard lemonade to guarantee a taste that holds true to the original shandy blend served in pubs and bars around the world. mike's authentic shandy is available now in a six-pack of amber bottles or in a 12-pack of cans.
Another new category entry for the company is mike's hard Smashed Apple Cider. This natural cider is traditionally fermented with crisp Washington apples, delivering a vivid aroma and refreshingly smooth taste. Smashed Apple Cider is available in two varieties: Crisp Apple, a juicy, tart beverage, and Classic Dry, a more traditional cider. Both varieties are available now in a six-pack of amber bottles. Crisp Apple is also available in a 16oz. can for convenience stores.
The brand also added an icy chill to its most loved flavors with the new mike's hard lemonade Frozen. All four popular flavors -- mike's hard lemonade Frozen, mike's hard black cherry lemonade Frozen, mike's hard classic margarita Frozen and mike's hard strawberry lemonade Frozen -- are available now and sold in single 10oz. pouches. Unlike other pouch products, mike's Frozen pouches are non-sticky, thanks to special production technology. Additionally, mike's Frozen pouches have the smoothest ice crystals for an almost sorbet-like experience.
Mike's newest spring seasonal beverage, mike's hard blood orange, taps into growing consumer demand for hot, cutting edge flavors. mike's hard blood orange, which is less tart and a bit more sweet than traditional orange flavors, will be available through mid-summer. Previous spring seasonal and consumer favorite, mike's hard strawberry lemonade, is now available year-round in bottles, cans and frozen pouches to ensure consumers can enjoy the drink anywhere, anytime -- even in "no glass" zones. For an extra kick, this favorite flavor is also now available in the Harder line (8% ABV).
The new products and flavors will be showcased today in New York at an exclusive event at Bowlmor Times Square, where comedian Fabrizio Goldstein will emcee a night of unconventional bowling and incomparable flavor. The venue will bring to life three of America's favorite drinking occasions -- a beach party, backyard BBQ and nightlife experience -- and highlight the versatility of mike's beverages.
"I consider myself to be a mike's kind of guy--part unconventional and part refreshing and delicious-- so it was a natural fit to help the brand launch these new products," said Goldstein. "It's hard to choose between the shandy and the strawberry lemonade, but I'm not opposed to flavor hopping."