Beast Unleased line of drinks

Monster Alcohol Drinks with Caffeine

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Although the drinks have yet to be released nationwide, you may have noticed the new The Beast Unleashed hard seltzers boasting a solid 6% alcohol and marked with Monster Energy’s iconic three slashes on the label. The lineup of hard seltzers debuted in early 2023 to wide acclaim in four fresh varieties which mimic the flavors of its energy drinks: Mean Green, White Haze, Peach Perfect, and Scary Berries. With such similar marketing and flavors as Monster Energy, it would be natural to wonder if caffeinated alcoholic drinks are making a surprise comeback. But despite the similarities, The Beast Unleashed line is completely caffeine-free. 

This is not Monster’s attempt to pick up where Four Loko left off. There are still plenty of Four Loko flavors available, but the iconic adult energy drink brand voluntarily removed all caffeine from its products back in 2010 due to a string of lawsuits brought against the drink maker. That, and the FDA gave the company notice that caffeine was an unsafe food additive in alcoholic drinks. Almost anyone who had a chance to try a Four Loko before the change can likely attest to that fact. There’s a reason the brand got the nickname “blackout in a can.”Had Four Loko not already tested the waters it’s possible that Monster would have attempted something similar. But at this point, a caffeinated hard seltzer has mostly been soft regulated out of the market. 

The Beast Unleashed is a caffeine-free hard seltzer for brand loyalists

Beast Unleasehed on a beach

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Beyond The Beast Unleashed, you can also find its hard tea brand, The Nasty Beast. Since The Nasty Beast line is tea, it has a small amount of natural caffeine, about 21mg per can compared to the 160mg of a regular Monster Energy drink.

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The Monster Beverage Corporation has been aggressively expanding its market presence, acquiring the CANarchy Craft Brewery Collective in 2022 — the shop behind Jai Alai IPA, Dave’s Pale Ale, among others— as its way into the alcohol market. It wasn’t long after that The Beast Unleashed was released – complete with an aptly marketed NASCAR sponsorship. And the following year, Monster took over Bang Energy for a cool $362 million.

Monster’s transition to alcohol was consistent with a larger trend in the beverage industry. The phenomenal success of hard seltzers has acted as the world’s shiniest carrot, luring such unexpected newcomers to the adult beverage market as SunnyD vodka seltzers and Simply Spiked hard lemonade. Monster has displayed good market sense in following this trend without attempting to fully capitalize on its brand identity as a provider of caffeine. Still, the fact that it’s forgoing that aspect of its brand in the transition does make it difficult to make the case for why consumers should choose The Beast Unleashed beyond brand recognition and familiar flavors, though that may be enough. 

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