Four Loko – Lemonade – Review

I heard the stories. I heard the hubbub. I went out and bought a can of Four Loco. Here is my review.

[This is a review of an alcoholic beverage. It is not intended for kiddies. Not even a little bit.]

When I see a lot of advertising – or news stories – not that there is all that much of a difference these days . . . Wow! Did you see me pull out and hop onto a soapbox – all quick like – like that?! Now, I’m going to hop back off. No need to preach to you guys – you are in the choir – right?! Do-Re-Mi-Fa-So-La-Ti-Do!

Alright. I heard that there was a drink that could potentially hurt me – and I had to have it. I should preface this by saying that the hardest drink that I usually have these days is red Kool-Aid ( . . . I am a card carrying lightweight. From the word on the street – I gathered that it was caffeine with alcohol – it was a malt beverage – that it potentially had a bit of wormwood in it (which is the stuff in Absinthe – and I am a real dork for the idea of Absinthe – not necessarily the drinking of it – but definitely for the idea) – that it came in huge cans that looked like camouflage – and that it didn’t taste all that great.

It seemed like it was going to be like Sparks ( another energetic malt beverage that has been on the market for awhile. That I drank a long while ago and never reviewed – because it was before I learned how to dictate stories to my robot.

I went to the company’s website ( and found out that it is a “mix of caffeine, taurine, guarana, and alcohol, and the brand name “Four” is derived from the use of these four ingredients.” The can is 23.5 ounces (which is a huge mountain of a can) and that it is either 6 or 12 ABV (Alcohol by volume) – mine happened to be 12. There are eight flavors (Orange, Fruit Punch, Lemonade, Cranberry Lemonade, Uva (grape), Watermelon, Blue Raspberry and Lemon Lime) and they have roughly the same alcohol content as wine and some craft beers and roughly the same amount of caffeine as a tall Starbucks coffee (

Alright. Enough of the copy and paste book report that I was just giving you. I opened the can of “Lemonade” and like a true high-society man, I poured myself a nice little glass. It looked kind of like Mike’s Hard Lemonade ( reference that will come back) and it smelled like a lot of alcoholic malt beverages – which is to say that it smelled like the water that is used to mop up a bar after a really busy weekend on a Monday morning. I took a sip and my face twisted all askew. I am very picky about which alcohol I drink – and this taste was way outside of my wheel house. I had to keep putting the glass down, walking away and coming back to it over the course of about a half hour. I couldn’t believe how big the can was. It was going to be a long night.

I should let you know that while I am not super-versed in alcohol – I have had a pretty large number of energy drinks – so – I could see where this was all coming from. Who wouldn’t want to get tipsy and have a lot of energy all at the same time? The FDA – that’s who. I forgot to tell you that this drink (or at least the iteration that I sipped on) is (or already has) totally gone away. According to Reuters (look at me sourcing my quotes!) “The maker of controversial alcoholic energy drink Four Loko said it would remove caffeine and other stimulants from all of its beverages ahead of an expected crackdown by U.S. regulators.” And – that is why I felt the need to drink this drink and write all kinds of about it . . . it is for experimentation, it is for science, it is so that you don’t have to.

I’m not going to blame the drink – but I feel like this review is muddled and meandering . . . I want to take a nap. My head feels like a flip-flopping fish. I just looked at my glass and realized that after approximately five sips – I am getting to be a bit loopy.

So – after my initial revulsion – my brain realized that it really did taste a lot like Mike’s Hard Lemonade – which kind of tastes like lemonade that has started to turn – which is to say – lemonade that has started to go bad – to fester – to ferment. And a light went on. Or – it dimmed slightly . . . everything is/was/is spinning. I was drinking the drink. I was going to win. It didn’t have anything on me – nothing at all.

I’m Sir Drinks-a-lot – an official knight of the table.


[UPDATE: Coming back and looking over this a couple of days later – I am amazed at how disjointed and sprawling it is – but – I also think it is a decent encapsulation of my actual experience. I am also intrigued at how much “research” I did . . . normally – I have Socks look everything up and give me a breakdown (with bullet points!) – I guess when I get tipsy – I like to get my hands dirty and dig through the facts myself. I am also a bit horrified – because – evidently, I only drank that tiny glass – and that means that there is still 2/3 of a can of this stuff in my fridge. I’m the lightest lightweight on the block. I think that I need a plan of action. I think that I need an exit strategy. I’m gone.]