A couple weeks ago, the internet was abuzz with the debut of Pong Lite, a beverage modeled after some of our favorite cheap beers and unapologetically targeted at binge-drinking collegiates (or those who party like them).
Is this a good thing: An upstart company makin’ a little swill skrill in a market previously dominated by Keystone, Miller, Bud, Busch, and Natty (aka MillerCoors, MillerCoors, InBev, InBev, and InBev)? Or is it a thinly veiled and uncreative attempt to sell a product by exploiting destructive drinking habits?
This is… Drunk, Counterdrunk.
It’s honest; it’s cheap; it’s a small-ish brewery. Let’s drink.
No hate for The Man. Honestly. Craft beer is great (drinking an excellentÂ Stone Levitation Ale as we speak), but we’ve also dedicated plenty of dollars to purchasing cheap beer made by… the companies who make all of the cheap beer.
It’s unique and intriguing for a smaller brewery- Jones Brewing Co. in Latrobe, Pensylvania- to decide to turn a focus toward sh*tty- sorry, economicalÂ ”lite” beer. Why not? Why doesÂ every small brewery have to make expensive, connoisseur-grade, award-winning beer?
The truth is that they can’t all be Stone or Sweetwater. Pong Lite has stepped up to diversify the market a bit, and in a way that says, “We know! We won’t try to fool you with picturesque mountains or bold advertising about being a real American! This sh*t’s for drinking games!”
And for all of it’s admissions to cheapness, Pong Lite isn’t even that bad. It’s BeerAdvocate rating average is a far from awful 3.2 out of 5. The consensus is that this beer, while surely a run-of-the-mill light beer, is far from the worst one out there, plus it retains a relatively low price.
The kicker isn’t a bad touch, either: each 30-rack comes with two pong balls, thus saving you the friendship-ending arguments about where the grocery store hides them (“I swear IÂ saw them in the freezer aisle” “WHY WOULD THEY PUT PING PONG BALLS IN THE FREEZER AISLE?! Clearly, they’re in produce.”)
Sorry, Pong. Try a little harder.
Are we being serious? Really, are we being serious?
It was bad enough when certain companies strutted into our frat houses and dorm rooms, offering “Official Beer Pong Tables” (Company names omitted as they may beÂ associated with or rival to a certain boozingear.com).
Beer Pong (or Beirut, however you like to call it) is not about being official. It’s about being resourceful. I’ve played with stools instead of a table. Chicken nuggets instead of balls. Because that’s all we had.Â The only “Official Beer Pong” kit I’d respect is a set of tools made specifically for unhinging doors…Â Hold up! Boozingear, get on that.
Anyways, Pong Lite is no different in it’s lack of reason for being. We do not wont for beers to play drinking games with. If anything, there are too many.
Accordingly, the minds behind Pong Lite should take the creativity and mental effort they spent on this beer and put it towards something beer drinkers need, not just something beer drinkers will buy.
What do you think? Does Pong Lite have a fair place in the world of cheap beer or is it a groan-inducing product that takes away the small bit of dignity beer pong once had?