It was always a desperation drink, what you grabbed when you just couldn't look at another beer, something you could pretend was a gin-and-tonic in a bottle if you used enough limes. Coors Brewing Company, then the nation's number-three brewer, devoted one and a half years--and a reported $3.5 million--to developing the "alternative" alcoholic beverage that it introduced in 1993, as described in "Clear Thinking," our 1995 story on the first malternative.
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Almost immediately, Zima became the butt of jokes. (From David Letterman's "The Top Ten Signs Your U.S. Senator Is Nuts." Number 9: Breakfast, lunch and dinner? Zima.) But for a while, Zima actually sold, particularly as the line added new, hip flavors.
But the market for Zima long ago dried up, and on Monday word came down that MillerCoors has stopped production of Zima. Zo long.