Cafe Society

Quick, react: Four Loko banned by the FDA

As expected, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration -- the cop-calling Debbie Downer in a room full of people who just want to party -- decided yesterday that caffeinated alcoholic beverages are unsafe and gave a handful of companies, including Phusion Products, which makes Four Loko, fifteen days to change their products -- or pull them off the shelves.

Four Loko will live on in sad, mutilated form: Phusion Products has already announced it'll be pulling the caffeine from the cans. Unfortunately, that move will likely reduce it's market clout -- without the upper, the beverage is just another terribly-flavored abomination of an alcoholic drink, which is quite a bit less fun to consume than a beverage that gives you heart palpitations while making you wasted.

Plenty of reaction has come in response to the death of fun. Here are some of our favorite outbursts.

1. Gawker's Haiku With the end in sight, the crew over at Gawker was moved to poetic expression, penning this haiku in homage to the dying drink:

Farewell, hyper booze Back to Mountain Dew and gin In a Solo cup.

2. Someecards profound greeting card reflection Somehow, we don't think the end of Four Loko is really going to be the end of terrible decisions involving alcohol and stimulants. Someecards said it best. - Combining malt liquor and caffeine is a terrible decision I could see making right after combining tequila shots and cocaine.

3. Brandon Swarthout's comment on our blog yesterday After we posted the news of Four Loko's decaffeination yesterday, Brandon left us a link to the real reason the drink is being banned. And of course, we decided to post that little gem here.

Thanks, Brandon. That was the comment of the day.

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Laura Shunk was Westword's restaurant critic from 2010 to 2012; she's also been food editor at the Village Voice and a dining columnist in Beijing. Her toughest assignment had her drinking ten martinis and eating ten Caesar salads over the course of 48 hours. She still drinks martinis, but remains lukewarm on Caesar salads.
Contact: Laura Shunk