I’ve never been much of a beer guy, but I do love a good glass of wine every now and again. Unfortunately, a dry red wine doesn’t really hit the spot on a hot summer day, which is probably where the idea for wine coolers came from. But those are a little too girly – even for someone who doesn’t like the taste of beer – and that’s why I started drinking Mike’s Hard Lemonade. Granted, they’re both variations of malt liquor, but you don’t feel like a total pansy knocking back a few bottles of Mike’s in front of your friends.
In recent years, the company has introduced a number of varieties to expand the Mike’s brand – including Mike’s Harder Lemonade, the Classic Margarita and Mike’s Hard Punch – but it’s a bit surprising that it’s taken this long for them to come out with a low calorie version of their classic drink. Mike’s Lite Hard Lemonade not only has half the calories (109 versus 220), but approximately half the sugar and carbs as well. It’s also gluten-free for those unlucky bastards who have to worry about things like that, and is available in the drink’s two most popular flavors: Lemonade and Cranberry Lemonade.
The guys at Mike’s were kind enough to send over samples of both flavors for me to try out, and although it boasts the same great sweet and sour flavor of the original variety, Mike’s Lite has a slight aftertaste that’s similar to most diet sodas. That wasn’t totally unexpected considering the nutritional info, but it was a bit disappointing nonetheless, even if those who are used to that distinctly diet taste won’t notice it. If you’re looking for ways to cut calories without completely removing alcohol from your diet, Mike’s Lite Hard Lemonade is certainly one of the best low-cal alternatives on the market, but for me, it’s just not worth it when a regular Mike’s Hard Lemonade tastes so much better.