One tried and true trend in the food industry is to test out wild flavor combos and offer them to customers as limited time offers (LTOs).
The tactic keeps the brand in people’s line of sight — and sometimes there’s more to that than just releasing something that looks delicious.
On the fast-food level, LTOs often look like monstrous food challenges inspired by competitive eating culture, like Burger King’s “Suicide Burger.”
Many other brands go for the marketing angle of slapping together the wildest thing they can come up with. Van Leeuwen’s Mac and Cheese flavored ice cream, Pepsi’s Peeps flavor, KFC’s Chicken Bouquet, and Taco Bell’s giant Cheez-It tostada are just a few of hundreds that come out every year specifically engineered to pique people’s fascination enough to give these items a try.
The mainstream beer world has been slightly more experimental as well in the past decade, although hardly quite as far out as the aforementioned brands (craft beers, however, are already there and killing it).
Now a well-known brand is taking a stab at the space, and it’s pulled no punches in going as weird as possible.
Beer and Chili, But As One
Having a cold, crisp beer with a bowl of chili is not an especially unheard-of move, but Hormel (HRL) – Get Free Report has taken it one step further with a new collaboration with Minneapolis-based brewery Modist Brewing Co.
Called the Hormel Chili Cheese Brew, this is exactly what it sounds like — chili cheese-flavored beer, or, as the commercial for the beer puts it, “combining chili cheesiness with hoppy beeriness.”
According to Modist’s website, the beer is a lager brewed with pilsner barley malt and flaked corn, then “conditioned on Hormel’s proprietary chili spice blend and cheddar cheese.”
The limited edition beer is on sale as of January 24 and can be purchased online at hormelchilicheesebrew.com or via Modist’s online shop, or if you happen to be in the Minneapolis area, you can try it out at the brewery on tap. A four-pack sells for $12, and shipping will cost an additional $12.
While many may turn up their noses at the sound of a chili cheese-flavored beer, a move like this is just the kind of thing to get folks talking on social media and snapping Instagram photos of their weird beer that no one else has heard of.
It’s also right in line with the example Hormel president and CEO Jim Snee mentioned in the company’s Q4 earnings call on November 30, 2022.
“We are leading with a more food-forward mentality, thinking and acting differently in the ways we position our brands with consumers,” Snee said. “This has created new opportunities that were not easily executed in our old model. And we are working with a newly created brand fuel team to ignite the potential of our products in store and on shelf.”