If you’ve never heard of Four Loko, you probably aren’t in college, where as many as one in four students have swilled some sort of beverage like Four Loko that mixes alcohol and caffeine with a fruity flavor.
There are lots of drinks like that. Most come in big, fat colorful cans the size of aluminum baseball bat barrels. They have names such as Liquid Charge, Rockstar 21 and Torque.
Most have an alcohol content of 12 percent – more than twice than in a can of average domestic beer.
There, they post photos of themselves – all looking very young – hoisting 23.5-ounce cans of the stuff. There’s lemonade flavor, blue raspberry, fruit punch and watermelon. Followers boast about getting hammered on the concoction.
“Oh Four Loko,” writes one adoring consumer. “If I haven’t told you lately, I love being drunk off you.”
Locally, the brand made a splash in headlines over the weekend when police said a suspected drunk driver told them he had mixed liquor with Four Loko and smoked marijuana before he drove his Chevrolet Impala through a red light in St. Petersburg, killing an Orlando man and his three sons.
For many, after processing the shock of the tragedy, the next question was: What the heck is Four Loko, and who would drink a 23.5-ounce can of a concoction that mixes alcohol and caffeine and tastes like grape juice?
The answer: lots of young people.
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