Tecate’s New 7.5% ABV Titanium Will Put You Down For the Count

Food & Drink

The new Tecate Titanium.Photo by Tecate

If you live in the band of states across the southern United States known as the “Sun Belt,” you’ve probably tried Tecate. Mexico’s first canned beer is also one of its most popular. Along with Tecate Light, it makes up the two brands in the Tecate portfolio, which is owned by Heineken. In 2019, Tecate is launching a new brand: Tecate Titanium.

“We have the original in the red can, we also have Light, and now we have Tecate Titanium,” said Belen Pamukoff, brand director for Tecate. “7.5% ABV. It’s the first Mexican beer that’s high ABV.”

Pamukoff adds that the beer isn’t competing with craft — she’s referring only to the category of light Mexican beers produced by larger companies like Heineken and Constellation Brands. 

“We have different brands, and we see the function that every brand plays in a larger strategy,” she said. 

It’s a smart point of view which indicates that Heineken recognizes modern consumers want choice. In other words, the consumer who picked a single beer brand and stuck to that his entire life is being replaced by those who want an IPA on Monday, a brown ale on Tuesday, and a lager on Wednesday. Recently, Heineken launched 0.0 to fill a gap in their portfolio for a non-alcoholic product, and Lagunitas Hoppy Refresher and Hi-Fi Hops added a flavored water and cannabis product to the portfolio, respectively. Heineken also re-launched Newcastle for those who enjoy a light brown ale.  

Packaged in 24-ounce silver cans, Tecate Titanium is easily recognizable, the brand’s iconic “T” emblazoned across the chest of an eagle. The brand’s motto, “For those who are BOLD,” is aimed directly at a community of masculine, Mexican bi-cultural Millennials.

“Mexican bi-culturals are first and second generation Americans,” Pamukoff said. “Typically, their parents or grandparents are Mexican. They speak English, and they may speak Spanish or not. They love to watch American football but also soccer. They’re connected to their roots. We call them bi-culturals because they live between two cultures.”

As an additional piece of the brand’s 2019 marketing campaign, Tecate is teaming up with Weber for an event partnership. 

“Among Mexicans, barbecue is part of the culture,” Pamukoff said. “There’s a whole thing about having ownership of the barbecue. How you cut the meat, how long you’re going to cook it, when you flip it.” 

The brand is also sponsoring two huge boxing matches. Canelo vs. Jacobs will take place on Cinco de Mayo in Vegas, and then Canelo will take on a currently unnamed competitor in September. And Tecate sponsors 3 Mexican soccer teams that regularly come to the US to play friendly matches.

Currently, Tecate Titanium is available in California, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas. At the end of the month, the beer will also be available in New York, where Tecate has slowly replaced Pabst Blue Ribbon as the “hipster” beer of choice in many bars across Brooklyn.

Between Tecate Original and Tecate Light, the brand produces around 17 million cases, 75 percent of which is consumed by men. With regards to Titanium, the goal for the U.S. market is 189,000 cases.

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