Share your favorites on Show & Tell

Controversial 1991 Colt45 PowerMaster Malt Liquor 16oz (Pint) Beer Can

In Breweriana > Beer Cans > Show & Tell.
Recent activity65764 of 179012Oriental Metal Plaque (?)European Scene Oil on Paper
Love it
Like it

Add to collection

Please create an account, or Log in here

If you don't have an account, create one here.

Create a Show & TellReport as inappropriate

Posted 7 years ago


(13 items)

In June 1991, the G. Heileman Brewing Company announced a new malt liquor called PowerMaster. While typical malt liquors contain about 4.5 percent alcohol by weight and regular beers between 3.5 to 4 percent, PowerMaster had an alcohol content between 5.5 to 6 percent. The target area for the initial release was Chicago.

However, local clergy in Chicago contended that the malt liquor with its high alcohol content was being aimed at young black males. A nationwide campaign protesting the beer soon erupted.

Less than a month after the announcement to introduce the malt liquor, the Bureau of Tobacco and Firearms withdrew their approval of the PowerMaster label based on an old 1935 law that forbade the labeling or advertising of beer as "strong" or "extra strength." They stated that the word "power" violated this law.

So Heileman was given a few months to sell whatever stock of PowerMaster that it had already produced, however many retailers refused to put it on the shelves.

These full pint-sized cans of PowerMaster were bought by my brother who worked at one of those retail stores that was pulling their stock from the shelves. He gave me some of the beer as a Christmas present in 1991.

As you can see, I never drank mine.


  1. ChrisKittinger, 3 years ago
    I was in college and for Homecoming one of our alumnus brought a case of the stuff. We were not collectors, so I did drink some of it. It wasn't bad.
  2. ixll, 2 years ago
    I have two cans of this that have remained "chilled" since they were canned back in the early 90's. My father worked for G. Heileman Brewery for 35+ years and thought they were worth holding on to.

    I wonder if they would still taste good 25 years later.

Want to post a comment?

Create an account or login in order to post a comment.