Self-Heating Lattes Blow Up in Wolfgang Puck’s Face

Amidst reports of drinks exploding in consumers hands and leaking calcium oxide, a brand of self-heating Wolfgang Puck latte cans have been withdrawn from supermarkets.

The self-warming beverage warms at the touch of a button on its undercarriage, allowing a mixture of water and quicklime to mingle and heat the coffee drink up to 145 degrees in six to eight minutes. But the real heat is in the flareup between WP Beverages, licensors of the Wolfgang Puck name, and OnTech, manufacturers of the on-demand heated beverage device.

OnTech contends WP owes $1million. WP is countersuing and alleging OnTech switched the inner plastic shell inside the cans to a cheaper material. A managing partner for WP Beverages says he’s received 917 written consumer complaints, 1000 phone calls and 300 plus return authorizations from retailers who said the cans malfunctioned, reports the New York Times.

As the TortsProf blog notes, the klatch would be more amusing if instead the product was a self-hating latte can.

145 degrees in six to eight minutes? That’s pathetic. What’s your market, anyway? Trendy truckers? What are you, like a fifth grand science fair project with venture capital backing? The Greeks knew about quicklime and water, you don’t seem them walking around with self-heating gourds of olive oil. So what are you saying the, you’re better than Socrates? Huh? HUH?

Self-Heating Latte Cans Bring Out Lawyers” [NYT via Tortsprof]

How the can works. Discussion of its environmental impact.

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  1. I wish the can was self-hating. I’d drink it then.

  2. I’ve had a couple of these. They’re actually quite good, and great for early morning drives when you don’t have time to stop off for a warm latte. But they’re not cheap… still, bummer they’re being pulled.