Drink trends for 2018 – what do customers want?

By Nicholas Robinson

- Last updated on GMT

Top of the drinks: trends for 2018
Top of the drinks: trends for 2018

Related tags Distilled beverage

Northerners want gin in their cocktails, Londoners prefer herbs in their gin and those in the midlands have a severe thirst for cider.

Those in the far south will drink their wine from bag-in-box, the Welsh have a desire for wine knowledge, while those in Scotland are loyal to their local brews, that’s all according to the Waitrose Food and Drink Report 2017–18​.

Broader trends revealed by the research include the ‘craft-isation’ of porters and the fact that stouts are moving in line with their lighter counterparts.

There is also a trend for whisky producers to experiment with new flavours, such as Glenfiddich finishing some of its whiskies in IPA casks to deliver a hoppy flavour – “expect more cross-categorising to come”, said the Waitrose ​research.

‘Pimp their fizz’

Consumers are also looking to “pimp their fizz” with flavours such as raspberry and even gin liqueurs.

Other trends can be seen in the infographic on the right.

Meanwhile, as was revealed at The Morning Advertiser’s ​Future Trends: Spirits event last month, interest in rum is also on the up.

“It was only 50 years ago that the Royal Navy stopped giving daily tots of rum to crews aboard its ships,” the research said.

“But this hugely versatile drink is making waves again,” it continued. “The stories behind rums and their cocktails can be fascinating and feed into customers’ interest in provenance.

‘Regional rums’

“The variety is astonishing; sugarcane grows at different latitudes and under different conditions across the Caribbean and Central and South America, meaning that the molasses used in regional rums all produce distinct flavours.”

At The Future Trends: Spirits event held in London last month, CGA insight showed sales of golden rum would overtake gin​ in the next three years.

CGA’s commercial director Graeme Loudon said: “Golden rum is forecast to grow faster than gin by 2020 with Tequila and malt whisky also performing well.

“Forecast volume percentage change also shows that gin volumes will rise by 28%, Tequila by 13% and malt whisky up 9%.”

Related topics Wine

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