2023 Drinks Trends
Often seen as a trend-setting industry, the world of drinks is constantly evolving to keep up with our ever-growing tastes. We’re diving into which cocktails are on the rise, the dominance of low/no, and breakout drinks for the year ahead...
THE RISE OF HIGHBALL AND SPRITZ COCKTAILS
Versatile, simple and easy to make at home, Highball and Spritz-style cocktails are becoming increasingly popular, and will undoubtedly dominate the drinks scene throughout 2023, as consumers seek easy-to-make drinks they can make using ingredients found in their cupboard.
Highballs allow for a longer, lighter drink and appeal especially to a younger millennial and Gen Z audience who are looking to reduce their alcohol intake with the ability to dilute spirits to their taste. Consumer’s growing preference for a Highball style cocktail, has led to a variety of spirit mixers increasing in popularity too, including the likes of the Pink Grapefruit Soda and Tequila, perfect for an easy Paloma - the drink of summer 2022 with 6 million Google searches across the summer months.
While typically a drink associated with the summer, wine-based Spritz style cocktail’s will likely dominate throughout 2023 due to the versatility and potential to liven up classic spirits and mixers. The impact of the cost of living crisis and recession may also mean some consumers are turning to cocktail recipes which require less ingredients - something which the Spritz lends itself to.
GROWTH OF THE NO/LOW ALCOHOL MARKET
A recent report revealed the no/low alcohol drinks market is now worth $11 billion (£9.5 billion) globally, with category consumption expected to grow by a further third in the next three years (by 2026).
The growth of the market stems from a shift in consumer habits, as they prioritise health and wellbeing and look for flavourful and quality drink alternatives to alcohol.
New stats shared by Pinterest shows the low/no alcohol market is only set to grow further with a 220% increase in searches for ‘fancy non-alcoholic drinks’ and a 75% increase in ‘mocktail bar’ searches on its platform.
To meet this demand, we purposely developed dual flavoured drinks using unexpected flavour pairings, which can not only be enjoyed as a sister serve to any spirit for those moderating their drinking, but also within an alcohol-free cocktail or drunk solo to enhance the overall drinking experience.
We've recently partnered with our friends at Club Soda, to be the official mixer partner for their alcohol-free tasting room taking London by storm.
Ginger Ale is set to be a breakout drink for 2023, having seen the demand for it grow consistently over the last few years. In fact, in London, Ginger Ale is now our highest growing soft drink and mixer as we have seen a 120% increase in distribution and a 131% increase in volume. Ginger Ale is also the second highest growing SKU in the Double Dutch range in the On-trade in comparison to last year. The versatility of the SKU means we find it is often mixed with spirits, but it is also drunk alone as a refreshing, flavourful and low calorie soft drink.
In the on-trade specifically, we have also seen a 104% increase in distribution of Ginger Ale and a 120% increase in volume, and so we predict this will translate to the off-trade market longer-term too for a simple at home serve that feels a little different to a tonic or soda. It’s the perfect pairing for a variety of spirits including gin, whiskey and mezcal.
VODKA & TEQUILA TO TAKE ON GIN
Gin has had its time, and now it’s the return of vodka and tequila. Consumers are now turning away from the saturated gin market in favour of other spirits, with vodka - the timeless classic - back for good as it’s revealed it makes up 30 pence for every pound spent on spirits in the UK. With a 27% increase in searches in the past month alone, and a gradual climb since September, demand for vodka-based cocktails is only set to rise further throughout 2023.
Tequila will also stake a claim for the spirit top spot, having dominated throughout 2022, as consumers seek out new ways of enjoying the spirit as an at-home stylish serve with nearly half preferring it as a cocktail over a neat drink or shot. The rise of Tequila led us to develop our Pink Grapefruit mixer as a simple way of creating the rising cocktail trend of a Paloma.
ADAPTION TO PACKAGING
A growing level of eco-conscious consumers are resulting in drinks brands reconsidering their own impact on the environment.
With the ‘can’ being infinitely recyclable and costing less in energy and transportation costs than other raw materials, including glass, we expect to see more drinks brands place a greater focus on the aluminum can as a packaging option for products.
Retailers are also increasingly calling for cans as part of meeting their own sustainability goals, which prompted us to adapt our entire range to be available in cans, as well as glass bottles, at the request of Waitrose and Tesco. As a result of the sales performance of our cans, we have now switched exclusively to cans across our listings at Waitrose and Tesco.
1 According to Google Trends data
5. According to Google Trends data