International drinks research firm IWSR has found that flavours such as coffee, peanut butter, lemonade and chocolate have become increasingly popular during the pandemic. All these comfort food flavours tap into a sense of indulgence and childhood flavours.
In the US, for example, peanut butter flavoured whisky is up 250%. While in the UK, the pastry stout style – a flavoured, sweet dark beer often called ‘dessert stout’ – has jumped from dark beer into lagers, the popularity now spilling over into gin, whisky and more.
So whether it’s choc cherry stout, coffee vodka or marshmallow seltzer, it’s happening, and it’s wildly popular.
Speaking of beer, the main flavour of lockdown isn’t alcoholic at all. The zero alcohol beer category is now growing at above 30 per cent annually (although that’s off a low base), with the idea of ‘drinks that are better for you’ driving this push.
One of the other key winners from lockdown is something just as nostalgic, with the ‘classic beer’ category enjoying a bump in popularity too. CUB has reported VB and Carlton sales have enjoyed a bump over the past year too, tapping into the taste of a distant time, perhaps.
Here at WINEDEPOT one of our bestselling beers has no shortage of history, with the Pikes Pilsener (made by the Pike family, who’ve been brewing in South Australia since 1878) enjoying unprecedented popularity.
Finally, as we’ve written about recently, canned cocktails have been the other runaway pandemic success. So don’t miss the new range of drinks from Poor Toms or kombucha-based Blume coolers for some well-packaged and delicious sophisticated drinks that are a million miles away from Vodka Cruisers (and all the better for it).
WINEDEPOT’s MARKET has an extensive range of on-trend spirits, canned cocktails, cider, beer and more. Sign up to become a trade buyer for FREE.