Beer Is Still King, but Wine Gaining With Millennials

Poll: Wine Is Drink of Choice for 24% of 21- to 34-Year-olds

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Here's more good news for the wine industry, which is counting on millennials to fuel a new wine boom. A new poll shows vino is the drink of choice for 24% of 21-34 year-olds. The generation still prefers beer (at 37%), but more prefer wine compared with older Generation X drinkers (aged 35-46), who choose beer to wine by 41% to 16%, according to The Harris Poll. Drinkers tend to shift to wine and spirits as they get older, so if the trends hold, millennials are likely to be pleasing the wine industry for years to come.

For frequent drinkers of all ages, beer is still king, with 63% preferring it to domestic wine (54%). But wine popularity jumped five points from 2009, while beer fell by four points, according to the poll. Other gainers include rum (from 32% to 34%), tequila (24% to 28%), Canadian and Irish whiskey (16% to 20%), and cordials and liqueurs (14% to 17%). Losers include Champagne (18% to 17%) and Scotch (13% to 11%).

Overall, American drinking habits haven't changed much, with 29% of those polled saying they drink at least once a week, the same result as 2009. More men drink once a week (38%) than women (21%), while 5% of all respondents drink once a day, down from 6% in 2009.

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