Is Gin the New Craft Beer?

Global trends often preview local trends.

Who would have guessed in the early 2000s that craft beer would be such a huge trend? What started off as just a few local brews sold locally, inched up to steal market shares from some of the biggest players. Now craft represents over 11% in volume of the U.S. market, and probably more importantly, close to 20% of the market in value. Some were taken by surprise; some rode the wave and profited; but undoubtably, everyone now asks, “where is the next trend coming from?”

There is certainly plenty of U.S. consumer research and data tracking to keep every trade analyst busy, so instead of looking in, I propose to look outside of our borders to see what interesting trends are taking place in Europe and Asia. And without a doubt, one trend stands out from the crowd: the growth of premium “craft-like” gin.

Although interesting variations appear from country to country, agencies across Sopexa’s network agreed that premium and small-batch gins were a trend to contend with. In Germany, where the trend is probably the most apparent, gin is living through a full-blown renaissance. Hipster brand ambassadors highlight the wonders of their unique product. Creative and adventurous mixologists itch with the desire to explain the differences between the various product discoveries they have made. And dedicated bars, like the G&T in Berlin, are becoming unmissable staples of the nightscape.

“In Germany, gin has now become an affair of connoisseurs,” says Sylvain Rouchy, Sopexa Germany’s Managing Director. “Long gone are the days where you’d order just a Gin & Tonic at the bar.”

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