Beer, Wine or Spirits? New Poll Finds Top Go-To Adult Beverage

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Beer? Wine? Spirits? Which alcohol beverage category is most popular? Image: Getty

An online survey of 2,148 American adults aged 21-plus conducted by The Harris Poll found that wine is the favorite alcohol category among women, consumers in high-income households, and adults aged 65 and older. The survey took place between January 18 and 20 of this year.

Follow this link to see the results of The Harris Poll’s study in their entirety, because what was uncovered is illuminating.

The Harris Poll sought to find which of the three main adult beverage alcohol categories – beer, wine or spirits/liquor – was the top “go-to” choice for American consumers of legal drinking age. And while what was discovered about wine is valuable information for operators, it is not the top go-to beverage choice among those surveyed. The survey found that wine is the top choice for 31% of “regular drinkers,” or US LDA+ consumers who imbibe alcohol several times a year or more. The spirits/liquor category accounted for 28% of survey participants.

It turns out that, according to The Harris Poll’s survey, beer is the current top choice for roughly 40% of America’s LDA+ beverage alcohol consumers. Drilling down, the survey results found that beer is the favorite adult alcohol category among 55% of men, and 43% of Americans who live in the South.

Beer is also the preferred beverage category for the following age groups:

  • Ages 21 to 34 – 41%
  • Ages 35 to 44 – 44%
  • Ages 45 to 54 – 42%

Separating the beer category into subcategories, The Harris Poll identified the three types of beer preferred by those whose current beverage of choice is beer:

  • Domestic non-craft – 38%
  • Craft – 29%
  • Imported – 23%

Taking a look at wine, the runner-up to beer, if you will, the following subcategories are most popular:

  • Red – 38%
  • White – 32%
  • Rosé/Blush – 19%
  • Sparkling Wine – 10%

The favorite spirits among those who currently prefer spirits/liquor are:

  • Vodka – 29%
  • Whiskey – 26%
  • Rum – 16%
  • Tequila – 8%
  • Cognac – 7%

To learn more about The Harris Poll’s survey, such as which spirits are preferred by women and which are preferred by men, click here.