Friday, May 15, 2015

American’s Tastes in Rums are Getting More Sophisticated-and More Expensive

     As a bartender and purchaser of rums for the Rum Bar in Key West, one thing that I am noticing is the consumption of more premium expressions by my clientele.   The premiumization movement by the rum producers is being appreciated by the consumers.   It seems that here in America, people are drinking less, but what they are drinking is of a much higher quality.
     According to research by Guestmetrics, a firm that tracks drinks sales at 6,000 bars and restaurants, US adults are going out less frequently and drinking less alcohol instead opting for more expensive cocktails, beer and wine.   “When consumers do go out, they’re trading up to more expensive drinks,” Peter Reidhead of the research firm GuestMetrics, told Bloomberg.    Furthermore, consumers are also more inclined to spend more money for specialty of high-quality liquor options, paying 5% to 7% more compared to two-years-ago, according to Nielsen.

    Danelle, Kosmal, vice president of Nielsen’s Beverage Alcohol Practice said the increase in costs is not a reflection of stores putting their prices up, but “it’s more a reflection of consumers trading up”.   More bars are hiring mixologists to create US$20 cocktails, and with the boom of “craft” distilleries, consumers are seeking more locally made spirits.   While GuestMetric explained “luxury” spirit drinks – those costing more than US$12 – are still rare, comprising just 3% of the volume of spirits sold at bars and restaurants, this is now 15% more than in 2013.


     I feel that this movement is a positive one at least from my point of view, it means that my customers are drinking at a slower pace and savoring the flavor and feel of these premium and ultra premium rums and enjoying them and sharing their experience with those around them.   Today many of my customers are buying one or two premium rums or premium cocktails and leisurely enjoying them rather than tossing back some cheap mixture that really lacks taste and loaded with sugar.   I'm really glad to see this trend and I hope that it continues.   ;o)