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Consumer Trends

Raise a glass

On-premise wine drinkers traded down from bottles to glasses in 2012, according to GuestMetrics, which tracks over 250 million checks from restaurants and bars across the U.S. In addition, Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon—longtime favorite varietals—lost some ground to Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir.

  • The number of wine bottles ordered in restaurants and bars declined 13% between 2011 and 2012
  • The number of glasses of wine ordered increased by 4% over the same time period
  • The varietals that gained the most share of the wine category were Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir and Malbec, while Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Pinot Grigio lost some share. Even so, these four varietals remained in the top five spots in 2012, along with Sauvignon Blanc
  • In total for 2012, wine by the glass represented 87% of wine orders, while wine by the bottle represented 13% of all wine items ordered
  • Because of the significant price difference, wine by the bottle accounted for 41% of total wine sales vs. 59% for wine by the glass

“Given the large difference between the price—with the average bottle costing over $43 and the average glass costing $9.60—we believe this shift was driven by a consumer base that is still feeling pressure from a sluggish economic recovery…” says Bill Becoriello, CEO of GuestMetrics.

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