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What’s Shaking Now


From Mezcal to Mules, Here are 8 Cocktail Trends to Ride into 2018

By Jack Robertiello

Drink trends move as fast as a bartender pumping out Margaritas on Cinco de Mayo. On the other hand, is there really anything new under the sun? Hoping to keep up with the currents moving through the cocktail world right now, we checked in with top bartenders and drink consultants across the country to get their sense of the most important waves to catch. 

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By Jeff Cioletti

The bad news: Vodka is shrinking on the global scale. According to the Global Vodka Insights, a report from just-drinks and the IWSR based on 2015, the latest full-year data available, vodka’s top four markets—Russia, the U.S., Ukraine and Poland—all lost volume and value in 2015. And while the U.S. is expected to be essentiall, the others will experience further declines right through to 2021.The good news: Globally, vodka is pursuing a clear trend of premiumization, the report notes. More specifically, low-price and value sales are declining; the standard segment is flat; but premium and super-premium sales are increasing.And most relevant of all: vodka is still the biggest-selling spirit in America. And it continues to be available in myriad forms and formats, despite it being famously neutral at its core. Here are a few Q&A’s to keep up to speed on vodka today. 

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Vodka’s Silver Lining


Neutral profile calls for tasteful marketing


Vodka’s wave of popularity, which began last century, may be cresting, but it remains America’s reigning best-selling spirit, so keeping the section well-stocked is certainly worth the effort. Moreover, because vodka is supposed to be tasteless—promoting the spirit has always called on marketers’ keenest creativity.

That silver lining is exactly what is keeping the spirit vibrant in the marketplace. Either way, neutral or flavored, there are plenty of creative approaches at work today—which in turn provide the points of distinction that retailers can use in conversation, signage, social media, etc. To wit:

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