Tag Archives: Wine Market Council

Winebits 321: NeoDry edition

Winebits 321: NeoDry edition

No, no, no — drinking isn’t good for you.

Because there are a lot of people who don’t drink or think those of us who do drink too much:

One out of two: One of the most telling statistics in the wine world? That 40 percent of Americans don’t drink, a figure that shows up in almost survey of U.S. liquor habits. It showed up again in the recent Wine Market Council study of wine drinking in 2013, where 35 percent of respondents said they didn’t drink and 21 percent were identified as “non-adapters,” those who drink rarely. In other words, more than one-half of adults in the U.S. aren’t interested in drinking wine, one of the few pieces of bad news in a report that otherwise demonstrated wine’s growing popularity. Regular visitors here know who the Wine Curmudgeon blames for this, and it’s not religion. It’s the wine business, for doing everything it can to make wine too difficult for all but the most dedicated among us.

Ending cancer by abstinence: That’s the goal of the World Health Organization, which said in its 2014 report that alcohol is one of the seven leading causes of cancer, and that cancer is growing at unprecedented rates. Hence the only way to halt the growth was to eliminate the causes, like drinking. Said one of the report’s editors: “”The extent to which we modify the availability of alcohol, the labelling of alcohol, the promotion of alcohol and the price of alcohol — those things should be on the agenda.” Ironically, it also cited delayed parenthood and having fewer children as a major cause of cancer, which makes the Wine Curmudgeon wonder: If we eliminate drinking, how are we going to solve the fewer children problem?

Not at the World Cup: Want to get a belt while watching soccer’s World Cup on TV later this year? It will be more difficult in Britain, where the government has banned cutting booze prices to attract customers. The Drinks Business trade magazine reports that the crime prevention minister said: “The coalition Government is determined to tackle alcohol-fuelled crime, which costs England and Wales around £11 billion (about US$18.5 billion) a year.” Ironically, the minimum pricing scheme has been criticised by alcohol charities, including Alcohol Concern, which said the measures were “laughable” and that enforcing it would be impossible. Even the government said it woudn’t cut drinking by much, and that “limited impact on responsible consumers who drink moderate amounts of alcohol.” Almost makes three-tier sound like a good idea, no?



What drives wine drinkers? Price, of course


wine drinkers priceNot that the Wine Curmudgeon had any doubt. But listen to enough people in the business, and especially to the Winestream Media, and it’s scores and romance and tasting notes and about as much foolishness as you can imagine. But we have better evidence than ever that wine drinkers buy wine based on price, in the form of the 2013 Wine Market Council Study.

And what kind of wine do most of us buy, even those of us with deep pockets and subscriptions to the wine magazines? Cheap wine, of course.

More, after the jump:

Millennials and the confidence of the palate

Wine Market Council 2012 report

Confidence is one thing, but that 71 percent number is something else entirely.

Dear Millennials:

Almost no one who writes about wine respects you as much as I do – in fact, I’m in the middle of a trade magazine story detailing the massive changes you’ll bring to the wine business.

But even I had to giggle when the new Wine Market Council study reported that 7 out of 10 of you who drink wine at least once a week said you could “correctly differentiate a glass of merlot from a glass of cabernet sauvignon.”

That’s saying a lot. For one thing, the two wines can taste quite similar, especially given that one goal of post-modern winemaking is to eliminate the qualities that make them different. For another, I often have trouble telling the difference between cabernet and merlot — and I’ve been drinking wine for a long time.

In this, I’d love to do a blind tasting – for money, of course, because I have all these expenses – to see if you can really do it. I’d enjoy being proved wrong, though I doubt that would happen. It’s one thing to wax poetic about wine at the dinner table with your friends, and something altogether different when a bunch of people are waiting for you to demonstrate the acuity of your palate.

Yet, having said all this, I’m quite impressed that so many of you are so confident about wine. It’s not something that we’ve always seen in the past from younger wine drinkers, who are usually more worried about using a corkscrew than about what the wine tastes like. No doubt this is yet another way in which you’ll change the wine business. I guess I need to figure out to work that into my story.

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