Let’s be honest: Millennials have taken a lot of heat recently. Their elders are proclaiming that the younger generation doesn’t care about anything “important”, they don’t know how to communicate without an iPhone in-hand and they have a false sense of entitlement.
These sweeping generalizations are common when condemning any “new” generation (remember when the baby boomers were listening to “the devil’s music” and the world was going to hell in a hand basket?), so we don’t take it all very seriously. In fact, we’d like to salute Millennials for the way they are beginning to transform the drinking landscape, one bottle of wine at a time.
Lately industry experts have been noticing an interesting trend in the wine world: the Millennial generation is consuming more wine than previous generations when they turned 21. This is music to wine-makers ears because while people ages 55 or older in the U.S. still make up the largest percentage of wine drinkers, millennials have years of wine drinking ahead of them. The interest from Millennials is bringing some new hope to the wine world.
When it comes to preference, Millennials don’t care about the more pretentious side of wine. They’re growing up in a generation where authenticity is applauded and the more transparent a brand is, the better. They don’t care about awards and stupid marketing gimmicks – they care about learning where the wine was made, how it was made and what’s unique about it.
However in true twenty-something fashion, wine companies are finding that Millennials are passionate about wine, but they’re not necessarily willing and/or able to drop big bucks on it. They’ll typically spend $10-$12 on a normal bottle, but may spend up to $20 for a special occasion. We don’t know if this is indicative of purchase preferences moving forward, or if it’s just because this generation is still young and probably doesn’t have a lot of disposable income as a whole. We’re thinking it’s a combo of the two.
We’re excited that Millennials are joining the wine world with a new perspective and fresh taste. How could this new shift change the wine world?