DrinkWire is Liquor.com's showcase for the best articles, recipe and reviews from the web's top writers and bloggers. In this post, Greg of GreatDrams offers a look at gin's return to the spotlight.
Gin has often been regarded as the spirit of old ladies who smell like lavender and enjoy knitting over an episode of Eastenders. But times are changing for Gin, with the drink finding a new lease of life and resurgence in popularity.
The drinks industry in general has seen a change in how people drink and the drinks they buy. In a recent consumer insights study by the CEB found that “Adult beverage consumers are discovering that alcoholic beverages are an intrinsic part of social gatherings”.
Drinking alcohol is becoming focussed on socialising and group activity rather than the drinking experience itself. People are in search of a drink that will bring them together with their friends instead of alcohol being the focus for the entire evening. Gin allows this through its versatility, being a key ingredient of many cocktails and also being enjoyed on its own.
The very act of creating a cocktail is becoming more consumer friendly as well. The search for a more sociable drink comes hand in hand with people embracing cocktail making at home. Today, consumers are choosing to stay in and treat themselves rather than break the bank on an expensive night out. And with this movement of socialisation into the home, cocktails at home are becoming more and more popular.
Cocktails at home allow you to own your drink and create a mixture that is personalised and new. Whether or not that tastes good is definitely down to personal taste!
With companies like Tipple Box, who send out monthly cocktail recipes and ingredients and a huge amount of books and recipes on the internet, cocktails have become accessible to everyone and anyone.
And Gin is a big part of the cocktail industry. As consumers move inside the home, they are searching for new drinks to experience and Gin has been swept up in the moment.
This also coincides with a growing interest in craft or locally produced spirits.
The word craft suggests artisan uniqueness and consumers are now looking for more niche drinks to enjoy.
Craft distillers offer a deeper connection to the product, especially if they are locally produced or a place is specified in the brand name or description.
A recent report by Mintel states, “craft spirit producers have chosen to emphasize more detailed provenance such as locally sourced ingredients that suggests exclusivity and quality”.
Craft spirits are attracting more consumers by being different and emphasising their high quality over their reputation. They may be little known, but that is working in their favour.
Having a craft spirit in your drinks cabinet can also give off the idea that you know the industry and have niche tastes yourself.
This builds the notion that craft spirits are exclusive and interesting for that reason.
Specifically in the Gin industry, craft spirits are on the rise for their use of botanicals and emphasising ingredients.
The same Mintel report explores this; “The use of botanicals in the spirits sector has gained more ground in recent years, particularly in gins, due to its sophisticated taste profile”.
By emphasising certain botanicals and building a brand around that, producers are able to set themselves apart from competition and show that they have something different on offer.
So with the rise of home made cocktails, craft spirits and specific ingredients and places, the Gin industry is seeing a rise in interest.
People want to invest in good drinks if they’re not going to be experiencing them in bars any more.
Gin offers versatility and a certain niche quality that is attractive to those of us who just want to stay in and