The last year has completely upended the drinks industry. Bars crumbled in favor of at-home drinking. Consumers drank more, or not at all, fueling a wave of non-alcoholic options. Hard seltzer rose, then fell, then paved the way for a whole slew creative RTDs. Sustainability continued to become a larger and larger part of the conversation, while a proliferation of online ordering options made it easier than ever to order booze.
So what’s to come? Experts predict the top beverage industry trends of the season, from what’s next for RTD to a big moment for classic cocktails.
“One of the greatest success stories over the past few years has been the explosion of tequila and mezcal,” says Zach Kameron, the beverage director of Peak in Hudson Yards. “The tequila you are getting today is incredibly better than the tequila you were getting 10 years ago, so as the market is maturing people are looking for higher quality products that have a high purity of expression.” He notes that Peak recently received new releases of Clase Azul—the bottles sold out before ever hitting menu. “That sort of engagement with allocated products is normally only seen with fine wines and whiskeys, so the trend in agave spirits right now is definitely toward an appreciation for quality.”
“The tequila category has seen exponential growth due to the surge in consumer interest of the spirit and we anticipate this trend continuing