Vodka Popularity Growing

vodka popularity growingThe national drink of Russia is now leading in the U.S. as well. Vodka popularity is growing. In fact, vodka is now the most popular spirit in America.

Ten of the top 24 spirits brands in the U.S. are vodkas, according to Bernstein Research and reported by CNBC. More surprising? The top five slots on that list are all vodkas. Vodka has gained in popularity while the recent growth of whiskey and low-calorie cocktails has tapered off. In the U.S., vodka sales represent 31 percent of the total spirits market compared to whiskey at 22 percent.

Across the pond, the same scenario is playing out: based on value and volume for take-home sales, vodka popularity is growing in the U.K. as well, outpacing whiskey. Vodka sales have grown 22.5 percent in the last four years compared to whiskey’s growth of ten percent.

Vodka’s growing popularity in the U.S. has also been reported by RIA Novosti, one of Russia’s largest news agencies.

Top Ten Vodka Brands

According to The Drinks Business, Smirnoff holds the top spot in the world’s ten biggest spirits brands with its competitor, Absolut, on the same list in the fourth position, according to its latest ranking in October 2012. In 2011, Smirnoff sold 24.7 million 9l cases, notably ahead of Bacardi in second place with 19.6 million 9l cases sold during the same time. Absolut sold 11.2 million 9l cases in 2011.

When ranking the top ten vodka brands, The Drinks Business reports an increase in sales for Smirnoff of four percent from 2011 to 2012 with Absolut experiencing a three percent increase during the same period.

The other vodkas rounding out the top-ten list (in order of popularity behind Smirnoff and Absolut based on case sales) are: Belenkaya, Pyat Ozer, Krupnik, Zoladkowa de Luxe, Grey Goose, Skyy, Stolichnaya, and Finlandia.

Flavored Vodkas

The list leaders, Smirnoff and Absolut as well as others, offer flavored vodkas that some believe are at the heart of vodka’s popularity growth. You might be familiar with orange and vanilla vodkas, but what about fluffed marshmallow, root beer float, or whipped cream (offered by Smirnoff as part of the 33 different flavors it offers)? Absolut offers 17 different flavors of vodka including “Hibiskus” and Wild Tea. On the other hand, Grey Goose aficionados are limited to four more ordinary flavors: cherry, pear, orange and citrus.

If the flavors offered by the top sellers don’t tap your taste buds, there are plenty of other choices including peanut butter and jelly or banana (Van Gogh Vodka), pickle (Sazerac Co.), bubble gum or fruit loops (Three Olives), or perhaps cookie dough (Pinnacle Vodka).

Whether vodka drinkers are purists or those looking for an off-the-beaten-path flavor, there is no denying vodka’s popularity growth.

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