Wine Country: America now prefers wine over beer
It must've been around my sophomore year of high school when I had tasted my first sip of beer. A few friends and I had gathered in the garage of one of our houses, and we passed around a bottle that somebody had swiped from a party one of our parents had thrown. It tasted awful to me, and I remember thinking, "why would anyone buy this stuff?" I didn't touch the stuff again until college.Need help deciding where to go? Try out our merchant recommender for New York and San Francisco
But my first sip of wine was a different story. I was 20, and studying abroad at Cambridge University, where the legal drinking age is 18 (sidenote: I was amazed when I discovered it was perfectly legal for 16-year-olds to drink alcohol in public as long as they were with adults. The United Kingdom is a fascinating place). At Cambridge, wine was served at our weekly formal dinners, which, if you want to picture it, looks pretty much exactly like having dinner at Hogwarts. I instantly preferred wine to beer. Red wine, to white. And I wasn't the only one.
For only the second time in 20 years, wine has tied beer as the alcoholic beverage of choice among U.S. drinkers, according to Gallup, which asked a random sample of more than 1,000 adults if they drank beer, wine or liquor the most often. According to the poll, 36 percent of U.S. drinkers prefer beer, 35 percent prefer wine, and 23 percent prefer liquor.
Men, adults aged 18 to 34 years, and Midwesterners prefer beer the most, but everyone else prefers wine. The preference for men change when they're older than 55 — 47 percent prefer wine compared to 27 percent who prefer beer.
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As you can imagine, wine is more expensive than beer because it must be produced in certain regions, climates, and needs time to age. And unless they're buying bottles of 2-buck Charles Shaw, people who drink wine the most often are probably seeing their wallets hit a little harder. Plus, if you've ever been to a wine bar, or ordered glasses of wine at a bar, you know how quickly the numbers on your tab adds up.
As always, drink responsibly. If not for your health, than for your finances.Need help deciding where to go? Try out our merchant recommender for New York and San Francisco
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