Friday, October 14, 2011

Spirits Cause Promiscuity

About 25 years ago, it was easy for me to be monogamous. But nowadays, with so many choices available to me, I have embraced promiscuity. Sure, I have some I prefer more than others, but I love to experiment, to see what the new ones have to offer. And I am far from alone. You might not want to admit it, but I bet most of you have become promiscuous too.

When I first started drinking spirits, my choices were rather limited. There just were not that many brands available, so I, like many others, soon enough found favorites within each category, such as a favorite vodka and tequila. We then generally were monogamous, loyal to that brand and saw no need to stray. At liquor stores, we would purchase our favorite brand. At restaurants and bars, we would always order that favorite brand. If we bought someone a bottle as a gift, it was an easy decision, just purchase them their favorite brand.

But as time passed, temptation arose to break those bonds of monogamy. An incredible diversity of spirits became available, in all categories, and many were high quality products. It led me, as it did many others, to try these new spirits, to break our loyalty to our favorite brands. For me, that led to the adoption of new favorites, as well as a promiscuous nature, the desire to continue to try new brands and spirits. I was no longer satisfied with a single brand, but wanted to experience all that was available out there.

So, when I visited a liquor store, it took much longer to decide which spirit to buy, and new brands, with that come hither look, might tempt me to give them a try. At restaurants and bars, I will peruse their liquor list to see all of the available options. I no longer have a single favorite brand. Now, I have a handful of favorites in each category, but am still willing to venture outside that group to experiment. That seems to hold true with many people I know, and none of them are remorseful for this fact.

Previously, each generation began drinking beer and spirits, and then got more into wine as the generation got older. But, now with the incredible diversity of artisan spirits available (as well as craft beers), I am not sure that will necessarily happen to the current generation, as well as future ones. With all of the excellent spirit choices now available, there is a compelling argument that drinkers will continue to embrace them, even as they get older. That could negatively affect the number of wine drinkers in the future, unless wineries work at creating reasons why consumers should consume wine rather than spirits.

I am a promiscuous spirits drinker, and proud of that fact.  What about you?

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