Waitrose has revealed that gin is the tipple of choice this year for its customers, with sales of the spirit up 17% compared with 2015.
The supermarket chain’s spirits buyer John Vine said: “Customers are discovering that gin lends itself to being shaken up with more than just tonic. In fact, there are more classic cocktails made with gin than with any other spirit thanks to the vast diversity of flavours available.
“The innovation happening in the gin world, especially with artisanal distilleries, makes is a very exciting time for gin lovers.’
The retailer’s top-selling three spirits are all gins – and one in every three bottles of spirit sold at Waitrose is gin.
Gin now pips Pimm’s [a gin-based fruit cup generally served with lemonade] to prime position as the ‘weathervane’ of drinks – when the sun shines, the nation indulges in a gin and tonic.
So far this year, Waitrose has added six new gins to its already extensive range. The grocery multiple now sells 43 different versions of gin which, it claims, is the widest range in a UK supermarket.
In December 2015, a study by market research company Mintel revealed that over half of gin drinkers are aged under 35. The trend for gin-based cocktails rocketed last year, in line with the number of artisan distilleries that have been popped up recently, particualrly in London.