I have read two articles in the past month that described Millennial wine drinkers as less sophisticated than older wine drinkers.
Here is a link to one of the articles.
I cannot say that I agree with this viewpoint.
But then again, it depends on your definition of sophistication.
Boomers have historically wanted to impress friends and family with an expensive bottle from high profile wine regions like Bordeaux or Napa.
Millennial wine drinkers gain prestige by bringing a bottle with a interesting story, which might be an import from Croatia.
I would argue that Millennials thirst for wine knowledge and their desire to experience as many grape varietals and wine regions as possible, is a mark of sophistication.
Their frequency of wine purchases tells us that they have made wine a part of their everyday life. Whereas past generations of Americans may have relegated wine drinking to only special occasions.
And yes, they are savvy too, these new young wine explorers. They access and share information, wine reviews, food pairing ideas and pricing online.
They have also been the generation that has accelerated the growth of the organic wine and biodynamic wine sector. They care about what they put into their bodies and how it was made as well.
I always get an enthusiastic response from Millennial wine drinkers about natural wines. With the older generation, there is some begrudging yet growing interest mixed with distrust for a product made without chemicals.
These are some interesting results from a recent Wine Market Council survey.
Frequency of wine bottle purchases over $20:
32% Gen X
Importance of online information when purchasing wine:
29% Gen X
Percentage of imported wine purchases:
31% Gen X