Millennials are a notoriously flighty, flaky bunch, so it comes as some surprise that they are leading wine industry growth -- a market plagued by old guard attitude and pretension. But the habits of Generation Y are more in line with the experience of wine than any generation ever before. Here's why:
Millennials are pleasure seekers...
Whether in the realm of food, sex, music or alcohol, Millennials have learned to embrace, accept and expect the good life. Of course, generations of young people have been experimenting with hedonism for years, but no generation has exhibited such a pronounced desire for the finer things since this one.
....who are social by nature.
The Millenial generation has harnessed the connectivity of social media to cultivate shared experiences. A bottle of wine, more than a can of beer or a cocktail, is a beverage designed for sharing. As Millennials enter their twenties and early thirties, gone are the kegs and Cuervo shots of college days, but social gatherings remain frequent. For the Millennial seeking a more sophisticated and social drink, wine has become the beverage of choice.
They're adventurous about food...
Foodie culture is more en vogue than ever before, and Gen Y-ers are constantly seeking new ways to enhance their culinary endeavors. The Foodie Millennial is curious about wine, and enthusiastic about exploring new regions to complement their restaurant meal or dinner party.
...and don't take wine too seriously.
Unlike baby boomers, Millennials don't need a special occasion to drink wine. In fact, many Millennials consider cooking, relaxing and watching TV to be prime "wine drinking times." It's no surprise then, that about 25 percent of all Millennials will find an opportunity to drink wine several times a week.
And of course, Gen Y loves nothing more than technology.
Anyone who hasn't recognized that Millennials are completely enamored with their smartphones probably doesn't own one. With the rise of tracking apps and recommendation sites, learning about wine has never been easier. For the Mobile Millennial, finding a wine to love or buy is as easy as listening to a song on Spotify.
Follow Leora Kalikow on Twitter: www.twitter.com/publichousewine