Drizly purchasers were ready to ring out 2023 in style last month, reaching for varied categories and brands during the holiday season. Though January commonly sees a spike in non-alcoholic wine, beer, and spirits purchasing, several NA brands experienced a strong month even in a month typically dedicated to indulgence. At the same time, richer categories of beverage were popular last month, from Espresso Martini ready-to-drink (RTD) cocktails to Quadrupel beer. Learn more about these and more insights from Drizly’s December 2023 sales.

December Category Growth: Martini RTDs, Ice Wine, and Quadrupel Beer

As is fitting through the December holidays, consumers reached for richly flavored subcategories to close out the year. Within the spirits category, Martini-style ready-to-drink cocktails were popular, particularly the uber-trendy Espresso Martini. Bestsellers include Espresso Martini RTD cocktails from On the Rocks, Ketel One, and Cutwater.

In the beer category, Quadrupel – a strong style of dark ale – led subcategory growth last month; the top seller was the festive St. Bernardus Christmas Ale. Wine drinkers reached for the ice wine/eiswein subcategory more in December, led by multiple SKUs from Canadian producer Inniskillin and New York producer Wagner Vineyards: the Inniskillin Vidal Pearl Ice Wine, Inniskillin Cabernet Franc Ice Wine, Wagner Vineyards Vidal Blanc Ice Wine, Wagner Vineyards Riesling Ice Wine, and Inniskillin Vidal Ice Wine.

Purchasing Insights from Christmas 2023 

The holiday sales rush peaked on Friday, December 22 as shoppers prepared for the Christmas weekend; Saturday, December 23 was the second-biggest sales date of the month. Gifting comprised 18 percent share of sales in December, more than doubling from the eight percent of share it comprised in 2023 overall. 

That spiked even further over Christmas weekend (December 22 to 25), when gift share hit 22 percent of sales; of these dates, Friday, December 22 was the top gifting day, when gift share held 30 percent share of sales. Just like last year, liquor was the most popular gift over the long weekend, holding 50 percent of gift share. Wine held 48 percent of gift share, and beer held two percent. Subcategory gift share was fairly consistent year-over-year, with a few small shifts.

Gift Share Over Christmas Weekend 2023 (Versus Christmas Weekend 2022)

  • Whiskey: 30 percent (vs, 31 percent)
  • Champagne and sparkling wine: 23 percent (vs. 23 percent)
  • Red wine: 21 percent (vs. 20 percent)
  • Tequila: 12 percent (vs. 12 percent)
  • White wine: 3 percent (vs. 3 percent)
  • Vodka: 2 percent (vs. 2 percent)

New Year’s Eve 2023 Insights

The final sales day of the year, Sunday, December 31, was the third-best sales date of December. As always, Champagne and sparkling wine was the top-selling subcategory with 28 percent share of sales. However, this was down from 30 percent last year.

Some Champagne consumers were trading their traditional choices – which tend to carry higher price tags – for more value-oriented ones this year as well. Champagne was the top seller with 67 percent share of the sparkling wine category – down two percentage points from last year – while No. 2 seller Prosecco was up two percentage points year-over-year, holding 17 percent of share. Those were followed by sparkling rosé wine (seven percent), American sparkling (four percent), and Cava (one percent).

At the same time, tequila saw year-over-year gains, reaching 10 percent share of total sales on Drizly (versus nine percent in 2022). Though silver/blanco tequila held onto its top spot this year, other styles – including reposado, añejo, and gold – all experienced share gains year-over-year.

Share of Tequila Sales, New Year’s Eve 2023 (Versus New Year’s Eve 2022)

  • Silver/blanco tequila: 43 percent
  • Reposado tequila: 33 percent (vs. 31 percent)
  • Añejo tequila: 19 percent (vs. 17 percent)
  • Gold tequila: 3 percent (vs. 1 percent)
  • Flavored tequila: 1 percent

Market Insights: Tucson, Arizona

In December 2023, Tucson, Arizona was the fastest-growing market on Drizly. The market indexes on both liquor and beer; liquor held 51 percent of share in Tucson last month, compared to 47 percent nationally, and beer held 15 percent share in Tucson last month, compared to 10 percent nationally.

Whiskey ranked as the top-selling subcategory last month in the market, with 25 percent share of sales, followed by Champagne and sparkling wine, which held 12 percent share. Red wine (10 percent) and white wine (seven percent) followed, while vodka, lager, and tequila each held six percent of share.

Drizly’s Top-Selling SKUs in Tucson, December 2023

  1. Veuve Clicquot
  2. Oban
  3. Crown Royal
  4. Woodford Reserve
  5. Tito’s
  6. Duckhorn Vineyards
  7. Casamigos
  8. Bulleit
  9. Clase Azul
  10. Stella Artois

Fastest-Growing Brands in December 2023

Non-alcoholic brands had strong showings last month, including NA wine brand Lautus and NA spirits brand Ghia. Lautus specializes in dealcoholized wines from South Africa, and their top seller was their Sauvignon Blanc, followed by the Savvy Red Wine. Ghia is a non-alcoholic aperitif, and while they also make canned spritzes, their Ghia Signature Non-Alcoholic Aperitif was their bestseller last month.

In the beer category, Portland, Maine, brewery Bissell Brothers saw exceptional growth year-over-year. Sales on Drizly were led by flagship IPA The Substance Ale.