Though it was a short month, several trends already showed staying power in 2023. Non-alcoholic options continued to prove popular, while several breakout brands from January showed strong growth in February, too. From Valentine’s Day to Super Bowl purchasing occasions, explore these and more insights from Drizly’s February 2023 sales.

February’s Fastest-Growing Beverage Subcategories

Non-alcoholic alternatives had a strong month again, proving that consumers are continuing to look to NA options for more than just Dry January. Both non-alcoholic beer and non-alcoholic spirits saw the highest year-over-year sales increase in their respective categories.

In the wine category, the beloved Burgundian variety Aligote experienced strong year-over-year growth in February. This reflects an overall trend towards year-over-year white wine growth; white wine accounted for 30 percent of the wine category in February 2023 versus 28 percent in February 2022.

Super Bowl Beverage Sales Insights

The Kansas City Chiefs may have come out on top for Super Bowl LVII, but so did the liquor category, which gained two percentage points in share over last year on Super Bowl Sunday 2023. Overall, liquor held 43 percent of share on Drizly, followed by wine at 35 percent and beer at 22 percent.

Three liquor subcategories experienced the highest year-over-year growth on Super Bowl Sunday 2023: non-alcoholic spirits, ready-to-drink (RTD) cocktails, and reposado tequila. Albeit from a small base, non-alcoholic spirits share grew 200 percent over Super Bowl 2022, indicating wider embrace of NA alternatives for many occasions (NA wine also experienced a 50 percent growth in share, and NA beer experienced a 80 percent growth in share). Reposado tequila grew 25 percent in share over Super Bowl 2022, underscoring continued interest in this style of tequila. The RTD cocktail subcategory experienced 52 percent growth in share over last year, while at the same time, hard seltzer experienced a seven percent decrease in share.

Within the beer category, American-style lager saw a share increase of 18 percent, while IPA experienced a decrease of 11 percent. Echoing what retailers noted in our 2022 Retail Report, consumers reached for less expensive sparkling wine within the wine category for the Super Bowl this year. Champagne experienced a 23 percent decrease in share, while Prosecco experienced a 24 percent increase in share.

Valentine’s Day Beverage Sales Insights

As it typically does, Valentine’s Day 2023 drove gift purchasing spikes. Gift orders accounted for 14 percent of Drizly orders on February 14, which is up five percentage points over gift share in 2023 to date. Consumers were also ready to spend more on gifts; the average unit price of gifts on Valentine’s Day 2023 was $44.60, which is a 14 percent increase over last year ($39.22).

Though wine accounted for the highest share of gift orders once again, with 50 percent share, it was down slightly versus overall 2023 gifting share (51 percent). Liquor, on the other hand, experienced gifting gains, holding 47 percent share of gifts on Valentine’s Day (versus 46 percent in 2023 to date).

Drizly’s Most-Gifted Subcategories, Valentine’s Day 2023

  1. Champagne and Sparkling Wine: 26 percent
  2. Whiskey: 25 percent
  3. Red Wine: 17 percent
  4. Tequila: 15 percent
  5. White Wine: 4 percent
  6. Vodka: 2 percent
  7. Pink Wine: 2 percent

Market Insights: Cincinnati, Ohio

The Cincinnati market, which showed strong growth in February, tends to over-index on wine and beer relative to national sales on Drizly. In 2023 to date, wine holds 59 percent share (versus 39 percent nationally), beer holds 16 percent share (versus 14 percent nationally), and liquor holds just 23 percent share (versus 45 percent nationally). Within the wine category, Champagne and sparkling wine is very popular (47 percent of share in Cincinnati versus 22 percent nationally), followed by red wine (28 percent of share) and white wine (17 percent of share).

February’s Breakout Brands

Several familiar brands, and one new brand, made the list of breakout brands last month. As they did in January 2023, hard seltzer brands Happy Dad and Spindrift experienced the strongest year-over-year growth in February. The two breakout brands in the spirits category were also repeats from January: NÜTRL and Beatbox Beverages, both ready-to-drink cocktail brands.

The breakout brand for the wine category was a new one: Field Recordings, a Paso Robles, California-based winery that makes a wide range of wines from classic and offbeat grapes alike.