BWS biggest drinks trends summerLifestyle

The biggest drinks trends for summer

Seltzers, hazy craft beers and low alcohol options are predicted to be the biggest drinks trends this summer.

BWS is preparing for its biggest season ever for alcohol-free or lower alcohol options, with products on shelf in categories ranging from rosé to bubbles, beer and spirits.

BWS drinks expert Simon Wilson said consumer passion for all things pink will also continue. And, when it comes to beer, it’s about all the flavours.

“We are seeing huge growth in hazy beers and alcoholic ginger beers,” he said. “As a bonus, ginger beers will be the ultimate pairing for foods with Christmas spices on the festive table this year.”

These are the eight drinks trends Wilson is backing for summer:

Alcoholic ginger beer

Alcoholic ginger beer sales have increased 60% at BWS in the last six months, with breweries including James Squire jumping on the trend.

“Alcoholic ginger beers are light, refreshing and have that great zingy taste we all know and love from ginger, so expect to see these everywhere this summer,” Wilson said.


After having taken the US and UK by storm, it is official – seltzers are the drink of summer 2020 in Australia. Seltzers are in essence alcohol-infused sparkling water with a hint of natural fruit flavour. The secret behind their success is the freshness of flavour and the lightness of the drink – most seltzers contain less than 100 calories, and are sugar and gluten-free.

Among the offerings on shelf are cult US brand White Claw, plus loads of Australian-made seltzers such as Rainbird and Liberty Coast.  

Local craft spirits

Australia has a thriving craft spirits industry with world-class products. Explore craft gins like the Manly Spirits Lilly Pilly Gin made with native botanicals, or try a spiced rum, which experts predict will be the new gin.

Another category that’s on the rise is Australian-made whisky, including Victorian Premier Dan Andrew’s Melbourne-made favourite Starward.

Hazy beer

Australians are falling in love with the juicy, punchy flavours of cloudy craft beers. BWS has seen an uplift in hazy beer sales of more than 500% in the last 12 months. Hazy beers are generally Pale Ales or IPA’s that have been extra-hopped later in the brewing process which brings forward more of those juicy characteristics and really soften the bitterness and results in a cloudy or “hazy” beer.

Low and no-alcohol

There has never been so many options for those who wish to moderate. Zero alcohol and low alcohol is one of the fastest growing categories at BWS. Customers are also going for wines that are lower in alcohol, such as Moscato – an Italian style sweet, frizzante (which means lightly sparkling) wine which is naturally lower in alcohol (around 6% ABV). 


Although rosé has become a wine Australians like to enjoy all year round – in particular thanks to its food friendliness – BWS is expecting sales of rosé wine to surge more than 50% over the summer months. The rosé trend has also expanded into other categories – pink gin, pink beer and pink premix G&Ts! 

Alternative varietals 

Move over Shiraz and Sauvignon Blanc, the “alternative” varietals are in this summer. Like Shiraz? Then try a South Australian Malbec. Like Pinot Gris or unoaked Chardonnay? Then Fiano will be right up your alley.


Whether the fruitier Prosecco or dry Champagne, sparkling sales tend to grow more than 150% over the months of November and December according to sales data from BWS. It predicts rosé Champagnes such as Duperrey Champagne Rose will be particularly popular this year. 

The biggest alcohol trend in 2020

The rise of at-home consumption of spirits during COVID-19 is being hailed as the biggest alcohol trend of 2020. According to Nielsen, the “homebody mentality” created during pandemic restrictions is continuing to drive off-premise spirit sales.

GlobalData’s latest report, ‘Coronavirus (COVID-19) Case Study: Alcoholic Beverage Innovation’, notes that the scale and impact of the global health crisis has changed consumers’ consumption habits.

Mitsue Konishi, Senior Innovation Analyst at GlobalData, said: “As more people avoid bars and clubs, alcoholic beverage manufacturers need to consider consumers’ ‘New Socializing’ occasions such as home drinking in product development. One key consideration will be catering to premium and budget-friendly alcoholic innovations to allow consumers to capture the bar-quality drinking experience at home.”

Brown-Forman President and CEO Lawson Whiting described the rise in home consumption of spirits as a “phenomena”.

“As long as people are largely unable to spend on travel and other forms of entertainment, we think that the spirits’ strong growth will continue predominantly in the off-premise,” he said.

BWS kicks off 100 Days of Summer campaign

BWS is kicking off its biggest ever 100 Days of Summer campain today, giving away 25 million Woolworths Everyday Rewards points, plus products and experiences from a prize pool worth $7 million.

When shopping at any BWS store or online between Wednesday November 4 and Sunday November 8. One in three scans will win points, and customers can triple their chances to win by purchasing selected products. 

Customers can also play the BWS Cooler – which is back for the second year in a row – through BWS on tAPP from today until February 12, with 1 in 3 chances to win daily.

To play the BWS Cooler, download BWS on tAPP through Google Play or App Store.

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