Americans Are Bubbly about Sparkling Wine

Weak economy still a concern, but sparklers continue to outpace total U.S. wine market
Dec 22, 2011

Americans are drinking more bubbly these days. Total consumption of sparkling wine in the United States will approach 15 million cases by the end of this year, almost eclipsing the 20-year high recorded in 1999, when sparkling sales surged in anticipation of millennial celebrations. This year’s gain will mark the third consecutive annual volume increase for sparkling wine, according to The U.S. Wine Market: Impact Databank Review and Forecast, 2011 Edition. Sparkling sales have rebounded from the most recent global economic downturn, and Americans are expected to further increase consumption in the foreseeable future.

The import sector is estimated to have outpaced domestic sparkling wines for the second consecutive year in 2011, led by Italy’s Verdi, from Carriage House Imports, which is projected to increase 13 percent this year to 1.2 million cases, solidifying its No. 1 ranking in the U.S. among imported brands. But the fastest-growing sector is Prosecco—imports from Italy nearly doubled from 2007 to 2010 and are projected to exceed 1 million cases this year, according to the Impact Databank report. E. & J. Gallo’s Andre brand leads the domestic sector, but the fastest growth is being recorded by Barefoot Bubbly, also from Gallo.

Sparkling wine sales in the U.S. are estimated to have outperformed table wine brands for the third straight year in 2011, when American drinkers will have consumed the equivalent of 900 million glasses. More than 40 percent of those 15 million cases are sold during the holiday season. The overall wine market is projected to increase 1.7 percent by year-end, to 313 million cases, its 18th consecutive annual gain, according to Impact Databank, which is owned by M. Shanken Communications, the parent company of Wine Spectator. Sparkling wines account for a modest 5 percent, but growing, share of that volume.


The annual U.S. Wine Market report analyzes the latest trends in the wine industry. With more than 500 tables, graphs and maps, the expanded 2011 edition consists of the first look at brand data for 2011, projections by origin and category through 2015, as well as comprehensive charts of wine trends by variety, color, origin and type. The report also provides volume data for over 500 brands since 1980, rankings of the top 100 wines by volume and retail sales, the top 25 marketers and much, much more.

For more information about The U.S. Wine Market, which is also available on CD, and other Impact Databank reports on distilled spirits, beer and the global drinks market, contact Elisa Trapani at M. Shanken Communications, 387 Park Avenue South, New York, N.Y. 10016; by phone at (212) 684-4224, ext. 339; by fax at (212) 779-3366; or by e-mail at etrapani@mshanken.com. For a comprehensive table of contents and a detailed listing of tables and charts, or to print an order form, go to ImpactDatabank.com.

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