SHOULD YOU FOLLOW COCKTAIL TRENDS?

January 20, 2017

Each incoming new year overloads us with information on the latest cocktail trends - what's fading, popular and what will be popular.
 
Whenever these reports surface, there’s lots of chatter and interest amongst bartenders and bar owners hoping to gobble up and then commercialise the latest trends:

However, the resulting consequence is less exciting than one hoped to imagine - with bars around the world following the exact same trend and offering similar concoctions with little to no differentiation. 

Here’s some things to consider the next time you’re reading (and hoping to implement) about the latest cocktail trend
  1. Trends are the talk of the town. Whilst it’s great to know what’s happening away from your bar, do you really want to follow a trend that too many others close by will soon follow?
  2. Some trends are irrelevant. Trends tend not to account for nuances such as culture, demographics and geographic differences and can prove to be irrelevant to your customers.
  3. Trends should be symbolic only. Trends should be seen more as an indicator, rather than something that’s definitive, to represent the theme and taste relevant of your bar and its guests.
  4. Who is reporting the trend? Can the information reported be trusted? Is the trend promoted by a liquor company or its reps with a vested interest?
When it comes down to reality, the bar world is competitive with everyone looking to gain an edge...and following a cocktail trend seems like a good idea!

Therefore, while a bar can start crunching profits early on by adopting a trend, the question of a trend's longevity must be taken into consideration. Is investing in the trend worthwhile? Will it provide sustainability for the business? Rather than answering these questions, we can focus our energy on creating a craft bar experience - who are better served being beacons of creativity while offering inspiration, art and experiences rather than slavishly following cocktail trends of dubious or possibly irrelevant provenance.
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