Thirst for new drinks fuels popularity of brewpubs, neighborhood bars

Nielsen CGA uncovers exclusive survey findings around the fast-changing habits of out-of-home drinkers the rising popularity of craft beer.

According to the latest Nielsen CGA On Premise User Survey (OPUS), one in seven U.S. consumers has visited a brewpub in the last three months while neighbourhood bars are broadening their appeal.

“This latest Nielsen CGA OPUS research provides compelling insights into how adults’ thirst for new experiences and a wider selection is driving growing interest in brewpubs and taprooms,” said Scott Elliott, senior vice president at Nielsen CGA. “It also reaffirms how neighborhood bars remain pivotal in the out-of-home drinking sector.”

Brewpubs & Taprooms’ Most Frequented Visitors

The research highlights the soaring popularity of brewpubs and taprooms across the U.S. in the last few years. Across all legal-aged consumers (age 21 and up), 14% have visited one of these locations in the last quarter—and nearly half (46%) have visited them more in the last year than in the previous 12 months. Brewpubs’ appeal stretches across adult age groups, with two in five (39%) visits made by 35 to 54 year-olds and the rest by 21 to 34 year-olds (33%) or those aged 55+ (28%).

More than half (56%) of brewpub visitors say they visit these locations because of the opportunity to experience something different, while nearly two in five (38%) say it gives them the chance to explore a more interesting selection of beers.

Craft Beer: Brewpubs’ Most Popular Beverage

Craft beer is the leading drink in brewpubs, chosen by more than two thirds (68%) of drinkers. Of craft beer, seasonal ales, IPAs, pale ales, stouts and Pilsners are the five most popular styles. However, brewpub visitors are versatile drinkers beyond beer, with large proportions also drinking wine (50%) and cocktails (43%).

All figures are drawn from the October 2017 round of the Nielsen CGA On Premise User Survey, a nationally representative sample of around 15,000 consumers who have visited on premise sites in the last three months. The survey delivers detailed consumer insights into brand and category engagement in the U.S.

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