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svb 2016 Cohort ChangesThe Silicon Valley Bank’s annual State of the Industry Report is out. Among the topics it addresses is whether wine consumption among millennials is increasing quickly enough to compensate for the Boomers who are quickly aging out of the wine market. From the above chart the answer would appear to be no.

The Wine Curmudgeon thinks that for millennials and Gen X’ers, wine is losing its reputation as the drink to have with dinner:

Craft beer and craft spirits replacing wine as the drink to have with dinner. Several analysts told me that there are no firm numbers on this yet, but that they have seen evidence that Millennials and Gen Xers are perfectly content to drink beer and cocktails instead of wine with dinner. That’s revolutionary: Wine’s reason for being is to drink with meals. But beer and spirits are easier to order and the diners know exactly what they’re getting in terms of flavor.

Mmmm. Perhaps they will grow out of it.

Beer is refreshing if all you want is a palate cleanser, and it  is probably easier to pair with sweet glazes or spicy hot foods (although bitter hops can accentuate the heat rather than relieve it). But in general you don’t get the synergies of mutual enhancement that you find with some wine and food pairings. It is true that you have to have an idea about what you’re doing to get a good food/wine pairing. So maybe laziness will win out.

And as for cocktails or spirits they overwhelm almost any food. Hopefully, finesse is not lost on the young-uns.

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