Restaurant owners that serve alcohol need to be aware of two trends that are making waves in the industry. One is a trend that is can only increase your alcohol sales, while another could possibly damage your sales.
Craft Your Millenials Audience
Nation’s Restaurant News reports that the current young generation of drinks, Millenials (and to a fair bit, Generation X), are not the fans of Budweiser, Miller Lite, and more that their parents held on to have fallen out of favor versus craft beers. Craft beers are small and independent beer companies that produce much smaller quantities than their larger brethren, and at the same time, limit themselves regionally, for the most part.
With Buffalo Wild Wings, they initially tried to go in-depth with their descriptions of the drinks, eventually finding that shorter descriptions would be more effective and memorable. Much of the generation tackling these unearthed curiosities of craft beers will be able to do their research on their smart phone, and may even tackle a restaurant with the lone intent of trying a certain beer.
If your restaurant caters to younger crowds (not too young; they still need to be able to drink), you should look into which craft beers you can and should carry. Make an extra note about all the locally produced craft beers for ease and reputation, but you might also want to look for farther-sourced ones for curiosity sake. People might want to go to your restaurant just because it’s the only place to get a drink from the other side of the country.
Tighter Regulations Could Lead To Tighter Bills
All these extra craft beer sales might be rendered moot if the National Transportation Safety Board has their way. The board hopes to increase stricter DUI regulations. All US states have the legal limit of BAC at .08, but the Board hopes to lower that to .05.
With the lowered limit as reported by Huffington Post, the continuing belief is that a lowered BAC limit will lead to lower alcohol sales. The NTSB’s logic is that over 100 countries have an equal BAC limit and the 10,000 annual deaths caused by drunk drivers. Opponents argue that this wouldn’t stop the hevy drinks with .15 BAC that are the cause of 70% of deaths. Other groups, such as the Distilled Spirits Council and Mothers Against Drunk Driving, argue that .08 is appropriate, but needs to be more strictly enforced.
While alcohol sales might go down in restaurants, they may go up in stores that sell drinks, as many drinkers might chose to go to a friend’s house with a case of beer instead of spending money in a restaurant they have to drive to and from.