Upgraded Points recently unveiled the results of a fascinating new study on the liquors enjoyed by Americans across the country, broken down and displayed in a series of fully illustrated color maps – state by state, with liquor type and brand – including perennial favorites like Malibu rum, Hennessy cognac, Jose Cuervo tequila, and Crystal Head vodka. Upgraded Points is a trusted travel company that routinely provides similar studies of interest to both its customers and general travelers.
The study determined keywords for liquor types and liquor brands using information from popular alcohol-based websites Vine Pair and The Spirit Business. Celebrity liquor brands were determined using a list from Esquire. In all, there were 150 keywords used: 14 liquor types, 73 popular liquor brands, and 63 celebrity brands. The Google Trends data used to determine the popularity of each type, brand, and celebrity brand of liquor in each state came from a year of data (February 2021 to February 2022).
Americans are enamored by a wide variety of liquor types and even though one type stands out from the rest – the preferred liquor of 18 states in total – it was closely followed by another. Three other liquors tied for third place as state favorites and some results were surprising outliers. For example, gin is only the most popular liquor in Washington, D.C., while rum is only the most popular in Hawaii. Brandy is only the most popular liquor in Wisconsin and bourbon is only the most popular liquor in Kentucky – which makes sense, given Kentucky’s famous bourbon pride. Whiskey and vodka were the clear winners overall though – taking a total of 33 states between them.
Whiskey is popular in the west (Colorado, Montana, Oregon, Washington, Wyoming), in the south (Alabama, Arkansas, South Carolina, Tennessee, West Virginia), and in the Midwest (Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, South Dakota). And vodka dominates the northeast – Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, and Rhode Island. But categorizing favorites by specific brands changes the shape of these results. For instance, Hawaii’s favorite liquor is rum, but that does not mean rum is not well-liked overall: Malibu is the most popular brand of coconut rum in most states.
There are many celebrity liquors to choose from in the U.S., including UFC fighter Conor McGregor’s Proper No. Twelve Triple Distilled Irish Whiskey, and Dan Aykroyd and John Alexander’s Crystal Head Vodka – both of which reigned as celebrity favorites in multiple states. And some celebrity brands are state specific. Californians love tequila with Elon Musk’s Tesla Tequila as their favorite. Harlem native and rapper P. Diddy won over New Yorkers with his DeLeón Tequila, while Tennesseans preferred Kenny Chesney’s Blue Chair Bay Rum.
To see the complete results including exact numbers, types, and celebrity brands for each state, please visit the full study HERE.