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On Wine: Men, Women, and Wine

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Men and women aren’t the same. No surprise there, and it’s no surprise that our gender differences manifest themselves in our wine purchases and consumption.

The web site Statista reported in a 2019 survey of 1,006 American respondents 18 or older, that 22% of men said wine is their favorite alcoholic beverage while 43% of women said the same. That survey also revealed that 39% of American men say beer is their favorite alcoholic beverage, while 16% of American women rank beer as their number one. Seems more American women like wine than do American men.

WineBusiness.com surveyed 335 California wine consumers, concluding most gender differences revolve around whether or not you’re drinking alone. This is because, the survey says, women value the social benefits of wine more than men. Further, when drinking with others, women identify social and relaxing reasons as motivation while men focus more on proving (bragging about?) their wine knowledge or wine collection. This study also revealed men’s average per bottle purchase is $4.04 higher than women’s.

Similar surveys in Australia support the fact that wine is that country’s most popular alcoholic beverage, despite Australia’s national identity evoking rough-n-tough men drinking beer while wrestling wild animals in the outback. The dominance of wine over beer down under is because of the number of women who drink it. 49% of Aussie women drink wine while the men come in at 41%. Beer remains the favorite among Aussie men.

Aussie statistics also reveal some interesting psychology behind wine drinking. Women like sweeter white wines and associate this with happiness and joy, enhanced by the fruitiness and floral scents of such wine, but associate red wine with aggression and guilt.

England’s Daily Mail claims via survey that men prefer beer in public, but love wine at home, saying wine drinking “isn’t manly.” In fact, the survey reports that while 24% of male Brits drink wine at a pub, 91% drink it at home. My interpretation of this isn’t at all about manliness, but more likely reveals how shallow and easily peer-influenced many men can be. (I mean come on, be a man and wear something pink once in a while!)

Marketing data show that when wine advertising is aimed at men, women are inclined to try it out of curiosity. However, when reversed and the target market is women, men are not inclined to buy it unless it’s a gift for a woman.

Most of this information points to men being entirely wrapped up in their masculinity, while women are more open minded. No surprise there either.

Ernest Valtri of Buckingham is a sculptor, graphic designer, and a former member of the PLCB’s Wine Advisory Council. Contact Erno at ObjectDesign@verizon.net.


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