7 Cocktail Trends Prediction in Singapore
Asia and Australia collectively nailed 8 spots in The World’s 50 Best Bars. Singapore alone has 10 cocktail bars ranked in top 100 list. Here’s our prediction of 2023 cocktail trends in Singapore.
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Barcadi put together its consumer and brand ambassador surveys and predicted global trends for cocktails.
The respondents, whom Barcadi considered as global, comprise people from the United States of America, the United Kingdom, South Africa, India and Mexico, leaving most parts of Asia and Oceania – Singapore, South Korea, Australia, Japan and China, out of the data collection.
The countries that have been omitted are among the key contributors to the cocktail boom. Asia and Australia collectively nailed 8 spots in The World’s 50 Best Bars. Singapore alone has 10 cocktail bars ranked in top 100 list.
Quoted in the Barcadi Cocktail Trends Report 2023 are leanings indicative of the regions they have surveyed. But, by no means does it reflect the cocktail trend and culture in Singapore.
SINGAPORE'S F&B CULTURE
Singapore is a global city of which only 3.55 million of the total 5.64 million population are citizens. The country has a whopping 37% of non-Singaporeans to add vibrancy to the kaleidoscope of cultures, tastes, lifestyle and exchanges.
People in Singapore rarely cook and eat at home, much less to make cocktails. Seven out of ten eat out for dinner. At least 25% of population eat out on a daily basis.
Even during COVID-19 lockdown periods, seven out of ten ordered food delivery.
In September 2022 alone, 127 F&B companies were incorporated in Singapore. The 728.6km2 country is the twentieth smallest countries in the world but has 5,200 food and beverage operators from hawker stalls to fine dining in the latest count. Assuming that a visit is made each day, it would take someone at least 14 years to complete all the F&B operations in Singapore.
So, that said, cocktail making and consumption at home will not be a trend in Singapore in 2023 or even the near future. Dining out and bar visits will remain a culture and norm in Singapore. And so, here’s our prediction of 2023 cocktail trends in Singapore:
SINGAPORE COCKTAIL TRENDS PREDICTION 2023
TREND 1: Ascent of Affordable Alcohol
Singapore is ranked the world’s most expensive city to live in. With the increase in goods and services tax (GST) and bleak global economic forecast, barflies are definitely going to feel the pinch and counting their drinks. In the year ahead, affordable cocktails through creative bartending and happy hour promotions will strike a chord with most.
TREND 2: Earlier-hour Imbibe
The pandemic has a residual and lasting impact on overall lifestyle. With more hybrid work arrangements, more consumers will be looking for earlier-hour drinks to wrap the day or socialise instead of the traditional afterwork hours.
This coincides with Bacardi Consumer Survey 2022 which shows that respondents in the US and South Africa are now drinking at an earlier time of between 4pm to 8pm. In fact, close to 40% of respondents in the U.S. and U.K., and more than 50% of respondents in countries including South Africa, India, and Mexico, are going out to eat, drink or socialise earlier in the evening.
TREND 3: More Creative Cocktails
The well-travelled Singapore audience is spoilt for choice with the food and drinks options available locally. With greater knowledge and exposure to cocktails, they will continue to look for elevated experiences to excite their palates in 2023.
Barcadi Cocktail Trends Report 2023 predicts the trend of more fun and sugary drinks in the coming year.
However, with Ministry of Health tightening regulations on sweet drinks, and a generally well-developed palate in the consumers here, it is more likely that the cocktail lovers will turn to more adventurous notes in Singapore.
The prediction is that this year will more likely witness greater creativity in the use of local and perhaps unusual ingredients, and greater experimentations with umami, spice and herbaceous notes rather than saccharine cocktails such as Blue Lagoon or Grasshopper that once dominated bars in the 90s.
This is also supported by GlobalData research which shows that 30% of people would buy a drink because they were curious and therefore adventurous about the flavour profiles.
TREND 4: Rise of Premium Spirits - Tequila, Mezcal and Rums
Over the top dressing has already been a thing of the past in Singapore. This is also a recorded as a global trend as bartenders focus more on quality spirits and techniques to let the quality of cocktails speak for itself.
In the year ahead, minimal dressing will continue as more time (and therefore money) will be invested in premium spirits to court the scrupulous barflies in Singapore. More premium and artisanal tequila, mezcals and rums have already surfaced in the bars locally. And those who can afford will remain fastidious with the spirits that go into their drinks.
According to figures from NielsenIQ, rum has also overtaken whisk(e)y in terms of sales and raked in 1.2 billion pounds in the UK, accounting for 13% of the overall spirits category. Appreciation for premium rums has already started to make inroads in Singapore particularly at the most recent Whisky Live.
TREND 5: Greater Appetite & Support for Local / Regional Spirits
The cocktail scene in Singapore has evolved and matured tremendously in the last decade. Singapore claims top spot as the city with the greatest number of bars in The World’s 50 Best Bars top 100 list.
As the taste for cocktails evolves and matures, consumers have also become more adventurous. Greater demand for local / regional spirits can be seen at bars. This is good not only for the consumers. It also helps bolster local and regional economy and reduce carbon footprint.
TREND 6: Increased demand in RTD Cocktails & Tap Cocktails
The RTD market is currently valued at $36.42bn and is expected to grow 11.2% by 2030, according to Insight Ace Analytic.
“The rise of the no- and low- alcohol category may be a boon to the F&B industry. It presents greater opportunities for socialisation between people who drink and those who don’t,” Matthew Fergusson Stewart shares.
“More people are also willing to pay top dollar for these no- and low-alcoholic beverages in a social setting and be a part of the conversation. This is a trend that appears to be here to stay for quite some time; it’s not just the latest gimmick that will pass in a year or two.”
Riding the cocktail boom coattails, more bars will be needing bartending expertise and speed to meet demand. Considering labour shortage in the Singapore, and especially in the F&B industry, more bars will turning to pre-batch cocktails in tap and RTD formats.
This resonates with the Bacardi Global Brand Ambassador Survey 2022. According to the survey, 62% of the respondents foresee increase in demand for pre-batched cocktails, and 72% of respondents cite speed as the reason for the rise.
TREND 7: Growth of Spirits with Conscience
Two key lessons learnt during the pandemic are the importance of community and environmental sustainability, and how they intertwine. In foreseeable years ahead, there will be greater emphasis on social and environmental conscience.
Leading the charge are Arbikie and Equiano.
Arbikie is the world’s first distillery to be powered by green hydrogen. Sustainability forms the foundation of Arbikie’s development since day one. Built with the environment in mind, the distillery has photovoltaic panels on the roof and the distillation co-products being returned to the fields as natural fertilisers or being fed to the highland cattle. It also develops and produces the world’s first carbon negative gin and vodka – Nàdar.
Equiano started The Equiano Rum Co. Foundation to push forward the movement against slavery. Philanthropy is at the heart of the business and quarterly grants are disbursed to aid important causes such as bonded labour in Nepal and Vietnamese child trafficking across Europe.
PREDICTION IN A NUTSHELL
Better and cheaper cocktails at earlier hours.