IPAs May Be King But Most Age Groups Prefer Other Beer Styles

Though India pale ales have taken the craft beer world by storm, only millennials say IPA is their favorite style, a new survey shows.

The online survey of 548 beer drinkers by market research company Datassential finds that millennials (respondents 26-40 years old) prefer IPAs, while Gen X (41-57 years old) and Baby Boomer (58 years and older) beer drinkers say lager is their favorite beer style. Gen Z (21-25 years old) drinkers’ top choice is ale but not an IPA, according to the survey, which was conducted in August.

Besides millennials, women and beer drinkers with an annual household income of more than $100,000 prefer IPAs, the survey finds. Lager beers are favored by beer drinkers earning less than $25,000 yearly.

“Luckily for consumers and the beer industry, there seems to be an endless number of combinations among beer styles and popular flavors that’s appealing for either at-home consumption or the drink menu at a restaurant or bar,” says Mark Brandau, Datassential’s associate director of research and insights. “Beer varieties exist on a spectrum from chocolate porters to mango wheat ales and everything in between, making beer more versatile than most types of wine or spirits.”

Besides the 548 beer drinkers who responded to survey questions about preferred style and flavors, the survey sampled 2,283 others who are at least 21 years old and drink alcohol.

Other survey conclusions were:

*Two-thirds of drinking-age adults have drunk a beer in the past month, and 58% of beer drinkers consume one or more beers weekly.

*Citrus ranks first as the preferred flavor in beer. Berry flavors rank second, followed by apple and pear.

*Nearly 4 of every 5 respondents say they prefer beer brewed in the USA. Beers from Mexico are preferred by 17% of respondents, and beers from Germany are preferred by 15%.

*Seven of every 10 respondents say they prefer to be served a beer from a can or a bottle, while 24% say they prefer a draught beer.

*Thirty-seven percent of survey respondents consider themselves beer connoisseurs, which was defined as people who have expert knowledge about high-quality beer and where to get it.

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