Hot Beverage Trends According to Social Media

Hot Beverage TrendsBeing trendy may help beat a path to your door, so let’s look at some of the hot beverage trends according to social media.

Social media changed the marketing playing field. Consumers, that is your patrons, have a louder voice than ever before. (For a more in-depth look at successfully using social media, see our earlier three-part blog: Social Media Success for Restaurants.) In some instances, consumers’ voices via social media are meaningful, and in others, well, far less so.

Consider this posting on a social media site: “The place is fabulous and so are the drinks.” Sure, it’d be great to read this about your establishment, but it doesn’t tell you a lot. It doesn’t answer the critical question “why.” A more specific comment that answers why the drinks are fabulous gives you clearer insight and allows you to replicate success.

Study on Hot Beverage Trends

With an understanding of meaningful versus non-meaningful social media comments, newBrandAnalytics (nBA) conducted a study that analyzed 40,000 social media comments of the hottest 100 restaurants in the U.S. SmartBlog on Food & Beverage recapped the results (“Thirsting for more loyal guests? Try these beverage trends.”)

The bulk of the data came from Yelp, with Open Table, Trip Advisor, and Twitter splitting the balance of the lion’s share of data collected. Facebook, Foursquare, and Google Reviews each only contributed two percent toward the study. That information alone may help point you in the right direction to which social media sites you should be following.

Based on the nBA study, Germany is the geographic region getting the most hype including sparkling wine, moscato, Riesling, and pinot grigio. Speaking of wine, wine-based drinks are also getting positive reviews. Think sangria, mulled wine, and mimosas.

Although craft beers are an industry leader, the nBA study showed that Stella Artois and Guiness are always popular. A top trending beer is the Michelada, a Mexican beer cocktail that includes hot sauces, peppers, salt and lime. (See recipe at the conclusion of this article.) Other brews that are generating positive feedback include oatmeal stout, hazelnut lager, and pear cider.

There are also soft drinks that are creating social media buzz. With summer upon us, don’t overlook berry-flavored lemonade, the Arnold Palmer (half lemonade, half iced tea), and horchata, a rice drink with cinnamon. Tropical fruit flavors are always popular but especially so in the summer months.

Regarding social media studies, nBA CEO Kristin Muhlner is quoted in Vibe’sAnalyzing Beverage Trends through Social Media”: “Social data also provides a rich source of competitive information to help executives understand how promotions or seasonal offerings may be perceived at competing concepts. In short, you really can’t have a marketing plan that doesn’t adequately incorporate social analysis, given the incredible impact it has on current guest decision making.”

You can create loyal patrons and attract new ones by tapping into some of these hot beverage trends.

Here’s’s Michelada recipe:

  • 1 Lime wedge
  • Salt
  • Cayenne pepper
  • .5 oz Fresh lime juice
  • 2 drops Tabasco Sauce
  • 2 dashes Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 pinch Ground black pepper
  • 1 pinch Celery salt
  • Mexican lager beer, such as Tecate, chilled

Garnish: Lime wedge

Glass: Pint

Rub the lime wedge along half the rim of the pint glass and dip into a mix of equal parts salt and Cayenne pepper. Add the remaining ingredients except the beer. Fill with beer and garnish with a fresh lime wedge.

For the popular Horchata, we’re sharing the Food Network’s recipe, courtesy of Aarón Sánchez:


  • 1 cup long-grain white rice, rinsed
  • 1 cinnamon stick, preferably Mexican, broken into pieces, plus more for garnish
  • 1/2 cup sugar, or to taste
  • 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon, preferably Mexican, for garnish


Combine the rice and cinnamon stick with 4 cups water in a blender; pulse to coarsely grind. Transfer to a large bowl and add another 4 cups water; soak at room temperature for 3 hours.

Puree the rice mixture in a blender in batches until smooth. Strain through cheesecloth or a fine sieve into a pitcher. Mix in the sugar; chill.

Stir the Horchata well before serving. Pour into ice-filled glasses; garnish with cinnamon sticks and a dusting of ground cinnamon.