Wine becoming popular drink among young population

Laura Cordle

Enrollment climbs in wine-tasting class

Even though it may seem that wine has been a popular drink for centuries, its true popularity has increased in the past 10 years.

Tony Carlucci, an enologist and instructor in geography, said statistics have shown that today’s generation has been drinking more wine than previous generations.

“The average age of drinkers at wineries were the 45-plus crowd, and now the average age is about 24,” Carlucci said.

Richard Fallon, junior physical education major, and his twin brother are among the young wine-drinking crowd.

“We have been drinking wine for years; our mother would always open a bottle of wine for dinner,” Fallon said.

Last Wednesday the two brothers went to Riverside Wine and Imports in Kent to enjoy a glass of Chardonnay.

Riverside Wine and Imports is a popular place for people to go drink wine in Kent.

Bob Morson, the owner of Riverside Wine and Imports admitted that even he has noticed more students in the winery compared to previous years.

“I have noticed more Kent students in here compared to the past few years; mostly girls. This does seems to be a popular place to bring dates here, maybe to seem older,” Morson said.

Carlucci said wine’s popularity began when its health benefits were discovered. Red wine, for example, has vitamins and minerals that are essential to the body’s growth and development, and white wine has a low pH balance, which helps kill unwanted bacteria in the body.

He also noted that wine is beneficial in weight loss, because its density fills up one’s stomach much faster, allowing people to eat smaller portions of food and preventing them from gaining extra weight.

“Between 2002 and 2005 wine sales have increased by 13 percent and beer sales have decreased by 13 percent,” Carlucci said. He added that just 10 years ago the average person drank about 1 gallon of wine per year, whereas today the average person drinks about 1.9 gallons of wine per year.

Kent State offers a Geography of Wine class which not only teaches students the many different tastes of wine, but also how it is manufactured, how it is properly served and all the health benefits from drinking wine. Carlucci teaches the class.

“When I first started teaching, I maybe only had from 20 to 40 students total, and now I have between 210 to 215 students,” Carlucci said.

Wine is a quickly growing drink that Carlucci said will get more and more popular as people get more educated about all the benefits of drinking wine.

“The 20 plus crowd is the quickest growing wine sipping demographic,” Carlucci said.

Contact news correspondent Laura Cordle at [email protected].