Wait, This Is the Top Spirits Brand in the US?

One particular canned cocktail is propelling the drinks market

Close-up view of the can cap with waterdrops. A canned cocktail is the number one drinks brand in the U.S. in 2023.
The growth of the U.S. drinks market can be attributed to canned cocktails, tequila and Tito's.
Krit of Studio OMG / Getty

Canned cocktails are here to stay. According to a new report by Impact Databank, High Noon is booming. The ready-to-drink (RTD) brand grew a whopping 30.5% in 2023, easily leading the spirits market when measured in volume.

Even with that impressive growth and an overall market increase of 4.2%, there were some troubling signs in the spirits world. “The rise of the RTD category masked more challenging conditions for a majority of brands among the market leaders in 2023, as only seven of the top 25 labels posted volume increases,” writes the drinks industry publication Shanken Daily News. “The group’s volume progress was led by standout brands like High Noon, Tito’s, Cutwater, Monaco, Casamigos and Don Julio, all of which grew by 5% or more, underscoring consumer thirst for both tequilas and RTDs.” (We’re not surprised.)

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The RTD market has grown from less than 10 million cases nationally in 2019 to almost 60 million cases in 2023. Most impressively, High Noon has “accounted for 31% of the total spirits category’s volume growth since 2018,” per Shanken. High Noon calls itself a hard seltzer in some of its marketing, but the use of vodka and tequila as the spirits base means they’re more akin to a canned cocktail — all certainly quafflable, but they admittedly didn’t make our best canned cocktails list last year.

Part of the brand’s popularity — for better or worse — can be attributed to its close, non-ownership relationship with Barstool Sports. Some other drinking trends in 2023, as noted by Impact Databank report:

  • The top 25 spirits brands in the U.S. market grew 3.6% collectively but were outpaced by smaller labels, which grew 4.7%. The greater growth of smaller brands over larger ones is a change from the past five years.
  • Tito’s vodka is the leading brand in retail dollar terms, with its U.S. retail value now nearing $2.5 billion.
  • Crown Royal and Hennessy are the only other spirits brands with U.S. retail value above $2 billion.


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