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Europeans and alcohol: Who drinks what?

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Translation by:

Charles Clark


In general, studies on alcohol in EU countries are full of stereotypes; while the French drink wine, the Germans drink beer and the Polish have a penchant for vodka. However, a study was finally published to shake up these clichés. 

There's always a good reason to get drunk. In Europe, perhaps more than anywhere else, recent events have surely pushed people closer to the bottle. Still, Europeans are divided by clichés when it comes to having a drink. Undoubtedly, the French drink wine served in a wine glass, the German drink beer in a stein and the Poles drink vodka in a shot glass, right?

Wrong. A study decided to debunk these stereotypes and found that there is a serious habit when it comes to alcohol. According to the OFDT, the 10 countries with the highest volume of alcohol consumption are found in the Old Continent.

Dalia Research had a careful look into Europe’s drinking glasses and shared a few things about its respective tastes. Beer is the alcoholic drink that is consumed the most; 57% of interviewees had confirmed having drank some in the last three months. Then comes wine (51%), Champagne (27%), vodka, whiskey, rum and gin. On the flip side, 23% of Europeans said they hadn’t consumed any of the above-mentioned alcohol over the same period of three months.

This study showed that, while some clichés regarding drinking habits in different countries were confirmed, others were completely off. For example, in France wine really is their favourite poison but they are only the second highest consumers of it (55%), trailing way behind the Italians (64%). On the other hand, Germans are not the biggest beer drinkers in Europe, even if it is their favourite drink. Only 53% of Germans confirmed having drank beer in the last three months, less than the European average (57%) and significantly behind Poland (69%), Spain (69%) and Italy (68%).

Vodka, live young

Dalia Research also noticed a trend linking certain alcohols with specific age groups. Vodka, for example, is drank by those in their twenties. The graph tails away steeply in older age groups. Beer, however, reaches a peak in consumption for people in their thirties, before slowly dropping off. Wine consumption often increases with age.

More than 10,000 people from the ages of 18 to 65 from the six most populated countries in the EU were asked the same question: “In the last three months, have you consumed these alcoholic drinks?” And here are the results.


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Translated from Les Européens et l'alcool : check-up complet