Brands Report 2020: Vodka

Ketel One has retained its position as the bestselling vodka brand in the world, with 32% of elite bars declaring it the number one choice.

As one of Diageo’s Reserve brands, Ketel One gets a lot of exposure through the company's World Class bartender competition, which this year held one leg of the global final at Ketel One’s Netherlands distillery. This makes it a familiar brand to bartenders all over the world and it continues to percolate down to consumers.

Aside from Ketel One’s ongoing reign, Tito’s is one of the most interesting developments. The Texas- based vodka is beginning to dominate the US market through its craft branding - a style which is craved by consumers in cities such as New York and Chicago due to the boom in craft whiskey production. Tito’s is now the fifth bestselling vodka brand, having not featured in the list in 2019, and its success is so significant that Brewdog used Tito’s as a model for its Rogue One vodka to match the same craft styling.

Pernod Ricard's heavyweight Absolut has leapfrogged Belvedere into third in the list with 16% of the participating bars stating it their number one bestseller.

Meanwhile it's bad news for Diageo's Ciroc, which has dropped three places to ninth, and beluga has dropped off the list altogether, suggesting the demand for expensive vodkas in the elite on-trade is declining.

Something to look out for in 2021 is the emergence of brands from less traditional markets, such as Haku and Nikka Coffee from Japan rather than Russian and Polish brands. The same thing is currently happening with gin as consumers are more experimental than ever and the absence of geographical indicators for vodka gives the category freedom to expand beyond its traditional strongholds.



The results of this report are the culmination of a questionnaire of 106 bars around the world, each cherry-picked to take part based on their performance in global bar awards. We aim to find out not only which brands sell best but also what’s trending. These two data sets give us an insight into the brands that are doing the most volume and the brands that are hot right now.

To read more on the methodology of the Brands Report click here.