Whether it’s baking bread, frequent FaceTimes with friends, or watching trashy reality TV, everyone has something to make getting through the pandemic a little bit easier. But, one thing many folks in Ontario seem to have in common is their liquor of choice over the past two years.
According to LCBO data published by the Toronto Star, a select handful of spirits and coolers dominated the list of Ontario’s most popular alcoholic drinks sold throughout the pandemic.
The data shows that during peak lockdown in 2020, Ontario residents were huge fans of Nutrl Vodka Soda, Smirnoff Berry Blast, and White Claw Hard Seltzer.
White Claw didn’t hit LCBO shelves until February 2020, right before the pandemic began. When it finally arrived, people lined up around the block in Toronto just to get their hands on it. The drink managed to stay popular even after the initial hype, especially the black cherry and mango flavours.
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According to The Star, over 600,000 black cherry White Claws were sold from April 1 to June 20, 2020, in Toronto’s central region.
Prior to the pandemic, Smirnoff Vodka and Nutrl Vodka Soda led the way for most units sold and highest revenue sales in the city. However, White Claw and Hennesy were quick to replace them as COVID took hold.
Other drinks in Toronto’s top 10 between February 2019 and September 2021 include Rev Pet (#3), Georgian Bay Gin Smash (#8), and Cottage Springs Ontario Peach (#10).
Baileys Irish Cream also had a moment during the winter. One cocktail expert theorized to The Star that many folks were adding a few splashes to their coffee while working from home.
Honestly, if that’s what it takes to get through a Zoom call with your camera on, so be it.