Fireball Cinnamon Whisky sales may be hotter than last week’s heat wave, firm says

Is Fireball Cinnamon Whisky one of the hottest drinks of the year? More evidence from Restaurant Sciences LLC is emerging to support that claim.

Headquartered in Newton, Restaurant Sciences collects and analyzes sales data about food and beverage consumption in restaurants, bars, nightclubs, and other foodservice establishments.

Vodka would seem to be the ideal spirit to be infused with flavors, but spiced whiskey now seems to be ascendant, according to a recent report from the firm.

“Flavored spirits continue to grow through 2013 and were fueled by the extraordinary sales performance of flavored blended whiskey, which more than doubled in 2013,’’ Chuck Ellis, chief executive and president of Restaurant Sciences LLC, said in a statement. “While flavored blended whiskeys’ popularity rose, other flavored segments including cordials and liqueurs, flavored vodkas, and flavored rum softened a bit through the second quarter of 2013.’’


Ellis was so taken by the upward trends of Fireball Cinnamon Whisky that Restaurant Sciences issued a separate report on Fireball sales in mid June.

“We have seen a rise in popularity of flavored spirits as a category, with Fireball Cinnamon Whisky showing tremendous growth,’’ Ellis said then. “In establishments selling Fireball Cinnamon Whisky over the past year, Fireball Cinnamon Whisky is approaching 7 percent dollar share of spirits up from 3 percent dollar share in April 2012. Currently, Fireball Cinnamon Whisky registers more than 2 percent dollar share of spirits in the US overall market. As Fireball’s distribution expands, the overall share will continue to grow.’’

A Web search finds that Fireball Cinnamon Whisky is a brand of the Sazerac Co., which notes that lore suggests that this blend was accidentally created by a Canadian bartender looking to perfect frostbite treatments.

(Yes, but can this incandescent beverage hold a candle to Yukon Jack, once billed as, “The black sheep of Canadian liqeurs’’?)

In any case, the Sazerac website offers this helpful data point about its fireball blend, “The cinnamon flavor is often used for shooters but can add character to a mixed drink.’’

Given its “fireball’’ monicker, a teetotaller might conclude that a couple of character-building mixed drinks would just about be guaranteed to cold-proof even the beefiest of Zamboni drivers.

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