The Surprising State That Drinks The Most Wine In The U.S.

While wine-drinking was surprisingly down last year for the first time in a quarter-century (yes, you can blame it on millennials, and also on hard seltzer, according to CBS News), it's still always wine o'clock somewhere. You'll never believe, though, which state is sucking down the largest amounts of this noble beverage. Okay, no, it's not Utah — now that really would be a shocker! But Utah, true to its state stereotype, is down near the bottom of the list that was put together by VinePair in order to break down wine consumption per capita on a state-by-state basis. 

Beehive staters put away a mere 0.2 gallons per person per year, which still makes them not actually dead last. At the bottom of the wine-drinking list, Utah is followed (in order) by Mississippi (0.18), Kansas (0.14), and West Virginia (0.11). But sitting right at the tipsy top, with a bottle in one hand and a glass in the other, is... Idaho??

Idahoans beat out rest of the country with their wine drinking habits

Yes, Idaho, the state famous for its potatoes and not much else. Well, yes, okay, beautiful scenery, and don't forget part of Yellowstone National Park is in Idaho (plus a ton of other interesting stuff, via National Park Service), but as states go, Idaho seems to prefer keeping things low-key and flying under the radar. Finally, we may know why! It's because if they were ever invaded by tourists, it might put a dent in the wine supply. As things stand now, each resident (over the age of 21, we trust) manages to knock back, on average, more than 10 times as much wine as those abstemious West Virginians — a whopping 1.2 gallons per person, per year.

California is surprisingly low on the list

While we generally associate the West Coast with wine drinking, particularly California, the state that's known worldwide for its vineyards only comes in at number 7, with 0.62 gallons per person. Rounding out the top five, all the leading wine-drinking states besides Idaho are on the east coast. Number two is hard-drinking Washington, D.C. (which leads the nation in binge drinkers, via WTOP News), followed by the practically twin states of New Hampshire and Vermont, and then tiny Delaware, a state that may have more wine per square mile than any other.

Make of these findings what you will, but if you're looking for a peaceful vacation destination where you're sure of getting a glass of vino with your dinner (and lunch, and possibly breakfast), you may want to give Idaho a try.