Conventional wisdom always has indicated that men shied away from fruit-flavored mixed alcoholic beverages, opting instead for beer and the like. However, new research suggests that wisdom may well be flawed.

A survey of legal-age consumers by Jim Beam Brands Co. (Clermont, Ky.) found nearly a quarter of consumers will choose cocktails with fruit-flavored mixers, a number that rises significantly for vacationers. Some 71% of women say they enjoy a cocktail featuring fruit-flavored mixers while on vacation but, more surprisingly, more than half of the male respondents (60%) said the same thing.

Why the turn toward fruit-flavored cocktails? “First, there is a general shift away from beer consumption and an increase in spirits consumption as the cocktail trend continues to gather momentum,” explains Nicole Ertas, brand director with Jim Beam Brands DeKuyper Cordials. “Secondly, as the survey shows, 80% of consumers say flavor is the deciding factor in their choice of drink.”

So-called “classic” cocktails have maintained their popularity, with a Screwdriver being the drink of choice for 82% of Americans, 67% opting for a Martini and 62% preferring a Fuzzy Navel, though the latter reportedly is being augmented with a splash of vodka.

Why the move to cocktails? Some 80% say they are motivated primarily by flavor preference, while only 12% say they are opting for cocktails to be “trendy.”