Mapping who drinks wine or beer in Europe, by tweets

Summer is often a time for drinking with your friends. I lack friends, so I found another way to participate in this summer ritual: over the summer and fall of 2014, I collected more than two million tweets mentioning alcohol. Using the tweets, which had location tags, I mapped out people’s preferences. In the map below, red areas show where people tweet more about #wine; blue areas show where they tweet more about #beer; yellow areas are balanced. (I focused on tweets containing hashtags because I found these often more reliably came from people who were actually drinking.)

Wine_vs_Beer_Europe
(Nikhil Sonnad)

Europe shows even more geographic schisms; it’s a wonder that the Germans and the French get along at all.

Some important caveats about these maps: first, in areas with very few tweeters, patterns are less reliable, which is why some countries in Europe are filtered out. Second, since I searched for tweets only using English words for alcohol, tweeters discussing #vino or #cerveza will be ignored. Third, people tweeting about alcohol are an unusual population.

We can break down these maps by gender, revealing further patterns.

Wine_vs_Beer_Europe_Women
Wine_vs_Beer_Europe_Men

Men are more boring than women, although we didn’t need data science to tell us that: they overwhelmingly factor beer. British women contrast strongly with British men.

Data visualization by Nikhil Sonnad.

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