New numbers on liquor sales could be a good sign for the economy.
The Ohio Division of Liquor Control said statewide sales grew by about 5% last year and totaled a record $794-million. The number of gallons of spirits sold increased by about 4% in Ohio. Chad Lynn of the Winerak Market in Zanesville said his store saw a 6% boost in sales last year.
"The new flavors of vodka are coming out," said Lynn. "There's new bourbons coming out. In general, all of the liquor companies are starting to expand the variety that they carry."
Lynn said more customers are coming through the door as the unemployment rate drops. He said he also attributes recent success to a strong holiday season and a push for local products.
"We do carry local wineries that the chain stores can't carry, because they have to go through corporate in order to get them," said Lynn. "The advantage to it is that we try to support more local retailers because we are a local store as well."
The top brand of liquor sold in the state last year was Kamchatka vodka followed by Jack Daniels whiskey.