The Big Night In: Recreating the out-of-home experience

It seems that during lockdown – and possibly for some time after – ‘in’ is the new ‘out’. Consumers are trying to recreate the 'going out' experience as closely as they can at home, turning to takeaways, home brew, cocktail tutorials and more to make it happen.

Recent reports from The Grocer and Stylus have highlighted the importance of this new 'Big Night In' to consumers – and therefore to brands and retailers.

Order in.

The Grocer reports data from Kantar showing takeaways up 250% year on year since lockdown began. And it’s not just the same old takeaway – consumers are turning it into a real occasion, with a 36% rise in orders of dessert, more sides and drinks ordered, and a jump in retail sales of crisps and dips.

Unilever has spotted this opportunity, offering deliveries of Ben & Jerry's and Magnum ice cream through partnerships with various food delivery services. Stylus notes that Treasury Wine Estates has formed a similar partnership, this time to offer free wine samples alongside food orders, accompanied by tasting notes and pairing suggestions.

Do it yourself.

But consumers aren't all waiting for the experience to come to them; many are taking active steps to recapture what they're missing. Stylus reports that sales of home brew kits have risen by nearly 500% during lockdown. And John Lewis Partnership reports that Waitrose sales of liqueurs for cocktails have increased by 78%, and cocktail ingredients by 46%.

Again, this changing consumer behaviour hasn't passed brands by. For instance, Stylus notes that UK gin brand Bombay Sapphire has collaborated with several brands to run live-streamed cocktail making sessions. And we were interested to see that London craft brewer The Five Points Brewing Co started selling 5L kegs of beer during lockdown, enabling fans of the award-winning beers to recreate the pub experience at home.


  • The Grocer, 'Focus on...Big Night In', 201 June 2020
  • Stylus, 'The New At-Home Drinking Occasion', 19 June 2020
  • John Lewis Partnership, 'Britain through the lockdown'

Header image: Coca-Cola Signature Mixers bar takeovers by N2O

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