With the end of the year looming, just-drinks is running a series of 'Top Tens of the Year' in the run-up to Christmas.

Here are the ten most read comment pieces written by our regular columnists on just-drinks in 2012.

10: Beer - It's a Cider the Times

Back in March, Pete Brown turned his attention to the cider category and found that the brewers could learn alot from their fruity cousins.

9: Soft Drinks & Water - Energise Me!

In April, Ray Rowlands revisited the energy drinks category to see what had been going on in the evolution of what has been the soft drinks industry's star performer in recent years.

8: Spirits - Bearing up to Polarisation

July's sermon from Ian Buxton looked at the continuing issue of polarisation in the overall spirits category. He started and finished with two quotes, from two wildly disparate sources.

7: Soft Drinks & Water - India and Multi-Nationalism

In October, Ray Rowlands investigated the outrage caused by the intended opening of the Indian retail market to foreign investors, and compared the impact that a similar development had on the country’s soft drinks market.

6: Spirits - What makes a brand 'global'?

How do you define a truly international brand?  And does it matter. Can it be decided purely on volumes? In August, Patience Gould dug out her atlas as she ponders the issue.

5: Wine - Losh's Chris-tal Ball

January saw Chris Losh take his traditional look at what the next 12 months would provide for all you wine producers out there. Note: Some of the following did not happen.

4: Spirits - Nurturing All the Way to the Bank

These days, mergers and acquisitions appear to be the main ways to own a big spirits brand. Patience Gould came out in June as one of those folk who misses the days of building a brand from scratch. Is nurture no more?

3: Beer - Craft Beer & Big Brewers: It Can Be Done

Using Pete Brown's analogy - more of which follows - the craft brewers of this world are the Gorky's Zygotic Mynci to Anheuser-Busch InBev's U2, or the Ramona Falls to Carlsberg's Coldplay. Confused? Allow Pete to explain.

2: Soft Drinks & Water - Stagnant Water in Western Europe

At March's Consumer Analyst Group of Europe conference, Danone faced up to the challenges its bottled water division faces in Western Europe. Richard Corbett concurred and sympathised. But, Richard warned, beware of the emerging markets: The rewards they promise come only from booming volumes.

1: Wine - Social Media: Does Twitter Chatter Equal Sales Patter?

In May, Chris Losh looked at the role of social media in the conversation between producers and consumers, and concluded that talk on Twitter does not necessarily equate to buying more bottles.