It’s never too early to start looking for the perfect Christmas gift for the bourbon lover in your life. Finding the right gift is key, from custom whiskey glasses to their favorite bourbon and the tools to make whiskey cocktails. Here is a list to help you get started.
Their Favorite Bourbon
The most obvious Christmas gift is their favorite bourbon. No bourbon lover will ever be sad to see their favorite bottle as a gift, and they will be happy to pour it into engraved glasses and savor it. It doesn’t matter if their favorite bourbon is common or rare, though a rare bourbon might take some planning to acquire. You can also try to see if there is another expression of their favorite bourbon, such as barrel strength, that you can get as something special.
A Top-Shelf Bourbon
What is better to pour into glasses etched with their monogram than a top-shelf bourbon? This doesn’t necessarily mean an expensive bourbon, either, but rather one with a sterling reputation. For example, W.L. Weller Special Reserve is easily found for between $60 and $70 but will make any bourbon-lover smile. It’s made with the same mash in the same distillery as the legendary Pappy Van Winkle and may be the closest they get to trying Pappy. W.L. Weller is essentially Pappy but not aged as long, making it the perfect present for those in the know.
Custom Whiskey Glasses
Speaking of custom whiskey glasses, if they don’t have any or want something new, personalized whiskey glasses make a beautiful gift. Whether it’s a fictional whiskey expression bearing their name, a monogram, or a custom image, you have plenty of options for gifting custom whiskey glasses. Nothing adds elegance to a home bar like custom whiskey glasses, and they are always impressive to serve guests with. They even make daily sippers feel like they came from the top shelf, adding an extra layer of class to the drinking experience.
Throwing regular ice cubes in custom whiskey glasses means diluting the top-shelf bourbon, muddling the flavors as the ice quickly melts. If you want to give the gift of a bit of water in the bourbon, opening up the flavors while still chilling a glass of bourbon without diluting it, give ice molds. The two most common are large cubes and spheres. For both, it’s one large ice cube, which doesn’t melt nearly as fast as a handful of ice cubes.
If your bourbon lover still wants a bourbon neat, whiskey stones are the answer. They look elegant in glasses etched with a monogram and won’t dilute the whiskey at all while chilling it. Instead, your bourbon lover can add as many as they want without fear that ice will continue to dilute the bourbon.
Whiskey Water Dropper
A whiskey dropper helps your bourbon lover be precise in the amount of water they are putting in their personalized whiskey glasses. Too much, and it dilutes the whiskey. Too little, and the flavors will not open up. With a whiskey dropper, they can get the perfect amount of water every time.
There are plenty of cocktail books you can choose from as gifts. Whether it’s a recipe book, such as Death & Co., created by the famous bar, or a book that examines the science of making cocktails, like Dave Arnold’s Liquid Intelligence, you have options. Hacking Whiskey by Aaron Goldfarb mixes the two, with whiskey experiments helping your gift recipient understand the perfect drink. If your bourbon lover would rather read a story, consider Wright Thompson’s Pappyland, the story of how Pappy Van Winkle came to be.
A Whiskey Aging Kit
If your bourbon lover is up for a bit of fun, try giving them a whiskey aging kit. They will want a high-proof bourbon or other whiskey. The kit itself should have a bottle and wood staves. They fill the bottle with a fairly neutral bourbon, add a wood staff, and wait a couple of weeks.
A Customized Flask or Decanter
What is better than custom whiskey glasses? A matching flask or decanter. The flask can help your bourbon lover when they are traveling with their favorite whiskey, while a decanter will help them display whiskey in their home in an elegant way. A decanter isn’t needed to aerate whiskey, unlike wine, but instead is a way to display whiskey artfully.
Interesting and Uncommon Bitters
Chances are your bourbon lover is well-acquainted with Angostura bitters, as they are an essential part of the old fashioned. But orange bitters are also perfect for old fashioneds. The interesting bitters don’t stop there, either. You can also find bitters in flavors such as chocolate, grapefruit, and celery. There are also other herbal bitters than Ango, such as Peychaud’s, Copper & Kings Old Fashioned Bitters, and 18.21 Havana & Hide bitters. These can help your gift receiver branch out with flavor profiles.
High-Quality Cocktail Ingredients
Consider gifting high-quality cocktail ingredients. Consumables are always used and thus always needed, making them excellent gifts for the whiskey cocktail lover. You might consider high-end cherries, such as Luxardo, Bada Bing, or Amarena cherries. These are all perfect for an old fashioned or Manhattan. You can also provide liqueurs to go with the whiskey, as well.
A Smoke Gun
A smoke gun, sometimes used in combination with a smoke box, is simply a way to introduce a smokiness to a drink. It can be plain whiskey or a cocktail. First, your bourbon lover chooses a wood, then sets it on fire. The smoke is funneled through a tube, either into their custom whiskey glass or a glass box meant for holding in smoke. Other versions include a cloche or lid.
Barware for Mixing Cocktails
Finally, if they don’t have any or need an upgrade, get them high-quality barware. Not all bar spoons are made the same, and some are easier to stir with than others. Most bartenders worth their salt use Boston shakers instead of a shaker with a strainer at the top. Hawthorne and tea strainers are essential for mixologists who want to make cocktails at home. Metal picks add an elegance to garnishes that a simple toothpick can’t match. A muddler is crucial in making a proper old fashioned.
About Crystal Imagery
Eric Schuchart started making custom engraved glasses for friends and family in 2000. In 2013, he incorporated Crystal Imagery, joined by Sherri Blum, a well-known interior designer for celebrities, as a co-founder and business partner. Crystal Imagery uses a deep-carving technique on glasses, making them stand out from the competition. It carves a 3D relief into the glass, creating a depth you can feel and adding shadow. Typical laser and rotary surface etchings simply can’t compare. Crystal Imagery offers products including personalized whiskey glasses, Nick and Nora glasses, highball glasses, Nick and Nora glasses, champagne flutes, beer mugs, and more glassware. Add a touch of personalized elegance to your home bar and indulge yourself with Crystal Imagery.
Get custom whiskey glasses for holiday gifts at Crystalimagery.com