The holidays can come with a lot of added stress. For some reason, it always seems that the people you know best are the most difficult to shop for. Spirit gifts offer options for everyone due to their long shelf life and for the camaraderie they spark when sipped with friends after dinner or by the fireside. In the winter, whiskey stands out as a high-quality product that won’t necessarily blow your budget. Their range of flavor profiles also make them approachable for anyone, from novices just getting into the spirit to those who correct your pronunciation of Laphroaig.
To help pick the perfect gift for the whiskey lover in your life, whiskey maven Greg Sinadinos, the owner and head writer of Whiskey Culture, offers this easy-street shopping guide just in time for the holidays.
Note: These prices were pulled on this article’s publication date. Please visit the whiskey vendors’ websites for the most up-to-date prices.
Best Whiskey For New Sippers:
Laws Whiskey House lies neatly tucked into a downtown Denver side street. They only use the finest of heirloom grains to make their whiskeys. In the Four Grain Straight Bonded Bourbon, drinkers find the four American mother grains: corn, rye, wheat, and barley. This gives the whiskey a unique profile that’s full-bodied and rounded, giving it a crowd-pleasing flavor.
Rabbit Hole Boxergrail ($49.99)
Rabbit Hole distillery is the brainchild of Iranian immigrant Kaveh Zamanian. Enamored with whiskey and its production, he left a lucrative position as a clinical psychologist to pursue his passion, falling down the proverbial “rabbit hole.”
Rye whiskeys can be a tough nut to crack for new whiskey drinkers, but some make it easier than others. Boxergrail is one of those ryes. A nice, sweet note and toasty full-bodied profile make it a great bridge for bourbon drinkers. The rye notes aren’t quite as spicy or sharp as others in its class, and it can introduce sippers to this whiskey category if they’re looking to expand their palate.
Glencairn Glasses ($30)
For those looking to amp up their whiskey game, Glencairn glasses are an absolute must. They have been specially designed to funnel the scents from a whiskey to help enthusiasts capture all of those beautiful aromas. They also allow more surface area to touch oxygen when sipped from to help aerate and mellow the whiskey so flavors can be more easily identified.
Best Whiskey Gifts for Seasoned Sippers
Aberlour A’Bunadh ($99)
Scotch can be a divisive category of whiskey. However, many find that it isn’t scotch they dislike but peat. Peat is a condensed plant matter from bogs in Scotland that distillers of old used to dry grains, which gave the resulting spirit a pungent, medicinal and acidic flavor.
While some still use this technique, many have reverted to traditional distillation methods that forego using peat in favor of a more-modern whiskey flavor profile. Aberlour A’Bunadh is one such kind. Don’t expect peat notes in this spirit, but you will find a nice sweet and smoky flavor from the malted barley and the sherry finish, which makes it a wonderful pour for any and all whiskey lovers.
Nashville Barrel Co. Single Barrels ($75-125)
This distillery has made a huge splash in the whiskey community. They set themselves apart by operating differently from traditional distilleries. They source their whiskey, making sure to take great care in selecting only the tastiest and smoothest barrels.
Their incredible bourbon and rye single barrels earned them much of their renown. Recently, they started shipping them to multiple states.
This is an awesome opportunity to provide a seasoned whiskey enthusiast with a high-quality, popular, and downright delicious one-of-a-kind selection that they are sure to love!
- by Trisha Boyer
- by Local Palate