Every holiday season, I’m plagued with how to shop for my family and friends. In years past, I have made list upon list and gone through each person, thinking of a personable gift that shows our friendship and how much they mean to me. But with the pressure of finding the perfect gift, I end up going with either a gift card to a favorite store, or a home-cooked dinner by yours truly. However, as we’ve gotten older and our tastes have matured, I’ve realized that while a pretty piece of jewelry, a good book, or even a good dinner is always a nice gesture, the heart wants what the heart wants.
This year, the heart wants liquor.
Liquor image via Shutterstock
This year, spirit brands have gone above and beyond to release some pretty fantastic expressions just in time for the holiday gifting and drinking season. Some of them are the standard liqueurs, full of sweet flavors like gingerbread and cinnamon. Others are a little more inventive, with a focus on smoky and spicy Scotches and bourbons. Toss in a couple of curveballs, like a flavored whiskey or a rare tequila, and you’ll be known as the best friend there ever was!
So as you brave the shopping malls and department stores, searching for the perfect gift for your friends and loved ones, consider browsing the aisles at the liquor store or on specific brands’ websites instead. Diamond necklaces show your love right now, but a bottle of good Scotch? That is everlasting love. Cheers, and happy gifting!
What spirited gifts are you hoping to get this holiday season?
Kahlua Gingerbread Liqueur: This is a perfect example of a timely holiday treat. Sweet and spiced, this gingerbread-flavored liqueur is great on the rocks or in a cup of hot coffee.
Baileys Hazelnut Liqueur: Baileys is a standard liqueur for this time of the year, and the new hazelnut expression is really enjoyable.
Johnnie Walker Black Label Blended Scotch Whisky: This new expression from Johnnie Walker is quite smoky, but makes for a great sipping whisky at a reasonable price point.
Don Julio Reposado Tequila: Tequila usually isn’t considered when thinking about cold-weather spirits, but don’t leave this one out! Its rich complexity and deep, oaky flavors are perfect for a holiday punch or to sip over ice.
Grand Marnier Natural Cherry Liqueur: Cherry-flavored anything is a pretty superb flavor for the winter time, and Grand Marnier, which is already known for its stellar orange flavor, makes an excellent product here as well. Enjoy over ice with a cherry and an orange wedge.
Godiva Chocolate Liqueur: Godiva is one of the best chocolate producers in the world, and as such, their chocolate liqueur is pretty extraordinary. It’s rich and creamy without being overly sweet, and also comes in a very attractive bottle. Friends who aren’t big hard liquor drinkers will very much enjoy this.
Van Gogh Pomegranate Vodka: Van Gogh Vodka has some of the best flavored vodka that I’ve ever had, and they continue to produce fantastic new flavors every year. Van Gogh Pomegranate is definitely a vodka for the flavored vodka drinker as well as the non-flavored.
Van Gogh Double Espresso Vodka: Just as with the Pomegranate, the Double Espresso vodka from Van Gogh is incredibly enjoyable, and one of the few vodkas that can be enjoyed on its own without any mixer. Give your friends the gift of good vodka this year with a vodka from Van Gogh.
Ron Abuelo Rum 7 and 12: Not many people appreciate a good dark rum, but people who do will appreciate Ron Abuelo. The seven-year is complex and has a very rounded taste, and is perfect straight up or on the rocks. The 12-year is similar in complexity but is noticeably smoother. Any sophisticated palate will appreciate this.
— Sara Kay, The Spir.it