Shopping for a whisky lover is does not compare in any way, shape or form, to shopping for a booze lover. Whisky is specific, so your gift should be purposeful; but don’t worry- we’ll guide you toward the most delighted smile of gratitude a gift has ever provoked.
Whisky is a sophisticated beverage with a bold and distinctive presence. Its seduction is absolute, making avid connoisseurs out of fledgeling curiosity and securing from its fans lifelong loyalty. You see, whisky is an emblem of good taste and drinkers aren’t just drinking whiskey- they’re drinking damn good whiskey.
Whisky good enough to validate the hundreds (and yes, sometimes thousands) of dollars spent on one single bottle demands excellence of everything that comes into contact with each of its golden drops. This includes containers and chilling agents such as ice or stones as well as anything that will transform subtle hints of flavor into tantalizing bursts of palatable pleasure.
Other than a fine bottle of the stuff itself, gift your whiskey lover with something that will upgrade a glass to its full potential. Here’s what a whisky drinker needs (and covets):
1. The Ingenious Whisky Wedge
Whisky Wedge. Image: gadgetreview.com
“Whiskey on the Rocks” is quite a satisfying phrase to say, however the gusto lasts exactly as long as the integrity of the ice cubes. Watery whisky is second only to warm whiskey and both are quite tragic.
The beauty of the Whisky Wedge lies in its simplicity. The efficiency and execution of this bold little edge of ice coveys an excellence worthy of a fine single malt.
Utilizing its surface area to effectively chill without diluting, the Whisky Wedge is the most functional slab of ice ever submerged in booze. Its ingenious design utilizes the space within the tumbler in such a way that minimizes the infusion of water, allowing each sip to remain full-flavored and perfectly tempered.
The cost of one Whiskey Wedge unit complete with old-fashioned tumbler and silicone ice mold is $25. The value of a perfect glass of whiskey however, is priceless. Watch ’em sip!
The whisky drinker is unassuming in style, allowing his taste to speak of him rather than for him; his genuity lies in the details.
While the most telling detail of a true whisky connoisseur is his recognition of a quality bottle, the glass in which he serves it is equally important.
Sure, an old-fashioned tumbler does the job well, but a true whisky fanatic (and we’re talking Scotch aficionados) will only pour his elixir into the Glencairn, recognized worldwide as the official whisky glass.
Designed to optimize every sensory component of true Scotch whisky, the Glencairn is the choice of purists- the boldest of whisky drinkers. These are the people that take their coffee black, and their whisky neat.
Know a whisky drinker who’s latest glass played the protagonist on all his social media platforms? Good– now you know exactly what to wrap in his gift box.
The Smart Bottle by Thinfilm, while slightly “over the top” for traditional whisky-drinking types is perfect for his millennial counterpart. Created to encourage informative interaction, this bottle will not only store whisky, but also provide brand communication and recipe suggestions.
Where to buy: Hmmm… Tell us if you find.
4. Bottoms Up!… Wait
Whisky Space Glass. Image: gizmag.com
The rhetorical question, “what do you give to a whiskey-drinking astronaut?”, has finally been answered thanks to Ballantine’s very specific quest to enhance the whisky-drinking experience in outer space.
The answer is… an earthly sipping experience.
Ballantine’s Space Glass was designed specifically for your friend the whisky-drinking astronaut and engineered to enable sips in zero gravity.
Believe it or not, homesickness transcends time and space. A Space Glass literally provides both the taste and comfort of home.
Where to buy: Hmmm… Tell us if you find.
5. Whisky Decanter
Whisky Decanter. Image: homewetbar.com
When it comes to buying for a whisky drinker, there are two never-fail options: The obvious one is a fine bottle of the stuff itself- the second depends on where your friend keeps his whisky.
The artful whisky drinker likes to display his craft and there is no better way to do so than through an assortment of beautifully sculpted crystal decanters. If you’re lucky, you’ve got a collector and your gift-giving ventures just got effortless.
And why you need that thing called Decanter? Watch this video:
As long as you keep an eye out for quality (crystal is almost always a no-brainer), a whisky decanter will always be a never-fail gift option.
Now whisky stones are an issue of debate among whisky aficionados. But what we’re concerned about here is whether or not they would make a useful gift to a whisky fan. To this I say, it all depends on the fan and the level of fandom.
Those who like whisky and want to portray this love as often as possible usually keep whisky stones around just for the sake of sticking with the theme. This works much the same way as those Yankee coasters you’ve managed to keep in the back cabinet for seven years.
Ultimatum on whisky stones: a whisky enthusiast will like them more for their relation to whiskey than their function in keeping their whisky cool. First find out if they like it on the rocks.
The ice bucket gift is for the type of whisky-drinker that enjoys his glass as he rotates sausages on his grill or floats down the river with a fishing rod and a handful of roasted peanuts in his pocket. This man is not going to analyze the body and aroma of his whisky. He’s not going to swirl it in the sunlight while admiring subtle changes in tone- he’s going to chunk some ice in a tumbler, splash some whisky on top, and enjoy a brief-lived chug that gives him a simple sort of satisfaction.
A whisky flask is a great gift because we know everyone secretly wants one. Whisky-drinker or not, the appeal of the whiskey flask is universal. That being said, a whiskey aficionado has a special reason to appreciate the gift of a whisky flask- portable whisky, accessible anywhere, anytime.
To make a whisky flask a more personal gift, have it engraved or give it alongside a fine Scotch whisky. One thing is for sure though- you cannot possibly go wrong with this gift.
A water jar is the perfect jar for the whisky drinker who takes his Jameson with a splash of water.
When it comes to the purpose of this gift however, keep in mind that you don’t want to pick any water jug- a “splash” is a very precise measurement in the whisky-drinker’s vocabulary; it means the exact amount of water it will take to bring out the flavors in a good malt without diluting the taste.
A weighted pitcher is the best bet. These specialized jars are designed to allow for precision pouring, releasing by the drop, instead of a stream.
While a luscious beard is not an official requirement for whiskey-drinking, it sure as hell looks cool to sip single malt fully decked out in facial hair. But that all depends on the style you bring to your whiskey game.
For those that prefer to keep their face-mane tamed, there’s shaving soap. Better yet, for those that enjoy the subtle hovering of a subtle whiskey scent, there’s Portland’s Whiskey Wet Shave Soap.
Clean-shaven and armed with a fine scotch- neat, of course.
… and then there was the eccentric. The Ardbeg Haar Scotch Mist Gadget is exactly as sci-fi as it sounds.
A mist-making device meant to simulate the cool Scottish fog descending upon the coast of Islay, the Ardbeg Haar utilizes ultrasound technology to vaporize scotch for one of the most unique whisky drinking experiences available.
The recipient of this gift should by association, be just as singular.
Korres Men’s L’eau de Parfum with Whiskey . Image: amazon.com
While the very idea of spritzing a whisky person with something fragrant seems irrevocably unconceivable, you have only to get a sense of this whisky-inspired scent to understand why of all things, a perfume would make a whiskey-lover’s must-have list.
Present yet subtle, this fragrance is the only thing its recipient will ever wear hence forward.
Outlaw Kit From American Oak Barrel. Image: amazon.com
I’m not sure if someone could really be called a whisky aficionado if he hasn’t tried to age his own whisky yet. But of course, everyone must start somewhere, so for those just venturing into the depths of their vice, the most perfect of gifts could only be a nice hefty barrel kit.
American Oak Barrel makes an excellent natural oak barrel meant to speed up the aging process for bourbon, whisky (and whiskey, respectively), scotch, brandy, cognac, and rum.
Even more so than a fine bottle of scotch itself, this kit is quite literally the gift that keeps on giving.
Whiskey: The Definitive World Guide. Image: amazon.com
In case the recipient of this very thoughtful gift isn’t already an insufferable whiskey know-it-all, this excellent guide is sure to make him so.
A guide in every sense of the word, this gorgeous hardcover isn’t just coffee-table decoration. It’s a harsh world out there for the would-be whiskey literate and believe it or not, “whisky” and “whiskey” cannot be used interchangeably in serious scotch lingo.
For the whiskey lover lamenting over wasted barrels, this tea-light-holder is the one valuable repurposed craft. It also doesn’t hurt to kindle the ambiance with soft candle-light while enjoying a warm glass of your favorite single malt.