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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.
Evaflor Double Whisky Men Eau de Toilette. Image: ebay.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.
An RDP house, bottles of whisky and wine, a R4 500 cash donation, 43c worth of shares, and a paid return trip to Port Elizabeth are just some of the items that were disclosed by the Glauteng Legislature on Wednesday.
Lindiwe Lasindwa, an MPL and chairwoman of the portfolio committee on infrastructure development, confirmed that she’s the owner of the RDP house since 1998. It is situated in KwaThema Springs. She also said that she owns another house within the area.
Lasindwa also has 3 vehicles, which includes the 2015 model Mercedes-Benz. “I was just disclosing what I owned. I did not want to hide anything,” she said in a statement on Wednesday.
Members of the legislature are now required to disclose their business interests in their legislature members’ register, including Premier David Makhura.
Of the 73 MPLs, another MPL and member of the ANC Women’s League Jackie Mofokeng, confirmed that she received R4 500 donation in behalf of the league for their justice campaign for Reeva Steenkamp. Steenkamp was murdered by her boyfriend Oscar Pistorius, a Paralympian, in 2013.
Mofokeng also received a sponsored returned trip to Port Elizabeth last November to attend Reeva Steenkamp Foundation’s formation.
Meanwhile, Human Settlements MEC Paul Mashatie also received bottles of whisky as a gift. Presently, he owns R250 shares of Telkom. He also has a BMW X6 and a VW GTI.
Gauteng MPLs declare surprising array of gifts. Photo by www.iol.co.za
Makhura also said that he received golf shoes, as well as two bottles of whisky, wine, and Russian vodka. He also received pens for his birthday. He currently owns 2 houses, located in Midrand and Limpopo, as well as a 2008 Range Rover Sport Supercharge.
Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu disclosed his ownership of a house at a certain location. In 2015, she received a Johnnie Walker Platinum Whisky worth R949.95 for Christmas, as well as Meerlust Chardonnay and an R700 worth of gift basket.
Single malt whiskies have been increasingly popular around the world in many countries outside of Scotland, including Australia, and winning awards along the way. Among the new nations for whisky-making nowadays are India, Japan, Sweden, and Taiwan.
Alexandra Dahlenburg, a manager at the Grain bar of the Four Seasons hotel in Sydney, is a whisky-spotter herself. Over the years, she has curated one of the biggest collections in the city, having over 200 drams to show.
The Grain bar hosts a whisky night every Monday, giving away 20% discount on all the whiskeys they offer. She even makes a weekly whisky flight of 4 x 15 ml drams for only $40 ($30 on Monday), where you can explore different varieties of whiskies and decide on what you like.
The Business Insider had asked Dahlenburg to create a list of whiskies that she thinks everyone should try at least once. Her personal choice of whiskies has been based on research and personal opinion.
“At Grain bar, we believe whisky is about your own personal journey. Each individual nose and palate is going to pick up different smells and tastes, so there’s no wrong answer in what you like. It’s the journey of discovering that’s important,” she said.
Grain bar manager and whisky enthusiast Alexandra Dahlenburg. Photo: www.businessinsider.com.au
Here are some of the top whiskies on her list.
Bowmore 15 Year Old Darkest
What makes this whisky stand out from the rest is actually its color. It is aged in bourbon and sherry casks for 12 years. During its final 3 years of maturation, it goes into an Oloroso sherry cask, which gives its red cherry color with a chocolate-y smell, slight smoke and earth tones, and a sweet molasses finish.
Port Ellen 9th Release 30 Year Old
This bottle of whisky has among the rarest cask strength. It’s peaty and sweet with lemon grass and smoky pepper with a long medicinal finish. Currently, Port Ellen is on its 14th release; which only gives you an idea of how mature and special this 9th release bottle really is.
Auchentoshan Three Wood
Obviously, it is matured in 3 casks: Olorosso, Pedro Ximenez sherry, and American Bourbon. While this is a non-age statement whisky, it smells of red stone fruits and tastes like brown sugar or treacle with a citrus finish that cuts through its sweetness. It’s among the best whiskies that you can pair with cured meats.
Rosebank 12 Year Old Flora & Fauna
This rare bottle of whisky has a light straw color. It has a sweet smell and a taste of pure honeycomb and herbs with lemon and grass. Since the Rosebank distillery has already closed, this whisky has only limited supply and very difficult to find. It’s a must-try and a bit of a collector’s item.
This strong cask strength whisky is not for those with a faint heart. It has a deep amber color and a nutty-all spice; citrus smell; dark chocolate, raisins, and cherry taste; and a spicy finish. It’s visually appealing as it has a wax seal and a numbered label.
Markinch Amateur Operatic Society is preparing to stage its new production, Whisky Galore, at Markinch Town Hall. They will be performing “Whisky Galore – A Musical!” from Tuesday to Saturday next week. A Fifer who assisted in adapting the tale for the stage helped them to prepare for the said event.
Ian Hammond Brown, from Dunfermline, has joined the Markinch Amateur Operatic Society (MAOS) as the director for this latest production. Along with Shona McKee McNeil, they adapted the popular tale of Compton Mackenzie from the novel to a musical.
Ian said, “I was working with SusanLoftus from Cutting Edge Theatre Company in Edinburgh and she had gone to London and managed to set up a chat with Cameron MacIntosh about producing musicals in Scotland. He suggested picking up on Compton Mackenzie’s work.”
“I met up with Susan in Borders Bookshop and at that time we were trying to decide which of Mackenzie’s work to do. We saw Whisky Galore on the shelf and decided that was the one. It was one of my favourite films when I was young. We read the book and approached the relevant people to get the rights to adapt it,” he added.
The production was showcased first at Edinburgh Fringe in 2006 and has been developed from there.
“It was very successful there so I took it on from there and continued to develop it,” Ian said. “Pitlochy Festival Theatre was looking at Mackenzie’s work so I went up there and pitched it and was commissioned to rewrite for the 2009 season. After that I decided to release it for amateur productions.”
Markinch, Fife, Scotland, who produce a musical show in March of each year. By www.maos.org.uk
“Whisky Galore – A Musical!” is set during the time when the curse of rationing visited Hebridean islands of Little Todday and Great Toddy, which was in 1943. The thirsty islanders ran out of uisge beatha (the water of life) when a cargo ship came aground with 50,000 cases of whisky.
Currently, Ian is working on a new piece called the “Carnegie” — a musical based on the life of Andrew Carnegie which is set to be staged at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe this summer.
When he was asked about the Markinch production, he further added that, “It’s falling into place. It’s been a lot for the company to learn, as many weren’t that familiar with the musical. I think it will be an amazing night out.”
“Whisky Galore – A Musical!” will be staged from March 22 to March 26 at the Markinch Town Hall.
February 22, 2016 is held as National Margarita Day. Yeah, it’s a great event to get the week started. Actress Gabrielle Union will have her self celebrating in the launching of the Lime-A-Rita Fiesta Ready campaign. The campaign aims to revive “the margarita moment”. It is the fun and colorful social mood that happens when drinking the classic margarita. Lime-A-Rita will be officially launched with a pop-up fiesta at the Grand Central Terminal in NYC with Gabrielle Union.
Gabrielle Union. By www.sexycelebrities.us
Furthermore, there are great things to enjoy like the robust Lime-A-Rita portfolio samples. Also, consumers are able to get a chance to immerse at Lime-A-Rita atmosphere with experiential activations, series of social media activities and a ball pit for adults.
Drake and Other Celebs on Spirits
Popular Rapper Drake on the other hand had announced via Instagram a whisky project that he is involved – the Virginia Black. In his Instagram is an image of stylish logo popped up with the caption “After that legendary moment what else is there to do but celebrate with class. Virginia Black coming soon…”
Before the rapper Drake got involved into venturing into spirits, Puff Daddy also got affiliated with CÎROC Vodka and owns DeLeón Tequila. While Jay-Z owns Armand de Brignac Ace of Spades Champagne, Ludacris also had his Cognac brand Conjure launched in 2009. And last year was Snoop Dogg had Cucca Fresca (a premium Brazilian cachaca) endorsed.
Talking about whisky, on February 24 there will be Whisky Live. It is an annual tasting event in NYC at Chelsea Piers (Pier 60). The event is a part of a worldwide tour.
The said event presents 300 of the best whiskies in the world for the guest to indulged and enjoy on. The presentation would be along with stories to be told by master distillers, brand ambassadors and industry experts.
Also various brands will be featured like Beam, Heaven Hill, Ardbeg and Yamazaki. Boutique spirit brands like Balcones, High West, and Tuthilltown Spirits of New York will also be featured.
More to enjoy would be the hand mixing up signature cocktails of New York’s top whisky bars bartenders. On the event would be coming the master distillers and global brand ambassadors. Guests will be able to get a chance to unlimited free taste, great dinner buffet and entertainment and souvenirs to keep from the said terrific whiskey event of the year.
One of the many traditions in India is to exchange gifts in every occasion. The gift items actually reflect their status; which is why consumers nowadays want a touch of style and uniqueness. In the past years, the gifting industry in India has grown because of increasing disposable incomes, exposure to worldwide trends, and aspiration levels. Currently, it can be categorized as personal, festival, and corporate gifting.
A special dinner was hosted by the United Spirits Limited which was attended by popular personalities Chitrangada Singh, Lisa Haydon, Shibani Dandekar, and Nitesh Chhapru (Head of Marketing, Premium core Portfolio, United Spirits Unlimited). The company unveiled their Scotch Whisky Collection: An Exceptional Gift for men on all occasions.
United Spirits Ltd. Unveil the Scotch Whisky Collection as an exceptional gift for men. Image(c):maliveandkicking.blogspot.com
The Scotch Whisky Collection consists of a premium range of Scotch whiskies: the Black Dog, Vat 69, and Black & White. They are an ideal gift for whisky connoisseurs who loves specially-crafted collectible gift packs. Whether you plan to relax with a Black Dog, or savor the famous Vat 69, or feel the warmth of Black & White, there’s definitely a perfect blend for every moment.
The collection was launched to solve the dilemma of gifting for men, which was hosted by Anuradha Menon who kept the audience entertained with witty comments. Celebrities Lisa Hydon, Shibani Dandekar, and Chitrangada Singh commented that the Scotch Whisky Collection made it simpler to buy gifts for men.
Meanwhile, Nitesh Chhapru said, “The gifting market in India has become a billion dollar industry and is still evolving. People are now looking at more innovative and personalized options while purchasing their gifts. Keeping this in mind, we have launched The Scotch Whisky Collection: An Exceptional Gift with the finest of our Scotch Whisky blends to celebrate all occasions.”
United Spirits introduces you to a premium blends for gifting during the festive season that would surely delight men and whisky connoisseurs.
In a world where gift-giving is part of the culture, Scotch whisky is definitely the best gift a man can get. Giving two leading whiskies that are steadily making its way to Indian market, a proof of how women celebrated its virtues as well.
Actress Chitrangada Singh told the INS during the launch of spirits major Diageo-USL’s Scotch Whisky Collection that, “Growing up, the strongest memory that I have when I think of parties, or a celebration, is my father pulling out a bottle of whisky, a Scotch whisky, for his friends.”
According to her, mostly her father would pull out a VAT 69 bottle. “He is a whisky drinker even now and he enjoys it, he savours it. He often talks about the art, the whole craft; the time it takes to make whisky… did I grow up on Scotch? Yes, I grew up on the smell of scotch… so; I think if I were to gift it, it’ll be a VAT 69 to my father who enjoys it even today, a good drink of whisky.”
Singh explained that she would give it as a present because she hears a lot of her friends talk about how they enjoyed Scotch whisky. “I would gift it because I do hear a lot of my friends (talk about it), a lot of my male friends enjoy it and I think a lot of young people are starting to enjoy Scotch whisky which is something that was something else earlier.”
There are four brands of the Scotch Whisky Collection: the Black Dog Triple Gold Reserve, which is a luxury blend of a premium aged malt and grain whisky that is matured in oloraso sherry casks for character and depth; the Black Dog Black Reserve, which is blended with a variety of malts from different regions of Scotland; Black & White with premium Speyside and Highland whiskies that will balance body and flavor; and, VAT 69, which is chosen among blends made by popular blenders.
If a person is a drinker, Scotch whisky is a very good gift, says Singh. It won’t be set aside in the corner; you’d know that it will be enjoyed by many people.
According to Shibani Dandekar, a sports anchor, it is actually the men who are hard to buy for (and not the ladies) because you don’t know the kind of shirt or ties they need. It is a taste-specific gesture that this dilemma has resulted to giving SWC collection because it is almost guaranteed that men will love it.
Whisky is among the best alcoholic beverage that you can drink. Not only does it have the least chances of giving you a hangover, but it is among the healthiest one around. You’d find that having a few shots of whiskey every week will help you to:
Prevent Weight Gain
Compared to other cocktail drinks, beers and wine, whisky is a low-calorie alcoholic drink that you can find on grocery and liquor stores. You may drink a bottle of whiskey without having to worry about gaining pounds. Thanks to its low sugar content!
Promote a Healthy Heart
Like wine and dark beer, whisky can also make the heart healthier. Not only does it reduce the chances of blood clot formation, it also lowers the risk for stroke and heart attack. The antioxidants found in whisky can prevent cholesterol from clogging up the arteries. It can even help increase good cholesterol levels.
Help Fight Cancer
Whisky is high in antioxidants that are known as ellagic acid. Ellagic acid prevents the body from coming into contact with carcinogens. Aside from that, it helps protect the body from chemotherapy and reduces oxidation in the body.
Enhance Brain Health
According to a study in 2003, drinking whisky helps reduce the incidence of dementia and Alzheimer’s. If you’re concerned that your brain has slowed down with age, it might be time for you to start drinking whisky to protect the brain from any damages.
Stress is one of the main causes of a wide variety of health problems in our body. Fortunately, we have whisky as stress relievers! Whisky helps in reducing stress and anxiety levels as it calms your nerves and helps relax our body. It promotes circulation throughout the body, thereby providing oxygenated blood to the organs.
Health Benefits of Whisky. By www.wideopencountry.com
The antioxidants found in whisky also have memory-boosting effects. This same property also helps reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s and dementia, which helps keep the brain young and active.
People drink whisky after meals to relax the body after eating heavily. It also helps curbing the appetite and prevents overeating. And what’s even better? It aids digestion, thereby reducing your risk of indigestion after a heavy meal.
Great for Diabetics
Because it has a zero-carb content, diabetic people can drink whisky without worrying much about their blood sugar levels. If you are one of them, a shot or two of whisky might just be right for you!
Recently, the Japanese whisky has started competing with Scotch as the “sip of choice”. This is why when the popular spirits writer Jim Murray named the 2013 edition of the Suntory Whisky Yamazaki Sherry Cask as the best whisky in his 2015 Whisky Bible, this Japanese whisky have made it big.
What makes the Whisky Special?
According to Suntory, it’s all about the sherry. The company chooses Spanish casks that were utilized for sherry storage, and it’s the cask that added flavor to the single-malt whisky under the Yamazaki variety. Its complex blending process adds to its richness and mystique as well. The whisky product isn’t sourced only from the single cask, but a combination of many of them.
A single-malt from Japan has been named the best whisky in the world. Photo by time.com
The officials of Suntory made it clear that the 2016 edition will be its own, a variety that differs from the popular 2013 edition. They assured customers, however, that it is from the same family; expect a little more depth to the 2016 edition.
The 2016 edition is said to be hot in the market. Suntory only released 5,000 bottles worldwide, and according to their brand ambassador Gardner Dunn, only a limited number of bottles will be sold in America. He also said that previous versions of Sherry Cask were sold out.
How to Enjoy Yamazaki Sherry Cask?
According to Suntory, it can be enjoyed in any way you please, with ice or on a little water. “We’re very much about never telling anyone how to drink your whisky,” said Dunn. But he suggests that it is best drunk neat, so you can taste its flavorful notes.
The 2016 Sherry Cask is an ultimately good whisky, with rich and refined taste all at once. It is delicious but not overpowering with a hint of chocolate and cocoa. It is clear that aging whiskies in those carefully chosen sherry casks definitely took the spirit to another level.