By Rob Symes
The holiday season is here, and if you need to grab a gift for a craft beer lover, we have a few ideas for you:
For the social drinker: Wooden Beer Caddy
If your craft beer lover likes to share a selection with friends, then you’ll have seen them carry their beers in a cardboard six-pack or backpack. Give them something more durable, stylish and practical with a beautiful wooden six-pack. A number are available on the market, but this version comes with a built-in bottle opener. Probably impractical for regular use, but good in a pinch when the opener is misplaced later in the evening. The big plus of a wooden carrier is that you don’t have to worry about wet cardboard spilling liquid gold over the sidewalk.
For the thinker: Beer Education
Whether new to craft or wise beyond their years, education can always provide new insights to the drinker. Because of the wide range of courses available, there is something for everyone, whether an introduction to styles for the novice, or an analysis of off-flavours for the expert.
For the competitive drinker: Beer Boardgames
Check out something like Brewcrafters – a euro-style boardgames of resource management, where you take control of a craft brewery, with the goal of developing the greatest beers and flourishing as a loved treasure. Alternatively, if a simpler, more drinking-angled game is preferred, try The Red Dragon Inn, where the last play sober-enough and shrewd enough to hold on to all their gold coins wins the game.
For the ticker: Beer subscription / club
Beer of the month clubs have proliferated, along with brewery-specific clubs. What’s not to love – unique brews delivered direct to the door or available for local pick up. Tickers are hard to satisfy because they’re usually willing to put in a few kilometres to get something new, which is why you have to go a few further. A subscription or club can provide that, along with something truly novel.
For the homebrewer: Personalized tap handle
If you have a dedicated homebrewer in your life, chances are they may have some form of kegerator hooked up. The downside of this, is that while bottles may have intricately custom-designed labels, keg systems often use plain standard taps. That doesn’t need to be the case, and there are a number of sellers on etsy and elsewhere who can provide you with custom tap handles. Laser etched designs on wood can be as simple or complex as you can agree with a designer, with prices typically beginning around $35.
For everyone: Beer
Sometimes we overthink gifts. If you have a beer lover in your life, perhaps the best gift of all is… beer. It’s not the cop out it seems because your recipient has already demonstrated a proven love for this exact gift! Here’s the thing though, not all beers are created equal. Rather than gift something readily available, go the extra mile by visiting a craft brewery and picking up some beverages not available in local retail stores.