The best things come with a box of booze!
From your friend who is always embarking on a road trip to that mom in your life who cannot keep her head above water, from the man always in a suit to the person who makes better cocktails than most mixologists—we have a liquor or wine choice for every recipient in your roster.
This year, with our social distancing measures in place, we plan to drop off bottles all over town. There’s nothing cuter than a note tied around the neck.
Just try not to eat all the Sugarfina gummies in the car on the way over.
- The Candy Addict
Código + Sugarfina
Código is a beautiful, sipping tequila, co-founded by country music legend George Strait. No celebrity gimmicks here, just really great booze and a range that includes the expected Anejo, Reposado, Extra Anejo and Blanco styles. However, they also brought us one of the first-ever “rosé” tequilas. This 1530 Rosa label is rested in French White Oak red wine barrels, resulting in a blush hue and a gorgeous, fruit-laced flavor.
This holiday season, they have collaborated with haute, gummy candy maker, Sugarfina on a gift box that’s both adorable and exciting.
It includes a 50ml bottle of that 1530 Rosa, alongside a custom box of two Sugarfina flavors—Tequila grapefruit sour gummies and Top Shelf Rosé gummies.
Código Rose Tequila with Sugarfina Bento Box
- The Road Tripper or Tailgater
Ramona Wine Spritzes
Organic, low-alcohol wine spritzes in a can keep things sweet and simple. The fun four packs make excellent gifts for dropping off on porches, and the flavors include Blood Orange, Ruby Grapefruit, Meyer Lemon, Dry Grapefruit and a Sparkling Rosé.
There are a lot of canned beverages out there these days. And we will certainly hoist a White Claw without any guilt or apologies. Ramona is actually good, and has the pedigree to back it up. Founder/Sommelier Jordan Salcito is a 5-time James Beard Award semi-finalist and the former Wine & Beverage Director for David Chang’s Momofuku restaurants, where her wine list at Ko was named “Most Creative in the World” by World of Fine Wine magazine in 2016.
- For Those Who Love New Orleans
St. Roch Vodka
We are all about shopping locally, and that extends to hard spirits. Seven Three Distilling Co. is located right on North Claiborne in New Orleans, and their lineup—several vodkas, two gins, a rum, a whiskey and a moonshine—is gorgeous from the packaging down to the clean, balanced and affordable spirits. Their St. Roch Vodka is easy to experiment with in cocktails, whether you’re a professional or a totally confused mixology newbie.
In 2018, it won a Gold Medal at the New York International Spirits Competition. It’s one of our favorites for holiday Martinis by the Christmas tree. They also make a bright and vegetal Cucumber Vodka, too.
Seven Three Distilling Co.
- Best for Busy Moms
Usual Wines Mixed Pack
Sometimes, you just want a single glass. Or, you want to start with a red and then move to a white, but, in this age of doing so many things solo, you don’t want to open two entire bottles of wine.
Enter Usual Wines. They sell bottle sizes that equate to, their words, “a large glass of wine” with “no additives, no sugar, more fun.”
The Mixed Pack makes a stellar girlfriend gift, including a 12-bottle mix of each of their labels. The Red is a fruity and delicious blend with notes of cocoa, dark cherry, and cassis. The Rosé has crisp notes of strawberry, rose petal, and rhubarb—and the Brut, a dry and effervescent sparkling wine with notes of lemon, elderflower and bergamot.
- For the Dapper Gentleman
Aberfeldy Golden Hot Chocolate Gift Set
One hell of a deal at only $45, this is a truly impressive present for under the tree or by the bar. Famed Scotch house, Aberfeldy, partnered with Miami’s Exquisito Chocolates to develop a limited-edition, shimmering hot chocolate mix, with notes of honey and vanilla to perfectly complement the flavor profile of this 12-year whisky.
It arrives in a beautiful gold box and includes everything needed to prepare the Golden Hot Chocolate this holiday season, including a full-sized bottle, a 6.8 oz. bag of the Golden Hot Chocolate Mix, two custom mugs, two drink stirrers, six Aberfeldy-infused marshmallows and a four-gram bag of edible gold glitter.
- For the Whiskey Guy
Dirty Sue Whiskey Cherries
Dirty Sue is a bartender-owned company out of Los Angeles that first caught our attention with their incredible Dirty Martini Olive Juice. It makes Happy Hour a breeze and we keep at least two bottles in the fridge at all times. A few years ago, they launched Whiskey Cocktail Cherries—essential garnishes for all Singapore Slings, Manhattans, Rum & Cokes and Whiskey Sours.
- For the Home Bar Enthusiast
375ml bottles of Chartreuse
The best gifts are the ones we rip open to use immediately. The best gifts are both luxurious and thoughtful, that give a moment of travel and a timeless sense of history. People frequently gift spirits, but rarely gift modifiers. This year, consider adding something unexpected to a friend’s home bar, like a vermouth, a liqueur—or one of these 375ml bottles of Green or Yellow Chartreuse. It’s a moment of French culture, a bright and intense dash of anise and secret botanicals. Our recipe suggestion: An icy Last Word.
- For Yourself
El Guapo Bitters
Our home bar game has gotten pretty good. We’ve moved past simple sours to crafting simple syrups, tinkering with smoke and with bitters. Shop Local and Shop Small can apply to bitters too. El Guapo is located in the Big Easy, run by CEO Christa Cotton, who is a passionate advocate for the town. She’s got a Chicory Pecan flavor, a Cucumber Lavender, and even a Gumbo variety. By New Year’s, you just might open a bar in your backyard.
- For the Tiki Nerd
Frankly, Mai Tai cocktails are kinda a bitch to make. They require Orgeat—a syrup made from almonds. Even if you have that handy, you’ve still got dark Jamaican rum, Martinique rhum agricole vieux, and Curaçao liqueur to go for the perfect combination.
Enter Latitude 29 Wiki Wiki Mai Tai Mix. All you have to do is add 0.75 ounce of this magic elixir, a little lime and a white rum and you’re in business.
In Hawaii “wiki wiki” means “quickly.” This bottle puts a classic 1944 Mai Tai in your hands wiki wiki, without sending you on a scavenger hunt for a proper Mai Tai’s often hard-to-find ingredients.
- For the Budding Mixologist
Cocktail Kingdom Essential Cocktail Set
Cocktail Kingdom makes the best bar gear, whether you’re a novice or a full-time mixologist. The set includes a stainless steel mixing glass, and decorative engraving options make it personal. You also get a steel bar spoon, a Japanese-styled jigger, a set of weighted Koriko shaking tins and Hawthorne strainer.
No more vodka sodas when you go to your best friend’s house is a bonus for you, too.