Sometimes we drinkers want something else for the holiday other than another random bottle of booze from BevMo… OK, just kidding, that’s always a good present. But in the case that you’d like to get something more on the mark to open up for the festive season, I compiled this SoCal-centric list of 12 gift ideas (from $7-$500) for you to give to your loved ones to make sure you get something that you will truly love. Cheers!
1. Scoops’ Boozy Ice Cream — $7/pint, $13/quart
A pint or quart of innovative Scoops flavor combos would make the perfect hostess gift. I know I’d love it. Take your pick of Gingerbread Snap-Jim Beam Bourbon, Almond Irish Cream or even an egg nog ice cream cake! The Westside Scoops (3400 Overland Avenue, map) just opened its doors for the first time last week so grab your spoon.
2. Punch: The Delights (and Dangers) of the Flowing Bowl by David Wondrich — $23.95 or $10.99 Kindle
Cocktail fans will love this brand-new book by Imbibe! author and Esquire drink historian David Wondrich. Not only does it feature the backstory of punch and its place in drink culture but a variety of punch recipes you can use for your upcoming holiday parties. Here’s the Charles Dickens’ punch recipe.
3. Silverlake Wine’s Para Silverlake — $15
OK, yes, this is a bottle of booze but “I Heart L.A.” t-shirt-wearing Angelenos will appreciate this wonderful, albeit inexpensive, blend of Cabernet and Merlot from Monterey which was specially blended for Silverlake Wine and even sports a label created by local Silver Lake Artist Phil Lumbang. A “smooth and versatile medium-bodied red with notes of blackberry, plum and a hint of tobacco” will be just the thing to break open at Christmas. By the way, you can get this giftboxed up at Silverlake Wine for $3.50.
4. Copa d’Oro’s “Around the World of Whisk(e)y” Flight — $35
Whiskey fans will squeal over this international tasting flight which features some of the best whiskey from all over the world: Japan, Suntory Single Malt Yamazaki; Scotland, Glenrothes ?87; Ireland, Tullamore Dew; Canada, Hirsch Canadian Rye; and USA, Eagle Rare 17 year. Just make sure you include a designated driver with this gift.
5. Vendo Kado Green With Envy Clutch — $47.50
Such a cute and stylish gift basket. This one features Domaine de la Liquieres Mi Chemin Blanc de Pays France 2009, Lafco New York bath salts, Maura Peters Los Angeles travel candles for an instant night of pampering.
6. Gift Card for Arclight 21+ Screenings — $50
Cocktails and a new movie at one of the best movie theaters in Los Angeles is the perfect treat for any film buff with a penchant for drinking. Tickets are $12.50 a person and figure in $12 for cocktail. Best used for a comedy, not so much action movie with jumpcuts all over the place. Erp!
7. Plonk Holiday Wine Sampler Pack — $80
Plonk features great wine for incredible prices and this sampler pack is no exception as it includes six bottles of limited-production wine, regularly $130, for only $80! You get three Argentinian Malbecs and three Spanish Albariños. Email help [at] plonkwinemerchants.com or call 877-50-PLONK (75665) to get the address and hours for pick up.
8. Tour of San Diego Breweries — $85
Drink your way around San Diego’s best breweries like Alesmith, Ballast Point and Stone Brewing via a bus. Public tours cost $60 for Monday-Thursday and $85 for Friday-Sunday.
9. Bar Keeper: Classic Cocktail or Mixology Gift Basket — $85-$145
This is probably the best gift basket idea ever: Take your pick for the fixings of a classic cocktail like a Sazerac, Vesper or Last Word or for signature cocktails by some of L.A.’s best bartenders. Each basket contains a bottle of spirit, bottles of mixers, barware and glassware.
10. Eatz Holiday Cocktail Bash Class — $95
Sure, you may know how to make a cocktail or two for your parties but what about pairing said drinks with food? This special class will not only teach you how to make vodka cocktails but appetizers like potato crepes with creme fraiche and caviar, goat cheese tartlets, crab cakes and more.
11. 2011 Bruery Reserve Society Membership — $195
Oh my gawd, I so want this one. This membership gives you several tasty Bruery beers like 3 French Hens, Sour in the Rye and a mystery special release plus Trois Poules Francais and the 2011 Black Tuesday, upon their release. And if that’s not nearly enough beer, you get 15% off Tasting Room purchases as well as draft beer flights and beer at The Bruery Provisions store in Orange.
12. Y DRIVE LA – Red Hospitality Membership — $500 a month
The bad habit that Angelenos just don’t talk about: drinking and driving. That’s why any L.A. boozer would be so thankful for this extra thoughtful gift of a designated driver. This particular membership gets you three $38-$60 rides per week as well as priority for the first and best driver.