Struggling to think of a good gift for the home bartender in your life? We asked Drinks Ireland to give us their top eight Christmas gift ideas for that very person.
'Tis now most definitely the season. We are completely engulfed by bright lights and glitter. Catch-ups with friends are taking place almost every evening and family gatherings are taking over our weekends. For some, the first tin of Roses has been opened and for others, the mulled wine has been placed on the hob. Die Hard has been watched at least three times, but it's still a little too early to watch Love Actually.
At Christmas, we all enjoy a drink or two. Whether we meet in bars, restaurants or at home, it's a lovely way to reconnect and these instances are usually steeped in tradition.
Many of us know a drinks enthusiast, whether that be for wine, beer or gin. These individuals don't just care about the taste. They want to discover all they can about the blends that make the drinks unique. They love the process and work that goes into making them. And they love the brand story too.
When it comes to Christmas presents, there are two types of people: those who purchased theirs in September and those who are now in severe panic mode. If you are the latter type, don't be alarmed because you still have time, and there are a myriad of choices available for that person in your life who radiates with knowledge about every drink known to man.
To make it a little easier, we asked drinksireland.ie for eight of their top gift picks for the drink connoisseur in your life.
Dingle Gin Christmas Bauble
The popularity of Dingle Gin has grown exponentially over the last few years and has become a staple beverage during the Christmas period. Dingle Gin is a London dry style gin with a range of botanicals including rowan berry, fuschia, bog myrtle, heather, chervil and hawthorn. The gin is made in small batches of 500 litres and the flavour elements are macerated in spirit for 24 hours. This Christmas bauble is a fun gift for the Dingle Gin fan in your life and it can be reused each year as a playful ornament on their tree.
Eight Degrees Beer Hamper
For the craft beer buff, this hamper from the innovative micro-brewing company Eight Degrees will be a welcomed sight underneath the tree. The award-winning Co. Cork brewery was set up by two friends in 2010 and has achieved huge success in the industry since. The hamper includes four of their best beers including Howling Gale Ale, Sunburnt Irish Red Ale, Knockmealdown Porter and Bohemian Pils. It also comes with a branded glass for you to keep.
For the person who doesn't want to drink but wants to continue to enjoy the celebrations. We can confirm that non-alcoholic Heineken tastes pretty much the same as regular Heineken, but with a more fruity note.
This drink is specially ‘double brewed’, where they removed the alcohol and blended it with natural flavours to give it that Heineken taste. It's also only 23 calories per 100ml, combine that with no hangover and it's a win-win.
Teeling Whiskey Company 3 x 50ml Trinity Pack
Whiskey is a familiar part of Christmas. Irish coffee and a hot toddy have warmed up many a cold winter's night, and whiskey also makes a great Christmas gift. Teeling Whiskey is Dublin through and through. First created in 1782 by Walter Teeling on Marrowbone Lane, it didn't reappear until 2015 when Jack and Stephen Teeling opened the Teeling Whiskey Distillery – the first new distillery in Dublin in over 125 years. This gift set includes the Single Grain, Single Malt and Small Batch Blend and is an ideal way to try the entire Teeling range.
The Power House Tour at Roe & Co Distillery
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Experiences are sometimes a more exciting present than a physical thing, and this is ideal for the whiskey connoisseur in your life. Roe & Co is an urban whiskey distillery located in the heart of the Liberties. The Power House Tour takes guests on a journey through each stage of the whiskey-making process. During the tour, you will be given a first-hand look at the science behind distillation, the art of blending and how to make the perfect whiskey cocktail. And at the end, you get to enjoy a complimentary Roe & Co cocktail in the lounge. Tickets start at €19 and you can purchase them here.
The InCider Story & Spirit of Longueville Tour
This is for the devout cider lovers. Longueville House in Co. Cork has earned quite the reputation as a cider producer and has rapidly become a major hit in Ireland, the UK and even the United States. The InCider Story & Spirit of Longueville Tour takes you right into the heart of the distillery. Guided by Dan Duggan – Longueville's chief Apple Brandy Distiller and Cider Brewer – you will discover the unique process behind the making of this popular cider. And afterwards, you can enjoy a special lunch made by chef William O’Callaghan and his team using the best ingredients from the Walled Garden and Estate. Tickets start at €25. Email [email protected] to book.
Jameson Christmas Gift Box
Jameson Whiskey is an Irish Christmas. There isn't a house in Ireland that doesn't have a bottle or two of the famous drink stashed away for special occasions. This gift box includes Jameson socks, a 200ml bottle of Caskmates IPA Edition and a Jameson glass. The gift box is a sustainable alternative to gift wrapping and can also be recycled, while the socks are made by Irish company STÓR and made in an environmentally-friendly way.
Whiskey Cocktail Making at Jameson Distillery
For the wannabe cocktail maker in your life, this 60-minute masterclass will teach them the necessary skills. Hosted by a skilled Jameson bartender, participants learn how to make a total of three cocktails and take home a Bow St. Journal too (along with the skills). It costs €50 for the class and you can book here.
Sling Shot Gin School
Ever wanted to make your own gin? Well, the Lough Ree Distillery is giving gin-lovers the chance with its Sling Shot Gin School. Learn how to combine different scents and flavours of rare botanicals and then mix and distil them yourself at your very own copper still before bottling and labelling your creation. This can be done individually, as a couple, or as a group of up to 20 people. It's priced at €100 and includes Sling Shot & Tonics on the night and your very own bottle of gin. Book here.
Read more: The 6 best places to get mulled wine in Dublin this festive season
Read more: 12 of the best places to drink wine in Dublin
Read more: Avoid the crowds with these 4 under-the-radar Christmas events in Dublin