Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Combating the Ghost of Christmas Present: What to Buy for Christmas

It's close to the holidays...  You have a friend or significant other that you want to surprise with a little something to help show them you support their binge drink... I mean hobby.  To help make that happen, here's my list of the top 5 items an Indy Craft Beer individual would love to have:

Yeah... I said it.  After the #ICBM riot/backlash on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, (you name it, it was flamed) there was a letter from Caleb Staton in a heartfelt "it's a little broken, we're fixing it". Just like you dear reader I stopped listening after that.  However, Caleb made good and they are constantly evolving the SBS.  What was once one ticket per event has turned into a Ticket, plus one!  No longer do you have to make your wife/girlfriend/best friend sit on the sidelines while you have all the fun!  Constant perks not even mentioned in the membership page: want two free professionally cellared Winter Warmers for showing up at an SBS only release event?  Done.  Want to try the new sours that are in process that no one has heard about?  Done.  Wasn't there a collab with New Belgium Brewing... Does it even taste good?  DONE and yes they do taste awesome...  It's a little pricey, but worth it.

The Big Guy and friends have been trying to get me to home brew...  I am sure that more than one thing or the other has stopped you from buying your starter set.  It's tough buying things for yourself, but very easy to do it for others!  Want six hours to yourself once every two weeks?  Buy your man a starter set!  Be warned, if you don't spring for the (not included) Outdoor Gas Cooker your house will smell like boiled grains... 


3.  Proper IPA glassware from Dogfish Head, Serra Nevada, and/or Spiegelau/Riedel ($9)

I don't think I can reiterate it more to all you aspiring Hop Heads out there.  Glassware makes a difference.  I can pontificate its merits and filibuster this post, but The Big Guys post from earlier this year says it best.  Sorry Brewnibomber, The Big Guy got to it fist!

4.  A Seasonal/Specialty release bomber/six pack/growler from a local brewery in a style your beer lover prefers. ($10-30)

One that springs to mind is Sanitarium from The Bier Brewery.  They just released it and might have a bottle or two left!  Barring that, Flat 12 is having their 12 beers of Christmas and they just released Lactomatic Milk Stout!  I would mention Sun King, but WeeMuckle and their Kings Reserve Series have already come and gone for the month.

5.  An indestructible Growler! ($50-75)

Never a toss up for me, but options for you.  The BRĂ„ULER (Tin Man Brewing Online Store) and The Hydroflask (The Bier Brewery purchased at the brewery).  Another option: Portland Growler Company  Just know that because of Indiana State Law, you will have a growler sticker slapped onto your growler whether you like it or not.  Breweries have to keep it on the up and up!  I will take this minor inconvenience over a smashed growler any day of the week.  

As you're planning your gift giving for the beer lover in your life, I hope this list helps give you a good starting point. What have you found that should make it on the list for next year?

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