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Whiskey gift guide: Give the present everyone wants this year

Mathew Schwartz / Unsplash

While we’re not going to be mad if someone gives us a comfy sweater or a winter hat this or any holiday season, we always prefer to receive (and give) gifts in the form of alcohol. It’s not just the fact that we have a closet full of multi-colored winter hats and more winter sweaters than we’ll ever wear, but the holidays take place as the weather begins to grow colder and the days get ever shorter. Instead of clothes and headwear, we’d prefer the warm feeling of booze. Specifically, whiskey.

But we don’t just love bourbon, rye whiskey, single malt Scotch whisky, Irish whiskey, and whiskey from the rest of the world; we also love to gift (and receive) whiskey-related gifts. Bottles of long-aged whiskey, mixers, coasters, and other unique gifts, we love them all.

Since we assume you do, too (otherwise, you wouldn’t be reading this article), we decided to help you with your holiday booze-related gift-giving this year. So that you don’t have to spend an afternoon aimlessly wandering around the aisles at your local liquor store or scrolling through online retailers looking for whiskey gifts (while completely forgetting to buy any other presents for anyone else), we did the job for you. Below, you’ll find some of our favorite whiskey-related gifts for this (and every) holiday season. Keep scrolling to see them all.

Watershed Bottled-in-Bond Bourbon

Watershed Bottled-in-Bond Bourbon

This popular bottle-in-bond bourbon was distilled, aged, and bottled onsite at the Watershed Distillery, adhering to all of the rules and regulations of the Bottled-in-Bond Act of 1897. It’s a 100-proof whiskey that was matured in a Federally bonded warehouse for a full four years. The result is a bold, complex sipping whiskey with aromas of orchard fruits, rich oak, and vanilla beans. The palate is loaded with flavors of dried cherries, toffee, vanilla beans, and oaky, charred wood. The finish is warming, lingering, and gently spicy.

Bib & Tucker Double Char Bourbon
Bib & Tucker

Bib & Tucker Double Char Bourbon

If you’ve paid attention to the Tennessee-based whiskey brand Bib & Tucker, you’ve seen that the brand has been racking up awards in the last few years. One of its best expressions is its Bib and Tucker Double Char. This 88-proof whiskey gets its name because it first matured in new American oak barrels for six years at its Tennessee barrelhouse. It’s then aged for an additional five months in heavily charred and smoked new American oak barrels. The result is a rich, complex bourbon whiskey that begins with a nose of oak, toffee, wintry spices, and gentle smoke. Sipping it reveals flavors like sweet corn, maple candy, oak, vanilla, cinnamon, and gentle smoke.

Chicken Cock
Chicken Cock

Chicken Cock Straight Rye Whiskey

Sometimes, you might prefer your whiskey to land on the spicier side. That’s why we like to gift Chicken Cock Straight Rye Whiskey. This 90-proof rye whiskey was distilled, aged, and bottled at the Kentucky-based distillery. Matured for a minimum of two years in charred oak barrels, it’s known for its bold nose of fresh mint, dried fruits, vanilla, citrus peels, and rye spice. Drinking it brings you notes of sweet corn, candied orange peels, oak, and cracked black pepper. As rye whiskeys go, it’s sweeter and less spicy than most. It’s a great gateway rye whiskey.

Barsys Smart Coasters

Barsys Smart Coasters

Regardless of which whiskey you’re drinking or if it’s neat, on the rocks, or in a cocktail, you’re going to need somewhere to rest your glass. And while you can use a boring cardboard coaster, why not use a smart coaster instead? Barsys Coaster 2.0 is an aluminum coaster made from eco-friendly materials, but it’s so much more than that. It’s a smart coaster that connects to your phone via Bluetooth. You input your favorite spirits and mixers into the app, and it curates drinks for you.

Bittermilk Mixers
Bittermilk Mixers

Bittermilk Mixers Bourbon Barrel Aged Old Fashioned

If you’re anything like us, the thought of most cocktail mixes leaves a bad taste in your mouth (literally). They are often overly sugary and generic-tasting. But every now and then, we come across a brand making well-made, flavorful mixers. This is the case with Bittermilk Mixers. While you can’t go wrong with any of the mixers from this Charleston, South Carolina-based brand, we especially enjoy its Bittermilk Mixers Bourbon Barrel Aged Old Fashioned mixer. The mix is made from Florida golden cane sugar, burnt cane sugar, water, orange peel, spices, Gentian root, Cinchona bark, and Tartaric acid. It gets extra flavor from being aged in Willet bourbon barrels. Just mix it with rye whiskey to create a perfect, holiday cocktail.

JYPSI Whiskey
JYPSI Whiskey

Whiskey JYPSI

If you’ve never tried JYPSI, the time is right to try it. Also, buy a bottle for a friend, family member, or co-worker while you’re at it. This highly complex whiskey is a blend of 70% 7-8 year-old bourbon, 21% 20-year-old rye whiskey, and 9% 4-year-old American single malt whiskey. It carries a nose of fresh leather, toffee, vanilla, and gentle spices and a palate of dried fruits, vanilla beans, caramel candy, and peppery rye, with a warming, lingering finish.

Wyoming Whiskey Small Batch
Wyoming Whiskey

Wyoming Whiskey Small Batch Bourbon Whiskey

In the last few years, Wyoming Whiskey has won numerous awards and has become one of the brands that are changing the way drinkers think about bourbon whiskey and where it can be made. This 88-proof, small-batch bourbon is the brand’s flagship expression and one worthy of gift-giving. It begins with a nose of sticky toffee pudding, toasted vanilla beans, and floral notes. The palate is well-known for its flavors of brown sugar, crème brulee, cinnamon, and oak.

Union Horse
Union Horse

Union Horse Reserve Straight Bourbon Whiskey

Made with a proprietary sour mash recipe of corn and rye, this popular whiskey is distilled in traditional copper pot stills. Made in small batches, it’s matured in charred oak barrels for at least five years. This non-chill filtered bourbon begins with a nose of dried cherries, toffee, candied orange peels, and oaky wood. The palate is centered around butterscotch, wintry spices, dried fruit, vanilla, and charred oak.

Tin Cup Whisket
Image used with permission by copyright holder

TINCUP American Whiskey

Named for the cups miners traditionally used to drink water, this popular whiskey is a blend of two different American-made whiskeys. They are a straight bourbon sourced from Indiana and a single malt American whiskey distilled in Colorado. Both were matured in charred oak barrels. It’s known for its aromas of peppery rye, candied orange peels, and vanilla and its palate of toffee cracked black pepper, and vanilla. Sweet, spicy, and very warming on a cold winter day.

Editors' Recommendations

Christopher Osburn
Christopher Osburn is a food and drinks writer located in the Finger Lakes Region of New York. He's been writing professional
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