From the cocktail-curious to a seasoned spirit slinger, these are the best bar gifts for every drinking buddy on your list.
If you're having a hard time knocking some names off your gift list this year, you can't go wrong with a nice bottle of booze or some flashy barware. After all, who doesn't love sipping a delicious cocktail with friends and family during the holidays? And if you're on the hunt for clever bar gifts to give this year, then read on because we've shaken and stirred to find some first-class ideas for the cocktail lover or home bartender on your list.
In a pinch, I've always found a top-shelf or special bottle of booze along with some rimming salts, good bitters or a set of sleek glasses can be a real gifting win for an amateur bartender. Be it for a whiskey sipper, tequila tumbler or martini hound, this list covers the bases for any type of cocktail enthusiast. And there are Christmas bar gifts for every budget, from stocking stuffers to proper splurges.
So whether you fancy yourself the cosmopolitan type or it's something a bit more old-fashioned, these are the best bar, booze and cocktail gifts to give in 2022.
I find handheld citrus juicers to be mostly ineffective and murder on my wrists. In short, the juice just ain't worth the squeeze. Countertop juicers that you put more oomph into yield better results and fewer trips to the physical therapist. I love the look and feel of Verve Culture's retro model, especially since it catches the seeds and pulp for you.
It's rare that a cocktail shaker excited me all that much anymore but the High Camp shaker is special. It's loosely designed with camping or outdoor drinking in mind since you can either shake and pour or leave it and the shaker transforms into an easy-drinking highball.
It also looks great available in copper, stainless steel or gunmetal and it all fits together securely and compactly. You can (and should) get it engraved for $25 more.
Edible flowers are big on social media these days, and that's because they elevate the look of any food -- or drink. For happy hour hosts, spring a bag of Hands on Earth edible flowers on them to inject some spring magic to that next round of cosmos or sidecars.
As the spice of the mixology world, there's probably no more fun ingredient for a home bartender to experiment with than bitters. Fee Brothers makes a five-pack with some unique cocktail bitters like mint and peach in addition to the more traditional recipes.
One thing a home bartender will always appreciate is good glassware. These Libbey coups are sturdy enough to slide them down the bar but delicate enough to make your Sidecar or Brandy Alexander really pop.
Good rimming salts can take a cocktail from a 7 to a 10 with a few swirls of the glass. This set includes both spicy and citrus margarita salt and one for Bloody Marys.
These handblown Moroccan glasses come in four color choices and two sizes. The smaller glasses are incredibly versatile and perfect for an old fashioned, margarita or even just some scotch on the rocks. They're also durable and the inward cone prevents spillage making them great for parties.
Note: Unfortunately, the current batch has sold out, and while you can get your preorder in for the next batch, they won't be available until February 2023. So don't plan on having them under the tree for Christmas this year.
A bottle opener may seem like old hat and not all that giftable. Rosle's shiny and sturdy stainless steel model would like you to reconsider. Pair this with a nice tall bottle of 4-pack of La Fin Du Monde and you've got a very nice gift.
What I like about Shaker Spoon is that not only are all the ingredients (minus the booze) packaged for you to make interesting cocktails, but what is included would be really tricky to find anywhere locally. We're talking artisan cherry-vanilla bitters, pineapple shrub and a spritz bottle of white sage hydrosol.
There are recipes for each themed box like Fall for Mezcal or All Eyes on Rye but you can have fun experimenting with the ingredients too. Each box is about $50 (one month is $59 but it's cheaper if you subscribe). Either way, it'll lend plenty of cocktail inspiration to the budding bartender on your list.
I know that Halloween is over but these skull ice molds are fun all year round. They are easy to use and work great (you can really see the skull clearly). For a bartender who likes a little kitsch, pair this with a bottle of nice booze to mix with.
A good jam or jelly is my all-time favorite cocktail hack: High-quality fruit preserves, like these infused with booze from Brooklyn Preserves, are fun and underrated mixology ingredients. A little apricot jam in a whiskey old-fashioned or raspberry jalapeño in a margarita will give sweetness and some distinct fruit flavor so you can forgo that laborious squeezing and simple syrup-making.
Pair these jams with a nice bottle of rye or bourbon, and you've got a very excellent gift for the budding mixologist on your hands.
Spice things up with this small yet sturdy cast-iron mortar and pestle set. This bar tool will eliminate the need for ground spices, pulverizing whole peppercorns and fennel seeds to ensure fresher flavor and stronger aromatics in your drink. In the process, you'll also get a fun workout and stress relief. There's a reason this ancient food processor has withstood the test of time.
If you're shopping for a Don Draper type who appreciates a bit of vintage flair, this ice bucket has it in spades.
This is essentially a tequila tasting set disguised as an infusion kit, but it's a damn nice tequila tasting set. The handblown glasses are just large enough to hold a small margarita or tequila cocktail.
A beautiful solution for the cocktail enthusiast who prefers drinks stirred and not shaken. Wondering why you'd need one of these at all? If you ask an expert, they'll tell you most cocktails made with brown liquors like bourbon, cognac and aged dark rum should be stirred -- not shaken.
You can outfit a bar cart for around $32 with this sleek black matte-metallic Boston shaker set. It's got all the essential tools: shaker, strainer, jigger, muddler, bar spoon and tongs. It comes in copper and silver to coordinate with your home decor.
I think a nice bar board makes an excellent gift for the home mixologist. All cutting boards are not created equally and if you're slicing a lot of juicy lemons and limes, you'll want one with a reservoir to catch the juice. If you're nimble enough, you can even slant the board and pour it into a shaker.
This Henckel's board is fairly priced at $16 and comes with two utility knives -- one paring, one serrated -- for cutting fruit and making delicate garnishes.
This kit is tres chic and has all the bar essentials (except for the shaker) including a really retro-looking ice bucket. It's not cheap but the stylish home mixologist on your list will do flips for this collection.
For a pricier pick, this small Boos board is perfect for slicing limes, other citrus or small garnishes. Think of this as the Cadillac of bar boards with an actual drip tray to collect precious citrus juice to reuse for the next margarita. Brilliant, right? Plus, it's a John Boos so you can rest assured it's top-quality wood.