Christmas is rapidly approaching, but there’s still time to get that perfect gift for the beer lover on your list. Check out these ideas:
Hoodies are huge in the Pacific Northwest, but none of them are as functional as TV host Zane Lamprey’s Drinking Jacket (2.0), which is custom designed and engineered for drinkers. The Drinking Jacket is a feature-packed hoodie and the ultimate accessory for opening, transporting and consuming the beverage of your choice. Features include a bottle opener zipper, a neoprene-lined can/bottle holder, built-in (and foldable) drinking mitts with slip-resistant grips, a hidden pocket for a flask, an ID/money/phone pocket, a sunglass holder, deep outside pockets, a reflective logo, a lined hood and more. It’s a jacket that not only keeps you warm, but also keeps your drinks cold.
HOMEBREW STARTER KIT
For less than $200, you can buy a homebrew kit with everything an aspiring homebrewer needs to get started, and the folks at North Corner Homebrewing Supply in Bellingham can hook you up with all the necessities. It’s like the gift that pays you back, because your gift recipient will surely share some homebrews with you.
GrOpener BOTTLE OPENER
I have used many bottle openers in my time, but the GrOpener ($16) has to be one of the coolest ones out there. Its ingenious, patent-pending design allows for efficient, one-handed bottle opening, and it also has a built-in magnet that attracts and holds the cap, plus it allows for easy storage on a refrigerator. As a bonus, the other end of the GrOpener can be used as a can tab opener.
There is also a new steel-tipped version called the GrabOpener ST (for Steel Tooth). This version has a lightweight body with a very long-wearing stainless steel hook that makes it ideal for brewery staffers, bartenders and others who open hundreds of bottles per month. The ST sells for $30 and 10% of all sales go to Pencils of Promise to help build schools in Ghana.
LOCAL BREWERY MERCH
Kulshan sells gift boxes for $25 that include a t-shirt (men’s or women’s) and two logo pint glasses.
Another notable: Wander has recently released some vacuum-sealed, stainless-steel growlers by Miir that keep contents cold for 24 hours (or hot for 12 hours).
TAP TRAIL WALL CALENDAR & APPAREL
If your gift recipient loves the Bellingham craft beer community as much we do, you must get him or her one of our 2016 Bellingham Tap Trail wall calendars featuring 25 amazing brewery/beer images from Bellingham’s breweries. This 12 x 18 wall calendar is spiral bound and includes both a calendar side and a poster side from each featured brewery. Once you pass a month, pull it from the binding and show off the posters in your beer cave, garage, brewing room, gym locker, bedroom, office, etc. Calendars cost only $20 and we have a fairly limited supply. Preorder today and have one by Monday the 21st. (A bit later if you’re having it shipped outside of Bellingham.)
Keep in mind, the Tap Trail also has some sweet apparel in men’s and women’s designs.
FOOD MADE WITH BEER
Sometimes the most meaningful gifts are the ones that you make, and what’s better than a home-cooked meal made with beer? To make this option easy, we’ve assembled some holiday beer recipes, and all of them can be made with local beers.
The easiest gift you can give a beer lover is, well, beer. But since it’s the holidays and all, why not get that person a mixed 6-pack of holiday beers? You can either stick to holiday beers and winter warmers, or you can go with a Christmas pop culture pairing.
If holiday beers are not your recipient’s thing, how about a mixed 6-pack of beers from all 6 of Bellingham’s breweries? Or, even better, how about a mixed 8-pack of all 8 of Whatcom County’s breweries? I can’t imagine a beer gift being much better than that.