If someone you care about has:
1) Driven more than an hour to visit a brewery
2) Attempted to brew their own beer, despite lack of kitchen and closet space
3) Waited in line (or even overnight) for a special beer release... ...then you have a serious beer lover on your hands. Wondering what to buy them as a holiday gift? Here are a few ideas.
Beer They Can't Get Themselves
If you live in Wisconsin and your loved one lives in Boston, the best gift you can give is a stash of the New Glarus favorites that they can't buy themselves. If you're in Vermont and they're in Texas, a hand-toted can of Heady Topper is an obvious choice. The laws dictating beer distribution in our country (and the small size of many of the best craft breweries) means that many beers aren't available throughout the country. Do a little research (feel free to ask us in the comments below!) and pick up something special for your favorite beer lover to drink (and brag about to their friends.)
Hydro Flask Insulated Growler
These BPA-free double-wall vacuum insulated growlers really work to keep your cool drinks cool, so you can bring 64 ounces of refreshing beer with you for a day in the park or a hot summer barbecue without lugging a cooler full of ice. They're available in other sizes and colors, too—the 24-ounce version works well for keeping a bottle of rosé chilled (and drinking booze where it's not, um, technically allowed.)
A Propane Burner for Brewing Outside
The weather may be too cold now, but your darling homebrewer would be happier if he or she could brew outdoors. Sitting in the backyard, drinking a beer while your wort boils is an excellent way to spend a Saturday, so if your loved one doesn't have an outdoor setup, a propane burner makes a great gift. (Read more about the benefits and essential techniques for homebrewing outside here.)
Single Hop Art
We're really into these posters from The Committee on Opprobriations, and chances are your favorite beer fanatic will be, too. Choose from bright and multicolored Citra or orange-toned Mandarina Bavaria, orderly Sylva, or many others. Some of them are availabe as tshirts, too!
Bike Saddle Bag
If your favorite beer lover gets around town by bicycle, this saddle bag might come in handy in those BYOB situations. Made of waterproof canvas and Velcro, and designed to sit centrally to make pedaling easy. We don't recommend drinking while you bike, though...
Beer Pairing Calendar
Amber ale and pizza, salad and wheat ale: this cute wall calendar from redcruiser on Etsy has a beer and food pairing for every month of the year. It's sized 7" x 11", and printed on 100% post consumer waste paper.
There are also sets of beer and food pairing prints if you want to skip the calendar part.
Designated Driver For the Day
Maybe your favorite beer lover has always dreamed of checking out all the breweries in Portland, or perhaps she just wants to get upstate to check out Peekskill. Instead of spending money on a fancy gift, offer to stay sober and play chauffeur. (Just make sure to buy some bottles at each place so you can drink 'em all later.)
Got other gift ideas for beer-obsessed folks? We're all ears!