The mixologist wasn’t the kid in high school who had an older brother of questionable morals. He wasn’t the one in college with the car, perennially down to make a beer run. The mixologist received his MA in drinking. He makes an event all the more special because of the drink, and not the other way around. He shows you the best Scotches
, puts a cocktail
in your hand on hot summer days by the pool and passes you an aperitif
before fall meals. So get something to reward him for the consistent cheers and red-faced good times. Here are the best gifts for the man who prides himself on making drinks that play center stage from the start of the night all the way through to the end.
Hella Bitters Craft Your Own Bitters Kit
The obsessed home bartender will want to make as much of his drink from scratch as he can, and bitters are an easy but not-so-obvious place to start. This kit comes with four glass apothecary bottles, one funnel, one strainer, two infusing jars, and citrus and aromatic blends for adding flavor to reflect personal taste. It’s a major step up from a bottle of Angostura Aromatic Bitters they’d find anywhere.
Picobrew Zymatic Brewing Machine
A basic home brewing kit is cheap, but you’d never want to gift someone plastic buckets, tubes and the promise of hours of preparation and cleanup. The Zymatic solves the problem of space, time and expertise for the mixologist who wants to brew the occasional celebration beer. The all-grain, fully automated and computerized brewing machine is about the size of a toaster oven and weighs 50 pounds; it can brew 2.5 gallons of a number of styles in around four hours using pre-programmed recipes, after which the beer is transferred to the included keg for fermentation.
EuroCave Wine Art
Using a vacuum, the Wine Art preserves two opened bottles for up to 10 days at two separate, adjustable temperatures. That means spreading out the enjoyment of a favorite bottle he’s aged for years — and for the oenophile, that’s a miracle.
Mezcal Amarás Espadín Joven
Gifting clear spirits is tricky. They are the workhorse of many mixed drinks, but on their own they often feel bland as gifts. All the better to introduce your home bartender to mezcal, a 500-year-old spirit from Mexico that has gained immense popularity in the US in the last decade. Mezcal Amores, which began in 2010, is an upstart in the mezcal space that prioritizes sustainability, with fair employee wages and a commitment to replant five agaves for each one harvested. This bottle uses espadín agave, a close relative of tequila, that has grown in San Juan Del Rio, Oaxaca for 10 years. Farmers cut out the soft piña
(heart) and roast it in a large, conical oven before extracting the sugary juice for fermentation. It’s a complex, smoky spirit that makes a great twist on a traditional margarita
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