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BIRTHDAY GIFTS FOR COCKTAIL LOVERS

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We love doing holiday gift guides here at A Bar Above– and of course, some of our awesome recommendations can apply all year round– but I thought it would be fun to expand our scope a little and offer birthday gift suggestions for a variety of people in your life.

Ranging from simple to unique, here are some of our top current birthday gift ideas.

THE GIFT OF AN HERB GARDEN

This adorable and functional herb kit from Savvy Spade is great for your bartender friend or a cocktail enthusiast who wants fresh herbs for their drinks. You could couple it with our wooden muddler for the spirits lover in your life.

Photo by Brooke Clark via Unsplash

It’s also great for the people on your list who don’t drink alcohol (hey, mocktails should still taste great, right?), those who like to cook, or gardeners who don’t have a lot of outdoor space… So this is a really thoughtful gift for most people!

 

THE GIFT OF A DRINK: LIQUOR AND NON-ALCOHOLIC SPIRITS 

We are a barware tools and education company after all, so I’d be remiss to not suggest a bottle of alcohol or two, since that’s the ultimate gift for cocktail lovers.

The great thing about gifting a bottle of alcohol is that you can gift it alone or pair it with some awesome barware (like classic coupe glasses or beautiful rocks glasses), a cocktail book, or a recipe card journal for jotting down their mixed drink recipes. 

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ALCOHOL FOR YOUR MIXOLOGIST FRIEND

For your friends who do drink alcohol, I asked my favorite bartenders, Chris and Rob, and the moderators of our Craft Cocktail Club for some of their current favorite spirits recommendations to make many of your favorite cocktails:

Whiskey: Uncle Nearest 1884 Small Batch Whiskey– With a price of about $40-50 in the States, this is an high-quality whiskey. If bourbon is more your friend’s style, check out Paul Sutton bourbon, a newer (and slightly pricier at $70) woman-owned distillery.
Rum: El Dorado – If it’s in your price range– between $45-60 in the US– our community group recommends El Dorado 15.
Gin: Roku Japanese gin or Gray Whale (both in the $30-35 range) keep coming up as group favorites!

SPIRIT-FREE COCKTAIL GIFTS

To appeal to everyone you may be shopping for, I suggest delicious non-alcoholic spirit options for those who prefer to not drink alcohol– and even for those who do! I know I’ve mentioned this before, but our monthly A Bar Above team meetings all start by making a non-alcoholic cocktail using Seedlip, so I can recommend it on good authority.

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Seedlip (My personal favorite is Garden 108 for its earthiness and flexibility in a variety of mocktails.)
Amass: Chris, Rob, and I are all currently obsessed with Amass’ gin, but they also offer a non-alcoholic alternative, too!
Mingle: If you have a friend who loves brunch but doesn’t drink liquor, I highly recommend these delicious, light, and refreshing premixed mocktails.

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BARWARE

By the way, have I mentioned that we make barware? Maybe I’m biased, but our bar accessories are pretty darn amazing, and we offer a wide range from single pieces (like a cocktail shaker, muddler, or bar spoon set) to kits of essential bar tools in a variety of cool colors.

Barware is the perfect gift for budding cocktail connoisseurs. Here are a few must-haves for your buddy’s birthday:

A Bar Above bar set: For your friend who is just getting into craft cocktails (or mocktails), a bar set is the perfect gift. You can start with our 4-piece bar set or really show the love with our 14-piece bar set.

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Our new gray bar mats: A bar mat for a birthday present? No, really, these are great for everyone, even your non-drinking friends. 

Bar enthusiast? Pair it with some cool vintage glassware or a bottle of your favorite liquor so they can make some delicious cocktails with their tools. Coffee lover? Include a bag of locally-roasted coffee and a set of mugs. These mats are hyper functional for every kitchen, and the new gray color is so sleek-looking!

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Our new straws: Disposable straws are so passé. Our new reusable straws are perfect for your eco-conscious friend. For a complete gift, find some chic highball glasses or an insulated travel mug to go with them.

Stock Photo, Ulysses Press

COCKTAIL BOOKS

Mixology and Murder by Kierra Sondereker: OK, hear me out… We all have that one friend (or two or three, depending on the company you keep) who would be really into this book that combines cocktails with infamous murders. I mean, true crime stories are super popular right now, are they not?

Sure, it’s not for everyone, but it’s a very unique gift for the right person who has a dark sense of humor. 

If murders aren’t quite your friend’s thing, a more palatable gift idea might be Regarding Cocktails by Sasha Petraske. According to our Craft Cocktail Club, this is one awesome, underrated cocktail book for any classic cocktail lover.

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THE GIFT OF MIXOLOGY

These next two items are great gifts for bartenders– But even if your friend just likes mixing drinks at home, they’ll still appreciate these unique ideas that they’re unlikely to get from anyone else.

GIFT CERTIFICATE TO MIXOLOGY COURSES

I know, I know, gift certificates can seem impersonal– but not this one! Whether a pro bartender or a cocktail lover, we have a range of courses already offered and coming out in the next two years, so there is (or will be) something for everyone on your list all year round. 

INFUSION KIT

We’ve touted infusion kits before, but a cocktail lover friend of mine recommended this one from Uncommon Goods. The recipient of this pretty awesome gift can get creative with their concoctions– and then invite you over to try them! Win-win.

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BRING THE ART OF MIXOLOGY TO LIFE WITH THAT SPECIAL GIFT 

So there you have it: Our first official birthday gift guide. Hopefully you’ve found something on our list for all your cocktail-loving friends… And everyone else while you were at it!

The cool thing about any of these gifts is that they can be mixed and matched: Combine a bar tool with a set of coupe glasses, or complement cocktail ingredients with your favorite book.

Let me know in the comments what your favorite random gift is, and head over to our Facebook group to keep chatting about all things cocktail. Until next time, cheers and happy shopping!

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