Spirited Giving By Paul Grand


A general guide when shopping for a beverage gift for that special someone is to focus on their individual preference.  Whether they enjoy spirits, wine or beer, there are a myriad of choices available this time of the year. A number of spirits producers package their products in attractive gift boxes or “value added packages” during the holidays. These include flasks, champagne flutes and logoed glassware, and provide the recipient of your gift with a keepsake to remind them of your thoughtfulness. Your local retail wine & spirits shop will be glad to work with you on selecting an appropriate gift.

The following are a few suggestions for spirit giving during this holiday season. If you don’t see something that is appropriate for the person on your list, visit your local retail wine and spirits store where you will no doubt find a wider selection of beverage gifts. We are certain that you will find one that will be perfect for those on your list.

 Everyone has a “Gentleman” in their life, and


Gentleman Jack Rare Tennessee Whiskey would be well received indeed (hint hint) by the gentleman your list. The folks down the road in Lynchburg have just released the Single Barrel Collection featuring Jack Daniel’s Single Barrel 100 proof, Single Barrel Select, Single Barrel “Barrel Proof” and Single Barrel Rye. Any of these would be most appreciated by the Jack Daniel’s aficionado on your spirits list. During this time of the year Jack Daniel’s “Winter Jack” is available at your local retail store.  A seasonal blend of Old No. 7 Tennessee Whiskey, apple cider liqueur and holiday spice. The perfect winter warmer!


Nashville’s own Corsair Distillery has earned well deserved fame as one of America’s finest craft distilleries. Consider the Corsair Triple Smoke or Ryemageddon for the artisan whiskey fan on your list. The Whiskey Advocate released its Top 25 Spirits” of the year, and you may want to consider one of these outstanding spirits for someone on your list.

At #14 the High West Campfire is an intriguing, unique blending of American Whiskey and Scotch Whisky. Described as “a robust and beefy whiskey, with smoke reminiscent of Southern barbecue.” Rye has garnered renewed interest among whiskey drinkers and at #15 is the Peerless Straight Rye from Kentucky. Peerless uses a sweet mash fermentation rather than the more common sour mash technique to produce this outstanding rye whiskey. Canadian Whisky has long been popular in the U.S. with Crown Royal being the most famous. The Crown Royal “Noble Collection Wine Barrel Finished” #18 is finishes it’s ageing in Cabernet Sauvignon barrels and offers rich vanilla and woody notes. As for the Scotch Whisky drinker on your list, particularly one who enjoys single malt whiskies, The Macallan Double Cask 12yr Old was #17 on the list this year. Matured in sherry-seasoned casks of both American and European oak, this is a complex whisky with layers of ginger, white pepper, dark chocolate, dried fruits and hazelnut, another stellar expression from The Macallan.


One of our favorites is Old Hickory Straight Bourbon Whiskey, distilled at 86 or “perfect proof” and offering bold, rich aromas of spice and oak following by flavors of cedar, vanilla and gingerbread on the palate. Awarded a Triple Gold Medal by the 2017 Micro Liquor Spirits Awards Committee, this Bourbon is great on the rocks or in your favorite cocktail. Flavored whiskies are increasing in popularity and for “dessert” may we suggest the Ballotin “Original Chocolate” Whiskey. Great on the rocks or add to Bourbon, and a dash of bitters for a “Ballotin Manhattan”. Awarded a coveted Platinum Medal at the 2017 SIP Awards Show, this flavored whiskey is sure to please those preferring something sweet, and who, after all, does not love chocolate?




Paul Grand, Director Of Education