Gift This, Not That

We’ve all seen  magazine articles with advice on “Eat This, Not That” offering healthier options of our favorite burgers, wings, cheesecake and other comfort foods.  This inspired us to offer some better options for gift giving when it comes to buying for your beer geek friends.  And more importantly, as a guide for you to share with your well-meaning, non craft-beer savvy, friends and relations. (You know, the ones  that think just because we like craft beer we will love every gadget that has the word beer stamped on it.) While we appreciate their thoughtfulness and generosity, some of them could use a little guidance in their search for a  brewtiful gift.  So, to stop them from wrapping up those Shark Tank failures they found on the shelves of TJ Maxx just in time for the holidays, we’ve collated a list of “Don’t Buy This, Buy That” for you to conspicuously post where all of your well-meaning little elves will see and (hopefully) become enlightened!

Don’t Gift This!
Just don’t.  Really not sure whose décor calls for a bottle opener shaped like your state, but pretty sure they are not the folks reading this article.

Wall mounted state bottle opener

Dent free bottle cap opener
Gift This!
Instead, a bottle opener can make a nice gift if it is unique in a way that serves a purpose. We first came across this style of opener at La Trappe in the Netherlands.  There are many versions around now, Rodenbach even makes them out of old wood from their old foeders.  What is cool about it is that it keeps the cap from being bent when you pull it off the bottle, so if it is a rare bottle, collectors can have a nice cap as a souvenir.
Don’t Gift This!
Here is another alcohol related gift that we were so amazed existed we felt compelled to include it in the mix. Just because something is called a gift set doesn’t mean it makes a suitable gift. Single Malt flavored toothpicks? Is this the solution for having an after dinner drink and still being able to drive home? Get an UBER for heaven’s sake! 

Scotch infused toothpicks gift set

handmade pen with resin tinted and textured with locally grown hops
Gift This!
If you want something crafty and unique, but still beer themed, how about this brewnique writing instrument for your beer writer friends? (Some of us still use pen and paper).
Don’t Gift This!
I guess I can’t knock beer flavored water. I mean, when we were growing up, I never imagined that I’d even be paying for water or drinking it out of a plastic bottle like a baby. So maybe this has it’s place? Yea, well, I didn’t think so either. 

Beer Flavored Bottled Water

Unflavored Toothpaste
Gift This!
How about instead of water with a beer taste, you buy your friends with a taste for tasting beer some tasteless toothpaste?  This is a great stocking stuffer for beer judges, cicerones and other who take their beer tasting seriously.
Don’t Gift This!
I bet this was some crazy idea a guy came up with at a party. When he was drinking. A lot. But in reality, who really uses these? I bet lots are bought as novelty gifts and remain on a shelf for years. Can you imagine walking around a party with a bottle sitting on your waist and leading the way? ( Reminds me of that one-liner, “I’d rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy!”) Then again, it’s not likely many of you would be drinking a decent beer out of a bottle and not in the proper glassware in the first place.

Retractable belt buckle beer holder
Gift This!
Instead, how about some nice glassware, like  Teku glasses?  These glasses were designed to be the perfect tasting glass for most beers. They are nice looking as well as functional. We received a pair of these as a gift one year and they remain among our favorite glasses.
Don’t Gift This!
And this one wins the grand prize for what the hell were they thinking? The descriptor on the website says “Grow your own edamame, a classic Japanese bar food, in a planter that looks like a glass of Japanese beer.” How can this even be a thing? And who is buying it?   

An edamame growing kit in a Japanese beer glass planter.

Live Hops Plant
Gift These!
Instead, why not give them their very own hops plant?  And if you want to add a little whimsy to your gift, put it in something fun like this kitschy vintage planter !

Collectible Kitschy Vintage Planter

Hope this helps ease up the stress of your holiday shopping. If not, we suggest a beer for you to ease up the stress and also as a gift! After all, who wouldn’t love to see a bottle of their favorite holiday beer peeking out of their stocking?  Cheers!