The holidays are as much about fun as they are about relaxation, family and (for some), celebrating the birth of Christ. During this time, people party and socialize a lot and most indulge in alcoholic beverages. We’ve compiled a list of some alcoholic beverages to consider as gift options for friends, family, and other loved ones.
Christmas gift guide: Boozy gifts under R500
Woodford Reserve pure bourbon whiskey – between R399 and R425 depending on the retailer
Woodford Reserve Distillers Select Straight Bourbon Whiskey is a pure Kentucky bourbon whiskey that consists of over 200 detectable flavor notes.
The whiskey has a clean and bright honey amber color, as well as a perfectly balanced flavor derived from bold grain and wood, to sweet aromatics, spice and fruity and floral notes.
The nose of Woodford Reserve distillers select straight bourbon whiskey is heavy with rich nuts, hints of mint and oranges topped with a dusting of cocoa. You can also pick up faint vanilla and tobacco spice.
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It has a rich, chewy, rounded and smooth flavor with complex citrus, cinnamon and cocoa. Notes of coffee, caramel, chocolate and spices also abound.
All of this comes together to create a silky smooth, almost creamy finish on the first finish with a long, warm tail.
Peaky Blinder – around R285
Peaky Blinder, the Irish whiskey not the show, is a bold yet exceptionally smooth triple-distilled, small-batch blended whisky.
It has aromas of blackcurrant and apple.
With a background of toffee and melted chocolate, apricots and dried peel on the palate, it finishes with subtle hints of cinnamon.
Spier Good Natured Organic Shiraz Cabernet Savignon 2021 – about R105
This red wine is 57% Shiraz, 33% Cabernet Sauvignon from Spier from their Good Natured range. The wines were released to the public earlier this year and the range also includes Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc and Shiraz variants.
According to Spier, each of the four wines – two whites and two reds – is made with fruit grown in organic vineyards free of pesticides, herbicides and synthetic fertilizers.
“Instead, nature is invited back into the vineyard to encourage a diverse ecosystem of plants, insects and microorganisms to thrive. In winter, seeds of oats, mustard and clover are planted for cover crops to germinate and add nutrition in the soil. Bees, insects and birds act as welcome pest control and when the harvest comes, the team picks the vines by hand and returns as much as possible to the land for composting or recycling.”
The wine is vegan and makes a great gift for the environmentally conscious wine lover in your life.
This specific variant goes well with hamburgers, grilled chicken, roasted vegetables and hard cured cheeses like Gouda.
Whitley Neill London Dry Gin – between R215 and R299
Whitley Neill Gin is said to be “inspired by the world”. [but] distilled in London”.
The award-winning distiller behind this gin has been making small batch gins with a heritage dating back to 1762 and is now the UK’s number one selling premium gin.
Whitley Neill London Dry Gin is a classic dry gin, but not as you know it. According to the distiller, it is smoother and much smoother than traditional gins, with rich notes of juniper, citrus and exotic botanicals, Baobab fruit and gooseberry.
The flavored variants of the range have nine distinctive botanicals and are the perfect gift for the distinguished cocktail lover in your life.
Samuel Gelstons Irish Whiskey – around R289
Gelston’s Old Irish Whiskey was founded in 1830 by Samuel Gelston, a prosperous Belfast wine and whiskey merchant. On Samuel’s death in late 1869, Henry James Neill (Harry) bought the business and developed the scale of the business considerably both in Ireland and overseas markets.
To date, the Samuel Gelston brand is still in the hands of the Neill family and is once again developing a global following.
At the time of writing, the brand had seven whiskey variations available, as well as a cream liqueur under its stable.
Samuel Gelston’s Blended Irish Whiskey is made from a blend of locally sourced barley and Irish malt grain that is triple distilled for smoothness and then matured in ex-bourbon oak casks from the best quality
“This combination of triple distillation plus the finest ingredients and barrel aging creates an elegantly smooth yet expressive whiskey with rich flavors that can be enjoyed neat, over ice or blended into a refreshing long serve,” explained the distiller
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