With the upcoming gift giving season, I thought I’d throw out this little gift guide. Consider this your shopping list for the Tikiphile or Mixologist in your life. Hell, just give yourself a little something this hoilday season, you deserve it. The following items are tried and true, tested, touched and tamed and approved by me personally.
|Waring Ice Crusher Pro
Coming in around $80, this sucker’s just the right thing for throwing a tiki-drink party or two. Not great for the day to day one round evenings, but this sucker saves hours and a few wrists before full-fledged events. We used this at Teardrop for a few Tiki Tuesdays, so it can take whatever abuse you’ve got for it.
|Rhum ClÃ©ment XO
Possibly the best high-end Rhum I’ve ever had. Coming in around $150, this would be a gift for someone REALLY special in your life, and hopefully someone with a strong inclination for sharing. Seriously, liquid gold.
|St. Elizabeth Allspice Dram
One of the most useful substances known to bartenders, this Allspice Dram carries plenty of funk and a lot of allspice punch to whatever it touches. One quarter ounce goes a long way, so it’s the gift that will keep on giving. Used in classics, classic tiki cocktails, and even a few new drinks, this is definitely one for everyone’s liquor cabinet. Priced around $30.
|Orange Bitters Collection
Love a Martini, but not sure that Regan’s is the right Orange Bitters for you? This collection gives you a thorough sampling of Orange Bitters currently on the market. Angostura just came out with their product earlier this year, and it’s already quite the sensation. Sells for $21.95 through Kegworks.com.
|Anchor Hocking Ypsilon Acqua
Used by the fine folks at Teardrop, the improvements over the traditional cocktail glass are VAST. Let me tell you, when carrying a big tray of glasses, this is a drastic improvement over the easily spillable traditional cocktail glass. Doesn’t look that great with a rim, but they’re quite durable. They’re priced anywhere from $72 to $130, depending on where you go. Best to find them at a local restaurant supplier.
|Trader Vic’s Glassware
I’ll have to admit, these are not the sturdiest pieces of glassware, and they’re a bit pricey, but damned if they don’t add a touch of the debonair to any drink that fills them. A Mai Tai just don’t look right without one. Don’t forget to enter “MaiTai” at checkout for a 10% discount.
|Vintage Barkcloth shirt
My closet is filled with these suckers, and I don’t mind sharing the look. Originally developed to imitate Tapa, barkcloth is a sturdy material with a unique woven texture. You’ll usually find these in your local mid-century modern store, or vintage clothing store. Goodwill or Salvation army can be a tough find, though there’s always a large selection of SOME kind of Hawaiian shirt there. The bonus feature on these shirts? Shiny gold buttons. Dig it!
|Bon Vivant’s Companion from MudPuddle Books
Someone somewhere at sometime ago decided he could just reprint some out of copyright material off of PDFs from google books, rewrap it in plastic and make a mint. These are not they. The classic cocktail book selection from MudPuddle Books are extreme quality reproductions, down to the typeface, binding, and cover. Reading these online is fine, holding a real quality reproduction in your hand can be down-right breathtaking.
|Fugu Sipper from Munktiki
Strong ceramic, lovely coloring, and a bit of whimsy. These are what I’ve come to expect from Munktiki over the years. These Fugu Sippers are the perfect addition to a mug collection, or way to start a new one. Besides, how else are you going to hold your Fugu for Two?
Well, there’s what I’d get for myself if I didn’t already have most of the stuff above already. If none of these are quite floating your boat, you can always check out the Forbidden Island 2008 gift guide, the Tiki Talk Holiday Gift Guide, and of course, interesting reads on the Library page.