After booze, books are always a solid gift choice…
Got a cocktail enthusiast on your list this year? There’s plenty of great books that have been released recently to stir up some creativity. Here’s 9 of our favorites to give as gifts this holiday season for newbies through the professional.
It’s National Cocktail Day tomorrow in case you didn’t know (And it’s totally fine if you didn’t know. I forgot too until I read a recent press release). So I thought I’d round up a few of you readers’ favorite posts from the site because, if you’re here, you like cocktails. Funny thing though, you guys seem to like a lot of the DIY syrups/bitters/tincture posts just as much as the drinks. So I’m including those too because it’s always good to have some fun syrups and mixers around to get your creative cocktail juices flowing. Cheers!
It’s not cheap, it’s frugal. Here’s our first of the “practical” gift guides this year.
They might have a small price tag, but no one is going to regift these guys. Except maybe the reusable wine bag, because that’s the point. Whether you need some stocking stuffers they’ve never seen before (hello cocktail pins and firewater tincture!), some solid basics (muddlers! crushed ice trays!), or if you need a gift for your officemate who just got into cocktails (Meehan!), these are a sure bet. And of course, there’s always rum! And don’t forget yourself! I’ll be stirring up some drinks this holiday season with a couple Palm Springs stirrers.
Unless that tie rack comes with booze…think again.
For the bookworm Dad: booze books. For the stylish Dad: booze cufflinks. For the junk food Dad: beer and pretzel ice cream. For the outdoorsy Dad: a pocketknife to hand carve a muddler. Oh, and also a plaid flask (duh). For the goofy Dad: bourbon socks. For all the rest of the Dads: whisk(e)y. And you should probably throw in a Negroni finger stirrer because… well, your Dad knows a joke for that too.
Do you find yourself with not enough time to make your own yummy cocktail mixers because you’ve been inundated with holiday office parties/yule log cutting parties/tree singing soirées/ etc and so on? Me too.
So, I’m stepping in to save you from chugging that bourbon alone for this week’s giveaway. We’ve teamed up with Stolen Fruit Cocktail Mixers to offer THREE lucky Stir and Strain readers a 3-pack variety of mixers including their Lemongrass Ginger Sauvignon Blanc, Blood Orange Muscat, and Hibiscus Grenache. And, because you can’t show up to a holiday party empty handed (and you’re keeping the mixers to yourself), here at Stir and Strain we’re giving away a surprise cocktail book to each winner as well! Take it to the party, leave it at the White Elephant table, gift it to drunk uncle Frank… it’s up to you what you want to do with the books. You could, of course, keep it for yourself as well.
Stolen Fruit does not have anything to do with the legality of the product, FYI. The “stolen fruit” refers to the blend of verjus – the fresh pressed juice from green grapes – varietal grape juice, and grape skins that make up the base of the mixers. Then they’ve added in fresh, unique ingredients for a mixer that is great with any kind of booze, or if you’re not into the hard stuff, sparkling water or seltzer. It’s the perfect bottle to keep on hand when the holidays get hectic and you just.need.a.drink. But one that tastes good and you don’t regret.
Ready to mix it up? Enter below and get up to 12 entries to win. Remember, THREE of you are going to get a 3-pack AND a book (Open to US residents only). Giveaway ends at 11:59pm PST Tuesday December 13th, 2016. For more information on Stolen Fruit, check out their website at www.stolenfruit.com! Good luck!
AND! Stolen Fruit is offering FREE SHIPPING from now until December 20 with code stir16 (all lowercase). YAY!
Shake all the ingredients except the orange peel in a shaker with ice. Strain into a champagne saucer and, if desired, flame the orange peel over the top.
And because we here at Stir and Strain are already getting into the holiday spirit, the winner will also receive a bonus grab bag of goodies from us. Maybe a couple helpful things to get you started on your cocktail making *wink wink*.
So gather up your fresh fruit, a bottle or two of some healing tonics, and enter to win today! You can get up to 10 entries below. For more information on Ariane Resnick, check out her website at arianecooks.com and find Brittini Rae on Instagram at instagram.com/whiskynlace Giveaway ends at 11:59pm PST Monday November 7th, 2016 (US residents only). Good luck!
Growing up in New England, once the calendar page turned to October, inevitably the Colonial time plays in school began. But what they didn’t cover in grade school was the real story of how America came to be: those Colonists got drunk and invented America.
If you’re intrigued about just how these fine folks did this, then this week’s giveaway is for YOU! We’ve got a giveaway package that tells you the whole story, AND an amazing new on the scene bar tool you can use to replicate some of the toasty beverages those Colonists enjoyed while, you know, inventing America.
Colonial Spirits: A Toast to Our Drunken History by author Steven Grasse combines a love of cocktails and history into an immensely entertaining book that’s perfect for your cocktail book shelf. Here’s a few facts from the book you can throw out at your next Fall Holiday party:
George Washington had a treasured recipe for Small Beer stashed in a notebook, brewed with Bran Hops and 3 Gallons of Molasses
Martha Washington developed Cherry Bounce, a brandy-based drink that keeps her husband warm while he is away fighting the Revolutionary War
Benjamin Franklin took it upon himself to pen the Drinkers Dictionary, kind of like a colonial version of Urban Dictionary, where he published at least 200 synonyms for getting drunk
Thomas Jefferson imports red wines from all over the globe, collecting 20,000 bottles during his presidency; and toasts the Declaration of Independence with a glass of Madeira
John Smith and the early settlers at Plymouth Rock learn how to ferment alcohol from corn, as taught to them by Native Americans
John Adams preferred hard cider and drank a tankard of the stuff every morning; and Adams would live to be 90 years old, the third longest living president.
The Triangular Trade (and the blight of slavery) fuels the rum business and Fish House Punch is created at Philadelphia’s Tun Tavern as a way for people to “forget their mother-in-law”
How many of you have a loggerhead in your home bar? My bet is no one. However, this bar tool has been around for centuries helping to create toasty cocktails going all the way back to the Colonial era. And now one lucky Stir and Strain reader will get their hands on their own! But what is it you may be asking. The loggerhead is a unique bar tool that’s simple in design, yet has an effect on cocktails that’s complex and incomparable. Heat up the loggerhead, prepare your drink and then plunge the loggerhead in to create an exciting effect (and heat up your drink). This is the perfect bar tool for those chilly nights ahead of us.
The loggerhead is finishing up its Kickstarter run but has already been funded which means you’ll get yours by December. For more info on the loggerhead, head over to their page!
Ready to drink like this nation’s forefathers? Enter below and score up to 10 entries to win the Colonial Spirits and Loggerhead Bar Tool (approximate retail value $90)! Giveaway ends at 11:59pm PST Wednesday October 12th, 2016 (US residents only). Good luck!
School’s back in session and you have some reading to catch up on… About cocktails of course!
There’s been a slew of new cocktail releases we’re excited about and we wanted to share some of our favs. And watch this space in the following weeks because some of these guys are going home with you for free!
Do you guys have a favorite you can’t wait to read?
It’s Spring! And I think it’s time for a little cocktail refresh don’t you? I LOVE a cocktail made from fresh ingredients, and even better when they come from my garden. This week we’ve got a giveaway that’s sure to bring on the cocktail inspiration (from your garden, or, you know, the supermarket). Zen and Tonic: Savory and Fresh Cocktails for the Enlightened Drinkerhas over 80 recipes that are not only delicious, but can also provide a health boost too!
Blending superfoods right into your drinks, Aron’s recipes use unexpected ingredients, like ginger, kiwis, coconut water, kale, and kombucha, for powerful health benefits and surprisingly delicious flavors. A boozy boost is optional, but highly recommended, in recipes like:
* Papaya Passion Fresca * The Drunken Avocado * Yellow Mary * Retox Detox * Mexican Chocolate Buzz
Besides cocktail recipes, it also includes some fun ideas for making boozy popsicles, flavored ice cubes, infused spirits, and lots of techniques to up your cocktail game!
And we’ve been doing some Spring cleaning around Stir and Strain headquarters (like updating our bar shelves) and have put together a fun grab bag of goodies (no booze though this time, but we promise it’s fun stuff!).
So are you ready to stuff some Spring into your drinks?! Me too! Oh wait, I can’t enter. But you can! Check out the options below to enter and get up to 11 entries to win. Giveaway ends at 11:59pm PST Sunday April 10th, 2016. For more information on Zen and Tonic and the Healthy Bartender, check out the Jules Aron website!
Curling up by the fire, cocktail in one hand, a great book in the other, is one fantastic way to spend a lazy weekend afternoon. And this year, we’re in luck with the amazing plethora of cocktail books that have hit the shelves. Ready to crack one open? Let’s dive in with this week’s Gift Guide!
From single spirits to honing your craft to the actual science behind that drink, there is a cocktail book out there for everyone this year. Thanks 2014. And if your bartender is still shaking your Manhattan, well, there’s a book for that too.