Monday, December 3, 2012

2012 Holiday Gifts: What not to get.

Last week I published my list of whiskey gift recommendations for the holiday season. This week, I want to take some time to tell people what not to get for their spirit loving friends.

The Rabbit Electric Cocktail Mixer ($20) (image from Metrokane). For the past month or so, this has been advertised in full page ads in the New York Times Magazine. According to the ad copy, "Measure the ingredients of your favorite cocktail into the Rabbit Mixer, add ice and press the start button. Sit back and enjoy the mixing show."

This thing may be the saddest statement I've ever seen about American consumers. Is this what we've come to? Are we so lazy that we can't even work up the energy to shake a cocktail? Even if there was a reason someone couldn't shake a cocktail, say that had severe arthritis of the elbow or something, my guess is most people who are into cocktails already have a machine that mixes things for's known as a blender.

If you know someone just getting into cocktails, consider a Boston shaker for $2.75 and use that extra money for ingredients. Come on people, get up and shake that cocktail.

Whiskey Stones ($20). The idea of whiskey stones is to cool your whiskey without diluting it. You put these cute little rocks in the freezer and then add them to your whiskey. Now, I don't typically drink my whiskey on the rocks, so this clearly isn't for me, but even if I did, would I really need a $20 item just for this purpose? Does ice melt so quickly that your drink is diluted before you finish? And isn't the point of ice to dilute as well as cool? If you really wanted to drink cold, undiluted whiskey, why wouldn't you just put the bottle in the fridge or freezer? There, I just saved you $20. You can thank me later.

The Balvenie 50 ($30,000). (image from Scotch Malt Whisky). This new release from Balvenie looks on track to become the whiskey equivalent of fruitcake for the 2012 season. Don't get me wrong, I'm sure it's great Scotch, but like most whiskey lovers, I'm assuming I'll get dozens of these. Then I have to think about who I can regift them to or whether I can pass them off at the office "white elephant" party. For everyone who was thinking of this as a gift, instead, consider getting 120 bottles of the excellent Balvenie Tun 1401...or a Toyota Camry.

Happy holidays!


Andrew said...

Lol. I have that mixing thing in my basement. Back in 1999, a cheaper looking version was free with some spirit. The mixing stirrer is a stylized 2000.

SinoSoul said...

Just saw a Toyota Camry ad car for $19,999 by City of Industry. So make that 1.5x Camry.

Also, I want to be on your regift list for the B50.

Tim Read said...

@SinoSoul I think Steve's including his aftermarket spoiler, decal, carbon fiber shift knobs, underbody light kit and so forth in the value of the Camry. I can't picture him driving around without that stuff, it's part and parcel of his identity.

Louis said...

Wait, Balvenie is releasing a Toyota Camry?! Will it take peated or unpeated? Boy, the whiskey blogosphere is going to have a field day with this new exclusive scoop that you just released and that I'll attribute to you.

Steffen said...

You forgot this


sku said...

Steffen, wow, that is totally ridiculous.