Holiday Gift Guide: Bourbon 2020

Holiday shopping season is upon us! As with every year, some gifting decisions are harder than others.  Getting just the right gift for the bourbon lover in your life can be quite the challenge, but we are here to help. Don’t worry, you’ve got this!

By this time of the year, a lot of stores are often sold out of the most sought-after items.  Items that are usually available start becoming scarcer with each passing day, which means the clock is ticking, so let’s get to it.

Let’s get this out of the way early—finding bottles of George T. Stagg, Four Roses Limited Edition, or something like Elmer T. Lee will be almost impossible.  While it’s not completely impossible, you will have to get lucky, or pay an exorbitant amount of money on the secondary market. So, the best idea would be to plan the bourbon gift first, then if you get lucky, you can always gift the impossible bourbon and keep the original bottle for yourself.

I’ve always found that the best place to start when buying a bottle for someone is to decide how much money you are going to spend on the gift.  Honestly, I’d suggest deciding on a low-end and high-end spending range, as something great could be just over your limit. This should help you narrow the available options at hand.

Looking to buy a bottle of bourbon for a true bourbon aficionado?  There are a few bottles available that most bourbon enthusiasts would love to get as a gift. Four Roses Small Batch Select is readily available, has great liquid, and nice packaging as well.  This is an easy score.  Peerless Small Batch bourbon is another bottle that would check a lot of boxes on the list.  It’s also available, has good liquid, and a very unique package.

Another great gift option for enthusiasts and beginners alike would be a Liquor Barn Selected Single Barrel.  The liquid in these bottles come from single-barrel bourbons that Liquor Barn had the opportunity to taste and hand-select which barrel we liked best.  Each store has a designated area where these single-barrel selections can be found.  Each bottle has a label, or a medallion, that indicates it was hand-picked by Liquor Barn.  These selections are always unique and sure to please the bourbon drinker in your life.

Here’s another idea for a great bourbon gift—add some chocolate or a treat! Angel’s Envy and Woodford Reserve Double Oaked both play well with chocolate and nuts. Angel’s Envy is great with Reese’s Cups, a true match made in heaven. (See what I did there!)  Woodford Reserve Double Oaked paired with chocolate-covered pralines is possibly one of my all-time favorite bourbon and food pairings.  It’s easy—just stick the treats down in the gift bag with the bourbon.  Trust me, they’ll know what to do.

If you’re looking for more options, here are a few more bottles that will surely delight.  Bardstown Bourbon Company has a range of products on the shelf every day.  The Fusion Series is a great bottle, and often the Discovery Series is also available, though it’s a bit more expensive.  Something from the Old Forester Whiskey Row series is a solid option, and is also readily available.  You can look for 1920, 1910, 1897, or 1870.  With each year having a different proof and profile, there’s something for everyone.  The range of Jefferson’s bourbons is also easy to get: Small Batch, Reserve, and Ocean.  I also have a soft spot for the Russell’s Reserve line.  These wuality bourbons are all easy to find and have nice packaging.  I like the Russell’s Reserve Single Barrel offerings the best, but the Small Batch 10yr or Rye offerings are great as well.

Hopefully, I’ve been able to get you well on your way toward finding a great bottle of bourbon. And don’t forget, we also engrave bottles, which can take a great bottle of bourbon to the next level.

Cheers and have a safe holiday season!

Brad Williams
Liquor Barn-Party Mart
Bourbon Master
Vice President – Purchasing & Product Development

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