Dave Richmond has combined his work with his love of beer for more than eight years with the Madrigrano families, and is now Global Brands Manager at Beer Capitol Distributing-Lake Country in Sussex. In his position, Dave is responsible for coordinating the marketing and merchandising programs for all the Global brands. The beer products featured in his blog are primarily those distributed but not limited to by Beer Capitol Distributing Lake Country.
Some of you will laugh at me for this, but I encourage you to read the entire post first. Beer as a holiday gift, or as part of a gift, can be a huge hit for beer lovers and non-beer lovers alike. It's all about how you package it.
Here are some ideas:
A New Take on an Old Classic
Put a new twist on the age-old fruit basket by adding beer to the equation. Many specialty beers are garnished with citrus and other types of fruits. Load a basket with a few oranges and a couple bottles of Blue Moon and Leinie's Sunset Wheat. Add some lemons, limes and a few bottles of Hofbrau Weiss, Corona or Modelo.
A Gift that Sizzles
For the culinary-inclined, check out a beer cookbook like The Beer Cook Book by Susan Nowak or The Beer Makes it Better Cook Book by Maria Russell. Add a few beers and ingredients to the package and it makes a perfect gift. Or get really creative and include a nice dish, utensils or other cooking-related gifts as part of a cooking with beer basket.
Glass with Class
From flutes and goblets to snifters and mugs, different types of beers require different types of glasses. For a true beer enthusiast or for those who like to entertain, include a set or two of glassware and the beers best served in each. Package pint glasses with Anchor Steam Porter and Bells Kalamazoo Stout, pilsner glasses with Pilsner Urquell, and wheat beer glasses with Leinie's Sunset Wheat.
A Winning Pair
To satisfy a sweet-toothed beer lover, look no further than the local specialty grocer. Just as champagne pairs with strawberries, dark rich beers pair well with dark rich chocolates. Create a gift box filled with imported dark chocolates and a few bottles of Breckenridge Vanilla Porter or Negra Modelo.
The Beer that Keeps on Giving
Create a customized beer of the month club. Place the first of the beers under the tree along with details on the club and the remaining beers that will arrive at the lucky recipient's doorstep. Get creative and choose a theme. Focus on varieties of a specific type of beer (follow a wheat trend by giving 12 different wheat beers like Leinie's Sunset Wheat and Capital Island Wheat), choose a craft brewer and give 12 different beers made by that brewer (Lakefront Brewing Co., Bells Brewing, or Great Lakes Brewing Co.), or look for the most interesting beer names and give 12 varieties of uniquely named beer.
There are so many ways to have fun with beer as a gift. Some may even appreciate a simple six-pack with a bow set under the tree. But, if you're looking for a way to personalize a gift this year, beer is the way to go!