Stocking Stuffers and Party Favors for Wine Lovers
I have to get a very small token birthday gift for a friend's 50th. We're not really supposed to bring presents to the party so it should be really understated. He's got the whole beautiful wine cellar the size of my study - temperature, humidity controlled, cabinetmaker-type racks, great stuff laid down, all the best.
Is there any little new thing? Trendy? Fun? Off the wall? Even a good gag?
Christmas and Hanukkah are coming so I'll need lots of small gifts and party favors. What are some stocking stuffer, party favor ideas for wine lovers? Some small things that could go at place setting would be great.
I'd love to get this done early so I can put my feet up and enjoy the Season!
Little round paper name tags that go around the stem of the wine glass near the base are great for wine tasting parties so people do not lose their wine glass.
Vacu Vin makes some very nice acrylic pourers that fit in the neck of the bottle and prevent drips. Example here: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000...
Amazon.com has some cuff links that have wine glasses...as the arms move wine appears to pour in the wine glasses. Sounds weird...but looks cool.
One more gift idea....it would probably not seem out of line to bring a bottle of wine. Maybe something thats not readily available that can only be purchased at the winery...which of course means a trip to a winery for you.
I am sure your time is limited but if you have some-- take a funky old frame with the cardboard back and glue corks in it for a cool cork board. Leave one cork out and have the receiver fill it in with the wine they enjoy the evening of the party to remember the night by. I make them all the time for people and they are useful as well as thoughtful. I really like to receive the label savers as well. It is my most useful tool to remembering what I like barring taking pictures of labels with my cell phone.
My sister makes handmade wine totes, great for those "trendy....bring your own wine restaurants". You can make them out of any type of sturdy fabric and if you use fun or zanny patterns it could be real fun!
Also, for the not so inexpensive but impressive...how about tickets for 2 to "Wine Camp", you spend a few days at a winery working in the vineyards and learning the process. Usually these camps end with a lovely dinner and wine tasting!
You don't have to travel to California to find these wine camps. In fact there is one located on Long Island.
I'm gonna put a damper on this <sorry!>... having been a wine collector for years, most of the "gadget and tchotchkie" wine gifts are really over done and usually end up in a drawer somewhere. I can't tell you how many glass-identifyers, tags, and similar crap I have.
Some of the things I HAVE received which I appreciated were a handful of antique wine labels (I see them on eBay) Actually, just perusing the antique section on eBay and searching for "wine" displayed a number of interesting items for under $10 including a goblet, a wood faucet, and a thief.
I agree with SteveK who said, "If he wants these he already has them. If he doesn't have them he doesn't want them." but I would NEVER give a 2-buck Chuck or a Cooks as a gag. That, too, has been over done.
One last thing to consider is antiquarian books. BookFinder.com and used bookstores have a wide variety of books written on wine but instead of getting something new, a look at the wine world 25, 50, or more years ago is fascinating to many wine collectors.
I do use pourers, re-corkers, and nice coasters - that's about it - reference books can be nice, although there's a risk I've already got em -
Oh...I just stumbled onto something different at wrapables. It is a wine bottle puzzle. Called the Don't Break the Bottle Puzzle You place a bottle of wine into the wooden encloser and secure the bottle with the corkscrew lock. Nice conversation piece...the idea is simple...solve the puzzle to free the wine. Also comes with it's own gift bag.
I have also seen Wine Trivia games that would be fun for a party.
I'm going to second what Carrie 218 said. On the other hand, some things, like a book of wine quotes and toasts, or an old (very old) wine book can be fun to look at.
My wife is always complaining that she doesn't know what to get me that is wine related (I have enough glasses, now she is getting me cool decanters for a collection, just what I need, more decanters) because I already have most of what I want.
As for Christmas or Hanukkah gift could include the glass identifier rings (they are called wine charms) or a small wine tasting notebook, etc. that have already been suggested. One source to look at is at http://www.iwawine.com/orstore/defaul...
I shopped before I saw dinwiddie's and Carrie218's suggestions but arrived at the same conclusion.
I bought a first edition of Alex Lichine's 1951 "Wines of France" that still had the tattered dust jacket at a wonderful used book store in our neighborhood that specilizes in history books.
I enclosed a note that said the book was older than he was, sorry I couldn't afford a wine of an equal vintage, but he was aging just as well! He loved it! And after I saw how many bottles of wine and cachibachis he received, I was glad I had taken the time to find something special. I saw him again this morning and he was still raving about the book.
The party was great! Paella, Tuscan short ribs, Motown and dancing in a tent. Terrific 50th Birthday! And since it was in the neighborhood, we could all walk home. No driving. Just had to be careful crossing the streets.
Thanks for all the suggestions, folks. I'll uses some for dinner party favors. Holidays are coming...
Excellent, MakingSense! Your note sounds charming and I would have LOVED getting such a gift and it sounds like a great party.
I just found something fantastic and in fact just ordered these for a family member. I'm thinking of doing a wine basket with "wine related finds". These are winecorks that are made to hold place cards. This find is found at Uncommon gifts, the link for the item:
Price was nice and so is the shipping cost!