Raleigh, N.C. — The holiday season is here and if there's a craft beer lover on your list of folks to buy for, especially an NC craft beer lover, you're in luck! There are plenty of great craft beer gift ideas that put a new necktie or drill set to shame. The NCBeerGuys suggest the following.
Quench their thirst! Check out the local bottle shops and see if they offer gift certificates. What better way to enjoy a gift than to give a smorgasbord of beer choices at a bottle shop? If you are daring or find the shop doesn't offer gift certificates, put a gift pack together yourself. Bottle shop owners and staff are very knowledgeable about craft beer, and if you're not sure what to get, they would love to help put a selection together with you.
Prost! Let them raise a glass of great craft beer but which glass for which kind of beer? To enhance the beer drinking experience, there are different glass types for different styles of beer. Each one is crafted to highlight the features of the beer style – the aroma, color, carbonation, the rich head and lacing. You can find glassware gift boxes that contain the most popular styles. Experience craft beer the way it's meant to be. Don't forget to check out local breweries to see if they sell their own logo glasses. We believe a brewery's beer tastes better when served in their own glasses.
Take a Tour! They love local beer but haven't seen the breweries? What better way to explore where their favorite beer comes from than a brewery tour. Beltline Brew Tours offers two tours in the area – to breweries in Raleigh (Natty Greene's, Lonerider and Gizmo Brew Works) and to Southern Wake County (Aviator Brewing, Holly Springs Nano Brewing, Carolina Brewing Company). Wouldn't it be great to spend an afternoon being chauffeured from brewery to brewery, seeing the equipment that produces the beer and sampling their fine selection?
It's a Hauliday! Your craft beer lover carries growlers, bombers and bottles all over the place. What better way to transport them easily and safely than with a Growler-Box carrier? They offer carriers for bottles of all sizes and when you add their favorite beer to it – wrap it up and it's an instant gift box! Pre-filled gift-wrapped growler carriers are available at some of the bottle shops in Raleigh.
Read all about it! There are a plethora of books about craft beer, beer pairing and homebrewing for the avid reader. How about a magazine subscription? All About Beer, Beer Advocate, Brew Your Own and Zymurgy are all excellent magazines and there are many more!
Down Home NC craft beer. Maybe your beer lover's love for craft beer is so strong that they want to make their own brew. There is no better way to experience and enjoy beer than to brew it at home! Consider a starter homebrewing kit. You can start brewing with extracts and progress later and experiment with partial mashes and whole grain brewing. There's one book that is pretty much the bible of homebrewing and explains it all: The Complete Joy of Homebrewing by Charlie Papazian. From beginner to advanced, it's the book to own and will be appreciated for years to come.
Buying your craft beer lover a beer-related gift means you have a pretty good chance of enjoying it with them. We say to go for it! Cheers and best wishes for the holidays from the NCBeerGuys!
Dave Tollefsen and Glenn Cutler are regular guys living in central North Carolina with their families who share a love for craft beer and homebrewing. They work together as the NCBeerGuys. They can be found online at ncbeerguys.com promoting North Carolina craft beer, providing information about the folks who produce local beer and writing about beer adventures, activities and events across North Carolina.