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Gifts for Beer Lovers – Good for Any Occasion

The gift of beer is appropriate any time of year. Except maybe this particular brand.

When you have a beer aficionado in your life, it is like every day is Christmas. So even though we are a good 36 hours or so into 2017, I see no reason why I shouldn’t dredge up my pre-Xmas gift guide offered up during my regular CBC column a couple weeks back. (Full truth is that the link was only sent to me a few days ago, meaning posting earlier wasn’t possible.)

You can listen to the column here.

In many ways it is a standard listing of good gift ideas for someone who appreciates beer and the things that surround it. But as I listen to it again, I realize it also demonstrates just how far and how quickly the Alberta beer scene has come. When I did a similar piece a few years ago, most of the beer highlights were imports and other such things. While I did make a point of mentioning a couple of import options, including the newly arrived Logsdon Farmhouse Ales and the intriguing Beau’s Best of 2016 mixed pack, this year the list is dominated by Alberta beer, including the appearance on Edmonton shelves of Coulee Brewing and Hell’s Basement, along with the – at the time still available – Twin Creeks collaboration between Bench Creek and Ribstone Creek (read my side-by-side review here).

It speaks volumes that without much effort I could offer multiple Alberta beer suggestions – and having to omit a number of others to keep it manageable.

In the column I also offer up some non-beer suggestions, such as picking up a copy of the new World Atlas of Beer, the long-awaited successor to Michael Jackson’s famous compendium of beer. The new version is written by Tim Webb and Toronto’s Stephen Beaumont. Books from Pete Brown are never far down my list either, as he offers the wonderful combination of humour and beer insight. Finally – because I can – I suggest getting the beer fan in your life a homebrew starter kit so that they, too, can experience the joys of crafting the magical elixir themselves.

Sure, I know Xmas has come and gone, but there are never any shortage of occasions for which you want to buy beer-related things for your beer lover. Or maybe this can push you to get a very early start on next Xmas’ shopping.

Happy new year!


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