We spend all year writing about beer, checking off items on our beer bucket list (hello, Pliny the Younger), finding the best beers for you to drink (what up, all-time top-rated beers on Untappd), dropping knowledge on different styles (what is a pastry stout, anyway?) and new trends (have you tried kölsch service yet?), and even visiting breweries from right here in our backyard to Nashville to across the pond in Lille, France, and Belgium. For 365 days, all we think about is beer, all we drink is beer, and all we dream about is beer. We’re beer lovers through and through. So if that sounds like you, one of your friends, or someone in your family, you probably ask yourself: What should I get them for the holidays? Have no fear; HopHop Culture’s best beer gifts for the holidays are here!
We’ve already covered the , best beer glasses of the year, and the best coolers of the year, so here we’re giving you everything from a brewery shoe collab to a once-in-a-lifetime beer trip to a box of beer that will make your year.
We’re taking a bit of a different approach this year, honing in on gifts from specific breweries. During a time when breweries continue to grapple with the effects of the pandemic, a declining industry, and a struggling economy, we highly encourage you to spend your hard-earned dollars on the best beer gifts where it will matter most—at the breweries themselves.
So, without further ado…
Deck the backyard with boughs of hops.
‘Tis the season to be hoppy.
Don we now our ale apparel.
Quaff the modern stout in barrels.
Hop Culture’s Favorite Beer Gifts for the Holidays
Delicious Year in Beer Box
The holidays have come early for you! Untappd is curating an incredible collection of twelve beers based on the twelve top styles of the year from twelve of the best breweries in the world, throwing them all into one beast of a beer box.
Let’s say Stone, Drie Fonteinen, Hudson Valley, Grimm, Humble Sea, and more unwrapped holiday gifts together.
Wouldn’t you want one?
Well, Untappd is gifting one to you!
These are quite possibly the most incredible, highest-rated beers of the entire year—all in one place.
Last year, this box sold out in TEN DAYS, so grab yours before they’re gone forever.
Stone x Sanuk Live Buena! Collection
Stone has made a name for itself not only with beer but also with its unique collaborations that stretch beyond the beer world. Last year, we praised their Newair® beer fridge collection. This year, the Southern California brewery did it again, teaming up with shoe brand Sanuk to make these uber cushiony, uber chill, uber comfy line of hella cool shoes.
“We do collaborations like our Live Buena! collection with Sanuk because it combines two things we know our fans love while also extending our story to potential new fans,” says Erin Smith, VP of marketing for Stone. “Telling the story of Stone through Sanuk’s creative lens and beloved shoes reinforces who we are. And at the end of the day, it’s just really, really fun!”
Inspired by the Live Buena! brand, these shoes beg you to leave the work week behind, traveling to the beach or wherever you enjoy a few beers with friends.
Made of recycled materials, each shoe also encourages you to live sustainably.
“Seeing pieces of our artwork, brand personalities, and flavors come to life in new environments is really exciting,” says Smith. “We’re thoughtful about who we collaborate with. For us, it’s about quality, not quantity, prioritizing partners that share our values and commitment to excellence. Our goal is to delight our fans (and potential new fans) with something truly special and unique.”
Beer Mountain AD25 Adventure Series Cooler Backpack
Is there anything better than drinking an ice-cold beer in the great outdoors? Beer Mountain’s new AD25 Adventure Series Cooler Backpack mashes together all the innovations of an adventure bag with the beer drinker in mind.
The built an insulated main compartment for ice, meaning you can dump up to twenty-four cans in your pack, zip it up, and take off knowing your suds will stay frosty.
Hop Culture Senior Content Editor Grace Weitz did just that, filling up the pack with a few cans of Sierra Nevada to take on a hike with her wife and pup, Piper. A small pocket in front fit a few treats and a little water bottle for Piper, while a couple of almost fanny-pack-like pouches near her hips were perfect for smaller valuables like keys. “Oh, there are so many compartments!” Weitz’s wife mentioned when she first saw the bag.
Since you’ll probably work up a sweat on your hike, and because you should always hydrate while drinking, Beer Mountain even thought far enough ahead to build in a universal water bladder compartment. While you’ll need to provide that pouch yourself, it’s still a thoughtful touch.
Just like the added bottle opener attached to one of the straps!
Beer Mountain really thought everything through, including your comfort, especially if you’re hiking around with beer.
Weitz found the padded back support made carrying the weight of the cans extremely comfortable even during a long walks Oh and by the end of the two-hour hike? She and her wife enjoyed a nice little picnic with ice cold beer!
Comfortable, ergonomic, durable, and stylish, this cooler pack ensures you can have a cold beer whenever and wherever.
The Daily Beer Bar Dad Hat
Last year, Former Hop Culture Managing Editor John Paradiso and his partner Rosa Paradiso opened their own craft beer bar serving “Cold Drinks, Hot Sandwiches, and Good Vibes.”
Touted as an all-day cafe, The Daily Beer Bar serves coffee in the morning, sandwiches, salads, and snacks throughout the day, along with craft beer, natural wine, and non-alcoholic drinks.
Simplicity and intentionality are keywords at “The Daily.” Plus, a little bit of fun. All influenced by John’s own experiences in the beer industry.
For coffee, that means partnering with Caleb Durham from Yonder Coffee, whom John met at an event at Ancillary Fermentation. A curated list will showcase exciting craft producers that aren’t necessarily readily available in the Triangle area. “The bottom line is to serve a product that is simple and good but not over-complicated,” says John. “We’re focusing on good producers making simple, good products.”
Of course, with a background in beer, you can bet that The Daily always has an incredibly curated tap list.
“We want to show breweries that aren’t readily available, that we’ve had a chance to meet and know as individuals and can speak to why they are so great other than just the liquid itself,” he says. “Telling the story of these producers is as important as serving really good beer.”
Throughout The Daily, you can see those thoughtful yet playful touches, especially in the artwork.
Designed by Erik Raines, whom John also met through Hop Culture, The Daily’s graphics have an almost Steamboat Willie or Looney Tunes vibe. “It’s a playful throwback,” says John. “Maybe a little bit of nostalgia.”
Like on this The Daily Beer Bar Dad Hat, where a coffee mug, sandwich, and beer glass happily stroll along arm in arm.
A simple yet fun way to show your love of all things you love (not just beer), this dad hat makes an excellent gift for your dad or whomever.
We love collecting beer glasses (many of which we have already profiled here). But when it comes to hosting a dinner party or having folks over, you don’t always want to give them the option of an assortment of brewery-inked glasses.
We first noticed Dragon Glassware on IG and thought it would be the perfect way to amp up our drinkware game this year.
Now, Dragon Glassware offers a “beer glass” featuring an almost-shocking rainbow iridescent effect.
Crafted with double-walled insulation, in these glasses, beer stays nice and cold. Dragon Glassware recommends popping these glasses in the freezer first to ensure the ultimate cold beverage.
These head-turning luxury glasses make for a great gift.
And if you’re looking for something less beer-oriented, Dragon Glassware has plenty of other options.
Nodding to the recent Barbie™ phenomenon, the Dreamhouse™ Diamond Glasses come in a gravity-defying design that tilts to a fifty-degree angle to “shine bright like a diamond,” according to the brand’s website.
Sure to start a conversation, either the Dragon Glassware Upside Down Beer Glasses or Dreamhouse™ Diamond Glasses are one of the best beer gifts of the year.
Outer Range Frontier Daze Lighter
At this point, we’re pretty sure that brewery shirts make up seventy-five percent of our t-shirt drawer while fifty percent of the hats we wear come from breweries. Let’s just say we’re well-versed in brewery merch.
But a specially crafted Zippo lighter? That’s something we’ve never seen.
The beautifully embossed Outer Range Frontier Daze Lighter comes in a striking gold, almost like the color of their Belgian beers or lagers.
With this lighter, as the brewery says, “Be ready for whatever comes your way!”
Josh Bernstein’s The Complete Beer Course 10th Anniversary Edition
If there’s one modern beer journalist to know, it’s Josh Bernstein. He’s pioneered the shift of niche beer writing toward a broader audience, and his book, The Complete Beer Course, is just that. When he wrote the original version in 2013, the tome included a detailed breakdown of the beer market, beer styles, how to perform tastings, and what to identify when dissecting a beer.
For the next ten years, countless beer enthusiasts flipped through Bernstein’s pages to amp up their education and learn about their passion and craft. We even called Bernstein’s book one of our all-time “29 Best Beer Books.”
To celebrate a decade in publication, on June 6, 2023, Bernstein released an updated edition, The Complete Beer Course: From Novice to Expert in Twelve Tasting Classes.
Overhauled to reflect the seismic shifts of the last decade in craft beer, Bernstein’s revised book should be a must-add to any craft beer lover’s bookcase.
We sat down with Bernstein in the summer to chat about the new edition, but suffice it to say that if you’re looking for a tome that truly reflects contemporary craft beer in America, you need this book.
New Image Fanny Pack
Look, fanny packs have been “in” again for a while now. While first making their comeback amongst music festival goers, fanny packs are now a trendy, chic way to carry your belongings, whether traveling, going to a beer fest, or just taking a stroll around the lake.
Towards the end of last year, we visited New Image during an epic four days in Denver. If you haven’t been, add this brewery to your must-go list.
At New Image, Founder Brandon Capps, taproom manager and now minority partner Gavin Estes, and entrepreneur, writer, brewer, and marketer-extraordinaire Ryan Pachmayer push the beer envelope in every direction possible. An intellectual, a savant, and an encyclopedic fount of beer knowledge, Capps approaches beer with a mind we just really haven’t seen anywhere else. (And now, they’re welcoming Primitive Beer into their Wheat Ridge space!)
Their brewing philosophy is to tweak certain dials and levers until they brew the best beer possible.
For instance, the brewery’s Phanny Pack series, which over many iterations experimented brewing with Phantasm, a freeze-dried sauvignon blanc grape powder that makes hazy IPAs even juicier, into beers.
“As a brewery, we’ve always been trying to create beers that are different but still sitting within a style,” says Estes. “We’re going to test this a little bit…then put a little more into it in the next round and continually do that over and over again.” Which means New Image has pumped out, on average, 125 beers a year for the last four years.
“We’re experimental, but we’re not reckless about it,” says Pachemeyer. “We’re not making ten changes with every beer because that might be to the detriment of the beer or the drinker. We’re trying to innovate, but in a way where the consumer doesn’t get burned.”
All in the pursuit to create this “new image.” “Our brand is the constant regrowth of who we once were to who we are now…and our beers reflect that,” says Estes.
In Capps’ opinion, Phanny Pack is New Image at its peak. “We’re putting all the best practices into that beer at any given time and brewing it consistently,” he says.
We couldn’t agree more, so we named this series one of “The 27 Best Beers We Drank in 2022.”
So if Phanny Pack encapsulates New Image in a can, then the Phanny Pack fanny pack is our hella meta way of saying buying this will undoubtedly make you cool—dare we say, give you a whole new image of yourself—but drinking the latest iteration of Phanny Pack, well, that will just give you an entirely new image of the possibilities of hazies.
Cloudwater x WAWWA Collaboration Merch
More and more, we’ve seen breweries stretch the imagination of what a collab means. Like Stone, the British brewer Cloudwater teamed up with a lifestyle brand this year.
Made with WAWWA, a sustainable clothing brand using organic, vegan, and plant-friendly materials, this collab celebrates the planet and Manchester’s small businesses.
Called One Mile Radius, the line, released in conjunction with a new IPA, highlights these two independent, sustainability-minded companies—Cloudwater and WAWWA—all within a one-mile radius of each other.
We love the vibes and designs in this collection, but also what this partnership means for the industry.
We love KCBC’s graphics. Beautifully illustrated characters and creatures come to life on each and every one of KCBC’s cans. The artistry flows to their merch, where you’ll find some artfully composed creations. Feel free to shop around. We’re fans of both the Black Square and Blue Square Character Tree.
Dancing Gnome Run Club Membership 2023
This one is for the beer drinker and race runner in your life. While we’ve honed in on one run club in particular, we encourage you to look at some of your local breweries to see if they offer something similar.
We’ve also seen clubs like these pop up at breweries nationwide, so chances are there might be one in your neighborhood.
Dancing Gnome has a lock on those interested in racking up miles and cheers in Pittsburgh.
Join the brewery’s Run Club for access to things like an exclusive long-sleeve tee, first access to new DGRC merch, including a special Lustra Day glass and free pour (!), DGRC mug, free beer on run days, and member party at the end of the year.
Plus, the more you run, the more points you rack up to earn additional rewards.
Starting a run club like this is a cool concept and something we would totally take part in if we lived in Pittsburgh!
Here’s the big one. If you’re looking to blow it out of the water and go all out to claim that award of “best beer gift” of the year, you might want to consider buying an entire beer trip.
That’s what we did this past year when we traveled to Belgium with Bruz Beers.
Every year, Ryan Bruz, co-founder of this incredible Belgian-inspired brewery in Denver, leads a small contingent of beer folks to the country that inspired him to start a brewery.
Over ten days, you’ll visit some of the best breweries in the country, drinking your way through singels, dubbels, tripels, oud bruins, lambics, and gueuzes galore. Every trip is a little different, but some of the highlights we enjoyed included…
An exclusive tour of Brasserie Orval (not normally open to the public), walking through the ruins of the old abbey, and trying the beer the monks drink, which is only available on draft on site.
Drinking Westvleteren 12 on a bus at 9 in the morning!
Drinking lambics and gueuzes at one of the best breweries in the world—Cantillon.
If you’re looking for something more off the grid, consider Elsewhere Brewing’s Patagonia adventure—now open for registration.*
Elsewhere Brewing Co-Founders Sara and Sam Kazmer opened up the Atlanta-based brewery after taking a year to travel the world. One of their favorite countries visited, Argentina, provides the backdrop for this epic adventure-fueled trip.
Spend eleven days discovering the food, terrain, and drink of Patagonia, hiking, swimming, and learning along the way.
Or just explore options from companies like BeerTrips.com, which leads multiple tours a year to various beer meccas.
Whatever you choose, you can be sure it’ll be the beer adventure of a lifetime.
*At the time of publication. We can’t guarantee spots will still be available.
Permanent Hangover Cry For Help Sweatshirt
For the self-deprecating beer lover, Permanent Hangover crushes it with all their merch drops. Their latest featured this new Cry For Help tee.
Do you know someone who loves stouts? So much so that they have bottles on bottles in their cellar downstairs? So much so that they might need to seek help for this obsession?
You should probably gift them this.
Fort Point Beer Co. Growler
We can hear you shouting in our ears now: Growlers are so 2015! Yes, unwieldy glass growlers from 2015 are so ten years ago.
But if you’re going to take beer, NA beer, seltzer, juice, or really any liquid on the go, you need something like this.
Fort Point’s double-wall, vacuum-insulated stainless steel growler holds 64oz of liquid and includes the San Francisco-based breweries’ iconic illustrations of the city.
If you live in the Bay Area, we highly recommend filling up this growler with Fort Point’s newest limited-edition collab with Suppenküche, a Bavarian-style golden lager called Tunzenbier. (We went to the release German beer dinner last week, and we can tell you firsthand this beer is 🧑🍳💋)
Brewery Art Prints
With breweries focusing on the art inside and outside the can, sometimes the labels’ illustrations are so beautiful we don’t want to recycle them. But inevitably, we do. (Unless you’re this guy who owns an estimated $3 million of beer cans!)
Luckily, some of the breweries we know with the raddest designs—Burial, Great Notion, and Vitamin Sea, to name a few—have started making them into prints. Ones we can proudly display in our office or beer den.
I’m sure there are many more out there we haven’t discovered yet, but for now, here are a few we’d love to get onto our walls immediately.
TALEA Beer + Cheese Tasting For Two
Enjoy flights of four of TALEA’s latest beers, along with a small cheese plate including crackers, dried fruit, nuts, and more.
Whether for a date night or a hangout-with-a-friend-I-haven’t-seen-in-a-while gift, this beer and cheese tasting makes for a great beer gift.
Back Home Beer Lunch/Dinner for Two
Similarly to our friends at TALEA, another one of our favorite Brooklyn breweries has made big moves this year.
For the last two years, the woman- and Iranian-owned Back Home Beer contract brewed. Founder Zahra Tabatabai shared her Middle Eastern-inspired beers by stuffing them in the back of her Prius and delivering them to 250 accounts around New York City and D.C.
Recently, Tabatabai started a Kickstarter campaign to open her own brick-and-mortar—a community gathering place focused on bringing together friends and family to eat Persian street food and drink delicious beer.
If you’re passionate about supporting businesses like Back Home Beer, put your money where your mouth is, literally.
Tabatabai has many different options to support, from a $45 drunken thank you note to $2,000 to name a fermenter to a $10,000 all-expenses paid trip to Los Angeles with Tabatabai.
But if you’re looking for an excellent gift-range idea, try the lunch/dinner for two. You and a friend or significant other will enjoy a lunch or dinner of your choice at Back Home’s new spot when it opens, including an appetizer, two entrees, dessert, and beverage.
This is kind of like a gift for the future because you won’t be able to use it until the taproom opens, but that’s what makes it so fun.
Show your support now and set a date in the future to enjoy the benefits of your benevolence.
Beer! It’s for Everyone! Tie-Dye All-Gender T-Shirt
If you haven’t heard of Beer Is For Everyone, change that now.
Started by Lindsay Malu Kido, recently named one of Wine Enthusiasts Future 40 Tastemakers 2023, Beer Is For Everyone is a grassroots nonprofit organization fighting for diversity, equity, and inclusion in the craft beer industry.
Check out their Instagram (@beerisforeveryone) to find a constant stream of ways to directly contribute to making the industry more equitable.
Or buy some of their merch, like this Beer! It’s for Everyone! tie-dye all-gender T-shirt.
We loved this shirt so much that we bought two this year in different colors.
Designed by Shaina Leguizamon, the shirt boldly proclaims what this organization stands for: Beer is for everyone!
According to Leguizamon, the shirt was inspired by “The Rubber Hose cartoon style of the 1930s; this graphic is a playful reminder for those in the beer industry to be kind, have fun, and remember, beer is for everyone!”
We also love how Beer Is For Everyone offered the shirts in gender-neutral sizes. Plus, this line directly contributes to the Bevolution Creators in Brewing Grant started in collaboration with Women of the Bevolution, which helps women and non-binary entrepreneurs, digital creators, brewers, and homebrewers gain experience in marketing and content strategy.
We have proudly worn this shirt many, many times this year, and it always starts a conversation wherever we go.
Hoof Hearted Brewing Slø Turbø Sunglasses
Patrick Maholmes may have been the one to make the Oakley versions of these sunglasses cool. But you can get the same look for a fraction of the price from the fine, fashionable folks at Hoof Hearted.
Ergonomically built for anti-fog and reduced wind resistance and to effectively fight against rain, these sunglasses are more than just a fashion statement.
Tripping Animals Shroom Cocktail Glass
This Shroom Cocktail Glass from Tripping Animals is just so trippy and so fun. We’re not really sure of the practical use, but in this case, does it matter?
Bust out this crazy mushroom-shaped glass anytime, and it’s going to be the craziest thing in the room, most likely.
North Park Beer Co. Disciples of Fu! Enamel Pin Set
Pins are so in! Have you just started collecting? Do you have a jean jacket full of ones you’ve picked up over the last half-decade?
Wherever you are in your ex-pin-dition (get it?), grab this four-pack of North Park’s Disciples of Fu! Pins.
Considered by all of you to be one of the best hazy IPA breweries out there, North Park crushes it with hops, especially in their Disciples of Fu! series. Drink the beers, then capture the love forever with these cut yet fierce enamel pins.
Fox Tale Fermentation Fermented Autumn Giardiniera Mix
Last year, when we asked you all on Instagram to share your favorite brewery of the year, Fox Tale Fermentation came up again and again.
Following your advice, we had the pleasure of meeting Co-Founders Wendy Neff and Felipe Bravo, jumping down the rabbit hole of fermentation with them.
“We’re an all-inclusive brewery and food cafe that uses local ingredients, supports the community, and is a space for everyone to come in and be a part of it,” Bravo, who used to work for Fort Point Beer Co., told us.
Expect beguiling beers with locally foraged ingredients whipped up with wizardry from Bravo. At the same time, Neff, who used to lead the Superfoods program at Facebook Headquarters, helms the kitchen, brewing up a slew of fabulously fermented foods.
“I want people to walk away having tried something they’ve never tried before and learn about something they would have never eaten before,” she told us.
While we highly suggest getting yourself to San Jose to try some of her creations in person, if you can’t, you can buy some of her fermented foods online.
For instance, this lacto-fermented giardiniera mix made with, get this…
- Purple Cauliflower
- Orange Cauliflower
- Hungarian Sweet Peppers
- Cippolini Onions
- Castlevetrano Olives
- Fresno Chili Peppers
- Serrano Peppers
- Black Peppercorns
- Fennel Seed
- Mustard Seed
- Celery Seed
Do we need to say more? Get this. Try it. Prepare to be wowed!
Halfway Crooks Goed Bier Hat
Remember when Halfway Crooks started a huge tidal wave with its Lager Lager Lager Lager Sweatshirt and Hat (we have both, by the way!)?
Whenever we wear either of these, people give us a thumbs up. If you’re in the know, you’re in the know, right?
Could Halfway Crooks do it again? Create another piece of cultural zeitgeist?
Well, that’s pretty hard to do, but we love this new Goed Bier Hat with a high-structured crown and adjustable snapback in forest green and gold.
As to what “Goed Bier” means…well, if you’re in the know, you’re in the know.
Finback Brewery Dripping Whale Camo Short
Can’t say we see shorts from breweries too often!
You may not know this, but the popular New York brewery Finback got the inspiration for its name from a beached whale—kind of how the brewery felt at the time as it spent years trying to find a space for a taproom.
Almost ten years later, Finback has a location in Brooklyn alongside its OG in Queens, with plans to open another in Long Island City.
Sporting the brewery’s iconic whale-drip logo, these camo shorts are perfect for everything from hiking to chilling on the beach to visiting one of Finback’s taprooms for an afternoon of day drinking.
Forest & Main Saison Socks
Don’t overthink this one. Do you know someone who loves saisons? Get these socks!
After all, we all need ‘em.
Zephyr Presrv™ Kegerator and Beverage Cooler
Last year, we wrote a whole piece on the best beer fridges of the year. We aren’t putting one of those together this year, but since we saw this new option come across our desk, we had to give it a shout-out.
Actually a kegerator with a beverage cooler, Zephyr Preserv™ expertly keeps your draft beer cold while its sleek, stainless steel design fits into pretty much any part of your house—downstairs den, beer cave, or game room.
Pretty much if you want to be a game day boss, inviting all your friends over to drink fresh draft beer while they watch the game, you need this kegerator.