Amazingly, we are in the home stretch of the year 2021. It’s never too early to start thinking about some special gifts for the beer lover in your life, and breweries have already started releasing some amazing, highly sought-after beers that probably will not last for the last second shoppers.
Here’s just a couple of the beers you should be picking up today for gifts in December.
Bell’s Brewing is releasing quite a few great gift beers this year. Hitting shelves just this week is their Christmas Ale. A traditional Scotch Ale, rich and malty, warm and balanced. At 7.5% alcohol-by-volume, this is a great one for stashing away a six-pack or two to share under the Christmas Tree in December.
Also, for the first time in distribution, Bell’s Uberon is currently available. Whereas Bell’s Oberon is the de facto official beer of Summer in these parts, Uberon is designed to keep you warm while you pine for spring sunshine on a dark winter’s night. This is a Double American Wheat Ale, aged in bourbon barrels. At 11.3% ABV, Uberon is strong, almost a bit boozy on the palate, spicy and warming. With an unlimited shelf life, but a quite limited supply, this is a beer to grab as soon as you see it for the cold days ahead.
In May of 2019, Boston Brewing (Sam Adams, Truly Seltzer, Angry Orchard) merged with Dogfish Head Brewing. This craft beer marriage spawned a lot of speculation at the time about the possibilities for these two breweries to collaborate on interesting beers. This fall has seen the release of one of the most highly anticipated beers in years: Utopias Barrel-Aged World Wide Stout.
Both beers are the stuff of craft beer geek dreams. Sam Adams Utopias is one of the strongest beers in the world — this year at 28% ABV. Dogfish Head World Wide Stout is not far behind at 17.3% ABV this year. Utopias is one of the hardest beers in the world to obtain, released only every other year and in incredibly small amounts and at outrageously expensive prices (now retailing in the $250-$300 range for a single 750ml bottle). World Wide Stout is limited but available, with single 12 ounce bottles retailing for $9.99 each.
World Wide Stout is pitch black in color, very little effervescence, and rich with dark flavor notes like espresso, cocoa and sherry. A single 12-ounce bottle is actually great to share between two to four people in small snifter glasses, allowing the beer to breath and become more aromatic as it warms in the glass and oxidizes in the air. For the uninitiated, this may seem like a small gift; to the beer geek on your gift list, it’s a beer experience of a lifetime.