Variety Is The Spice Of Life Unique Beer And Wine Ideas To Wrap Up 2018 With

You love to drink. You pour yourself a cup of red wine over dinner and schedule outings with friends to bar hop.

You’re also tired of the same old thing. Maybe you’re thinking of buying some alcohol-related gifts, maybe you want to see what else is out there…wherever you land, rest assured you have the pick of the litter. The United States is home to thousands of breweries, many local and offering unique combinations that can’t be found anywhere else. The winter season is an especially good time to start branching out, whether you’re a wine enthusiast or a long-time beer guru. You’ll be falling in love all over again.

Brush up on your brewery knowledge below and pick a place to start before 2018 wraps up.

Interesting Facts

Here are a few facts about American beer culture and celebration trends you might not know about. Every weekend sees over 44,000 weddings taking place, which doesn’t even cover bachelorette parties and wedding receptions. It’s all today’s breweries can do to keep up — according to recent studies the number of operating breweries in the country grew by 15% since 2015, with small and independent craft brewers representing 12% of the market share. Small and independent breweries account for over 95% of all breweries in operation, which includes brewpubs and regional craft.

The Classic Appeal Of A Cup Of Wine

You see it in classical paintings, you see it in advertisements. The good, old-fashioned cup of wine has enjoyed impressive staying power for centuries, manifesting today as a great touch to a meal or a way to unwind after a long day. There are over 7,000 wineries across the country in all 50 states, though California leads the pack with the most wine production. The five most popular varietals of wine are Pinot Grigio, Cabernet Sauvignon, Chardonnay, Merlot, and Pinot Noir. A single cup of red wine can have surprising health benefits, reducing stress and relaxing your blood pressure.

Today’s Thriving And Diverse Beer Culture

Perhaps you’re more interested in a cold, frothy beer. A significant number of Americans today either drink occasionally or frequently, helping keep the United States high on the list of worldwide beer markets. Younger drinkers are considered thirstier than older drinkers, drinking an average of three glasses to the latter’s two. The types of beer that best suit you can run the gamut of dark brews undercut with soft chocolate tones or hard ciders with a refreshing aftertaste. A six-pack of seasonal beer at a local brewery makes a great supplemental Christmas gift.

Powerful Spirits For A Good Buzz

Sometimes you need something stronger than a cup of wine or bottle of beer. An interesting study found the number of consumers of pre-mixed cocktails nearing 14 million in a month-to-month period. While cocktails are more popular in bar settings and during parties, many are finding themselves creating mini bars at home for weekend occasions. Vodka, scotch, and rum are all delicious and flexible, able to be mixed and match at will with juices and spritzers. Your online liquor store will have more than enough choices to satiate your appetite.

Trying Out New Wine Stores And Specialty Craft Beer

There’s always something new to try out in the thriving American craft market. The four craft beer industry market segments include microbreweries, brewpubs, regional craft breweries, and contract brewing companies. Many offer unique seasonal varieties available for a limited time, such as pumpkin spice ale and chocolate vanilla mixtures for Christmas. It’s also becoming more common for people to purchase wine and spirits online, finding brands they can’t find at the grocery store. Better yet, visit a brewery in person and pair your purchase with a growler.

Give your tastebuds something new to talk about. Look up online liquor stores or an online brewery for a brand off the beaten path.