Father’s Day Spirits: Gift Ideas for Dads Who Enjoy More Than WhiskeyBy Jake Emen
When it comes to Father’s Day gifts, we tend to defer to whiskey. Certainly, that would be my father’s first choice. But that doesn’t mean that every dad holds whiskey closest to their heart—after their children, of course. Surely there are a few adventurous dads out there who like to expand their horizons. This Father’s Day spirits gift guide features selections from agave to rum—each being our highest recommendation.
Gin Mare is a gin meant to reflect its Spanish Mediterranean roots. Redolent with Spanish olives and Seville oranges, its unique savory components make it an ideal match for martinis. It also works wonders alongside a Spanish vermouth in a Negroni. Additional noteworthy botanicals include basil, rosemary and thyme which can be further brightened in a G&T. Gin Mare stands apart from both London dry and new American styles.
Pierre Ferrand continues to push cognac ahead with its innovative approach. Réserve Double Cask is a great example; one that works well for either the aficionado or the novice. The cognac is first aged for between seven to 10 years before a touch of 20-year-old cognac is added. Once blended, the spirit then undergoes a finishing process in Banyuls casks, a fortified wine from southern France, for an extra year. It’s bottled at a slightly amplified proof of 84.6. Expect the fortified wine and rancio notes of the cognac to shine.
Tobalá is the latest mezcal offering from Montelobos, following the brand’s popular Espadín Joven expression. Ordinarily, tobalá agave is wild-growing and tends to be found in high altitude regions. However, Montelobos has been able to source sustainably-cultivated Tobalá from the town of Puebla. The resulting mezcal is herbal and green, backed by pleasant layers of smoke, citrus and spice.
Absolut uses only single-estate grain for Elyx—in particular, winter wheat—producing a vodka representative of the brand’s home turf in Sweden. The copper accents on the packaging reflect its production on a fully copper column still. The brand uses what they call “copper packets” which are added to the liquid itself during the initial distillation. This helps to further strip away sulfur and other such impurities. Those are legitimate differentiators in the vodka space. With a showy bottle to boot, it’s a smart choice for the dad who likes his Father’s Day spirits served up in a martini.
Savvy imbibers are tapping into the top of the tequila market for excellent pours meant to be savored, rather than used as margarita fodder. El Tesoro’s aptly named Paradiso is aged for five years in cognac barrels. That is an exceedingly long time in the tequila world where three years is the expected find for extra añejo labels. Paradiso makes an excellent Father’s Day spirits selection for the dad who likes his nightcaps.
Washington, D.C. amaro producer Don Ciccio & Figli produces a dozen different varieties, any one of which would suit your digestif-loving dad. Amaro delle Sirene is at the core of its lineup, made with a recipe from the Amalfi Coast of Italy dating back to the early 1930s. Approximately 30 different herbs and roots are used in the amaro, which is matured for a year in used French oak casks. Amaro delle Sirene delivers a smooth, balanced expression that’s bitter without being overwhelming.
Father’s Day spirits shouldn’t be chosen simply based on packaging. Fortunately, Mount Gay’s 1703 Master Select Rum is lovely both on the inside and the outside. Its name pays homage to the distillery’s founding year, making it the oldest operational rum distillery in the world. It’s hand-selected by master blender Allen Smith who chose from barrels aged between 10 and 30 years, including a mix of pot and column still production. Rich, spicy and oak-forward, it’s an ideal sipping rum.
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