Happy Thanksgiving! When I look at the cocktail in the picture above something happens to me. My heart beats a little faster, my pupils dilate, I lose my appetite, I become tongue-tied… in short, I fall in love. It’s not so much about the alcohol, but rather all the details that go into actually making the drink: the recipe, the preparation, the choice of glassware, the garnish… I’m enamored with the entire process. That’s because I am a cocktail lover, through and through. But I’m not the only one. Chances are you have one in your life too. Or maybe you are one yourself. Either way you’re going to need some gift ideas to buy for someone else or to put on your own Christmas list. Well I have some suggestions for you! Although these ideas are geared towards local shopping right here in Haddonfield, if you don’t live nearby I’m sure you can find some of these items in your own hometowns. With Black Friday and Small Business Saturday right around the corner, now’s the time to get started!
Our first stop is Home on Haddon at 9 Kings Hwy East where you can find the hammered ice bucket above, as well as glassware, a mason jar shaker set, and a tabletop mini bar with decanters, shot glasses, and old-fashioned glasses. Every home bartender loves a nice ice bucket and a shaker set to make drinks, and new glassware is always fun!
Our next stop, Inkwood Books at 31 Kings Hwy East, has a wonderful selection of cocktail books including a few that I especially love like Paris Cocktails for the travel lover, Gone With the Gin for the movie buff, Colonial Spirits for the history expert, and Tequila Mockingbird for the literary-minded. You can bet the Visual Guide to Drink by Pop Chart Lab is on my Christmas list for sure! There’s also a very cool Drink Great Drinkers Shot Glass set that’s certain to make any cocktail lover smile.
Just across the street and up a little ways is A Taste of Olive at 106 Kings Hwy East. Here you’ll be able to put together a gift basket of cocktail ingredients including the fruit vinegars you see pictured above, a huge selection of olives for martinis (including the ones stuffed with Blue cheese), pickled vegetables like carrots, string beans, and peppers that would be crazy good in a Bloody Mary, and two different types of cherries for garnishing: Maraschino and Bada Bing.
Crossing back over at the light will bring you to The Polished Plate right on the corner at 101 Kings Hwy East, with its amazing selection of glassware. Both the William Yeoward (above) and the Simon Pierce are gorgeous collections that would make particularly beautiful gifts. Glassware is so important; pairing the right glass with the right drink elevates things to an entirely new level, something that every home bartender truly appreciates.
If you continue up the street you’ll land at Gorshin Trading Post and Supplies at 125 Kings Hwy East, an absolute bonanza of cocktail making ingredients. This Carry On Cocktail Kit makes a great stocking stuffer, and you’ll also find a substantial number of Jack Rudy tonics and bitters, McClary Brothers and Tait Farms Shrubs, Cocktail Crate mixers, as well as Luxardo and Woodford Reserve cherries. Be sure to read my feature on Gorshin by clicking on the link above and join me this Friday night when I’ll be serving cocktails there from 5 till closing!
Cross the street at Mechanic and pop into The Paper Trail and More‘s new space at 150 Kings Hwy East to see Andrea and Theresa (and Mr. Big) for all your cocktail party invitations! This is only a sampling of the options they have. And don’t forget cocktail napkins, party hats, and confetti.
Dried whole spices, ginger, and salts make great garnishes, especially in fall and winter drinks. Our final stop is Hanna’s Gourmet at 128 Kings Hwy East where you can purchase all of these along with a muddler, bar prep cutting board, and tea towels. Hanna’s also carries beautiful full-sized cutting boards, always a thoughtful gift for the home bartender. They can double as a prep surface and a drink background if you like to take pictures of your cocktails like me!
Three other stops along the way are Patricia of Mullica Hill at 37 Kings Hwy East for very pretty glassware, the most popular being etched coupes, Wild Violet Natural Specialties in Kings Court for organic teas, wild honey, agave, and organic sugar to make simple syrups, and The English Gardener Shop at 123 Kings Hwy East where you can grab a few different sodas for drinks, including Barritt’s Ginger Beer. They also carry many beer glasses, shot glasses, and a few old-fashioned glasses too. The sodas are also available in The British Chip Shop just across the street where you can sit and have lunch during your day of shopping!
The cocktail in this post is my Army & Navy Special Forces. Click for the recipe.
I hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving with family, friends, and cocktails, of course!!