Eight Ultimate Gifts for the Wine Lover in Your Life
Gifting a wine lover this holiday season? Let's think outside the bottle.
December 01, 2022
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The festive season is well under way: we're hurrying off to end-of-year catch ups every weekend, (hopefully) pouring sensational vinos and merrily sipping away our days. So, if you're like us, the pressure of trying to find the perfect gift can cast a dark shadow on the season. Sure, picking out the perfect gift for a special someone can be fun, but let's face it, it's pretty tricky to nail it year after year. The trick? Ditch the generic gifts and find something straight up your giftee's alley. And it's fair to assume we probably all know someone who is passionate about wine.
The fine people at Handpicked Wines certainly are. With vineyards in the Mornington Peninsula, Barossa, Yarra Valley and down in Tassie, the biz makes region-specific drops with a sustainability-focused mindset. Beyond growing, prepping, juicing and fermenting the fruit, Handpicked Wines also have two urban cellar doors — one in Sydney and one in Melbourne.
Together with Handpicked Wines, we've put our noses to the ground and found some brownie-point-scoring pressies especially for wine lovers (yourself included). Whether you're shopping for an office Kris Kringle or want to impress the in-laws this silly season, we've got options aplenty.
HANDPICKED WINES CURATED WINE PACK, Prices vary
Serious wine connoisseurs can be picky about their bottles. But fear not, Handpicked Wines is here to help you impress any sommelier (professional or wannabe) on your Christmas list. As a start, for the eighth year in a row, the winery has received a 5-red-star rating from the Halliday Wine Companion, the bestselling and definitive guide to Australian wine.
Where to start? It's hard to go past the Summer Pack ($87), featuring three wines classified as "outstanding" in the 2023 edition of the guide. If you're going all out, plump for the Top Scorer pack ($200), which features six of Handpicked Wines' highest-rated drops from the 2023 Halliday Wine Companion. Whichever you choose, you know you'll be gifting some A-grade wine.
For something a little different, gift your loved one the Sam Studd Pack. Along with their vinos, they'll receive three stand-out fromages curated by curd connoisseur Sam Studd — and quince paste and lavosh crackers, too.
HANDPICKED WINES CELLAR DOOR EXPERIENCE, $72
If you'd prefer a more experiential gift for your vino-obsessed, opt for a gift voucher to the Handpicked Wines Cellar Door in Chippendale. They'll be able to take a special friend (aka you, the glorious gifter) and immerse themselves in an urban cellar door experience. For $72, the pair of you can each enjoy two delicious glasses from the Handpicked Wines Regional Selections range alongside two exceptional cheeses.
It's the perfect gift for city slickers who enjoy a holiday to wine country — from this sleek central location, you'll discover (or taste, more like it) premium drops from the winery's vineyards across the Mornington Peninsula, Yarra Valley, Barossa and Tassie.
FULL GLASSES McLAREN VALE CANDLE, $45
If you're looking to get a little more creative, think wine-adjacent. Maybe your wine-loving friend already has an extensive collection of bottles and has travelled to all the hot spots for a drop? If so, gift them the scent of that special vineyard.
Sydney-based sommelier Samantha Payne, of Full Glasses, has created her own line of wine-centric candles focused on her memories and experiences in different wine regions. Her recommendation? The McLaren Vale ($45), which blends fresh figs and eucalyptus trees for a sweet take on the Aussie bush. But there's also Pinot Noir ($65), which marries the scents of grape skins, strawberries, cloves and cinnamon bark, Chardonnay ($65), for a hit of lemon, apple and oak, and more. Each candle is hand-poured and decorated — an extra special gift.
CORAVIN TIMELESS THREE SL, $299.95
One for the wine lover with an extensive collection (and sure to put you firmly in the good books): the Coravin Timeless Three SL ($299.95). With this sleek, handy gadget — which is the easy-to-use preservation system working in tandem with Coravin's argon capsules — still wines will stay perfectly primed for weeks (or months or years, even).
That friend of yours will be pouring their favourite drops without pulling the cork, so a glass of that extra special drop can be enjoyed without committing to the whole bottle.
MAISON BALZAC WINE GLASSES, $129
This is perhaps for the wine-lover in your life that can't help but be persuaded by a beautiful label on their bottle. If they're into natural, fruity drops or can't look past a pet-nat, Maison Balzac's Pom Pom Wine Glasses ($129) are the ideal gift.
This handblown pair is adorned with adorable cherry-red "earrings", but there are three other colourways to choose from. It's an extra-special gift for the new-age wine lover that doesn't take themselves too seriously.
FESTIVE TABLEWARE, Prices vary
Artful, style-heavy and deliciously unique tableware is a gift that will be eagerly received by the wine lovers in your life — chances are, if they like a good vino, they'll like to curate a vibe-heavy setting to sip it in.
They'll kick their 2023 entertaining off with a bang with these hyperrealistic Heirloom Tomato Candles ($85) from Nonna's Grocer, sure to spruce up any and every tablescape; and a set of the brightly hued Cecilia Coasters ($29) from Sage and Clare for an aesthetically pleasing place to pop that drink. Or, stick with decor masquerading as food, and pick up this sweeter-than-sweet canelé from Corey Ashford, the candle holder ($125) sure to keep it moody.
WANDERING FOLK LOVERS PICNIC BASKET, $195
For a gift that's perhaps a little more romantic, opt for a basket (with dedicated spots for wine) to bring on picnic dates. The picnic experts at Wandering Folk have you covered with the Lovers Picnic Basket ($195). Designed in Australia and woven by women in Vietnam, it's a stand-out gift that's been crafted consciously and creatively. Plus, if you're feeling generous, you can even stock up your gift with a couple of their favourite bottles and some picnic essentials.
GIGI & TOM SEA SNAIL ICE BUCKET, $49.95
With a sea snail keeping a celebratory bottle of sparkling cool, this one's for the ocean-loving oenophile in your life. Unique, summery and chic, Gigi & Tom have you sorted with its Resin Sea Snail Centrepiece ($49.95). Practical? Tick. Fun? Tick. Meets the criteria for a winning gift. Watch them swoon.
For the wine lover in your life, your best spot to start is with Handpicked Wines. Head to the website to get your gifting sorted.
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