Miles away from home (whether in the wilderness, on the water, or on the road), there are plenty of luxuries you can do without, but a good cup of strong coffee in the morning isn't one of them. With the Poler x Stumptown Camp Coffee Kit ($125) you'll never have to. This kit includes an AeroPress coffee maker with filters, two enamel coffee mugs, a Porlex Burr coffee grinder, a 12-ounce bag of Holler Mountain coffee beans, and more — all packaged in a custom carrying case perfect for travel.
What is arguably the best summer cocktail, the gin and tonic, just got a little bit better, thanks to the Gin Wheel ($500). This Lazy Susan-style cabinet houses everything you need to mix up a proper drink — the center cutout holds your gin, doors on the top open to reveal an ice reservoir, a cutting board lifts off uncovering a garnish tray, and the side slides away revealing glasses, coasters, and bar tools. Includes four specialty glasses, four wood coasters, stainless steel ice tongs, a paring knife, a jigger, and a stirring spoon.
Making good coffee on the go can be a tough, messy process — hotel coffeemakers are some of the filthiest things on the planet, a french press is a pain to clean, and instant coffee is often pretty gross. With Caffe Borsa Hand Drip Coffee ($18), all you need is hot water and a mug to enjoy fresh drip coffee. Simply tear open the package, rip the top off the filter bag, and use the built-in supports to suspend it over your cup as you pour in hot water. Available in Colombia Supremo, Guatemala Antigua, and Sumatra Mandehling.
Most of the ciders you come across here in the states tend to be sickly-sweet affairs, making them less than ideal for pairing with food — or for drinking more than just one. Soon, however, you'll be able to escape that sad fate by picking up some Stella Artois Cidre ($TBA). Launching May 13 in four-packs and 24 oz. bottles, this new drink is drier and crisper than your normal cider, made with hand-picked apples grown in wine-friendly regions, and design to complement foods like chicken, fish, many cheeses, and even Asian foods.
Just because they have "breakfast" in the name doesn't mean you need to guzzle them before Noon. Although, on second thought, the flavors of Mama Walker's Breakfast Liqueurs ($13) are so perfectly suited to the waking hours that we might have to rethink our first statement. Coming in at a healthy 70 proof, these specialty spirits come in three IHOP-friendly flavors — Maple Bacon, Blueberry Pancake, and Glazed Donut — and are sure to liven up your morning, afternoon, or night.
It's been called a precursor to all fermented drinks, and there's a reason for that: it's easy to make. So easy, in fact, that you can do it at home. This Homemade Mead Kit ($60) includes everything you need to make your own honey wine, including a one-gallon fermentation jug with a metal lid, a temperature strip, a hydrometer, an airlock, a stopper, a siphoning tube, and enough yeast for five one-gallon batches. So everything but the honey, and the 4-6 weeks it takes to go from throwing stuff in a jug to tasty goodness.
When it comes to unusual spirits, it's hard to top Clear Creek Douglas Fir Eau de Vie ($46). Inspired by the rare Alsatian distillate Eau de Vie de Bourgeons de Sapin, this unique tree spirit is crafted by infusing hand-picked Douglas Fir buds into clear brandy, which gets re-distilled and re-infused before being strained and bottled. Said to smell and taste like the woods, you'll find notes of juniper, wood, vanilla, and Christmas tree in each sip. In other words, it's as close as you can get to drinking Pine-Sol without making a call to poison control — and we mean that in the best way possible. [Scouted by Eric]
Have a fantastic drink of coffee, no brewing required with Secret Squirrel Cold Brew Coffee ($20-$30). Brewed over 18-24 hour periods using nothing but filtered water and ground beans, this coffee concentrate can be mixed with hot or cold water or milk — whatever you like — and produces a smooth, rich coffee flavor. Available in two- or three-bottle packs; each bottle makes between 4-7 drinks, depending on the size and strength.
New to the world of absinthe? Get a jump-start on your green fairy education with these Absinthexplore Kits ($35-$80). Included in each set is either three or six 50ml vials of various high-end absinthes, as well as at least one spoon, all packaged in a handsome black box. The six-vial sets include two spoons while the three-vial sets include one; if you don't see a set that interests you, you can also build your own, with as may as three spoons packed in.
Whether you're looking to add to your knowledge of classic cocktails or are simply too lazy to mix them up yourself, this line of Experimental Series Antique Cocktails (£40-£50; roughly $65-$80) should be on your booze shopping list. Each bottle of pre-mixed Negroni, Manhattan, Rob Roy, and Martinez is made using rare spirits bottled in the '60s, '70s, and '80s, giving them a slightly more complex and mellow flavor than anything you'll get at the local bar, and thanks to the Handmade Cocktail Company's experience, you can ensure they'll be mixed properly. Cheers.
It doesn't get much better than this. The Macallan 60 Years Old in Lalique ($20,000) is not only one of the oldest and rarest (and tastiest) single malt whiskies ever bottled by the distillery, it's also one of the best looking when it's sitting on your shelf. That's because it lives inside an elegant Lalique IV decanter that pays homage to the small stills in which the spirit is made. It's topped off with a crystal stopper with a copper cap made from an old Macallan still. All of it comes in a sleek, high-polish black lacquer box.
Expand your coffee horizons beyond the standard Starbucks brew and try out a cup of Bowtruss Coffee ($11-$28). Their lineup of coffees includes everything from a standard Colombian to the chocolatey Ethiopia yirgacheffe — our personal favorite — with a little bit of everything in between. Should your current coffee pot not be up to the task of rendering these fine flavors, Bowtruss also offers a line of Japan-sourced Hario brewing solutions that will maximize the potential in pretty much any coffee you choose.