We've seen plenty of trends, styles, and drinks reemerge years after they were first popular, but none quite as old as mead. A modern take on the ancient drink, HoneyMaker Mead ($TBA) is still made from honey, clear, pure water and a proprietary yeast strain, but is available in a variety of flavors, including Lavender, Blueberry, Semi Sweet, Dry Hopped, and the ever popular Elderberry. Gold chalice not included, but highly recommended.
Feeling a little less than chipper after last night's drinking escapades? Start your recovery off right with some Charleston Bloody Mary Mix ($10). Available in Original and Bold & Spicy varieties, these tasty mixes include a number of premium Lowcountry ingredients, including Worcestershire, sea salt, ground peppercorn, tarragon, thyme, rice vinegar, habanero mash, and celery seed. Just add vodka.
If the best part of waking up is Folgers in your cup, consider spoiling yourself with a Wrecking Ball Coffee Subscription ($115). This high-end, six-month subscription provides you with a new 12 oz. bag of freshly-roasted beans each month, letting you savor whatever flavor the merry band of coffee-roasting geeks at Wrecking Ball are most enjoying at the moment.
It's not hard to find a place to get a bloody mary, but finding a good one? A far more difficult task. Apparently, so did the guys at Stu's, who you might know from their Spicy Garlic Pickles. The result is Stu's This Is Bloody Mary ($8). This powerful seasoning is designed to be used in concert with tomato juice and vodka to create a bold, flavorful drink that will send your celery stalk running for cover.
The soda aisle at the local grocery store can seem overwhelming, until you realize that it's basically just a bunch of variations on the same themes. UFlavor ($TBA) is out to change all that. This upstart Indiana-based company lets you pick the ingredients to create your very own soda, complete with a custom label that you upload yourself. Whether you want flavored water, an energy drink, a soda, or a tea, they have you covered — no word yet on a "create your own beer" option.
Wait, what? Doughnuts, bacon, maple syrup, and beer? Indeed, that's the potentially lethal combination found in Rogue Voodoo Doughnut Bacon Maple Ale ($13). Developed in collaboration with Portland's famous Voodoo Doughnut, this unique brew contains an assortment of odd ingredients, including, yes, bacon and maple syrup from one of Voodoo's signature treats. It's almost as if Rogue is daring you to drink one for breakfast.
Unless you're a straight-edge teetotaler, odds are you're going to have a few drinks at least a few times a year. To help keep you from feeling like hell the next day, drink some Mercy ($12). Unlike normal sports drinks, Mercy offers up a specific, unique blend of amino acids, antioxidants and vitamins to help boost your body's natural defenses, eliminate free radicals and nasty by-products, all without caffeine.
Absolut's well-known bottle is one of the most iconic shapes in the liquor business, and this holiday season it's getting the recognition it deserves. Designed by the celebrated Swedish pair Magnus Skogsberg and Mimmi Smart, the Absolut Crystal Pinstripe Bottle ($1,500) is hand-blown, -cut, and -engraved using high-quality crystal from the Reijmyre glassworks, limited to just 800 individually numbered and signed pieces, and arrives in a handmade chest lined with pinstripe fabric — which inspired the bottle's design — along with two matching tumblers. Oh, and if the shiny clear style is too upbeat for you, there's the Absolut Crystal Pinstripe Black Bottle ($10,000), which is basically the same thing, only black, and limited to just ten units.
Normally when the words "burn" and "liquor" are used together, it isn't a good thing — but Southern Comfort Fiery Pepper ($17) is here to challenge that notion. By mixing the well-known lime partner with Tabasco chilies and other natural pepper flavors, SoCo has created a literally intoxicating mixture of bite and smooth drinkability that's sure to demand a new variant of bloody mary in which to use it. Just consume wisely — SoCo isn't known for its fresh breath powers, and neither is Tobasco, so mixed together they might make for some eyebrow-searing exhalations. [Scouted by Brock]
Iced coffee is a great way to cool down in the heat of the summer, but if you'd tried making it, you know it's a little more complicated than brewing a normal pot and waiting on it to cool down. Grady's Cold Brew ($15) is an iced coffee concentrate that comes ready to mix with your choice of milk, cold water, and sugar, giving you eight cups of icy deliciousness from each bottle, no specialized brewing equipment required.
Your average Red Bull mixing shot maker it is not. Painstakingly handcrafted in small volumes, Absolut Elyx ($TBA) is a new super-premium vodka from the Swedish spirit maker, distilled in a vintage rectification still, with columns, pumps and hand-forged pipes all in copper, with additional copper packets which are used to purify the vodka, and made from the finest Råbelöf-sourced wheat and water from the company's own natural underground springs, resulting in a drink that's silky and smooth, with subtle floral and fruit flavors. Drink it neat, on the rocks, or use it to create great-tasting classic cocktails.
Prefer your home brews to be a little less alcoholic and a little more kid-friendly? This Root Beer Brewing Kit ($27) can get you on your way. It includes two packets of flavor crystals, one bottle of root beer mix, a packet of no-rinse cleanser, one packet of yeast, four plastic one-liter bottles, four bottle caps and gaskets, four labels — although we recommend making your own — one funnel, and one instruction guide. Vanilla ice cream for homemade floats is optional.