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Illustrations: Montevarious


et's Get Crafty

Hops Canary

But wait: remember how so many of your friends and relatives have been discovering craft beer lately? What if their love of beer could help somehow? Relax. What's Brewing columnist—and beer gift expert — Lynn McIlwee (of is here to walk you through some creative ideas for your craft-loving friends and family. As Lynn says, "If you’re looking for a gift for the beer-loving person in your life, here are some ideas that go beyond the usual".

Don't end up like this. Let us help you source holiday gifts that have the right kind of appeal.

creative beer gifts

getting started

Do you dread the pressure to come up with nifty gift ideas every holiday season? You're not alone.


Hop Pendants & Earrings Creations (like these, by beloved, pioneering BC artisan A. Brown Designs) are hard to find online, but try these Etsy and CafePress links, especially MagsBonham. In Canada, there's Mashed In, and Vancouver artist Luna Negra.

Etsy is the perfect web site to peruse for one-off gifts.

Beer Muse Wooden Beer Crafts If you have a custom beer/hop gift in mind, Beer Muse might be the person to create it for you. After purchasing some wooden hop earrings ($18) from Beer Muse on Etsy, I contacted her about some custom pieces. She quickly made me wooden hop cufflinks ($16) for my husband, which are now available on her site.

Bath Accessories Did you know: when one purchases a hop shower curtain ($65) from Concord Collections on CafePress, one needs matching 3-inch wooden hop cone shower hooks from Beer Muse.

Wall Art


After we saw some beer-related chalk art at Sierra Nevada in Asheville VA, we connected with local Steveston chalk artist Chalkstar, who created a custom piece that incorporated our garden hop varietals, descriptors, and the inner workings of a hop cone, and our name (Three Dawgs Bierhaus).

Photo Enlargements Does your significant other take a lot of photos of beer, hops, or breweries? Of course they do. Find a good, unique photo and blow it up. Cost for 16 x 20 " might be about $20 per frame, available at many retail outlets.


Holiday Food & Drink

seasonal Beverages

Custom Gift Baskets! We’re making gift-giving easy with custom beer baskets. Have a beer style or brewery in mind? Our beer team will work with you to put together the perfect gift, or pick up one of our ready-to-crack sets.

BC Brewery Advent Calendars! Count down with your favourite local brewery calendars like the Phillips Snowcase or Red Racer/Parallel 49's Great White Wonder collab, because nothing says Holidays quite like 24 beers in 24 days. Browse the Legacy online shop

Granville Island Small Batch Cellar Series With GIB's small batch cellar series gift pack, featuring Doppelbock, Japanese Biere De Garde, Belgian Quad and Barley Wine, craft beer lovers are guaranteed to be impressed. This pack is suitable for cellar aging up to 3 years, allowing its flavors to deepen and further develop. Learn more at

Tip: try beer-flavoured goodies for the foodie on your list. - WB Columnist Kim Lawton

Christmas Cocktail Spirits Crafted locally in Cowichan, Merridale’s artisan spirits — with their distinctive flavour and smooth finish — are the perfect gift for the cocktail connoisseurs on your list. Ask for them at private liquor stores or at the farm in Cobble Hill. Learn more

Beer isn't just for drinking; you can eat it, too. When in Port Moody, pick up some beer-flavoured ice cream at Rocky Point. Try Penticton's Cannery Brewing for beer infused mustard, syrups, jellies and beer soaps. Your local brewery will have more great ideas like these. Pictured: Spinnakers' Vinegars

Feeling crafty? Check out my easy stepby-step guide to making your own Super Awesome Beer Advent Calendar™. - Lynn

Foamer's Folly Gift Pack Set of 4 Juicy Double Dry-hopped White IPAs: the 3 ghosts of (rebrewed) batches past of original Juicy Double w/ Strawberry, Juicy Double ll w/ Mango and Juicy Double lll w/ Kiwi Fruit, exclusively available together with the newest Juicy Double lV w/ Pomegranate. Learn more

Strange Fellows: the Fellowship

Looking for a really exclusive beer gift? A $200 "Fellowship" membership offers "aficionados with a taste for extraordinary beer the opportunity to receive rare, barrel-aged & exclusory Limited Release Beers." Learn more


TOURing & TASTING A gift card for a brewery tour is a super way to treat a loved one to a great day or night out on the town (especially if you get to come along). So are taphouse tastings with lots of beer choices, and early bird beer festival tickets! Vancouver Brewery Tours Gift Certificates! What to get for the beer lover who has all the "stuff"? How about the ultimate craft beer experience with Vancouver Brewery Tours. Gift Certificates are available for purchase in our online shop and make the perfect holiday gift. Shop Online

Canadian Craft Tours Give the gift of a "Locally crafted experience" with Canadian Craft Tours. Brewery & Winery tours are a great gift for that special someone who has everything.

Cheers Cowichan Tours Getting there is half the fun! Experience the sights & flavours of the Cowichan Valley Wine and Craft Brewery Region! Stagettes, Stags, wedding/event transportation on Vancouver Island. Corporate day trips/staff rewards, gift certificates. Friendly local drivers, cozy/fun buses with daily tours, year round.

More BC Beer Tours

Don't forget BC's other craft beer tour operators in your area, such as:

Victoria: West Coast Brewery Tours

Nanaimo: Vancouver Island Expeditions

Penticton: Grape Friends, Hoodoo Adventures

Vancouver : Vancouver Beer and Wine Tours, Taste Vancouver Food Tours

CRAFT Beer Market: Gift Card Christmas Bonus! It’s the most wonderful time of the year…to give beer! This holiday season, for every $50 worth of gift cards purchased, get a $10 bonus gift card. For every $100 in cards purchased, get a $20 bonus. Buy them at the restaurant or Shop Online

This new festival, unique in Canada, will bring craft breweries and coffee roasters together on February 24th 2018 to celebrate two of Vancouver's favourite beverages. Tickets on sale December 16th. Save $7 via early access registration

The What's Brewing Beer Caddy Where do lucky people at beer festivals get those amazing handsfree adjustable tasting glass holders you've seen? From us, now that we have them, just in time for stuffing that Christmas stocking. Only $10. Free Shipping within BC for online orders. See back page for more info. To order:

Victoria Beer Week: Discount Code! Tickets to Victoria Beer Week are the ideal gift for that beer lover on your Christmas list. And they've made it even easier for you, by offering $5 off on most of their events. to get this sweet deal, use promo code WHATSBREWING Tickets on sale December 5th

Fully adjustable; holds any size of glass from any festival

Vancouver Craft Beer Week: Early Bird!

Okanagan Fest of Ale: Early Bird!

Check out the Super Early Bird pricing and new VIP ticket packages for the 9th annual VCBW Festival coming up June 2nd & 3rd, 2018. Tickets prices starting at: Single Day $29, Weekend Pass $45 (very limited). Early Bird Tickets on sale December 1st

Work your way on to the nice list this year with tickets for a Weekend Getaway to the Okanagan Fest of Ale under the tree. Weekend pass only $42 until Jan 15, 2018. Early Bird Tickets on sale December 1st


Books & reading

What's Brewing!

Four issues home delivery Like to read What’s Brewing as a hardcopy? Don’t blame you; it’s fabulous in its glorious glossy printed format. Subscribe to home delivery of our quarterly magazine Receive 4 issues of What’s Brewing, including postage. $20 per year (4 quarterly issues).

From our 2017 book reviews Ted Child reviews books for What's Brewing. Here are a few items Ted reviewed in the past year, as well as links to other book coverage in What's Brewing. Atlas Of Beer

National Geographic

My Beer Year

Lucy Burningham

Oh Beautiful Beer

Harvey Shepard

Comic Book Story of Beer

Jonathan Hennessey & Mike Smith

The Growler You shouldn't be surprised that we read and recommend BC's Craft Beer Guide. Subscribe to home delivery of The Growler for even less than we're charging! $18.99 per year (4 quarterly issues).

Homegrown beer books Lonely Planet gets Joe's nod Let Lonely Planet’s local experts help you plan your next beer-soaked voyage. They’ve got pretty much the whole world covered, from Addis Ababa to the Yarra Valley. British Columbia is well represented, too, with Vancouver singled out as “the venue for much of the best beer being brewed in Canada today.” - Joe Wiebe Lonely Planet Global Beer Tour

Here's a few "Made in Canada" and "written in BC" craft beer books to check out, including some written by past and present What's Brewing contributors. Pocket Beer, 3rd edition

Stephen Beaumont & Tim Webb

Brewing Revolution

Frank Appleton

Craft Beer Revolution

Joe Wiebe

How to Drink Beer in Mandarin

Rick Green

Fine Old Ales & Barley Wine

Philip Atkinson

150 Years of Canadian Beer Labels

Lawrence C. Sherk

What the Heck is a GROWLER?

Graham Harrop

Learning & Appreciation

If you’re looking for some education to pair with your beer, there are a number of choices. - Lynn

Join BC's pre-eminent beer enthusiast's society for comradeship, education and insider discounts. CAMRA BC has five established branches. Individual Membership: $25/year. Find the one near you:

The CiceroneⓇ Certification Program has a number of nerdy gift ideas at your disposal. You can purchase a gift card for any of their study materials, courses, and exams, such as the Certified Beer Server (USD $69) exam.

Or how about a homebrew club membership? Brewing is easy and a great way to learn about beer. See our list of BC homebrew groups in Brew Club Corner.

They also have a number of study materials, from beer style flashcards ($15) and course books ($99) to off-flavour sensory kits ($149 to $749).

Vanbrewers annual membership: $30

Need some more material to pass the CiceroneⓇ exam? Beer Scholar Study Guides will provide you with real practice exams, a study guide, and flashcards.

Serious Beer, taught by Chester Carey, Canada's first Certified Cicerone®, is held at the Pacific Institute of Culinary Arts and offers a broad spectrum of beer style history, brewing mechanics, beer tasting, analyzing off-flavours, and food/beer pairing. Next session: Level 2, January 2018. $750

KPU's Brewing and Brewery Operations program is for people that would like a career in commercial brewing. Visit the website at

Malt or hops-embedded business card holders from Mashed In $20

Personalized Growlers!

At Home: Bar & Brewing Make your home brew stand out with custom bottle caps ($0.14+ each) and bottle labels ($0.60+ each) from Bottlemark.

Amazing custom engraved refillables from Vancouver's Sigil & Growler

Taps & Handles For the home brewer in your life, you can have a custom tap handle made. There are many options around $50 to $70 including Beer Designs, Mashed In, and locally, Smooth Edge Design. This Stainless Steel Intertap Faucet has a modular, threaded spout which can fit a variety of different attachments including a growler filler or a stout spout. $45 at Beyond The Grape

for Serious Beer Nerds


Glassware Collection! It's hard to go wrong with glassware as a gift, especially if your beer lover has less than 100 of them already. Support your local BC brewery by picking up their branded shaker glass. But you can go so far beyond that by collecting the many shapes and sizes available to match different beers. Then get your beer lover an affordable shelf to keep them in at IKEA (from $50).


Who needs this? Who would want to be seen wearing one of these at a beer festival? Here’s who: •• People who eat things •• People who own smartphones, or other things that require hands •• People who use washrooms •• People who don't love to put their glass down on things in those washrooms •• People who don't have a well-trained butler present at all times •• People who would love to never drop or lose their taster glass again •• People who possess two hands or less •• Generally anyone who attends beer festivals and is not an octopus

Does that sound like you, or someone you know? Now you can now own this craft beer accessory for only $10. And we’re offering free shipping within Canada! WHATSBREWING.CA/BEERCADDY

Now you can own the Beer Caddy! $10 including tax & shipping within Canada.

Some people try to make their own, but handmade and crocheted beer lanyards fit only one size glass and soak up sticky beer. Don’t spend time or money on those when you can have the professional, one-size-fits-all Beer Caddy.

Features •• •• •• •• ••

Completely adjustable! Holds any size glass from tiny taster to pint Classic black; matches any outfit Reversible strap: plain or branded sides Water resistant polyester, wipes or rinses clean Strong, reliable velcro holder

Benefits •• •• •• •• ••

You will never drop or lose your taster glass at a beer festival again Busy beer pourers will never mix up your glass with other people's People will admire your beer festival sense Makes an amazing birthday surprise, holiday gift or stocking stuffer Shows off your support for What’s Brewing, who in turn support BC’s Craft Beer Movement

What's Brewing Gift Guide 2017 Inspiration and/or perspiration acknowledgements go to: Navin Autar Wendy Barron

Ted Child Emile Compion Kim Lawton Ligia Margaritescu Lynn McIlwee Khatira Omar Dave Smith Ivana Smith Joe Wiebe

Illustrations: Montevarious


ave you ever seen those lucky people at beer festivals with a lanyard that holds their tasting glass? What’s Brewing is proudly your source (and the only source in Canada, that we’re aware of) for these handy beer festival accessories.

Profile for What's Brewing BC

BC Craft Beer Holiday Gift Guide 2017  

What's Brewing magazine of BC, Canada presents its 1st Annual Craft Beer Holiday Gift Guide. Possibly the first of its kind anywhere, this b...

BC Craft Beer Holiday Gift Guide 2017  

What's Brewing magazine of BC, Canada presents its 1st Annual Craft Beer Holiday Gift Guide. Possibly the first of its kind anywhere, this b...


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