Christmas. It’s two months tomorrow, people. Eight weeks to uncrimp the tinsel, get the sprouts in, and singe the ends of your fingers untangling those tree lights. Beer fans do have one ounce of solace amidst the festive madness, however – all the Christmas and winter ales will be hitting the shelves and hostelry handpulls; ease your way down into the celebratory madness with a few plum porters or twangy Belgian spiced ales. Whilst you’re soaking yourself in festive cheer, though, spare a thought for your nearest and dearest. What choices do they have, attempting to buy Christmas presents for beer lovers?
There is always an easy way out, of course – everyone loves a mixed case from their favourite brewery. But these purchases are usually fairly hefty (both literally and on the wallet). Is there something smaller, more stocking-filler friendly? Buzzfeed put up a list of twenty ‘fun’ gifts for beer lovers, and just before the Guinness soap (would you really want to smell like Guinness all day?), in position number 10, is something that until now had totally escaped me. The Beer Holster. The [quote] ‘perfect gift for any guy that enjoys a cold brew!’. Well, thanks to the good people at Splash Brands in Düsseldorf, I am now THAT GUY.
One of the immediate boasts about the Beer Holster is that it’s hand-made from 100% leather – and it certainly feels like it. I’ve had wallets that I’ve used for a decade that weren’t made as well (in fact, pretty much every wallet I’ve ever had has been inferior). Held together with metal rivets, looped through the belt [‘belt not included’] it seems to fit reasonably well, and does make you feel a little like a cowboy. A slightly ridiculous-looking, beer-toting cowboy standing in your kitchen, but a cowboy nonetheless.
The bumph states that the prime selling point is that the holster enables you to ‘Draw and retract your beer with only one hand’ – we can all agree those two-handed beers we all drink can become troublesome after a while – and that it can be used practically anywhere; ‘Ideal for barbeques, parties, stag dos, picnics, nights out with the boys and DIY jobs around the house’. Well, once my other half had stopped laughing, we agreed that it could work quite well at a BBQ, my DIY skills are bad enough when sober, and that if I ever wore it to a party, she would leave immediately.
One possible downside is that it only fits ‘regular’ beer bottles or cans. Apparently 500ml bottles can get in, but it would be quite a squeeze. The last thing you’d want is a jammed holster – particularly if you were at a party and another beer cowboy turned up to muscle in on territory and take fancy to your lady folk. “You lookin’ at me, [and my holstered bottle of] Punk [IPA]?’. You certainly couldn’t fit a 750ml or American bomber in there, unless you (carefully) decanted into two (cleaned) plastic bottles, and dual-holstered those bad boys. “Are you feelin’ Luckie [Ales Russian Imperial Stout] ?”.
So, are there any alternative Christmas gifts for the beer-lover? Along the same lines, there’s the belt-buckle beer holder, a kind of flip down tray for your beer, only attached to your groin (what could go wrong?). There’s now also a nifty bottle opener remote control, for the true couch potato. I can’t help thinking, though, a useful idea might be a beer version of those plastic clips that people attach to their plates at buffets, so they can hold a wine glass. Something that can clip a 330ml tasting glass to a smartphone, giving you hands-free status update capability, on the go. Over to you, Düsseldorf…
Thanks to Nicole at Splash Brands for the holster, which can be purchased on Amazon here…