What You Should Get “me” for Christmas

A couple of weeks ago, we were driving along in the car, and my wife asked me what she should get me for Christmas. We have been together for who knows how many years, but she asks me this question every year. And every year I answer the same way:

“A bottle of wine.”

As soon as this comes out of my mouth, her response is immediate and consistent:

“Yeah, right! Like I am going to get you a bottle of wine.

We both then laugh and I struggle to give her a bit of a list of ideas (I think this year I told her socks, a new bike helmet, and, well, some other stuff). A couple of days later I started to think about the question more broadly.

We have had people over to the house on countless occasions and many of them have stated that they would never bring wine over to our house due to my “attitude toward wine” (someone actually said that once–do I really have an “attitude toward wine”?). That always made me scratch my head and ponder a bigger question:

“What gift does one give a Wine Snob?”

Of course, I do not consider myself a Wine Snob, so I am exploring this topic for those out there who might know a Wine Snob and are a bit perplexed this time of year (no need to thank me for this public service).

As far as I am concerned, there are essentially three categories of gifts that you can give the Wine Snob:

Wine Accessories

There are countless wine accessories, but I will touch on a few.

Wine Glasses: Wine Geeks break wine glasses all the time. All the time. One can never have too many wine glasses, but one can have too many crappy wine glasses. Go by the old adage here: less is more.

A few of my corkscrews.

A few of my corkscrews.

Corkscrew: Wine Snobs are, by nature, collectors, and as such along with copious amounts of wine, they tend to collect corkscrews, too. Similar to wine glasses, though, Wine Snobs have a ton of horrible corkscrews, but good ones can be expensive. What is certain, is that the Wine Snob does not want one of those “butterfly” corkscrews (unless the Wine Snob is also a cycling Geek, in which case the Campagnolo butterfly corkscrew is über cool [and über expensive]). Stick to the waiter’s corkscrew and you should be fine.

Coolest corkscrew I own

The coolest corkscrew I own

Wine Stem Charms: Wine stem charms are a really cool idea and useful in theory. The problem? Any self respecting Wine Snob already has a ton of them. Adding to the problem is that the Snob is so focused on getting his drink on, that he completely forgets about using them. He/she rarely puts his glass down either, so there is really no need in the Snob’s mind to identify his glass since it’s the one glued to his hand.

Aerators: Another very cool idea, but also one that has certainly been addressed by any Wine Snob that is worth his sediment. Like the wine charms, the Snob is usually far too impatient to take the time to aerate the wine (I have a few aerators and can not remember the last time I used them, and  I am not even a Snob).

Gag Gifts

Just like with just about any obsession, there are a bunch of gag gifts that are available for wine. “Gag” gifts are supposed to be funny, but who is the one laughing? The giver or the receiver? Well, if anyone is laughing (other than the merchant), it is the person giving the gift. The recipient tries to be gracious, but they are really thinking either “Huh?” or “What the heck is this?”

The first gag gift I ever got was from my sister. When I was a kid, I was obsessed with the Rubik’s Cube, but I could never solve the top level. My younger sister thought buying me a Rubik’s Cube Smasher (a huge plastic paddle) that I could use to beat the crap out of the cube was a great gift (ignore for the moment that she could have bought a book on how to solve the Cube for less money).

To this day, we have never let her forget about it.

There are several types of Gag Wine Gifts (for example, I have a pair of never worn, but super sweet polyester socks with a Santa drinking wine straight out of the bottle– very classy): aprons, t-shirts, hats with witty sayings (“Wine a Little”, “If Found Please Take to the Nearest Winery”, “Love the Wine You’re With”); Redneck Wine Glasses; and of course, the Wine Rack Flask Bra (I think there is a pun in there somewhere). Take it from me (I know a few Snobs), the Wine Snob really does not understand any of these “gifts”.

There is also the box/jug/Mad Dog 20/20 option. The problem with this? You will never be the first one that has given this “gift” to a Wine Snob. If you are, then he/she is not a true Wine Snob. Sorry, but it is true. Before becoming a bona fide Wine Snob, one needs to have received at least one box (preferably Franzia) and at least one jug (Carlo Rossi is quite popular).

To date, I have received three of these as "gifts".

To date, I have received three of these as “gifts”.


It seems crazy to even mention this, but above all the other gifts, the Wine Snob in your life will LOVE getting a bottle of wine as a gift.


There is a difference between a 'critter" and an "animal". this is the latter.

There is a difference between a ‘critter” and an “animal”. This is the latter.

The wine could be corked. Oxidized. Just plain bad. But I promise you, the Wine Snob will be over the moon if you actually get him some wine. The Snob will not judge you about the quality of the wine. After all you didn’t make it yourself, did you? (If the answer to that is “yes” all bets are off.) Just try and remember that “Critters” on a label are usually a bad sign (with a few notable exceptions).

So in sum, the best gift you can ever give a Wine Snob is a bottle of wine. No need to feel intimidated, just grab a bottle. Really. Any old bottle will do–the Wine Snob loves to drink, evaluate, and ponder all vinous creations and you would be giving him more fodder.

There is one gift that is better than a bottle of wine, however.

A Magnum of wine.

Trust me.


About the drunken cyclist

I have been an occasional cycling tour guide in Europe for the past 20 years, visiting most of the wine regions of France. Through this "job" I developed a love for wine and the stories that often accompany the pulling of a cork. I live in Houston with my lovely wife and two wonderful sons.
This entry was posted in Humor, Wine and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

41 Responses to What You Should Get “me” for Christmas

  1. seetinarun says:

    I might just be brave enough to give a bottle of wine to some of the wine enthusiasts on my list now! Proud to say that I have never given one of the afore-listed gag gifts. Yikes.


  2. aFrankAngle says:

    I hope you don’t receive the appropriate value of Franzia by mail.


  3. tomsimard says:

    Really enjoyed that “attitude toward wine” line. Of course, we all know you’re not a wine snob,
    just someone who wants to share your enthusiasm. No better thing in the world.


  4. There’s a whole book in this idea–why are people intimidated out of giving the very gift that the recipient most wants?

    The idea that someone is a wine or food or music (or whatever) “snob” is really a misperception (most of the time). Just because someone is good at something (evaluating and appreciating wine, or cooking and appreciating a meal, or making/appreciating music) does not make him a snob. A snob is an ungrateful, conceited jerk. Most of the bonafide snobs I’ve met aren’t good at anything at all, except being snobs.


  5. Fun post, Jeff. Helpful, too. Really! Thanks. 🙂


  6. shonnako says:

    Agreed! Best gift ever. Food, booze or experiences. Wine gift-wise, I’ll either find something I’ll love or something I’ll never want to try again. Win/win. Current go to: La Fiole – Cotes du Rhone 2010 (sweet price point, simple and delish). Thanks for the like on me post — appreciated.


  7. dwdirwin says:

    My husband would consider a wine stem charm a gag gift- he hates those things-hmm, gives me an idea for his stocking…


  8. linnetmoss says:

    Excellent post, with the bonus photo of your corkscrew collection. I am in awe! I’ve got two simple waiter’s corkscrews. The next time someone asks what to get me, I know the answer. But I agree re the gift of wine. It is always welcome!


  9. You spoke my mind. Thanks for that!!


  10. chef mimi says:

    I don’t think I ever put my glass down, except to pour more wine. Hhmmmm, I might be a wine snob! And I do need more glasses.. Great post.


  11. Holli says:

    I have no idea how I came to ‘unfollow’ you…I hadn’t realized this happened until this morning. Here I had thought you were on hiatus, probably in France drinking wine! I love the list. So true about the wine glasses, although I tend to blame everyone else for the fact that I don’t have a full set. I love the idea of wine trinkets but don’t feel the need to use them as I never put the glass down. Truthfully, I wouldn’t really care whose glass I was drinking from. Also, I don’t see the need for a wine stopper. Cheers!


  12. The Franzia is high class, I once received a bottle of Boone’s Farm in the past five years as a gift, I graciously accepted it. One drinker’s Screaming Eagles is another drinker’s Carlo Rossi (did I really say that). I just received four bottles of home-made “Dago Red.” So Merry Christmas and may your glass never be empty.


  13. rhchatlien says:

    I don’t exactly consider myself on your level as a “wine snob,” but I will attest to joy over a bottle of wine. A good friend want to congratulate me on the publication of my novel, so rather than sending flowers, she sent three bottles of French wine. I was delighted.


  14. “There is one gift that is better than a bottle of wine, however.

    A Magnum of wine.”

    Hear, hear !!!


  15. Pingback: Sunday Read: What you should get “me” for Christmas | the winegetter

  16. It’s true. All a wine lover really wants is more wine! And large format bottles are so much FUN!! My favorite is the Methuselah. Because it’s fun to say Methuselah. And the bonus of large format bottles: instead of going to the gym, you can just rearrange your cellar! Salud!!


  17. What a wonderful wealth of ideas! This just about crosses everyone off my Christmas list. Cheers!


  18. flippenblog says:

    You are describing my husband who is also “not a Wine Snob” like you. And the glass has to be THIN


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