The Weirdly Specific Wine Gift Guide

There are many gift guides that have landed in my inbox recently but none of them quite do justice to the uniqueness of my friends, family, and acquaintances. What if your circle is not average? Maybe this gift guide can help. If not, we're around to talk through the most challenging individuals on your gift list.
For full descriptions, click on the items below.

For the survival reality TV contestant that just reentered society.

Everyone knows that returning from an extended period of isolation in the wilderness requires some adjustment. In my experience, most people who film themselves on the brink of starvation and madness in the desolate landscape of Saskatchewan for the reality show 'Alone' are fans of Pinot Noir. This Burgundy from the Hautes Cotes de Beaune is elegant enough to remind them of the finer things that civilization produces without being too decadent to send them back into the woods. It will also pair nicely with the foraged berries and roast Prospect Park squirrel they'll be serving for Christmas.
Image of Domaine des Queues Rouges Hautes Cotes du Beaune 2020
Domaine des Queues Rouges Hautes Cotes du Beaune 2020
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For your cat sitter neighbor who briefly dated Andy Taylor of Duran Duran. 

 Your neighbor Wendy has had an interesting life. She stopped doing hard drugs in 1990 after a night carrying around a paper bag full of handguns given to her by the drummer in her band who was a coke dealer for the Russian mob. Lucky for you, she is obsessed with cats—including your temperamental Queen Diane—and she only leaves town occasionally to perform with a Portuguese Heart tribute band called “Coração.” Yep, Barracuda is the same in Portuguese. Honestly she’ll drink whatever you give her, but this delicious declassified Côtes du Rhône from Eric Texier has a cat on it and is called ‘Crazy Cat.’ It’s the perfect way to say "Queen Diane only eats rabbit now, please avoid the lobster at all costs. Thanks, Wendy!"
Image of Eric Texier 'Chat Fou' VdF Rouge 2022
Eric Texier 'Chat Fou' VdF Rouge 2022
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For your woo-woo mom. 

Why is your mom so obsessed with crystals? Nobody knows but it seems to have started in 1992 when she was working at B Dalton in the City Center Mall and a store called Natural Wonders opened across the atrium. You can kind of handle the wind chime cassettes she still plays but the judgmental attitude towards your decision not to use cloth diapers really wears you out. Let’s face it, this Champagne is mostly for you, but the fact that it was made a man who has specific crystals he pairs with his wines will at least give you something to talk about other than the secret connection between 5G cell towers and Covid. Maybe you can enjoy a glass in the hot tub if she bothered to clean it. Worst case, it will pair pretty nicely with ancient grains and vegan cheese.
Image of Benoit Marguet Champagne "Shaman" Brut Nature Rose 2020
Benoit Marguet Champagne "Shaman" Brut Nature Rose 2020
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For Darek. 

Your partner’s brother is a very intense sommelier who lives in Boston and seems to already know everything about wine and always politely ignores the bottles you typically bring to holiday gatherings in Newton. Instead of giving up, you are determined to make him pay attention to you. If it turns out he’s already had this stunning Portuguese white blend of Bical, Cerceal, and Maria Gomes from 1990 then f*#% it, you tried.
Image of Luis Pato Vinhas Velhas Branco 1990
Luis Pato Vinhas Velhas Branco 1990
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For You. 

It’s Christmas and you’re the assistant general manager of a natural wine shop in North Brooklyn. Your colleagues give you crap for not liking wines over 13% alcohol and finding Grenache boring. But you came to wine after working in coffee and loving funky, acidic, natural processed coffees and that’s just what you like, is that not OK? You spent all morning blasting Q and Not U while cleaning the apartment after your roommates left the sink running into a pile of week old dishes. Your reserves are spent. It’s time to treat yourself to the bottle that finally convinced you people who were into Pinot Noir weren’t just bandwagon followers and enjoy it with the Norwich terriers you’ll be dog sitting for the next week.
Image of Cameron 'Abbey Ridge' Pinot Noir 2021
Cameron 'Abbey Ridge' Pinot Noir 2021
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