It’s that time of year where your social calendar fills up with office parties, drinks with friends, and other social gatherings. Emily Post will always tell you to never show up to a party empty handed. Giving a hostess gift is just good manners, but it doesn’t have to be stressful. If you search the internet there are tons of websites prompting ideas for unique hostess presents, but I think there’s really no point in sniffing every single candle at Yankee Candles to pick the right one for your friend…it is literally not worth the headache. Everyone likes booze, and there is no such thing as having too many bottles of vino hanging around at a party. So be a good friend this holiday season: bring a bottle of wine, show up 15 minutes after the party starts…oh, and look fantastic.
Here are some of my favorite wines to gift this year for any budget:
$10 – $20 Wines:
Cava is the new champagne. It hails from Spain, while the flavor profiles are often very similar, cava tends to be a little lower in price. This particular bottle of sparkling has tons of crisp, bright flavors for the right price!
Pine Ridge is a recognizable name that is sure to impress, and the varietals are a departure from the norm, which will set your gift apart from the others. The Chenin Blanc and Viognier blend goes great with food, and is it a sure-fire party pleaser!
This is one of the first red wines that I fell in love with. It’s an 85% Petit Syrah blend that offers a full bodied red with low tannins, rich flavor, and lingering finish. And while I know you’re not supposed to judge a wine by it’s label, but this one is pretty great and is sure to stand out!
I can’t say enough good things about all of the Alma Negra wines. Their red blend is jammy and delicious, but their brut rosé stands out as the perfect celebratory gift. The flavors are to die for: fresh strawberry, tart raspberry, and who doesn’t love pink bubbles in their glass?!
$30 – $50 wines:
Rombauer is another known name, and brings a certain cache when it comes to hostess gifts.
Your friend who is a chardonnay lover is going to find that this wine hits every note: peach and melon, vanilla and toasted nuts. It’s a classic California, buttery chardonnay.
This is probably my favorite champagne. We drank this at our wedding, (see photo of the classiest bride below) and it’s my favorite special occasion bottle of bubbles. The flavors of crisp green apple shine, it’s dry and vibrant. This wine absolutely stands up to some of the more popular champagne names, and offers an incredible product at an even better value.
Is there anything better than a big, bold, California cab? Especially in the winter, this wine warms your soul. You can taste every bit of the California soil in this wine, and I love it: eucalyptus, menthol, cedar, and dark fruits. This wine is made in the famous Stags Leap District, and will make a memorable and very special holiday hostess gift.
$75 – $100 wines:
If you show up to a party with a bottle of Taittinger, well then, the party has really begun. This champagne is so rich and creamy. Unlike the fruitiness of the Schramsberg, Taittinger wine delivers flavors of vanilla and brioche, it’s earthy and robust. It’s delicious and fancy, which is exactly why champagne is my drink of choice.
Jarvis is a famous name amongst wine lovers, and the person who gets this wine as a gift will probably love you forever. This wine is deep and oaky, with dark red fruits and hints of baking spice. The richness is sure to make anyone’s holiday merry and bright, and you’ll be a permanent fixture on the gift receiver’s “nice list