Eleven Boozy Colorado Christmas Gift Ideas — or to Keep for Your Own Holiday Table

Show off your state-made tipples this holiday season with a fine bottle of Colorado booze. After all, as the days of December count down, chances are you have plenty of holiday parties, get-togethers and fancy dinners to attend — what better offering to bring than something to imbibe. From wine to beer to liquor, there are plenty of local options to dive into. There's no shortage of quality, craft-made potables in the Centennial State; here are ten bottles (plus a bonus keg because, you know, happy holidays!) to get you started.
1) A.D. Laws Four Grain Straight Bourbon from Laws Whiskey House
Keep yourself and loved ones toasty this season with a bottle of four-grain bourbon. But what are these grains you may wonder? Well, to be labeled bourbon, the spirit must have at least 51-percent corn in the mix — and Laws also throws in rye, wheat and barley. The mixture balances out and produces a slightly smoky dram with leather and roasted-corn flavor and soothing vanilla undertones. Each bottle is packed by hand and numbered, so you know each time you buy this whiskey it's special. $80

2) Bubble Universe by The Infinite Monkey Theorem
Every holiday booze list needs at least one bottle of bubbles, and right now this urban winery offers one of the best options. Enter Bubble Universe, which the winery produced this year for the first time ever. Inside the bottle you will find pleasant notes of lime, grapefruit and a tinge of peach, with a light, effervescent mineral bite. The flavor isn't just thanks to winemaker and owner Ben Parsons, but the Colorado-grown Albariño grapes he uses. Keep in mind only 176 cases were bottled, so head to the winery or go online and get this now before it's gone forever. $50
3) Canyon Wind 2013 Cabernet Franc
Canyon Wind has the ultimate luscious red wine for you, the Cabernet Franc. It's one of the first grapes the winery planted in the Grand Valley back in 1991, but it wasn't until 2005 that the vintner decided to stop blending and start bottling it as a single grape variety. Thank goodness, since this wood and dark cherry vino is great for sipping on a cold night, with a plate of freshly-baked cookies or a bowl of steaming stew. $20
4) CapRock Colorado Organic Gin by Peak Spirits Farm Distillery
Not every holiday drink has to be rich, dark and warming. Sometimes you want to sip something as clear and cold as snow, which is where this local gin comes in. With subtle floral notes of rose and lavender with a cooling hint of juniper berries and crisp winter apples, the folks at Jack Rabbit Hill Farm know how to make a gorgeous gin. Serve it in a gin and tonic, bring out the forest notes by mixing with pine liqueur, or make up your own festive cocktail. $32
5) Christmas Ale by Breckenridge Brewery
Who doesn't want a mini-keg of Christmas beer to put under their tree, at a holiday party or just to have kicking around the fridge for the rest of the season? Each mini-keg is the equivalent of about ten pints, so get one of these darling and festive vessels and pour the chocolate- and carmel-tinged brew until it's tapped. $20
6) Creekside Cellars Petit Verdot
Of course wine is something you should consider bringing to a get-together, and this slightly peppery petit verdot is a good way to start, especially if the party you're attending includes dinner. The profile features clove and bright red berries, giving it a nice acidity that will go with many a holiday meal. It's also a good bet if you want to serve a red wine that can complement most foods, even ones that traditionally call for white. $30
7) Fernet Leopold by Leopold Brothers Distillery 
Also known as Highland Amaro, this small-batch bitter liqueur proves the perfect after-dinner digestif. Amaro is a classic Italian beverage drunk after a meal, and often it's made with a neutral spirit or wine. This particular version uses the distillery's base spirit, which soaks up the sharp qualities of bittering roots and herbs, as well as rose petals, elderflower, chamomile and honeysuckle. The result is a dark beverage full of bold mint flavors that offers a slow burn to keep you sipping it slow and steadily. Try it straight up, with an ice cube or mixed with a splash of tonic. $36
8) Spruced Glider Cider by Colorado Cider Company
Nothing says good morning in the winter quite like a cup of sparkling alcoholic cider spruced up with — well, spruce. The company makes this seasonal blend with local honey and freshly-picked blue spruce tips, a combination that gives the beverage a nice Christmas tree and crisp apple essence, with just a hint of candy cane. Buy it in a large format bottle and take it to brunch, or stash it away for Christmas morning. $9
9) Richardo’s Decaf Coffee Liqueur, made at Spirit Hound Distillers
What's New Year's Day morning without a little coffee? Or, a little coffee liqueur for that matter. Made by Rick "Richardo" England at Spirit Hound in Lyons, this coffee, vanilla and pure-grain spirits concoction is a much tastier and local alternative to Kahlua. Plus, since it's decaf you can drink it morning, noon and night. Try it in a White Russian for a very Lebowski Christmas.  $28
10) Rye Vodka by Bear Creek Distillers
If you have never had rye vodka, you're probably not alone — it's not the most common spirit out there. That didn't stop master distiller Jeffrey Dickinson from making one with 100-percent local rye, which gets purified through a 16-plate column still. Try it as a whiskey sub in an old fashioned, or drink it straight and marvel at the slight spice emitting from the clear liquid. You can buy a bottle of this unique tipple in the facility or at many liquor stores around the state. $33

11) Yule Fuel by Bull & Bush Pub and Brewery
Bull & Bush not only has a tasty beer for you to give as a gift, but it comes with its own gift tag right on the label. Each 16.9-ounce bottle holds a smooth, malty brew laced with holiday flavors including cinnamon, nutmeg and crushed-up gingerbread men. In a way, it's like drinking a glass of liquified, not-too-sweet cookies, something no one is complaining about. $7
KEEP WESTWORD FREE... Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we'd like to keep it that way. With local media under siege, it's more important than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" program, allowing us to keep offering readers access to our incisive coverage of local news, food and culture with no paywalls.
Linnea Covington moved back to Denver after spending thirteen years in New York City and couldn't be happier to be home, exploring the Mile High and eating as much as possible, especially when it involves pizza or ice cream.
Contact: Linnea Covington

Latest Stories