Giving at the Office

Tokens of appreciation bring holiday cheer

12LS-Xmas-LIVE23EXC

Red & White Enhancers
Only a true wine enthusiast can appreciate the benefit of Vinturi (www.vinturi.com) wine aerators, but even aspirants will notice the difference. Created for both red and white varietals, these accessories instantly allow wine to breathe, which provides a better bouquet, richer flavor, and smoother finish—reducing or in some cases eliminating any bitter taste for just $39.95.

Politically Correct
Christopher Augmon’s luxurious travel and spa bags are a celebration of the political process. His Presidential Mate line—in Republican red and Democrat blue—offers sturdy leather bags that are also moisture-resistant. A smart look for $850. To order, visit www.augmon.com.

A Smooth Set
In a range of tastes for a Scotch whiskey palate, Dewar’s Discovery Gift Set includes 200 ml bottles of Dewar’s Signature, Dewar’s 12, and the award-winning Dewar’s 18, just released in the U.S. This limited edition case comes in special leather packaging and retails for $100.

A Stylish Sip
Toasting to the economic recovery can be a fashionable gesture with the Veuve Clicquot Ice Jacket II (www.veuve-clicquot.com). Present a gift of fine champagne cloaked in a textured honeycomb jacket accented with a brown leather strap and leather-framed label, which offers a gift card for a special message. Ring in the New Year with it for $50.

The House Special
From a cognac house that dates back to 1775, Hennessy Paradis (www.hennessy.com) was created in 1979 and has become an impeccable blend of more than 100 aged eaux-de-vie, or clear, unsweetened fruit brandies, for true connoisseurs. Its smooth, rich, spiced flavor is unparalleled. A holiday special for $670.

Culture Statements
Born in Ethiopia, raised in Sweden, and now living in New York City, chef Marcus Samuelsson has an acute appreciation for how world cultures have influenced the American palate. In New American Table (Wiley; $40), he uses vivid cuisine and travel photographs to take readers on a sumptuous journey way beyond hot dogs and apple pie.

True Classics
For those who have a refined appreciation for music, the fourth series of the Jazz Icons (www.jazzicons.com) DVD box set features classical performances filmed between 1962 and 1970 by jazz legends that include Coleman Hawkins, Jimmy Smith, Woody Herman, Art Farmer, Erroll Garner, Anita O’Day, and Art Blakey. Some footage has never been seen before — until now, for $119.99.

The House Special
From a cognac house that dates back to 1775, Hennessy Paradis (www.hennessy.com) was created in 1979 and has become an impeccable blend of more than 100 aged eaux-de-vie, or clear, unsweetened fruit brandies, for true connoisseurs. Its smooth, rich, spiced flavor is unparalleled. A holiday special for $670.

Aesthetics and Art
After 10 years of research, author and photographer Deborah Willis presents a well-rounded compilation and probing perspective of how black people have defined beauty over the last 200 years. Posing Beauty: African American Images from the 1890s to the Present (W.W. Norton; $49.95) offers research and photographs featuring celebrities, sexuality, fashion, and celebrations.

Chic Storage
The stylish new version of the Iomega eGo Portable Hard Drive (www.iomega.com) comes in four vibrant colors. A handy device, it’s also damage-resistant, providing up to 500GB capacity and a suite of backup and antivirus protection solutions. It’s an easy stocking stuffer starting at $84.99.

Drive Time
For those who love precision and performance, Breitling’s Bentley 6.75 chronograph (www.breitlingforbentley.com) embodies the craftsmanship of the engine it is named after. The self-winding timepiece with an especially easy-to-read calendar comes in steel, yellow gold, or limited-edition rose gold.

This article originally appeared in the December 2009 issue of Black Enterprise magazine.

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