Last Minute Holiday Shopping: Give the gift of mineral water

You did it again, didn’t you? You left your Holiday gift shopping to the last minute. Never fear. You can always give the gift of mineral water. Here’s why:

1.) No one will see it coming. How many times in your life have you ever unwrapped a case of mineral water under the tree? I’m guessing not many. It’s not a super common gift and thus it will take people by surprise. Let’s face it, most Holiday gifts are completely unnecessary useless stuff that either end up being re-gifted or ends up in the Goodwill box in January. Not your gift of mineral water. You can bet that’s something the giftee will get some use out of. Heck, they can start using it right then and there!

2.) One size fits all. Absolutely zero worries here. As long as the person has a functioning mouth, you’re in the clear. And who has ever heard of a mineral water allergy? No one. It’s zero calorie, hypo-allergenic, etc. etc. It’s water. It’s the most universally accepted thing you could possibly give someone, and yet…

3.) It’s exotic. Mineral water comes from all over the world. There are more different brands of mineral water than you could ever possibly hope to try in one lifetime (actually that may not be true, but there are a lot of brands). Go into any “international” or “ethnic” grocery store in your town and you’re almost 100% guaranteed to find some mineral water brand you’ve never heard of. The more exotic and un-readable the label, the better.

4.) Mineral Water Gifting Guide. What kind of mineral water you buy says as much about you as it does about the person you’re buying it for. But here’s a quick guide.

Perrier: You’re really determined to not put much thought into this, aren’t you? Sigh. Give Perrier to someone who is a complete mineral water neophyte. Someone who doesn’t get out much. Or perhaps, as a supplementary gift, a “stocking stuffer” if you will. OR unless you give someone the big bottles of Perrier. Then you’re in the clear. A case of the liter bottles is acceptable. Just barely.

San Pellegrino: You’re with it, you’re up on things, but you’re playing it safe and that’s okay. Pellegrino is Italian, and everything Italian (other than fascism) is awesome. No one, literally no one who has any sense at all is going to be disappointed at getting a case of San P. as a Holiday gift. It says you think they’re classy and refined, and who doesn’t like to be thought of in that way.

Acqua Panna: Now you’re getting somewhere. Giving someone a case of Acqua Panna will simultaneously confuse and delight them. Keep in mind Acqua Panna is “still” not sparkling, so unless you’re dealing with someone who has “next-level” culinary and water tastes, you may want to steer clear of Acqua Panna. It’s just more difficult to appreciate a still mineral water, so this one is more for your serious “wow” factor and for someone whose tastes are slightly more refined.

Topo Chico: Nothing says next-gen West Coast hipster like Topo Chico. This is the hottest thing in mineral water right now. If the giftee is under the age of 30 (or under the age of 40 and hip) then Topo Chico is the way to go.

Gerolsteiner: This brand reveals that you are deep into mineral water and have a keen eye. Gerolsteiner is so seemingly innocuous, it’s sometimes hard to notice on the shelves. But it’s good, vigorous, invigorating water for the Type-A, Alpha Person on your list. The thick, missile shaped-bottle is great for people on the go because it’s difficult to break and also fits nicely into bags and purses.

The Mountain Valley: This brand has an interesting kitsch value and will really, really set you apart. Not only that but it’s American. Recommended for someone with simple, classic tastes and a preference for “American Made.”

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