What to Buy Dad

Wine Is an Excellent Father's Day Gift

And here are some of your best bets.

By Bob McGinn June 8, 2022

A 2018 pinot noir from Gary Farrell Vineyards & Winery.

As with many holidays, Father's Day can cause a family conundrum: What to give him?

When there's no obvious answer, the poor soul is kicked out of the house and told to enjoy himself playing golf, even though he hasn’t used clubs in years. Or perhaps it’s suggested that he visit The Home Depot or Lowe's and browse the tool section even though he has never completed a home project in his life. I suppose either is preferable to ties or socks.

For perhaps a more thoughtful gift, consider wine. What would be an appropriate wine for you to give your dad? Unlike most personal gifts, wine is meant to be enjoyed with others, so my first suggestion is to offer a wine you like and would enjoy consuming with your father. I can’t imagine a nicer scenario than sharing a glass of a special wine with Dad over dinner, or even just cheese and crackers. It might develop into a nice bonding experience. I know I would look forward to it.

Some that I recommend are pinot noirs from Gary Farrell Vineyards & Winery and Bouchaine. (Coincidentally, Bouchaine is one of the few American wines to be served during the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee.) FEL is a wonderful chardonnay from Cliff Lede Vineyards, named after Lede's mother, Florence Elsie Lede. For cabernet sauvignon, consider Gamble Family Vineyards. Tom Gamble has just released his new venture, The Mill Keeper—exceptional wines at a lower price point and non-vintage.

Another welcoming alternative would be treating your father to dinner at a top restaurant such as Michael’s on East, Mattison's or Grove and share a nice bottle. Allow him to make the selection or defer to a sommelier or make the call yourself. If you take a photo, too, it would make a lasting remembrance. If you can’t make a personal appearance on Father’s Day, consider a gift certificate for a dinner at a local restaurant or a bottle of wine from a local wine retailer. After all, it’s the thought that counts.

Some fathers are committed to a certain brand of liquor or beer, and wine would be an anathema. If that’s the case, don’t argue. Just get him what he likes. It doesn’t have to be a mystery. If you don’t know, just ask.

Bob McGinn has spent his entire career in the wine industry—forming wine clubs, working in wine sales marketing and engaging in all facets of the winemaking process, including vine management, fermentation and yeast analysis. He has developed wine programs for companies such as Marriott, Sheraton and Smith & Wollensky, and consults with local restaurants. You can read more of McGinn’s work at gulfcoastwinejournal.com.

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