Why Every Gentleman Should Own a Wooden Hip Flask
The flask, that little secret hidden away from public view, is perhaps one of the great unsung fashion accessories a man can carry.
Sure, some might think you’re a lush, but a flask frees you from the constraints of unscrupulous bartenders, overpriced bar menus and the laborious task of carrying a full bottle of hooch around town (0/10 would not recommend).
And in uncertain economic times, the flask lets you drink what you want when you want it and with whom for less money. A flask is power, a flask is freedom.
Nevertheless, there are benefits, there are guidelines, and there is such a thing as flask etiquette, all of which are wise to observe. Read on intrepid drinker.
Where should I carry a flask?
You have a couple of options on where to carry your flask. The first is a jacket pocket, preferably inside a blazer, which only adds to the blazer's sophistication.
The second is a trouser hip pocket. Notice that you ought to be wearing trousers because they do a better job of concealing the flask. Jeans reveal far too much about what’s in your pocket and should be avoided when carrying the flask in public.
Still, you could stash your flask in the top of one of your boots. Easily accessible and undetectable, storing your flask in your boot will also keep any whisky at a reasonable temperature in cooler weather. Two birds, one boot.
What should I drink from a flask?
What you put in your flask is of equal importance as how you carry the flask. A high grade Canadian whisky or Scotch whisky should be your first choice, as it goes down smoothly and can be mixed with almost any cola or coffee on hand. Premium Kentucky Bourbons and Tennessee sipping whiskeys are your next best bets for instant satisfaction on the go.
Tequila is acceptable.
Gin is OK but pretty weird.
If you fill your flask with vodka I will punch you in your face.
Do I have to be a man to enjoy a flask?
Of course not. That's some dated misogynistic bullshit. You can be a man or a woman or something in between, none of that matters. What matters is your enjoyment of good whiskey-et al, with good people, and on your terms. That's the whole point of the flask. Yes, words like "gentleman" are sexist but I can't change how search engines work. Deal with it.
Photo by Taylor Friehl on Unsplash
How do I clean a flask?
Clean the outside first. With the flask closed and sealed, use a damp cloth with a little hand soap to thoroughly wash the outside.
Then clean the inside. It’s as simple as this: rinse it out with hot water (very Hot Water) when you get home, leave the cap off and let it dry overnight. Never use soap because you’ll never get the residue out of the flask completely, and this will affect the taste of the liquor. If you are changing the type of booze you carry, rinse it out with a little lemon juice.
What kind of flask should I buy?
The best flask, is the kind you didn't have to buy for yourself. It was a gift from a man or woman in your life that you admire and trust. Maybe it was gifted to him, maybe it's a true family heirloom. That's the best flask to own, but not necessarily the best flask to carry. "What you say? you just made me get all emotional about the family heirloom from my favorite uncle."
Well, yes. The heirloom flask is probably heavy. Most types built to last multiple generations to just too heavy to carry 2 nights a week. You will tire of it quickly. The point of the flask is that it's always at the ready.
And, let's think about the worst case scenario. The heirloom flask will get lost, damaged or confiscated. If you aren't (at least occasionally) doing any of the activities that could result in loss, damage or confiscation, then you should re-evlaute your Saturday night schedule.
OK, for real this time, what kind of flask should I buy?
The flask you want is lightweight, completely leak-proof, holds ~6 oz. of liquor, will survive for years, but also won't break the bank completely when it needs to be replaced. And, it has to be personal.
Why does it need to be personal? Two reasons.
1. everything you carry communicates a little about you to the world. Get a flask that couldn't have been picked up at the dollar store, by anyone, anywhere. Get a flask that is personal to you. A flask with a design, or image, or monogram that could only be carried by you, and that only you would carry. Get a flask so personal that your best friends instantly understand what it means, and new acquaintances just have to ask.
2. Basic theft. Flasks tend to be coveted by thieves. Not because they are terribly expensive, but because of the power it's owner wields drinking/sharing/showing the flask. And your flask with "THE JOHNSTER" laser-engraved into the front is much less likely to be lifted.
Seriously, are you going to tell me what kind of flask to buy, or not?
Of course. Sorry about that. These are our favorites and a bit about why for each one.
The leather flask
Customizable 6 oz Leather Wrapped Hip Flask from our friends at CKB.
Leather is classic, durable, and takes an engraving pretty well. They look better with time, (for a little while) but ultimately, spilled liquor, sweat and humidity will take the life out of this flask.
The simple steel flask
BakeBetter Damon Plain Stainless Steel 6 oz. Liquor Flask
Simple, understated, classic styling. Like most good flasks, made from 18/8 stainless-steel. Food safe, and not to heavy.
The rounded flask
Visol Podova Satin Stainless Steel Liquor Flask 6 oz.
If you're girlfriend forces you into skinny jeans, then this flask is really your only option. This is likely the only flask that will slide easily in and out of your front jeans pocket. And since she controls everything you do, you're probably already carrying some of her stuff anyway.
The wooden flask
Customizable 6 oz. wooden hip flask.
Wood is warm, elegant and gets better looking with age.
This one is covered in American Cherry, but you can select from any one of 7 different wood types.
How often do I change my flask?
Once bottled at the distillery, booze can have quite a long shelf life. However, once you start carrying it around in a flask, you’ll bruise it with all the shaking. If you’re carrying a flask of booze, you should be drinking the entire thing anyway – we’re only talking about 6 or so ounces of liquor. How long you carry it should not be an issue. But how long it will stay fresh is a matter of days, and at the most, a week. Once you fill your flask, you should be able to enjoy its contents in one or two outings without too much effort.
Photo by Quinton Coetzee on Unsplash
Where do I use a flask?
A flask is a very personal accessory, and there are good times to employ its use and bad times. The obvious times are ball games or cookouts when you’re at the mercy of high-priced vendors, or your friends feeble choice of beer and drugstore liquor. Your cousin’s wedding, although tempting, is probably not the right place for your secret drinking.
Who do I share my flask with?
If you’ve gone to the trouble of buying a flask, filling it with the best you can afford and carefully stashing it on yourself as a treat and respite to be enjoyed amid this chaotic world then why, like a great cigar, would you ever want to share its contents? OK, so maybe your girlfriend or a very close friend deserves to be included in your little conspiracy against high priced liquor menus, but that’s it. Sharing the contents of your flask is an almost sacred act of friendship. It’s a moment of true bonding in comradeship that takes a relationship well beyond the ritual of buying a few rounds at the bar. This is a private act of trust.
Photo by Kyle Glenn on Unsplash
What does the WUDN staff have to say about it?
Flask: Plain Aromatic Cedar.
Liquor: Crown Royal
Place: My living room. Now get out.
Flask: Custom Bamboo with an engraved lotus flower.
Liquor: Maker's Mark
Place: Lost in Bali
Flask: Sawtooth Mountains Walnut Sky.
Liquor: Macallan 12
Place: By the fire pit with friends.
Flask: Dio De Los Muertos (Day of the Dead) in Mahogany.
Liquor: Bulleit Bourbon 10
Place: In the mountains with Andrew
Once you have your flask, fill it with your favorite whiskey and stash it somewhere -- where you’ll have to wait for the proper moment to imbibe. Carefully reveal your flask and share it with only those you trust; this is a sacred act because a flask is not about showing off. Using and showing a flask properly is quiet sophistication and softening the edges of a tough world with stolen moments among friends and reminding yourself that you’re a man who drinks real booze.
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Since the beginning, we have been focused on doing something different, not just for us, but for you. I couldn’t look at another cheap plastic phone case at the mall kiosk. First, they’re trash, but more important, there are literally millions of those cases in the world, maybe thousands just in your town.
Part of our mission is making you distinctive; helping you express a little style in a world where everything is mass produced. A custom wooden phone case for your iPhone or Samsung Galaxy is a small thing, but for the one piece of electronics that literally never leaves your side, a bit of wooden style can’t hurt. Of course, the same philosophy extends to the rest of our product line including beautiful wood wrapped bar accessories and more.