Kyrö Distillery's co-founder Mikko Koskinen: My best Christmas gift ideas

We asked our friends to list the best Christmas gifts from the Finnish Design Shop selection. Mikko Koskinen, who is responsible for the branding and marketing of the Kyrö Distillery Company, included gifts especially suitable for drink lovers in his choices.

Mikko Koskinen is one of the founders of the Kyrö Distillery Company, which operates in the Finnish village of Isokyrö. In his opinion, investing in the design of everyday objects is worthwhile. “If an object is in use each weekday, this will amount to 200 days of usage on an annual basis. If the gift I give is used to this extent, it has not been an unnecessary gift.”

Mikko Koskinen, is there a Christmas you remember particularly well?
“The most memorable one has to be my Christmas, spent with a friend’s family, as exchange student in Mexico. I had the opportunity to experience a really different kind of Christmas, with all my senses: it was 40 degrees hot, the only person I knew at the Christmas table was my friend, and Christmas mass ended with everyone kissing a statue of baby Jesus.”

Name the tastiest Christmas drink.
“You can create a great mulled wine-like drink with Kyrö Distillery's oak barrel aged Koskue gin and cloudy apple juice. In addition to gin, you will need apple juice and Christmas spices, according to your taste. Suitable are, for example, cardamom, cinnamon and vanilla. Heat the apple juice and spices, but do not boil them. Strain out the spices. One serving will have 1 part Koskue gin and 2 parts hot apple juice. Serve with slices of apple.”

Mikko Koskinen’s Christmas gift ideas:

1. For the domestic chef

“At home, my spouse and I always keep two frying pans on the stove, ready for use. One of them is Gense's Le Gourmet blini pan. In addition to blinis, you can prepare omelets, stir-fries and roast nuts. The cast iron pan stands the test of time, and the cooking surface is of top quality. As a bonus, the packaged gift will be excitingly heavy! I would include a handwritten recipe.”

“I would include a handwritten recipe in the gift package.”

2. For the bartender

Iittala's Lempi is a beautifully designed glass that works well for both desserts and drinks. Lempi was my choice of glass as the distillery’s gin tonic glassware, as it releases the aromas nicely. Despite its foot, the glass is stackable and is an excellent choice if you are short of cabinet space. I would supplement the gift with a few drink accessories and a recipe.”

3. For the friend of whisky

“As a distillery entrepreneur I am surrounded by friends of whisky. The most common whisky glass is the Glencairn glass, but they don’t stay upright in the drying cabinet so cleaning them is a bit difficult. I haven’t yet tested these Normann Copenhagen’s Whisky glasses, but I am tempted to get them. The particular glass design holds and focuses the aroma of the whisky.”

4. For the fan of Aalto

“If investing a little more in a Christmas gift is an option, this is a true piece of Finnish design history: the Arte Alvar tray, which serves both as an everyday object and a decorative piece, designed by Alvar Aalto and produced by Nikari. It is definitely on my wish list!”

“Nikari's Arte Alvar tray serves both as an everyday object and a decorative piece.”

5. For the god child

“Beautiful objects are not just for adults. That is why I included a gift I intend to give to my god child once a little older. The alphabet blocks by Kay Bojesen, originally designed for schools, are a great source of joy for children and a source of pain for adults who happen to step on them. At least the giver of the gift won’t escape their minds!”

Discover more Christmas gift ideas >

Text: Mikko Vaija Images: Manufacturers, portrait Sina Valkonen

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