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Let there be no confusion about this whatsoever. The Indulge team is passionate about every single thing it writes about. Cars? Love. Bikes? Drool. Spectacle frames? Adore. Watches? We want to kiss them on the mouth and have babies with them.

But nothing comes close to pleasuring us like the annual spirits special issue. It is also the issue that seems to sell the most. Months afterwards, we still find readers writing to us for prints and PDF files.

Spirits are some of the most accessible items of luxury your money can buy. A few months ago, I visited the home of Moët & Chandon in France’s Champagne region. The sheer panoply of experience, heritage, science, engineering and hard labour that goes into a bottle of good champagne or wine is astounding. I would even put my neck out and say that some wines take more work to create and bottle than some “high-end" Swiss luxury watches.

And yet you can buy a fine bottle for not a lot of money. Unless you are looking to acquire some collectors’ item, rare bottling or a bottle previously owned by a celebrity, good spirits are affordable, great spirits only marginally less so. So when we prepare to put out our annual spirits issue, we feel tremendously good. There is almost nothing in this issue that is accessible only to the oligarch or oil baron.

There is one other thing about spirits that is tremendously gratifying. There are really no right or wrong ways of enjoying them. Sure, ordering a Montepulciano with seafood may raise a few eyebrows in some circles. But try walking into room full of watch connoisseurs and saying out loud that you hate Patek or will never wear a Royal Oak. Retribution will be swift and painful.

Spirits, on the other hand, give you so much latitude. Hate Islay malts? That is totally okay. Want to stir some Coke into your Balvenie? Go ahead. We won’t tell anybody. For now. This year, we present an international bouquet of beverage delights. Carefully curated by our in-house beverage expert. This year’s issue is on the various regions of the world and their local spirits. The idea is to inspire you to drink well, but also to give you plenty of gifting ideas for the holiday season.

Our beverage expert, Joel Harrison, is our favourite reason for loving this issue. Because he takes things over, we can begin to slack of for the holidays. So if you like what you read, don’t forget to drop Joel a line.

Finally, everyone here at Indulge would like to wish you a very, very happy holiday season and an excellent new year. See you in 2014 with copious luxurious delights.

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