The 10 Best Flasks
10. Collapsible Cruise Liquor Bags
- low price for large set
- leakproof design
- not the most durable option
|Brand||Home Team Products|
|Rating||4.2 / 5.0|
9. Binocktails Paddle Brush Secret
- includes a useful mirror on back
- good for the traveler
- won't hold up to close inspection
|Rating||3.6 / 5.0|
8. Stanley Classic
- lanyard ensures you never lose cap
- wide mouth for fewer spills
- cap crosses threads too easily
|Rating||4.3 / 5.0|
7. Cork Pops Nicholas Portside
- easy to see level of contents
- nautical-inspired design
- glass window can't handle abuse
|Rating||4.0 / 5.0|
6. GoPong Sunscreen
- comes in a pack of 2
- odors won't seep out
- label on back reveals it's a flask
|Rating||4.3 / 5.0|
5. Smuggle Mug Umbrella
- flask is bpa-free
- speed pourer included
- not functional as an umbrella
|Rating||4.1 / 5.0|
3. BarMe Shots on the Go
- larger than most other options
- cap seals very tightly
- shot glass stores on flask
|Rating||4.9 / 5.0|
2. Visol Edinburgh
- handsome plaid and imitation leather
- funnel for easy filling
- excellent best man gift
|Rating||4.6 / 5.0|
1. Stanley Adventure
- made of food-grade stainless steel
- easy to use while wearing gloves
- doesn't affect taste of contents
|Rating||4.5 / 5.0|
A Brief History Of Flasks
The feeling of needing a good, stiff drink is a near-universal aspect of the human condition. Unfortunately, there are certain times when you really need some booze, but imbibing is frowned upon (like church services and kindergarten graduations). Luckily, for those times, we have flasks.
In the early 19th century, glass-blowing techniques had developed to the point that it was possible to design personal, curved containers that would fit neatly on the hip. These vessels were first used in Masonic lodges, which provided food and water, but were strictly BYOB. Since many Masons also owned glass-blowing facilities, it was natural that they'd figure out a convenient way to sneak whiskey into their monthly meetings.
During the Civil War, many soldiers kept flasks on their person at all times, both to deal with the horrors of battle and also to use as an anesthetic and antiseptic. The whiskey used at the time, called rotgut, was severe enough that a good firefight probably seemed less dreadful by comparison.
Flasks would enter into their heyday with the passage of Prohibition. In fact, the term bootlegging stems from the fact that many people kept flasks stashed in their boots in order to smuggle alcohol, while many women used their garters for the same purpose. Owning and carrying a flask became quite fashionable, a sign that you were rebellious enough to flout laws you considered unjust — and that you were probably pretty fun to party with, as well.
With the passage of the 21st Amendment in 1933, Prohibition ended and flasks stopped being a necessity for the prospective tippler. However, they kept their roguish associations, and were still popular with those looking to liven up dreary social events.
Today, flasks of all shapes, sizes, and materials can be found anywhere that the consumption of alcohol is frowned upon, or in those places where drinking can be prohibitively expensive. Flasks are used by those on all rungs of society, and are equally likely to be found tucked away inside a purse as they are nestled in the breast pocket of a sports coat.
After all, if there's one thing that unites us all, it's the need for a belt of Scotch to get through that meeting the boss has every Monday morning.
Picking The Right Flask
The type of flask you carry says a lot about you as a person. The biggest thing it says is that you might have a drinking problem, but beyond that, it gives clear indications about your priorities in life.
The first thing to consider is the type of material you want your flask to be made of, as they all have their pros and cons. A glass flask won't taint the flavor of the spirits inside, but it's not suitable for rowdy events. Pewter and plastic flasks are inexpensive, but they can affect the taste, as whiskey bonds to the container in which it's stored. Stainless steel is the most popular, as it's both durable and light on your pocketbook, and it can be engraved for an added touch of class.
The size and shape of the flask is also important to think about, as you want something that's easy to conceal but can contain enough booze to help you get to feeling good. Think about how you're going to get your hooch into the thing as well; many flasks come with funnels, while others have large enough mouths that you can pour your sauce directly inside. Also, if it's going to be pressed against your person, than a traditional curved hip flask will likely be more comfortable than one that's flat.
Of course, there's no reason why you can't invest in several options, and have a suitable choice for every occasion that might warrant secret drinking. Just be careful when showing off your flask collection, as owning one can be a surefire way to spur an intervention.
Tips For Surreptitious Sipping
Just because you own a flask doesn't mean you truly know how to use it. If you want to set yourself apart from the drunken frat boys and morose day-drinkers, you need to know how to wield your flask with style.
Before we go any further, though, you should be aware that having a flask on you is still illegal in many places, as it's considered a violation of open container laws. You could potentially find yourself in hot water with the justice system as a result, especially if it's discovered in your car, so take that into consideration before you begin to carry any pocket potables with you.
Also, keep in mind that the flask was originally intended for you to drink just enough to take the edge off, not to get sloppy drunk. While that can obviously change based on the situation and your intentions, take into consideration your company before deciding to tie one on. There's a reason why drinking is frowned upon in certain situations, after all.
However, if you absolutely must pack a little firewater for that football game or school board meeting, realize that you're likely to be the only one with any alcohol on you. If you think that your company would enjoy a little nip as well, be sure to offer. It's rude to only think about your own needs — but it's potentially dicey to offer the wrong person a swallow, so use your judgment accordingly.
If you're sharing it, though — and even if you're not — please wash it. Bacteria loves stainless steel, and other materials aren't much better, so sterilizing it as best you can after every use is essential. A little soap and warm water should do the trick.
Once you get a handle on how to carry a flask, don't be surprised if others want to follow in your footsteps. There's a reason why they're so popular as groomsmen gifts, you know.