Goldman Sachs Reveals The Best 18th Birthday Present A Parent Could Ever Give

Goldman Sachs Reveals The Best 18th Birthday Present A Parent Could Ever Give

Turning 18 is a symbolic milestone that signifies a person’s entry into adulthood. It therefore requires an absolute corker of a birthday gift — especially if you’re the parent. This suggestion from investment banking firm Goldman Sachs is one of the best ideas we’ve come across.

18th Birthday picture from Shutterstock

Last month, we published Goldman Sachs’ tongue-in-cheek guide to becoming the ultimate 21st century male. At least, we hope it was tongue-in-cheek. The advice ranged from dating tips (“when in doubt, always kiss the girl”) to fashion pointers (“rebel from business casual”).

As you’d expect from a column aimed at Wall Street hotshots, there was a distinct air of obnoxious elitism to proceedings. However, there was one kernel of advice that stood out from all the rest. We thought it was so great, we decided to earmark it for its own separate post.

In short, it explains the perfect gift idea for your child’s eighteenth birthday (even if they don’t exist yet). Behold:

Start a wine collection for your kids when they are born. Add a few cases every year without telling them. It’ll make a phenomenal gift when they reach drinking age.

We think this is a genius idea. Firstly, it’s a suitably grandiose gift that reflects becoming an adult. Secondly, it will teach your kids to appreciate fine wine (and thus responsible drinking). And finally, it allows you to spend a little each year as opposed to blowing a huge wad of cash in one go. It will also make you the coolest parent ever.

When combined with a wine rack, the concept also makes for a spectacular house-warming gift for your offspring. I’m going to get started on my daughters’ collections right now. (On a related note, does anyone know how long goon bags keep for?)

What did your parents get you for your 18th birthday? Was it better than a personal wine collection? Let us know in the comments section below.


  • Storing a few cases of wine may work for investment bankers. For the rest of us it should say “store a box or two of goon away every year until they reach drinking age”.

    • Well, I think the concept still works fine if you substitute “case” for “bottle”. (Who wants a whole case of the same tipple anyway? Variety is the spice of life!)

    • Unless the case of beer is a limited edition one, it sort of defeats the purpose as one could just buy the beer 18 years later. The whole point of buying wine is to cellar it since it would appreciate in price and may be unavailable to buy 18 years down the road.

      • Who said anything about beer? I meant that buying individual bottles of wine lets you mix things up, whereas a case is typically all the same brand.

        • Yes beer. Great investment. I brought a case of Hahn special millennium edition dark ale off a mate for $20 shortly after 2000. Still have a few bottles and only found out recently each bottles worth about $600 now.

          • The beer would be off by now and pretty much he drinkable. Unlike wine, beer has an expiry date…

          • Nope still drinkable. Only opened a bottle 4 months back (I checked the pricing a few days after drinking….doh). Some beers (not all) can be kept, but they also have to be kept in the right conditions. Oh and it was a very smooth tasting dark ale to boot. 😛

      • serious wine enthusiasts are not buying wine to make money. they are buying it to appreciate it years later.

    • I would imagine that the key thing here is to have the right environment to store it in in the first place. Nobody’s going to be happy if your kid ends up with a collection of fine vinegars.

  • 18 year old wine is going to need very good cellaring (constant temperature and bottle maintenance) and be very high quality to start with!!!

  • This is a horrible idea imo, just buy them a carton of smirnoff double black the day they turn 18 and tell them that the rule is they have to drink every single bottle in one night

  • I got a Car. . . second-hand of course! No bankers in my family.
    adit: Oh and 1 bottle of very very nice red-wine which went down a treat but my palate wasn’t mature enough to enjoy it at 18.

  • A few cases a year, for 18 years is 36 cases! Sure that’s cool but I’ve got two kids so now it’s 72 cases. Just where would you like me to put them? It’s not like they’re easily hidden. I think someones gonna notice after a couple of years. 🙂 Oh, and the wrapping paper! Yikes!

    • You mean you don’t have a climate-controlled wine cellar at your mansion? What kind of heathen are you?

  • I got a high-speed ride around Silversone Grand Prix Circuit (UK) in a Caterham 7 for my 16th

    I got an aerobatic flight in a stunt plane for my 18th – barrel rolls, corkscrews etc… good fun

    I got hot laps around Calder Raceway in a V8 for my 21st (Self Driven, not passenger)

  • Excellent idea! I have goon sacks over flowing in the pantry. I you want to know how Long they keep for or how to make it slightly more drinkable, check out this site:
    Every thing you could ever need to know about goon.

  • I don;t know many 18 year olds that would appreciate fine wine. If I went to all that trouble to cellar good wine, I’d be drinking it myself!

  • Isnt this the same Golman Sachs that caused the GFC?
    I wouldnt listen to a f***ing thing they say.

    • Scotch would be my pick as well, get them a limited edition bottle every year until they’re 18 (or 21).
      Alternatively, put $20 a week aside for them in an account (which would cost more but would total around $20,000 by the time they got to 18).

  • Most 18 year olds (I hope) would have barely developed a taste for Bacardi Breezers, let alone good wine.

  • What’s mature or intelligent about buying alcohol? You want to give them a good present? How about investing in stock, or getting them something practical, such as safe driving lessons?

  • The real issue to me is that wine generally speaking should not be stored for nearly 20 years just in a wine rack.. It’s a much larger commitment than I think most regular-earning types could comprehend, even people who regularly move, which is fairly common these days, or don’t have always on climate control, or hell, in my case my place is pretty much entirely open plan; no dark spaces for me!

    And even THEN, the recommended ageing time really isn’t generally just ‘the longer the better’, its about 10 years or so for most complex reds (as far as I know).. so if they aren’t born yet..

    The only really inaccurate/outdated point I noticed on that guide (below) was humidity, which is only important if buying corked bottles, which most people don’t any more, since roughly 10% of all corked wine spoils for no realistic benefit.

  • I don’t drink alcohol… at all.

    Worst part is my family kept pressuring me on my birthday last year to “just have one drink”.

    Respect my choices dammit!

    So, I think this is a horrible idea. Mind you, I think drinking is a horrible idea in the first place. Shame on you all.

    • @ravenblayde

      I know, right? What should be the best 18th birthday present is something that the recipient actually wants, is thoughtful, and (in a perfect world), practical.

  • Thy case wouldn’t last a month in my house much less 18 years. It’d be drunk a long time before that birthday came around…!

  • I thought being an investment bank, they would at least recommend putting money away in a long term investment.

  • I’m pretty sure all that wine will be wasted on an 18 year old. They’d sooner sell it for whatever they can and buy the cheapest, strongest booze they can find.

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