Hard to believe that the holiday season is already here. While shopping may be the last thing on your list, it will be the season of gift giving before you know it, and you don’t want to be running around town like a chicken with your head cut off, buying Chia pets for everyone on your list (because that’s all that’s left in store on December 24th). We’ve pulled together a gift guide for all of your foodie friends, relatives and significant others. If you know someone who likes to cook, eat or drink, the items below will certainly make them happy when they open their gifts come Christmas morning.
For the At-Home Cook
Cookbooks from Local Boston Chefs & Bloggers, about $20 — Cookbooks are a dime a dozen, but Boston foodies will appreciate recipes from their favorite chefs and bloggers around town. For example, indulge in Joanne Chang’s Flour with a recipe for her famous sticky buns and Barbara Lynch’s Stir, which includes an aoli lobster roll recipe.
Cooking Classes – Local chefs are opening their doors this season and offering a variety of cooking classes for those who wish to perfect their knife skills. For example, Rialto’s Jody Adams has a $125 cooking demonstration, and Myers + Chang hosts cooking classes this winter to help refine your shellfish skills. The Boston Center for Adult Education also has a packed schedule of cooking and cocktail classes over the next few months.
For the Restaurant Enthusiast
City Dining Cards, $20 – Not your standard 52-card deck, this set of cards aims to please the restaurant-lovers in your life. The deck only costs $20 and contains 52 discounts to local restaurants around Boston, such as The Friendly Toast, Bella Luna, Antico Forno and Snappy Sushi.
Gift Cards to Restaurant Groups – There are several groups that own multiple restaurants across Boston, and their gift cards are redeemable at multiple locations. For example, a gift card from the Aquitaine can be used at any of the six restaurants in the group, including Metropolis Cafe, Aquitaine, Gaslight Brasserie and Union Bar and Grille. There is also Himmel Hospitality Group, which gets you in to Harvest, Post 390, and Grill 23, and the Grafton Group, redeemable at PARK, Russell House Tavern, Temple Bar and Grafton Street. For more groups, click here.
Food Tours, about $50 – Can’t decide on just one restaurant? Give your foodie a culinary experience with one of several food tours around town. Check out Boston Foodie Tours, which takes guests through neighborhoods like the Wharf District, Back Bay and Beacon Hill, stopping at restaurants, shops and food trucks to sample the fare. For those with a sweet tooth, give them Hiphost’s Beer and Chocolate Tour of Beacon Hill & Back Bay.
For the Cocktail Enthusiast
The Boston Shaker – This Somerville shop has an amazing array of drinking paraphernalia, available both online and in-store. I’m a big fan of their cocktail kits, such as the Whiskey Lover’s Set for $65 or The Shaker Set for $25, which comes with a shaker, two strainers, and a mini guidebook of recipes.
The Screaming Orgasm: 69 X-Rated Cocktails, $15 – Looking to get naughty behind the bar? Buy your honey this dirty recipe book by local cocktail enthusiast Kirsten Amann, which features drink recipes like the Blowjob and the Dirty Virgin. (Side note: Don’t buy this book for grandma.)
City Wine Tours, $56 – Get your fill of vino with City Wine Tours’ boozy samplings in the North End, South End, Harvard Square or Back Bay.
Olives & Grace Gift Boxes, $78 – The unique South End shop, Olives & Grace designs charming, hand-curated gift boxes populated with artisan food products, like bacon peanut brittle and caramelized graham crackers in dark chocolate.
Local Etsy Finds
Donut Notecards, $12 – Know a Dunkin’ Donuts lover? These adorable cards feature prints of the artists’ early edible donut watercolor art paintings.
Cupcake Christmas Cards, $38 – Cupcakes more your thing? Here’s a holiday-themed set of 24 adorable cards featuring snowmen, candy canes and holly.
Crochet Fruit Protector, $5 – Ever heard of a fruit protector? Apparently they keep your apples, pears, peaches and the like free from bumps, bruises and cuts on its journey from your fridge to your desk. I admire the creativity of these crocheted protectors enough to include on the list.
Etched Mug with Cuppow Lid, $14 – Local designers from The Fringe coworking space designed Cuppow, a lid for mason jars. On Etsy, another designer is offering etched mason jars to go along with the Cuppow lids with designs like anchors, owls and even mustaches.
For more, check out photos of some of these gifts below. Happy giving (and eating!)