'Tis the season, folks! As obsessive entertainers, we happen to have an opinion or two when it comes to the best gifts to buy the food lover or host with the most in your life. Here's a round up of our favorites — from perfect little hostess gifts (which, yes, you should always bring) to the ultimate splurge for the cook who has (almost) everything.
Nothing beats the warm, honey-scented glow of these locally-poured beeswax candles. They burn evenly and cleanly with no artificial fragrance, and they last FOREVER.
Cheese and charcuterie boards have always been the cornerstone of our little business, and unless you're living under a rock, you've probably noticed that the graze board was the ultimate staple for entertaining in 2019. We've been lusting after this huge, round board from Food52 for a while now...the matte black is such a pretty backdrop for the colors and textures of cured meats, creamy cheeses, fresh fruits, and crunchy nuts.
While we're on the topic of cheese boards, no home is complete without a set of these classic cheese knives. Forget those trendy sets of odd-shaped cheese knives - these French spreaders are all you need for creamy cheeses, crumbly cheeses, hard cheeses, pâtés, dips, chutneys, conserves, and mustards. They'll get regular use and will never go out of style.
Hosting truth: there is no such thing as too many little bowls. Just think about all the things you can put in a small vessel: tangy cornichons, spiced walnuts, olives - and don't forget one for the pits, hummus. These vintage bowls are so special and even more beautiful in person.
File this under splurge, but every serious home cook should have this Braiser. Naturally, it's great for braises with the lid on, but it's also the perfect pan for virtually anything, from spicy weeknight shakshukas to a perfect pan-seared duck breast. It's easy to clean - unlike cast iron, you can use soap, which we truly appreciate - and it conducts heat beautifully.
Just like tiny bowls, one can never have too many (stylish) reusable bags. North Loop's Parc Boutique currently has the the most fun selection of food-themed Baggus, and this Daikon sack is especially sweet. Baggus are light but strong, inexpensive, and they fold up into a neat little pouch, making them easy to carry around in your bag, ensuring you'll never again experience the *horror and shame* of forgetting your reusable bags at the checkout.
COMPLETELY SHAMELESS PLUG, yes, but seriously — can you think of a better gift for the food-lover who has everything? Surdyk's Cheese Shop has everything you didn't know you needed, from special French sea salts to umami-rich black garlic grown in Wisconsin to the best little Ficelle sandwich you've ever tasted. The experience alone of having free money to burn at the *original* specialty foods shop in Minneapolis sounds pretty darn good to us...
Personally, we're working on offsetting our nasty little Amazon habit by hitting up as many brick and mortars as we can this holiday season. In addition to the shops mentioned above, we have found some very special items (and great conversation) at MartinPatrick3, Golden Age Design, Golden Rule, June Resale, and so many more.