Shopping for the food-obsessed isn’t always easy. You may think that with all of the kitchen gadgets on the market that a quick trip to Target would be sufficient for the fanatical chef or the oenophile in your life, but I can tell you from experience, it is not. For example, my mother is a baker who owns over 880 cookie cutters and 120 cake pans. Odds are if I get her anything other than the most recent and novel gift out there, she’s already going to have it. Solution: Tireless research.
While shopping for the cooks and food connoisseurs in our families, we here at Eat Sip Trip have explored the far corners of the internet in search of gifts that are equal parts thoughtful, practical and unique. These are ideas that personally interest and inspire us, and are sure to open up a whole new world of culinary experiences for the lucky recipient.
Oyster Mushroom Log Kit
If the thought of going all Copenhagen and serving freshly picked mushrooms at home sounds appealing, but you’re a little sketched out by the idea of foraging for potentially dangerous spores, the Oyster Mushroom Log Kit at William Sonoma is a happy middle ground. For just under $30, this one log produces a crop of oyster mushrooms every two to three months for up to three years.
Tea from Around the World Set
Explore the world, one tea at a time. Under the philosophy of “sip local, brew global,” the Tea from Around the World Set comes with 10 tubes of tea from around the globe, with each tube providing enough tea to brew a 6-to-8-cup pot. It’s a great set for a tea novice who wants to learn more about tea culture in a wide variety of countries.
Ever pine for Pocky from Japan or Kinder chocolates from Europe? There’s no reason to wait for another trip across the ocean to enjoy beloved international snacks. MunchPak delivers the most popular snacks and candies from all over the world, and works with a free app that allows users to scan the barcode of each snack to learn more about where it’s from and what makes it so popular. This gift is also perfect for expats who miss a taste of home.
Murray’s Cheese of the Month Club
Truly the gift that keeps on giving. Every month, a group of cheesemongers comes together to create a mix of tastes and textures for cheese-loving subscribers to enjoy. It’s like having a fancy cheese plate delivered to your house every month. This makes a great gift for the novice who wants to learn more about cheese or for the connoisseur who wants to broaden their cheese knowledge.
DIY Goat & Chèvre Cheese Making Kit
Speaking of cheese, the DIY Goat & Chèvre Cheese Making Kit at William Sonoma makes it easy to craft homemade goat cheese right at home. All you need is fresh milk and within an hour, you’ll have a 2-quart batch of tangy goat cheese. It’s the perfect gift for the cheese lover who wants to have hands on experience.
The Gourmet Sea Salt Sampler
Pink Himalayan is only the tip of the salt rock when it comes to exotic salts. The Gourmet Sea Salt Sampler comes with 16 different types of sea salts from around the world. It makes an excellent gift for the home chef that loves to travel and bring home a taste of another land.
AromaFork Flavor Enhancing Kit
Scent is closely related to taste, and AromaFork focuses on sense of smell to heighten the flavor of any meal. This gift comes with four forks and 24 oil essences with scents like basil, banana and ginger, which trick your mind into tasting the combination of the food on the fork and the scent of the oil. It’s a fun gift for anyone who loves sharing new food experiences with friends at a dinner party. Think flavor tripping 2.0.
Who needs passport stamps when they can just get chocolate from faraway lands? Trader Joe’s Chocolate Passport offers the chance to experience chocolate from some of the world’s most sought after cacao beans. The package contains eight distinctive chocolates ranging from 60% to 73% cacao. It’s a journey for the tastebuds.
Make Your Own Hot Sauce Kit
Got an aunt who’s spicy and a little salty? You can make a sauce for that. How about a cousin who tends to get a little sultry when they’re drinking? You can whip up a sauce for that too, with this hot sauce kit. It comes with six bottles and customizable labels so you can bring a little personalized spice into the lives of your loved ones.
Get KomBucha Starter Kit
IPA home brewing kits were so Christmas of 2014. How about giving the gift of healthy probiotic tea made fresh right at home? No more running to Whole Foods and paying an exorbitant amount of money for fizzy fermented drinks. This kombucha starter kit gives you everything you need to get started with a lifetime supply of homemade Kombucha. Test out new flavors and share the joy of Kombucha – and Kombucha brewing – with others.