Top 10 Things Every Foodie Wants for Christmas

Merry Christmas

Looking for last minutes gifts? Skip the mall. Give food.

Eat Texas Published in
Bonnie Published by

My version of Oprah’s favorite things, deliverable (or pick-up-able) before Friday if you order by 12/23. Sweater-capes not included. How many gifts are as universally appreciated as good food?

1. CSA Membership

Basically a subscription to local farms, Community Supported Agriculture gives the shareholder a season or year’s worth of locally grown food. Basic shares, like those from our Hairston Creek Farm CSA, include a bushel of organically grown produce, but if you’re in the Austin area, I recommend Farmhouse Delivery, which bundles locally produced meats, dairy, bread, etc. into your weekly delivery as well, saving you a trip to the farmer’s market. To find a CSA in your area, check out www.localharvest.org.

2. Holiday Spirits

Premium potables like Austin’s own award-winning Tito’s Vodka and Treaty Oak Rum (a premium silver rum made from Texas-grown and Texas-milled sugar cane) top my party supply lists on a regular basis and are available at most local Texas liquor stores. Be on the look out for Garrison Brother’s Texas Bourbon Whiskey, from Texas’s first (legal) bourbon distillery, allegedly scheduled to hit the shelves in 2011.

3. Grassfed Goodness

Every year we try to convince my parents that all my husband wants for Christmas is meat. My sister and her husband have picked up on this rather well, as evidenced by the 12 quail he received this year (gracias Megan and Jimmy!). Thanks to ranchers like Jon and Wendy Taggert of Burgundy Pasture Beef, we can get grass-fed beef, lamb, and pork delivered to our door in a couple of clicks. I send chops, steaks, and roasts to family and friends year-round. My Dad is especially fond of the bone-in ribeye steaks. Next-day nationwide delivery. Excellent customer service.

4. Cheese

Tell your mom that instead of saying it, you want to eat it. The Houston Dairymaids will pack and ship Texas cheese gift boxes (have them choose or create your own). While all of their selections are outstanding, I would request Veldhuizen Farmstead Cheese (Redneck Cheddar and Bosque Blue are my favorites), CheesyGirl Cheese Co’s scantily clad chevre, Buff, and CKC’s Baby Blue or Baby Caprino goat cheeses.

5. Texas Olive Oil

Ubiquitous in the kitchen. The perfect hostess gift, Texas Olive Ranch olive oil is a no-brainer. Buy at your local HEB/Central Market or order online.

6. A Cuppa

For New Year’s morning (or afternoon, for some), a fresh cup of coffee from Austin Coffee Roasting Company, or cleansing tea from Zhi Tea is a must-have for holiday recovery. Whole bean is the way to go for optimal flavor, and grinders are easy to use and inexpensive.

7. Classes

Perhaps you are already privy to offerings from certain restaurants or ateliers, but for the rest of us, all Central Market locations regularly offer informal cooking classes for aspiring chefs of all levels. Reserve multiple places and make it a date or a party. I think Whole Foods offers classes in Austin and Plano only.

8. A Field Experience

Give the gift of an exquisite meal, prepared from entirely local ingredients, and whose table is set anywhere from a field on a local farm to the Hotel St. Cecelia. I hesitate to disclose the following information for fear that I will no longer be able to reserve a seat. In the spirit of Christmas, however, I give you this: Dai Due Supper Club. Austin area only, but sooooooo worth the trip across the state. If anyone knows of something similar in the Houston or Dallas area, by all means, divulge.

9. Beer, glorious beer!

Mr. Alfred P. Dolittle certainly had it right. My fail-safe gift for guys is beer and potato chips. I recommend St. Arnold’s of any variety, though the Christmas Ale and Winter Stout are in season as I type. Available at grocery and liquor stores statewide.

heifer international

10. Give Hope

Watch out, here comes my soapbox: I like to think that those who understand the joys of food and the global impact of our food choices appreciate the gift of giving families not only a food source of their own, but means to a livelihood. As little as $20 buys a flock of chicks at Heifer International. Give in honor of your favorite foodie.

Happy Holidays!

4 Responses to “Top 10 Things Every Foodie Wants for Christmas”

  • Dianna:

    I think that all of your suggestions/choices are a result of all of the research you have done. It is great to share your knowledge with others who will benefit. Knowledge is power! What a great Top 10. Of course, I especially appreciated your last choice as it shares what we have with those who have so little. Dianna

  • Trent Walton:

    I want the Veldhuizen Cheese melted over some Burgundy Pasture Beef with some Treaty Oak Rum. Gimme gimme gimme…

  • Bradley Westmoreland:

    So glad to see Garrison Brothers on the list, it is so tatsy and smooth!!!

  • Ray-Gun:

    Yes on Number 9! I got a Texas beer gift basket from the in-laws for Christmas. It’s the gift that keeps giving all year long. Loving it.