Foodie Gift Guide: Top 10 Picksfeatured

Let the chestnuts roast and the eggnog flow, it’s that time of year again! Here’s our short list of unique food-centric gifts that will bring a smile to your favorite foodie’s face.

1. Sushi Booties (For the Avant-Garde Baby)

Sushi Booties

Photo Credit: Sushi Booties (via Etsy)

You’re never too young to develop a shoe fetish. These super soft fleece Sushi Booties ($24), fashioned to resemble your favorite piece of soosh, are the perfect gift for hip parents or the sushi-deprived mommy-to-be. Each set of booties is handmade to order and comes in a sushi bento box ready for gift-giving!

2. Booze-inspired jewelry (For the Life of the Party)

Sora Designs

Photo Credit: Sora Designs

She’s the life of the party. She’s stylish. She’s bold. She loves boozin’ and she loves looking good while she’s boozin’. This necklace was made for her. Local SF jewelry designer Yueh-Wen Chang (Wen) of Sora Designs has created the ultimate statement pieces with her Owl-t on the Town Bottle Opener Necklace ($35.50) and Fish Bottle Opener Necklace ($29.50). Gift your girl this necklace and she’ll be the most popular person at the party…as if she weren’t already.

3. Tell Tale Society CSA (For the Discerning Sweet Tooth)

Tell Tale Preserve Company

Photo Credit: Tell Tale Preserve Company

Tell Tale Preserve Company is Pastry Chef William Werner’s (formerly of Quince) latest project. The modern pâtisserie and delicatessen is slated to open Spring 2011 at 33 Maiden Lane. In the meantime, company’s monthly CSA of heavenly confections is in full swing. Join the Tell Tale Society ($35/month) and receive a burlap bag full of inspired creations like Turrón of White Chocolate, Walnut and Yuzu; Hazelnut, Frankincense and Muscovado Toffee, and Pain D’épices Laced Caramels.

Customers can order one month at a time, or pre-purchase months in advance. Society bags can be shipped or picked up at the Ferry Building Farmers Market on Tuesdays (8:00 am – 2:00 pm) or at Coffee Bar. The bag of treats can also be purchased at the Ferry Building Farmers Market on Tuesdays and Saturdays (8:30 am – 2:30 pm) and at Big Daddy’s Antique Trunk Show Monday to Saturday (9:00 am – 5:00 pm) starting 12/10. Come along, sugar plum fairies, come along.

4. Marianberry Confections Doggy Cookies (For the Furry)

Marianberry Confections_dog cookies

Photo Credit: Marianberry Confections

Let’s not forget your four-legged friend. He does put up with all your shenanigans. While Marianberry Confections focuses mainly on treats for people (like amazing chewy, crispy, thin Oatmeal Raisin cookies), they have baked up something just for that special pup in your life. Honey Crunch Dog Cookies nestled in a classic Black and White Bone Motif Bowl ($15). The all-natural cookies are made with whole wheat flour, steel cut oats, honey, milk & eggs.

5. Homegrown Mushrooms (For the Green)

Back to the Roots_mushroom garden

Photo Credit: Back to the Roots

BTTR (pronounced better), which stands for “Back to the Roots,” was started by Nikhil Arora and Alex Velez after they graduated from UC Berkeley last year. During their last semester, the two discovered that they could grow gourmet mushrooms entirely on recycled coffee grounds. And so, they created a 100% sustainable urban mushroom farm in Berkeley (which now diverts 10,000 lbs/wk of coffee grounds from Peet’s Coffee & Tea, produces 500 lbs/wk of fresh oyster mushrooms, and sustains 10 urban school and community gardens by donating post-harvest grounds which have turned into nutrient-rich compost from the leftover mushroom roots).

BTTR now brings sustainable mushroom farming into your own kitchen with their Easy-to-Grow Mushroom Garden ($19.95). Just open the box, mist it twice a day, and watch your own science experiment grow. Harvest up to 1 pound of oyster mushrooms in as little as 10 days, and harvest as many as four crops.

This is the ultimate feel-good gift of the year. Support young entrepreneurs, recycle would-be waste, grow your own delicious , sustainable, as-local-as-it-gets mushrooms, and help raise money for the Susan G. Komen Foundation all at the same time (through December 5% of sales will be donated to support breast cancer research). This officially puts you on Santa’s Nice List. *DEAL ALERT* Use the code: LICKMYSPOON and receive 20% off through 12/31.

6. Breakfast in Bed (For the Sweetheart)

Kodiak Cakes Gift Bowl

Kodiak Cakes Gift Bowl

Nothing says “I love you” like breakfast in bed. Especially when breakfast entails thick, fluffy flapjacks sweetened with a touch of honey. This pretty gift package from Kodiak Cakes ($29) includes their famous hearty and healthy Frontier Flapjack and Waffle Mix (comprised of only the finest American wheat and Canadian oats), all-natural handmade berry syrup, a soft dish towel, and a 10-inch wire whisk, all nestled in a jumbo 2-quart glass measuring bowl with a rubber lid.

7. Smocks (For the Stylish Hostess)

Smocks designer aprons

Photo Credit: Smocks (on the left: “Kelly”; on the right: “MacKenzie”)

These sassy designer aprons from Smocks are flirty, feisty, fun, and functional. Yeah, alliteration. They are inspired by contemporary designers and designed to fit and flatter a woman’s body. Favorite picks include the flouncy Kelly ($39.95), with deep pockets cleverly hidden on each side to avoid bulk on your hips, and the retro-chic MacKenzie ($34.95) with those sexy back ties.

8. Bacon iPad Case (For the Devotees)

bacon ipad case

Photo Credit: Media-Digest

This is for the die-hard bacon devotees. I know you’re still out there. The Bacon Case ($59) from Antjes is the ultimate fantasy. Tasty fatty pork makes sweet love to sleek shiny iPad. There’s something viscerally disturbing in that statement, but I stand by it.

9. Homemade Goodies (For the Crafty)

Homemade Christmas Cookie Jars

Homemade Christmas Cookie Jars

There’s still nothing better than something homemade that comes from the heart. (Exception: diamonds. Obviously.) Granted, you probably won’t be showering your co-workers with diamonds anytime soon, or dropping a big fat rock into that Secret Santa bag…here are a few alternatives:

10. Classes (For the Hands-On)

Avedano's Meats butchery class

Photo Credit: Curiosity Atlas

If you’re a believer that things own you rather than the other way around, this could be your savior this holiday season. Curiosity Atlas is a Bay Area initiative that aspires to provide inspiration and access to unique, local and hands-on experiences that foster personal growth and cultivate community. Check out their roundup of vendors who could very well hold the key to the perfect experiential gift for that special someone who is always impossible to buy for. Some food-centric experiences to look out for:


That’s a wrap! Jingle bells, everyone!

For more foodie gift-giving ideas, check out Last Year’s Wishlist.

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