Food Gifts for Rad People, 2022 Edition
December 13, 2022 11:41 AM   Subscribe

I'm the kind of person who likes to send an assortment of tasty delicacies from my local area (PNW) to family members. I've put this off quite a bit, so now I'm panicking and I need HELP! because I need to send things ASAP to make the Christmas/Hanukkah cutoff.

In prior years I've used a local goods shop that also puts the items I choose into a box and sends it off for me. However, I don't want to send the same thing every year, and the product selection hasn't changed very much this year. I'm also looking at Goldbelly, but are there other places that send nice food gifts to people?

What I am looking for:
- cost between $50-$75 USD
- small business, small batch, PoC and/or woman-owned if possible
- unique things without being too off the wall
- some savory items

What I am not looking for:
- Zingerman's (that's local to some of my giftees) or Harry and David (meh)
- chocolate or other confections only
- X of the month; this should be a one-and-done shipment
- non-food items, unless it's an accessory that adds real value

Thanks y'all.
posted by daikaisho to Shopping (21 answers total) 29 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: You want, nay, need Frog Hollow Farm. They’re based in Northern California, and they have incredibly amazing fruit, dried fruit, conserves, and baked goods. They have a pear variety with a creamy flesh and vanilla flavor that honestly tastes like pear ice cream. I wish I could send you a sample through your screen. I found them at a farmers market in San Francisco, and have been kind of obsessed with them ever since. Their peaches, apricots, plums, and pears are out of this world good. Even fruit haters would be surprised. Their conserves (like jam but with less sugar) are delicious, their amaretti cookies are amazing, even their dried fruit is a real treat.

You can buy their produce separately, but I’ve linked to their gift section, where they have a nice mix of fruit, cheese, baked goods, and conserves in care packages right in your price point. You might even consider sending one to yourself. I cannot recommend them enough.
posted by Champagne Supernova at 11:55 AM on December 13, 2022 [14 favorites]

Best answer: I was looking at gift guides (2022, 2021) the other day and they have some possibilities, especially if you are willing to send a smaller selection than normal. Here's the 2022 Seattle guide. I'm guessing you might have looked at Providore and Wellspent Markets gift boxes already?
posted by spamandkimchi at 11:55 AM on December 13, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: Drifters Fish and Schoolhouse Fish Co send very delicious smoked salmon everywhere. Depending on how you want to define the PNW region, this maybe counts as "local."
posted by blnkfrnk at 12:04 PM on December 13, 2022

Best answer: Made in Washington (state) has great food items. Their smoked salmon was wonderful, and they used to have and probably still do have excellent jams and varietal honeys.
posted by jamjam at 12:05 PM on December 13, 2022

Best answer: Also Barnacle Foods for all your kelp pickle needs.
posted by blnkfrnk at 12:05 PM on December 13, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I’ve sent food boxes to folks the last couple years from Savor Seattle, and according to the email I got this morning, today is the last day to order with standard ground shipping for Christmas delivery.
posted by skycrashesdown at 12:44 PM on December 13, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: American Spoon in Northern Michigan has lovely jams, nut butters and condiments. I received a gift last year with their sour cherry preserves, peach preserves, and apple butter. They also have savory options.
posted by fies at 1:10 PM on December 13, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: My go to PNW food gift is World Spice. I enjoy their cookbook and like to give that along with spices. If you wanted to go all out for a few special folks, I have made the galam masala truffles from that cookbook (super easy and makes an absolute ton) and given those alongside it, though of course that means shipping yourself which is a pain. I have not checked if they have the same set this year but in the past they sold the cookbook with recommended spices. Or you can pick some out yourself or get another gift set of which they have a lot. For blends, I love their Chipotle Bomb and their salmon seasoning. Their singular spices (vs blends) are fantastic and there are a lot of little known varieties that makes for really fun gifts. I like their tea, too!

Speaking of tea, the PNW tea company Plum Deluxe has interesting blends and lots of gift ideas. While I have found most of their teas somewhat underwhelming, I still order occasionally because I am easily tempted by novelty, which is a good quality for gifts too!

I have also sent Fran’s Chocolates out as gifts, I have definitely gotten them from Made in Washington, which I second jamjam’s recommendation of!

American Spoon (linked by fies above me) was started in my hometown so I am thrilled to see them recommended! I often give them as gifts too and recommend anything cherry, since I find Michigan tart cherries to be so much more exciting than the usual WA Rainier or Bing cherries! But if you prefer something from your neck of the woods, I used to give out Dilettante chocolate covered cherries as client gifts and they were always a huge hit. Their stuff is great and I know I have gotten them through Made in Washington, too!
posted by the thorn bushes have roses at 1:37 PM on December 13, 2022 [3 favorites]

Best answer: Olympia Provisions and The Meadow, both in Portland, Oregon, have great options for gifts and shipping.
posted by jennstra at 1:40 PM on December 13, 2022 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Realizing now that I should have proofread a bit more carefully - gifts don't have to be from the PNW this year, which I am choosing to define rather arbitrarily as Oregon and Washington. Everything thus far is quite lovely, but keep the recs coming! Even if I don't use them, they might help others in a similar predicament.
posted by daikaisho at 2:27 PM on December 13, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: I was in the Yakima Valley recently and found Chukar Cherries to be pretty darned delightful.
posted by cyndigo at 4:11 PM on December 13, 2022 [3 favorites]

Best answer: I have been recommended Edward's Aged Meats, in particular their ground beef blend as out-of-this world by a reputable source.
posted by Maecenas at 4:12 PM on December 13, 2022

Best answer: Oh, The Meadow In Portland suggested above is a great idea. They focus on salt, bitters and chocolate. My kids blast through a small $16 thing of their truffle salt in no time-excellent on popcorn but better, apparently if you’re 12, on a 38 cent package of ramen.
posted by purenitrous at 7:04 PM on December 13, 2022

Best answer: Dark Horse: modern/experimental versions of Japanese condiments.

Fly by Jing: great spice gift boxes (their Sichuan Chili Crisp has become a staple in this house). Not sure they're still small, but they were not long ago! Woman owned (she started the business in China, is now based in LA).

North Spore: mushroom blocks and other kits. OK well these don't arrive ready to eat, but they're easy to grow, fun to watch, and eventually delicious.
posted by marlys at 7:05 PM on December 13, 2022

Best answer: Market Spice in Pike Place has this super strong cinnamon and orange flavored tea that's very distinctive

I've never gotten it but I know that there's a grower of wasabi in the PNW and they'll sell you the real deal. It's somewhat above your desired price range but if you know, say, a sushi lover it might be worth the stretch.
posted by foxfirefey at 8:10 PM on December 13, 2022

Best answer: Neither are PNW region, but I've gifted PSP hot sauce (Black owned small business, New York) and Tanka bison Jerky (Lakota owned, less small business, South Dakota.) I've had both myself and they're great.
posted by eotvos at 8:21 PM on December 13, 2022

Best answer: Stumptown Coffee from Portland has been a good gift over the years and Jacobsen Salt, also from Oregon, is having a moment in the sun and showing up lots of trendy places.
posted by Bibliogeek at 9:19 PM on December 13, 2022

Best answer: If the recipients are slightly more adventurous foodies, how about xiao long bao or other Chinese snack goodies? The XCJ is filling shipping orders quickly (mine delivered two days after ordering), delivery is great (packed in dry ice) and it's definitely foodie. Super local Seattle startup - learned how to flash freeze dumplings to help them pivot when COVID smashed their budding restaurant's business. Founders are very savvy and seem like nice people.
posted by BlueBlueElectricBlue at 10:52 PM on December 13, 2022

Best answer: For Wisconsin food specialties (centered on cheese of course), fromagination is hard to beat.
posted by rockindata at 4:54 AM on December 14, 2022 [1 favorite]

Best answer: East Van Jam is a Low Sugar yet incredibly tasty local jam I have discovered living in Vancouver that is small-business/woman opened and has made recipients of gifts I’ve given of the jams incredibly happy and highly recommend. They ship to US and beyond.

Kasama Chocolates is a Filipino small-batch chocolate company based out of Granville Island in Vancouver that I discovered at the farmers market that also ships across Canada and worldwide that has been another local/unique chocolatier with amazing flavours not found elsewhere that others have been delighted when I gift them.

Both companies I am loyal customer/supporter of and run by lovely people so feel confident recommending them to others!

Reading your edited comment I see you only want US PNW, but Vancouver is only a few hours across the border so hope you’ll still consider them!
posted by carabiner at 11:04 AM on December 14, 2022

Response by poster: I went with Frog Hollow Farm, but these are uniformly awesome. (Plus I think I found some things for myself. Kelp pickles? Yes please!) Thank you all!
posted by daikaisho at 9:16 AM on December 20, 2022 [3 favorites]

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