The gifting season has arrived along with the turkey feast here in the great frozen north. Now is the time to share the love of all things local food and drink with friends and family. Eater Twin Cities is here to help with this handy, carefully chosen, locally-focused holiday gift guide. Below are what all food and beverage lovers want, from the aspiring mixologist, to those far away longing for a taste of home, avid hunters, charitable hearts and even stuff just for people who like pretty things.
Below is the best in winter sipping spirits, pickle dips, stunning glassware and the hot cocoa everyone deserves on a chilly night.
.Read on for all that’s good, gorgeous and ready to wrap in Minnesota. For even more gift ideas, check out Eater’s national gift guide
Rose Street Patisserie hot chocolate, marshmallows, and treats
Hot chocolate mix and all the accouterments from John Kraus’ world-class bakery. Nothing beats coming in from the cold than a steaming cup of ultra rich hot chocolate. Give the gift of Rose Street’s easy mix along with homemade marshmallows and maybe even some cookies and chocolates to go along with it.
Build an impressive charcuterie board
A Stangler Works board spread with K’nack meats, surrounded by Darling Pickle Dips. Kick off holiday eating with a spread of the old fashioned meaty deliciousness from K’nack, the new butcher shop backed meat counter inside Keg and Case. We picked up spicy coppa, pastrami, and pepperoni.
No proper Midwestern party is complete without some pickle dip - straight from the weird, but true file, these creamy spreads with snappy pickles are divine on everything. Just try spreading one on a slip of sliced meat, roll up and enjoy.
Ross Stangler creates useable beauty out of wood, including this rich and knobby board that could be used to serve or just carefully placed on a table to show off. It’s usable art of the most stunning fashion.
K’nack’s meat prices vary, ask the helpful staff to build a selection based on your budget.
Stangler Works Board $120
BA Craftmade Aprons
Handmade in Minnesota, these aprons have been appearing in just about every new restaurant opening in the past few months, and are in even more kitchens. See them in action at The Lynhall, on Top Chef’s newest star Justin Sutherland, at Lowry Hill Meats or inside your own kitchen. The durable materials are highlighted with personalized touches and the cross body straps mean it never pulls or sags. BA Craftmade aprons even have a women’s selection tailored for a flattering and functional chest fit. They’re fun to wear and the company has kicked off a limited Eater Twin Cities-style available on their website with the pictured red and black check paired with red, canvas straps.
Upgrade at home mixology with spirits from J. Carver, Bēt and Dashfire
Even if you’re hopping on a plane with just a carry-on, it’s easy to bring a little taste of home with Bēt’s tiny bottles of that super smooth sugar beet-made vodka.
Amaroes are lovely for sipping on their own or mixing into a cocktail. J. Carver’s Cruella amaro is a mix of herbal bitters with flavors of rosehips, bitter orange and saffron. It’s an ideal sipper for after a large holiday meal, or mix it with their Rye for a locally-sourced Manhattan.
An Old Fashioned is a perfect fireside sipper, and Dashfire’s new batched cocktail upgrades the standard cocktail with subtly spicy aplomb.
Bēt Stocking Stuffer Bottles, $2.99
J. Carver Amaro, $26.99
The Best in Local Baking Books
The Great Minnesota Cookie Book, Sweet Revenge and Holiday Bread in Five Minutes a Day
Every year the Star Tribune runs a wildly popular cooking baking contest filled with everything from homey to fancy treats that will dazzle at any cookie exchange. Dig into this sweet book put together by the paper’s Rick Nelson and Lee Dean that’s a slice of regional baking life. Perfect for the mom in your life.
Sweet Revenge is deliciously salty writing and fun from local artist and pastry chef Heather Kim. The book was initially geared towards teenagers, but anyone who has ever experienced the pang of heartbreak or the redemptive qualities of procrastibaking will love pouring through this book. Shock and delight your friends with banana cake with peanut butter frosting or ramen noodle fudge.
Zoë François and Jeff Hertzberg have revolutionized home bread baking for the lazy or knead-challenged. Their newest book dealves into a delightfully sweet realm with breads that are ideal for occassions. It’s the perfect present to yourself for baking and paying sweets forward to friends and neighborhoods.
The Great Minnesota Cookie Book, $24.95
Parallel Hand-Blown Glasses and Dampfwerk Brandy
Parallel’s showroom sports several gorgeous glasses, all hand made that are sure to add a little sparkle to any holiday table. Go above and beyond gracious gift giving by pairing with a bottle of Dampfwerk’s immature grape brandy. This might just be the best use of Frontenac grapes ever tasted. Smooth with aromas of peach/citrus with a hint of tart, icy grape finish. Ideal for sipping at the start of a meal.
This local company has caught the eye of celebrity chefs with its gorgeous jewlery that gives back a portion of its proceeds. Check out these groovy little pasta pieces including a swirly silver necklace, macaroni earrings and farfalle cufflinks.
Farfalle cufflinks, $148
Celletani necklace, $99
Bootstrap Coffee Winterblend
A one pound bag of fantastic, locally roasted coffee. As festive as the holidays are, the late nights, crammed work days, interminable nights and chilly temps call for coffee and lots of it. Give a bag to fuel friends through the season and maybe nab a bag of the seaonal-only blend with subtle nutty and dark chocolate flavors. This pairs beautifully with gingerbread cookies and bouche de noël.
1 lb Bootstrap Winter Blend $16
Vox Media has affiliate partnerships. These do not influence editorial content, though Vox Media may earn commissions for products purchased via affiliate links. For more information, see our ethics policy.