Stop Buying Fruitcakes. These Culinary Experts Have the Best Foodie Gift Ideas

Conde Nast Traveler


November 19, 2013

Kate Parham

Not sure what to get the traveling foodie on your list this year? We’ve called in chefs, artisanal shop owners, and sommeliers to help you find the ultimate gift guide for the food-lover in your life.

Chef Michael Chiarello of Bottega, Napa Valley

I’M ASKING FOR: Gins from my friends' travels for my home gin and tonic bar. Each G&T combination can taste dramatically different, so I would love to stock my bar with a variety of options. Gins at the top of my wish list are Bloom Gin from Spain, Monkey 47 from Germany, and Caorunn from Scotland.

I’M GIVING FRIENDS AND FAMILY: I'm trying to keep things Spanish this year, so I plan to give handblown glass porrons from La Tienda. They're made of recycled glass and a great gift for anyone who enjoys wine.

MY TRAVEL STAPLE IS: I always carry gray salt for my meals. It's packed with minerals such as calcium, potassium, and magnesium, which satisfies a salt craving more than table salt. Gray salt also brings out the natural flavors of a dish without losing its moisture. It can be purchased at most supermarkets and specialty stores including Williams-Sonoma.

GREAT IDEA FOR FOOD LOVERS: For my closest friends, I'll be giving legs of Iberico Jamon. It's a treasure in Spanish cuisine and can be enjoyed for quite some time. It's the gift that keeps on giving. My favorite is the Reserva Jamon by Fermín.

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