Tuesday, December 9, 2014

Wendy's Favorite Things for December, Part 1: Holiday Gift Guide for Foodies

It's time for my annual Holiday Gift Guide for Foodies! Today and tomorrow, I'll be sharing my best ideas for holiday gifts that food lovers will love finding under the tree on Christmas morning. I've got a little something for everyone, so let's get started!

(1) For the coffee lover: The coffee lovers on your list will love being able to make their own gourmet coffee and espresso at home. The Nespresso Inissia is a perfect gift! It's compact (9 inches high), lightweight (just over 5 lbs.), and so simple to use. Not only that, this affordable machine retails for approximately $99, and it brews a perfect cup of coffee or espresso in seconds using specially made Nespresso coffee and espresso pods. The average price per cup of coffee or espresso made with the Inissia is $1 or less -- much more affordable than the neighborhood coffee shop! The machine is compatible with Gourmesso coffee pods too. To find a store near you that carries the Inissia, visit the store locator. 
(2) For the gourmet cook: Many times, I see a recipe call for creating a bouquet garni of herbs. They can be both frustrating and time-consuming to make yourself...even if you already have twine and cheesecloth on hand in your kitchen. Enter Pre-made Bouquet Garni from French lifestyle shop QuelObjet.com. A package of 8 ready-to-use bouquet garni is just $15, making it an affordable gift for the cooks on your shopping list. Each individual bouquet garni contains​ oregano, thyme, savory,and bay leaves that are perfectly ​rolled inside a bay leaf and tied with cotton string. They're great for ​infusing great herb flavor in roasts, stews, and soups. 
(3) For the wine lover: Wine of the Month Club membership is an ideal gift for the wine enthusiasts in your life. It's a gift that keeps giving all throughout the year, allowing wine lovers to discover the added value and instant gratification they provide friends and relatives via these memberships. The memberships start at $139.99 for an entry level four-month shipment schedule that can be delivered monthly or quarterly. That's a great price for eight bottles of highly rated wines! Each delivery features two bottles of hand-selected wine. Depending on your recipient's preference, you can specify whether the deliveries will contain 1 bottle of red and 1 bottle of white...or all red or all white. Each shipment arrives in a smart leather case, along with a newsletter containing information about the wines in that month's shipment.

(4) For the cookbook lover or party planner: The cookbook collectors and party planners you know and love will flip for Martina McBride's new Around the Table cookbook. McBride is best known as a very talented country singer, but she also is an accomplished cook who loves to entertain at home. This cookbook has lots of great party menus and recipes, divided by occasion and season. It also features decorating ideas, party planning tips...and even suggested music playlists to complete the mood. This versatile cookbook can be purchased online via Amazon.
(5) For those who love to dine out: How many times has this happened to you? You go out to dinner with a group of family or friends...and chaos ensues when the bill arrives. Dividing the bill between multiple parties and figuring out how much tip can be a huge hassle -- especially in a dimly lit dining room! A new device called Tip 'n Split will solve those problems in a flash. It not only calculates your tip, but it also magnifies and provides light! Thanks to Tip ’n Split, you can quickly calculate your tip, split the bill with friends and family, and stop worrying about how to make the right calculations! 
Tip ’n Split is a specialized calculator, so instead of just getting pre-prescribed amounts for tips like 15% or 20%, you can calculate exactly what percentage you'd like to give. 
Right now, Tip 'n Split can be purchased online at the company's website for less than $20. It would make a fantastic stocking stuffer for friends and family who love to dine out.

Disclosure: The products feature in my Holiday Gift Guide provided me with samples of their products to facilitate inclusion. I personal used all of the products before recommending them, and all opinions expressed are solely my own.

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