When it comes time to shop for the foodies on your holiday gift list, why not keep it local? Durham (and the rest of the Triangle) is filled with local and family-owned food and beverage businesses carrying the perfect gifts for loved ones, co-workers, and party hosts. You can even get creative and combine a few to create homemade NC-themed gift baskets!
Below, you’ll find 11 delicious Durham-based gift ideas for the foodies in your life.
For a unique holiday drink that’s also a welcome addition to any house party, try a hand-crafted mead from Durham’s Honeygirl Meadery. Mead is a fermented adult beverage whose main ingredient is honey, and their meads are made in small batches with all natural ingredients using seasonal fruits, flowers, herbs and honey. Honeygirl recently celebrated its two-year anniversary with the release of two new meads: Ginger Mead and Vanilla Mead. Their Spiced Apple Cyser is perfect for holiday mulling. Several meads are available for online shipping; you can also stop and shop at the production facility on Hood Street in downtown Durham on Saturdays from 1-6pm.
You’ll be a favorite work party or house party guest if you arrive with a box of Smallcakes cupcakes in your arms! Along with their signature flavors and superb seasonal specials, the Durham and Cary locations, owned and operated Durham natives, can custom design cupcakes and cakes for any occasion, including Christmas, Hanukkah, or a general winter wonderland. These sweet and fluffy cupcakes are so good they’ll have you plotting out your order for Valentine’s Day!
Sample a wide variety of Ultra Premium and infused olive oils and balsamic vinegars then customize your very own foodie gifts at Durham’s newest specialty grocer, Bull City Olive Oil in Brightleaf Square. Whether you’re shopping for co-workers, friends who like to entertain, or for the home cook in your life, you’ll find everything (including specialty meats and cheeses, artisanal chocolates, local jams, sea salt, pasta and more) at this cozy local shop.
What do you get the person who has everything? How about a gift certificate for a locally taught and globally inspired cooking class? Chef Amanda Cushman, owner of Chapel Hill Cooking Classes, has cooked professionally for over 30 years and offers public group classes and private in-home classes across the Triangle for two to twenty people. Whether you know someone who loves to cook or someone who wants to learn the basics, they’ll appreciate learning new culinary skills while enjoying a fabulous meal. She also has a cookbook, “Simple, Real Food” full of healthy, easy-to-prepare meals!
If you know someone with a sweet tooth, they’re sure to love the carameled buttery goodness of Durham Toffee, made with organic dark chocolate. This adorably packaged, locally-made treat makes the perfect easy gift for co-workers, a gift swap, and a wonderful stocking stuffer! You can find 8 or 4.5 ounce bags sold at local stores like Foster’s Market and Bulldega, or purchased online (where you can also add Brittled Nut Clusters and Bull City Crunch trail mix to your cart). Save 20% off your online order with code “BITESOFBULLCITY.”
Not all kids like salad and sushi, but it’s impossible to grow up around so many good restaurants in the Triangle and not be a future foodie! Bites of Bull City has the perfect t-shirt for the young people in the foodie families you know…whether they’re already adventurous eaters, or you’re anxiously waiting for the day they will be! Bright, fun colors in royal blue, sage green, and pink sport this Durham food blog’s adorable Bull City logo and made of comfy cotton. Save 15% off your purchase with code “BITESOFBULLCITY.”
Taste of Tobacco Road: A Culinary Journey Along the Famous Nine Miles is the latest cookbook from the Junior League of Durham and Orange Counties (JLDOC). A culinary reflection of the community the JLDOC has served for over 75 years, Taste tells the stories of our corner of North Carolina to help readers understand—recipe by recipe—why Southern Living recently named us “Tastiest in the South.” Junior League cookbooks are widely considered the best of community cookbooks, and this one comes to you from our own neck of the woods.
Craft beer is all the rage right now and you can choose from a vast seleciton at Beer Durham’s bottle shop where it’s easy to get the perfect gift for the beer enthusiast in your life! With the help of knowledgeable and friendly staff, choose your own custom six pack or get a refillable growler, which can be filled to order with any of the 20 rotating beers on tap.
Nothing quite says it’s the holidays like a handmade fresh-baked pie! East Durham Pie Co. has your holiday dessert needs covered with delicious pies in seasonal flavors like Malted Pumpkin, Cider Caramel Apple and Bourbon Honey Pecan. Owner Ali Rudel started the company last year making pies with local ingredients and handmade all-butter crust. She will be opening a bakery and cafe in Old East Durham in 2017. Be sure to order your holiday pies early! Quantities are limited and orders open on November 1st for Thanksgiving and December 1st for the holidays. Check their website for order details and pick up locations.
Skip the generic holiday snack tins from chain stores and share locally made gourmet popcorn from The Mad Popper with your colleagues and friends for the holidays! Fresh popped daily in 40 flavors, like yellow cheddar cheese, pumpkin pie, gingerbread, honey mustard and curry. Order tins, bags, or gift box of your favorite for Secret Santa, swap gifts, stocking stuffers, and holiday parties. Plus, you can ship anywhere in the U.S. and give far away family members a sweet and salty treat from the Bull City!
Now is the time of year when everyone is having a Conniption! Now ranked the No. 2 Craft Gin Distillery in the U.S., you can be sure that either of Durham Distillery’s award-winning Conniption gins, American Dry and Navy Strength will fit right at your holiday cocktail party. And if you’re more in the mood for sweet decadence, Damn Fine liqueurs are the perfect answer. Featuring local Triangle Videri Chocolate and Slingshot Coffee, Damn Fine liqueurs are available in Chocolate, Mocha and Coffee and are all natural and gluten-free. A truly local luxury. You can buy Conniption gins and Damn Fine liqueurs at ABC stores across North Carolina or you can order them online to be sent to out-of-state family and friends.
*Note: This is a sponsored post. Participation in our annual gift guide is paid – it is also by invitation only, therefore, each product/business is highly endorsed by Bites of Bull City.