Friday, 12 November 2010

Christmas Gift Guide-part one; Foodies.

Whether we like it or not, the festive season is being thrust upon us left right and centre by an industry striving to lure us out of a recession. In support of their cause, and to help you with your gift buying, I have asked friends of mine from various industries what they'd like for Christmas- both realistically and in an ideal world. Hopefully this will cater for those of you with on a budget and those of you who are loaded. I'll also be offering my own gift recommendations, testament to my embarrassingly encyclopaedic knowledge of internet shopping sites.Go forth, shop, be merry.

Interests include whales, distilling stuff and drinking (we're currently writing a book on cocktails)
Realistic expectations for under your tree:Coconut pimp cups. These were popular in the 15th and 16th century. Young princes would cover coconuts with jewels and use them to drink Renaissance cocktails. I've been hunting for them in markets for ages.   
Ideal Christmas gift of your dreams: A sugar refinery. We visited a Tate & Lyle site last week and it was utterly awe inspiring. Something to work towards.

Angel Adoree, 30s, Founder of the Vintage Patisserie - a company that turns your tea party dreams into reality! Interests include food, old things, food, music, old things and food.
Realistic expectations for under your tree: A break away somewhere with no internet access!
Ideal Christmas gift of your dreams: this vintage ice cream van

Rosie Lovell
, 30s,  deli owner and author of 'Spooning with Rosie'
Interests include food, going out dancing, watching bad tv
Realistic expectations for under your tree:a chunky knit cardigan from FOLK
Ideal Christmas gift of your dreams: my expectations are always pretty straight forward. and i'm a bit boring in that i feel like i have pretty much everything i want. i'd really love to skip off to india in january though, so maybe that's a big one

Alexa Perrin, 30s, Company Director – PR Consultancy – APR Consultancy/Founder of theExperimental Food Society
Interests include Food and Drink, Trends, Culture and Society, Reading and Travel.
Realistic expectations for under your tree: 2 Books – Carl Warner’s Food Landscapes £15.99 published by Abrams & Willie’s Chocolate Bible by Willie Harcourt Cooze £25 published by Hodder & Stoughton
Ideal Christmas gift of your dreams: Enrolment on an Ices course at the Historic Food School –.... Or A New Years Eve banquet 'dinner in the sky' over the Thames by Tower Bridge with family and friends and all members of the Experimental Food Society.

My recommendations for Foodies;
My number one rule when gift buying is that a present should be something the recipient loves, but could probably never justify buying for themselves. They'll probably have seen it on the market and want it desperately, but not quite have been able to bring themselves to spend money on something so obviously unessential. With this in mind, here are a few of my Foodie picks:

Washing up bowl- boring household essential?Not this one. And whilst most people in their right mind wouldn't dream of spending £60 on a washing up bowl, its perfectly acceptable if you're gifting. The texture of the bowl is divine, as are the vibrant colours it comes in.

For anyone who enjoys the luxury of a home with a real fireplace, this is the perfect Christmas gift. Useful too for camp fires if you do that sort of thing.

Delicious chocolates, innovative flavours, stunning packaging; Rococo have made buying chocolates fashionable again, rather than just a cop out. I'm particularly taken by their three chocolate hampers; Melchior, Balthazar and Nebuchadnezzar.

Supper with Mrs Beeton 6th December,
For people who already have all the stuff they could want, experiences make the best gifts. The School of Life offers educational experiences combined with food, drink and good conversation. The evening will be hosted by food historian Polly Russell, and cooked up by co-author of the Kitchen Revolution, Rosie Sykes.

Ms MarmiteLover's Underground restaurant Dec 18th, 24th, 31st
Take your gift recipient for an aga cooked dinner at the original London supper club. Ms MarmiteLover has actually written a brilliant post on what to buy for Foodies on her blog( I'm totally with her on the 'anything from Toast' bit; gorgeous website). Head to her Christmas farmers and craft market for a plethora of perfect gifts for Foodies.

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