Holiday Gift Guide 2021

Greetings! I’m so pleased to present The 11th Annual Dinner: A Love Story Holiday Gift Guide, complete with ideas for all the readers and eaters in your life, PLUS a few DALS-exclusive codes to give you a discount or two. Happy holidays everyone!

Fresh Catskills (Delivery or Gift Card, $50 minimum) I love going to the farmer’s market to run into people and talk to the vendors and all that, but sometimes it’s also nice to just order the same special, local meat, cheese, produce, and provisions online from your couch and have it delivered to your door. My brother and sister gave me a gift card to Fresh Catskills, but I keep thinking how fun it would be to send a cooking enthusiast a box filled with all you need to make a beautiful homemade dinner. (Think: Chaseholm Farm Nimbus Triple Cream, Autumn’s Harvest short ribs, polenta, Neversink greens, honeynut squash, Beach Lake Bakery cherry pie) P.S. Delivery is New York area only, but the idea is universal — wrap up a box with all of your favorite local specialties, even if it’s simply a dozen beautifully fresh eggs.

Cacio e Pepe Sweatshirt (Novel Mart, about $60) I bought this for Abby for her birthday (you might recall she loves the dish so much she started using “cacio” as a verb). The only problem (sort of?) is that everyone stops her to ask where it’s from — especially at a farmer’s market.

Coffee Subscription (Yonder, starting at $35/month, 25% off first month with code DALS) Yonder partners with roasters around the world, and sends you a different, very special bag of fresh, whole, single origin beans every month. The packaging is sometimes as exciting as the actual coffee, like this Norwegian beauty we’ve been very into lately.

Chef-Quality Knives (Nakano, 20% discount with code DINNER) You know by now that I partner with Nakano, makers of high-quality Japanese knives. And I do it for a reason: These are great knives at accessible prices. At the risk of repeating myself, I can’t get through a day without using my Nakiri or Santoku and the Classic Chef’s Set (above) is probably one of the best deals going right now. I encourage you to hunt around their site, there are some great bundle offers as well and the discount code applies to every last one of them.

Beer Can Glass ($4 each, Crate & Barrel) Anyone who’s been paying attention to me this past year knows that there is no job this glass is not right for: Ice Coffee? Check. Mid-day lemonade? Check. Beer or cocktail? Yep! I bought a six-pack for my sister last year and now I’m wishing I bundled them with a box of one of Death & Co’s new canned cocktails.

Pasta (Missy Robbins with Talia Baiocchi, $25) Giving this gorgeous cookbook by the James Beard-Award winning chef behind New York’s Lilia and Misi is not so much handing someone a present as it is handing someone an experience. Robbins gives loving, detailed instructions on Italian American and regional Italian pasta dishes that you can see would either ignite or fuel a passion in the right recipient. I’ll bet you know who that is. (Mine is wearing a Cacio e Pepe sweatshirt.)

Molino Premium Extra Virgin Olive Oil (Williams-Sonoma, $20) Andalusian extra virgin olive oil packaged in the most beautiful bottle. Tie some gelt around its neck and you’ve got just the right vibes for a Hanukkah gift.

Gin (Thomas Dakin, about $32-$40) You know we are purists when it comes to the gin and tonic in our house, but this bottle of juniper-forward gin, given to us this past fall by our friend Sloan, might have changed that for us. It’s made with orange, licorice, and coriander (with a faint and festive red tint) and we were instructed to drink our Thomas Dakin G&T with an orange garnish and a sprig of cilantro. We weren’t sorry. (Probably easiest ordered through your local wine and liquor shop.)

Dewy Skin Cream (Tatcha, $68) Who put beauty products in my DALS gift guide? I did! I have no justification other than I’ve never been a skincare person until I tried Tatcha, and now I’m an obsessive. My latest crush is their Dewy moisturizer, infused with Japanese purple rice, which feels as rich and indulgent as ice cream. (There’s your nod to food.) P.S. They have so many beautiful gift sets, take a walk around.

The Weekday Vegetarians + Rancho Gordo Heirloom Lima Beans ($32 + $6) I know you know someone whose New Year’s resolution was “I’d like to cut back on meat.” Why not make it as easy and delicious as possible for them? Gift them The Weekday Vegetarians bundled with a pack of those cover-girl-worthy limas to get them started. (Also worth considering: A Rancho Gordo gift card.)

Dinner: A Love Story, The Newsletter ($5/month or $50/year) Speaking of which: If you’ve enjoyed The Weekday Vegetarians, you’ve probably enjoyed my newsletter, which means, maybe you know someone else who might also? Consider a gift subscription for that friend you’re always forwarding recipes to! For $5 a month or $50 a year, they will get my weekly dispatch of Three Things I’m excited about reading and eating, plus tons of easy dinner ideas and access to hotlines with food and lifestyle experts (this week you can talk holiday baking with legend Dorie Greenspan!), weekly shopping lists, personalized books, bonus posts, and even the occasional podcast). Thank you as always for your support.

P.S. I happen to know someone who works at Random House, which means I happen to know that next week’s dispatch of their monthly newsletter is devoted to some of our favorite writers’ holiday rituals and gifts (like the best pannetone) and it is so so good! Subscribe here to find out what writers like Ruth Reichl, Imbolo Mbue, Taffy Brodesser-Akner, George Saunders, and Hanif Abdurraqib are giving and how they’re celebrating. Trust me when I say it is Reader and Eater Heaven. (And also this from National Book Award nominee Abdurraqip: “Every Christmas, I get myself something old that is new to me. Increasingly, I don’t want new things, I want things that have already lived a life, already been loved a bit.” Don’t you want to know what that is?) The newsletter is great all year long, btw, not just for the holidays.

P.S. Attention Brooklyn friends! The week before Thanksgiving I sat down at Books Are Magic and signed stacks and stacks of copies. Head over there to grab one…and all the other books on your list.

P.P.S DIY Recycled Newspaper Gift Toppings (in top photo) by the one and only Supermakeit. You can learn how to make them here.

Gift Guides through the years (Wow I’ve been doing this a long time):

Gift Guide 2020
Gift Guide 2019
Gift Guide 2018
Gift Guide 2017
Gift Guide 2016
Gift Guide 2015
Gift Guide 2014
Gift Guide 2013
Gift Guide 2012
Gift Guide 2011

Have a great holiday!

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