Coffee Lovers and Stocking Stuffers

Well, we’re here. We’ve made it deep into the holiday season, and halfway through our cheap, chocolate filled advent calendars. If you’re like me, you’re still (stressfully) shopping for the people on your list. Bearing that in mind, I give you my final 2016 holiday gift guide! This one covers your coffee lovers and your stocking stuffers. Enjoy!

FOR THE ALWAYS-CAFFEINATED

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Just like last year, I’m obsessed with the idea of coffee being delivered straight to my mailbox (instead of realizing I’m out at 6am and pouting for 10 minutes before I settle for a cup of old tea). Coffee subscription boxes allow you to try different beans from all over the country, and sometimes from all over the world.

Driftaway Coffee is a customized coffee subscription service that bases their selections for you on your given flavor profile preferences. First, they send you a box FULL of different kinds of beans (my favorite so far is the Brazil. SERIOUSLY one of the best coffees I’ve ever had). Once you’ve had a chance to try them all, you enter what you liked and didn’t to the Driftaway app. From there on out, the beans you receive will be chosen by the experts at Driftaway based on what they think will perk you up the most, allowing you to discover new beans and roasts that you never knew about before.

Learn more here!

Of course, it’s not just what you brew, it’s how you brew it! I like to keep it simple with my coffee setup, but also enjoy experimenting with new brew methods.

  • Bodum Pourover Set — I saw this at Target the other day and freaked out! This pourover set up is a) aesthetically pleasing and b) has a built in filter. HELLO. This is great for your friends who are having trouble coming to terms with their strained relationship with Mr. Coffee.
  • Hario Skerton Coffee Mill — This hand grinder allows the brewer to have ultimate control over the grind of their beans, while also getting a sufficient bicep workout. Probably best for the experienced coffee drinker, and not your friend’s mom who is going to mistake this for a ~ swanky pepper grinder ~
  • Bodum Travel Press — ALERT ALERT! YOU CAN NOW MAKE A FRENCH PRESS WHILE YOU TRAVEL. Easiest decision you’ve made all day.
  • Aeropress Coffee Maker — This simple piece of brewing equipment has completely changed the game for my At Home Coffee Routine. The coffee produced by an aeropress is clean, and full of flavor. It also takes less than 5 minutes (if your water is hot) and you’ll look really cool prepping it in your office’s kitchen. Seriously, do recommend.

    [Also the aeropress kit literally comes with everything you need to brew, with the exception of beans. Have I sold you yet?]

  • Turkish Coffee PotWatch this video and then tell me* you don’t have a hip, home-barista friend who doesn’t need this in their life.

*ADMITTEDLY  I’ve never had Turkish coffee, but I hear that it’s some of the most aromatic and richly flavored around. PLUS THE POT IS COPPER!! Who doesn’t love copper in the kitchen?


Looking for something small and (possibly) snackable?

See below for my compilation of food-and-drink-centric stocking stuffers, all produced by small businesses and local makers from across the U.S.!

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And that wraps it up for holiday gift guides! I hope that everyone has had a fabulous holiday season so far, and that it only continues to be great.

SO looking forward for what’s to come in 2017 (and what’s to enter my stomach).

For the One Who Cooks — A Gift Guide

The holiday season is here and none of us started gift shopping in September like we’ve always been told to do. But who has time for that, truly? The good news is that you still have plenty of time, but if you’re stumped when it comes to the actual gift selection then you’re going to burn through that time quick.

Never fear! Gift guides are here to help. I’ll be putting out a few this year to assist you on your quest to find holiday delights for the people in your life who love consuming food and drinks as much as I do. First up?

A Gift Guide for the Ones Who Love to Cook

  • Retro inspired kitchen timers — Because we all need a kitchen timer, and they might as well make a statement.
  • Cookware with character — The accessibility of artisanal goods has been made SO easy through sites like Etsy. Find a unique, useful gift online that supports the Maker community. Some even have options for personalization. (Pro tip: this is also a good way to scout out vintage finds).
  • Copper cooking utensils — For your trendy friend who enjoys cooking, and having a very instagrammable prep space.
  • Mortar and Pestle — The more I cook, the more I understand the need for one of these. They’re used for crushing and grinding herbs and spices, and it doesn’t hurt that they look nice on display, either.
  • Ravioli and Tortellini starter set — Remember your friend who studied abroad in Florence? Firenze. They’ll love this.
  • Hot chocolate pot — Why? The better question is “Why Not?”.  At first glance this probably seems ostentatious, but check this out: the teak handle makes pouring a breeze, the lid can be used as a trivet while cooling, and think of how COOL you/your friend will look when they whip out this puppy for a cocoa sesh.

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Joule by Chef Steps — Sous vide is a cooking technique that’s really blown up in the last couple of years. While I’ve never done it myself, it has already sealed its reputation as being a modern cooking method that boasts ease of execution and perfectly prepared steaks. But it can certainly do more than just cook your meats to the ideal medium rare. If there’s someone in your life who enjoys learning new techniques in the kitchen, this is the gift for them. Learn more on the Chef Steps website.

If you’re a person who feels safer giving, say, socks than this years trendy tech, try some of these safer, more practical gifts on for size:

  • Wooden Cutting Boards — Make it interesting, though! Look for different compositions of wood, wood grain, shapes, and materials.
  • Mandolin — No, not the instrument. This kitchen machine cuts major time out of slicing (see what I did there?).
  • Oven Thermometer — Yes, it’s just a food thermometer, but you can never go wrong with All Clad, right?
  • Scale — Bingo. A practical gift, with a high tech touch. (Plus, who doesn’t need a scale in the kitchen?)

I know what some of you may be thinking, “What about a cookbook?”.  My friends, worry no more. I’ve got you covered:

Perhaps you’re giving to someone who’s less of a “things-person” and more of an “experience-person”, which I totally get! There are a lot of options for these people, too.

Look for cooking classes in your area for the two of you to take together, or for them to take alone or with someone else. Are they adventurous? Maybe a foraging excursion is more their speed. Learn, alongside an expert, about the edible ingredients found in nature around you (+10 points if it’s a mushroom tour because that’s DOPE).

Or maybe they’re the kind of person that just wants to hang out and be together. Why not get all the ingredients you need to tag team a meal, and a few bottles of wine, obviously. Even plan an outing where you go to the Farmer’s Market together and gather everything you need, while simultaneously sampling your community’s best ciders and spiced donuts.

Want to gift all your kitchen-dwelling friends at once? What if you invited them all over for a night of enjoying company and YOUR cooking? All they’re required to do is kick back and snack. Sounds like the makings of a special evening to me.


Hopefully this makes your holiday hunt for the Home Chefs (or Chef Chefs!) in your life a little less stressful, or gave you some ideas of your own! I’ve got more headed your way in the coming weeks.

Happy Holidays!

For the Coffee Enthusiast | Holiday Gift Guide

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If you know me, then you know that one thing I’m completely unapologetic about is being a coffee…snob. That’s right, I said it. With a history of working next to talented baristas, experience in espresso training and a hell of a lot of tastings and cuppings to boot I know what I like my coffee to taste like and love to educate people on why it tastes that way.

I have a few friends who are adamant that coffee is “solely for caffeine.” While that is partially true (I mean it does have caffeine), coffee is so much more than that; it’s chemistry, it’s agriculture, it’s a combination of factors that come together to form this perfect combination of… I’ll stop.

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Regardless of how you drink your coffee, I’m willing to bet you have a coffee-loving friend who you are idealess on what to get for a gift this holiday season. BOY DO I HAVE A TREAT FOR YOU. I present to you… my the coffee lover’s holiday wishlist:

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Hario V60 kettle – Perfect for pour overs and making people feel like their coffee is going to be served with tasting notes of nuts, cocoa and pretentious eye brow raises.

• Falcon Enamelwear mug – Enamelwear for the city dweller who likes to trick people into thinking they spend a lot of time outdoors. (“Yeah I love to take this mug with me when I go camping…”)

• Joco travel mug – Eco friendly and clear so your coworkers know exactly how serious you are about brewing your coffee at home before coming to work. Why use that Keurig in the breakroom? That’s for coffee peasants.

• Hario v60 – I don’t have any jokes to make about this because I want one so badly. A V60 is a way to brew a single, clean tasting cup of coffee. Highly recommend. (Pro tip: To look like a real sucker, put one arm behind your back and use with the kettle from above).

• Capresso Infinity Burr Grinder – One of the best at home coffee grinders on the market; great for a variety of brew methods and for making your friends feel insecure about their at home coffee routines.

Mistobox – A coffee subscription is an awesome way to try different beans from different roasters and different regions of the world. Mistobox was my favorite one that I saw out there; they customize your monthly box specifically for you based on your preferences. Perfect for those friends that love to Instagram their coffee pouring action shots or well composed shots of them holding things. (RLTC pick!)

Acaia Coffee scale – The most unneccessary, neccessary coffee item you never knew you needed. The scale connects to your iphone/android via app and gives you all the info you could ever need. (I’m in lust.) Why would your friend need a coffee scale? Learn more here

**Coffee lovers do not include: people who brew dunkin donuts coffee in a coffee maker daily OR people who seem like coffee lovers because they have an “espresso yourself” print in their kitchen.

Speak to you soon!

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**couldn’t find image credit for the first one so sorrryyyy**

Some Like it Hot | Saturday Morning

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The weather in Seattle this weekend is forecasted to be rainy with an 85% chance of everyone forgetting what being warm feels like. That being said, I have been craving hot drinks: eggnog (a festive favorite), pour-overs (sue me), mulled wine (for those of us who like to get warm in more ways than one) and, of course, hot chocolate.

Here’s some hot chocolate recipes that I’m dying to try this season:

  • This Lavender hot chocolate
  • Eggnog hot chocolate found here
  • And perhaps one of these two mint hot chocolates; they both looked too good for me to choose just one.

Am I forgetting anything? What are you craving?

Speak to you soon!

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photo credit for title image here