Aside from the gift ideas straight from the SFC Farmer’s Market downtown, there are lots of other great choices for keeping your gift giving funds in our local economy, and exposing friends to new local businesses they might not be aware of.
Antonelli’s Cheese Shop is loading up on gift type items, and has a catalog in the works to make shopping easier. Aside from fabulous cheese, charcuterie, wine, beer, olive oils and preserves, Antonelli’s has a great assortment of serving pieces, like cheese boards, cheese knives, cheese plate markers, and an entire wall of other items that would be great for the cheese lover in your life.
They have one of the more interesting wine selections in town as well.
Another product I’m hoarding for my gift baskets is the locally made Cajeta and Bourbon Cajeta from Blue Heron Farm. Oh, heck yes! Goat milk caramel is to die for. Spoon it over Vanilla ice cream, please.
Other gift items can be found at Con Olio, in the Arboretum. This shop has an amazing variety of olive oils, balsamic vinegars, pastas, sauces, and another interesting wine selection.
One more amazing local food maker and purveyor is Delysia Chocolates. Nicole Patel has a way with her chocolates, imparting some of the most interesting flavors I’ve ever tasted. There are wine flavored chocolates, autumn inspired flavors, and some off the radar flavors like cigar, which is evocative of a cedar cigar box. I am partial to the chocolates infused with heat from peppers. Delysia has also now introduced a line of chocolate barks. Big Fan. www. delysia.com
Yet another interesting idea is to give the gift of a CSA Membership. You choose the frequency of delivery of local produce from area farms. Farmhouse Delivery offers not just produce from local farms but locally made products, such as Confituras’ locally made delicious preserves, and local cheeses.
Edible Austin, a wonderful resource for all of the local goodness that Austin has to offer, would also make a wonderful gift. Subscriptions are a mere $28 annually. http://www.edibleaustin.com
If you are building gift baskets, as am I, another good resource is the Better Bites of Austin, Local Holiday Gift Fair event at City Hall on December 8, 2010 from 4:00 to 8:00. This is a free event, where you can meet and shop from our local foodmakers and buy local products.