10 Local Gifts for the Portland Foodie

Our annual roundup of the shiniest kitchen tools, most covetable stocking stuffers, and undeniably crave-worthy foodstuffs to give this holiday season.

By Benjamin Tepler and Kelly Clarke December 1, 2015

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For the aspiring mixologist, boutique cocktail supply shop Bull in China is offering a home bar starter kit that includes a hand-blown and hammered mixing glass, knob bar spoon, julep strainer, and two standard jiggers. Bonus: it comes with a recipe from co-founder and Teardrop Lounge bartender Daniel Osborne. $80 at Bull in China, 2109 NW Irving St.

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Image: Kelly Clarke

Oregon spirits master Ransom’s bright, fragrant grappa, culled from Gewürztraminer grapes, finds a buzzy mate in Spella Caffe’s top notch Italian-style roasts. Buy both local standouts for the beverage obsessive on your list and combine for richly floral, super-warming cup of traditional caffe corretto. It’s bittersweet winter cheer incarnate. Ransom grappa $22-24 at local liquor stores; Spella Caffe available at Spella’s downtown café or Market of Choice $13.99.

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Why wait (and wait, and wait) in line for quality ice cream when the sweet elves behind Portland’s King Creamery Ice Cream Club will deliver a trio of handmade pints right to your door? Home dessert enthusiasts turned entrepreneurs Jason and Yvonne King have a knack for infusing mellow seasonal flavors—from zippy, dark chocolate flecked peppermint to pineapple-brown butter “upside down cake”—into seriously custardy, rich ice cream bases. They’ll tote three new flavors to your lucky giftee every month. Monthly to annual gift subscriptions range from $25–300.

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Image: Michael Novak

Give the serious home chef a gift he/she won’t just throw in the silverware drawer. That means reaching beyond the usual big brand Henckels and Shun at Southeast Belmont’s Portland Knife House. For a jack-of-all trades chef’s knife, check out the Tojiro DP Chef’s Knife, 9.5 inches. Kim Jong Grillin’s Han Hwang says “It’s my go-to for slicing and all matters of prep.” $99 at Portland Knife House.


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Only true humbugs can pass up a fistful of Masala Pop’s amazingly addictive South Asian-style popcorn. Share the vibrantly Indian-spiced corn love with the company’s DIY Savory Masala Kit ($12, with spice packets and organic popcorn) or embrace the lazy and just gift a Sweet Heat Curry Box, with boasts both a bag of curry-coconut sugar tossed popcorn and a bottle of Marshall’s Haute Sauce habanero carrot coconut curry sauce ($16).

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Sure, oats and honey seem like a simple affair until you crunch through a mouthful of flavor wizard Brett Aube’s Conundrum: Unordinary Granola. Achieve breakfast gifting supremacy with a bag of Conundrum deeply fruity/toasty/savory/herby creations, from Maple Bacon to Peanut Curry or Breakside IPA-wort infused Hummingbird. $9–10

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Force your loved ones to surrender their snoozy bags of Constant Comment and upgrade with Steven Smith Teamaker fancy holiday tea collections. Choose from a limited edition threesome of barrel-scented teas— White Chrysmas, Mulled Black, or Irish Moringa—stashed in a sexy black lacquer box ($39.99) or a pretty tin of cinnamon-y, holiday-spiced Silent Night or Morning Light, flavored with Douglas Fir needles and rosemary ($14.99). Available at the Smith Tasting Room or online. 

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Nicky USA/Farms is the city’s chefs’ go-to outfit for all the wild things, from elk and rabbit to venison. Now the purveyor has teamed with, who else, Jacobsen Salt Co, to create an awesomely herby, heady Nicky Farms Wild Game Salt spice rub for all your favorite home griller’s meaty, meaty needs. A portion of proceeds from each jar benefit Portland Kitchen, a nonprofit that teaches teens cooking and job skills. $14.50 only at Jacobsen Salt headquarters, 602 SE Salmon St.

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Starvation Alley, the organic cranberry juice heroes out of Long Beach, Washington, have finally succumbed to making a cranberry sauce out of their grade-A Oregon and Washington fruit. It’s a spicy-sweet cran-apple spread spiked with port, ginger, and curry spice. $7 at PSU, Hollywood, and Hillsdale farmers markets, or at The Portland Bazaar

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Bollywood Theater’s trio of freshly ground masala spice blends includes tikka, garam, and vindaloo, each with careful recipes and thoughtful notes from Bollywood’s India-obsessed chef Troy MacLarty to help you master your first Indian feast. Grab the trio for $19.50 at Bollywood Division, 3010 SE Division St or online.







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