Welcome to our 2021 Gift Guide Collection! Over the next month we’ll be dropping a new gift guide every few days so you’ll never be lacking inspiration – even for the hardest to buy for!
In this edition, it’s the friend who always knows which new restaurant is the one to visit, loves entertaining and perfecting a new recipe – they know what they like, but they’re always game to try a new food, dish or wine. So, you know something food/wine related would be perfect… but just what might they be coveting this year? We’ve got you covered!
Water & Wines Italy Wine Puzzle
Do you know someone who would like to drink wine while they learn about wine by doing a wine-themed puzzle? Of course you do. Water and Wines are puzzles designed by sommeliers that feature famous wine regions from around the world.
The box also features our grape profiles, describing aromas, characteristics, and food pairing tips! Puzzles are definitely having a resurgence, thanks to lockdowns, and god knows, so is wine. A perfect match!
Taste, by Stanley Tucci
Food memoirs have to be one of the most under-rated book genres out there – Nigel Slater’s The Christmas Chronicles, Ruth Reichl’s My Kitchen Year – and actor Stanley Tucci’s new release, Taste, is a love letter to Italian food, from his childhood, through to falling in love with his wife over their cooking habits, through to the crazy meal he accidentally ended up ordering with Meryl Streep that she described as looking like a horse’s penis.
It’s laugh out loud funny, beautifully written and a tribute to food and family. Plus, there is an EXCELLENT Christmas chapter.
Ottolenghi Cookbook Hamper
If you know someone who is a fan of Ottolenghi (or, just has tastebuds?) this delightful hamper from Farro is going to earn you serious points (and, maybe an invite to dinner one night??).
This ultimate hamper includes the brand new book from the legendary Ottolenghi Test Kitchen, with all the staples for a Middle-Eastern feast – we’re talking premium products like Cortas Pomegranate Molasses, St Andrews Preserved Lemons and Jens Cozinha Chaat Masala.
It all comes in a beautiful festive box and you can either pick it up from Farro, or have it delivered to a loved one (particularly handy if you’re not able to see them this Christmas!).
Biroix Dutch Oven
If your foodie is also a fan of colour – look no further! Get them a traditional gift, with an unexpected hit of vibrant colour. Yes, while Air fryers, high-powered blenders and instant pots might be having a moment right now, before all of that was the simple, unassuming Dutch Oven. It’s a resilient and versatile kitchen workhorse for a good reason, and a must for any true foodie’s kitchen!
While there are plenty of expensive international brands out there to choose from, we’re a fan of cast iron cookware brand Biroix – all cooked up by Queenstown-based mum, Rachel Turner. Her premium enamelled cast iron Dutch Ovens are available in vibrant green, orange and yellow and feature unique details like a studded lid, which allows for condensation to disperse evenly and ensures consistent texture in every dish, and a wide, ergonomic handle design that accommodates oven gloves.
They’re perfect for baking, browning, deep-frying, searing, roasting, broiling and everything in between – and, they’ll last a lifetime!
Biroix Dutch Oven, $259.
T2 Festive Teas
One thing to know about us at Capsule is WE LOVE TEA. And the option of a festive tea!?! Oh baby.
T2 does a great advent calendar but their stand-alone festive teas are great if you really want to commit to a festive flavour. There’s the T2 Christmas Breakfast – a gingerbread-inspired twist on a classic English breakfast flavour; perfect if you’re a refined tea drinker who will allow a festive hint here and there. Think of it as the Celine Dion Christmas album of beverages – sure, it’s festive, but it’s sophisticated, first and foremost.
However, if you’re after the Mariah Carey of Christmas teas – straight up, unadulterated, no-holds-barred festive, then you might want to try the T2 Eggnog tea (!!!!) which is said to be ‘sweet, creamy and custard-like.’ Oh, you want the Michael Bublé of teas – shamelessly sentimental and nostalgic? Then the T2 Trifle Tea is for you – ‘creamy, cakey, spongey and fruity’, it’s a pudding in a mug. Comforting and cosy on a Cold (Muggy) December Night.
Saffron Swirls & Cardamom Dust
Truly one of the most beautiful cookbooks we’ve ever seen, Ashia Ismail-Singer is based in Aotearoa but born in Malawi, with an Indian heritage, and this exquisite collection of recipes is a testament to all those beautiful influences and flavours.
Ashia is a mum-of-two and a nurse but also manages to be an A+ superstar when it comes to creating beautifully baking and dessert recipes that include amazing flavour combinations but – crucially – aren’t 42 steps long. It’s an absolute art form to make recipes both unexpected but accessible but this stuuuuunning cookbook nails it.
It’s separated into the different seasons and each section makes the most of seasonal fruit and flavours, mixed with spice stories from across the world. Think Summery combos of cinnamon, vanilla and saffron matched with berries and stone fruits. There’s also showstopper desserts for fancy dinners and a gingerbread cake that WILL be sitting on my Christmas table. A truly exquisite cookbook.
For a Christmas gift for those more refined palates, get them a gift that will surely put them in the Christmas spirit – a bottle of Honest Rum.
Heavy on the botanicals and easy on the eye (and the planet!!), Honest Rum has an aroma that is reminiscent of cinnamon toast (aka, deliciousness).
This scent is highly influenced by the sophisticated flavour profile of six botanicals – tonka beans, clove, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and orange peel. Cheers!
Honest Rum, $34.99 (250ml) or $72.99 (700ml)
IronClad Pan Co Essential Knife Set
Any foodie worth their salt (pun intended, thank you) needs an incredible knife set. There’s nothing worse than blunt knives harshing your kitchen buzz – you simply don’t get the same results and the frustration is enough for you to give up and order UberEats. Or that could just be us.
Kiwi company IronClad Pan Co have just introduced their essential knife set – one all-purpose chef knife and a smaller pairing knife – to complement their already wildly successful cast iron skillets. The blades are stainless steel for easy maintenance and are made to order – these knives are designed to last and each one is handcrafted and unique.
So, the perfect present then?
Kenwood MultiPro Express Weigh +
Mise en place can be a drag, and this bad boy will take all the work out of, well, all the hard work.
Yeah sure, its a food processor – but this one has integrated weighing (great if you’re following a food plan or you bake a lot) – as well as features that allow the chef-to-be to grate, chop, dice and slice like they’re bloody Julia Child in that room with all the onions. It can even dice perfect little cubes which is just fun.
It’s a premium product, but one that’s perfect for the chef in the whanau.
F Whitlock & Sons Rubs
A thoughtful present doesn’t need to cost the earth – if you have a BBQ master in your circle of gift recipients (you’ll most definitely know if you do because they won’t stop going on about it) then a selection of rubs, sauces and marinades is always going to be very well received indeed.
F Whitlock & Sons have a great range, including two pictured as well as Mexican-Style Chilli and Za’atar flavours, as well as a huge selection of other BBQ accompaniments.
Grab a basket, some cellophane and perhaps some printed out recipes from the internet you’re keen to try (might as well) and be proud of a job well done.
Pohutukawa Cooler Kit
Inspired by Aotearoa’s own Christmas tree, this gorgeous cocktail kit from Black Pineapple is the perfect festive treat for anyone who loves a well-deserved drink.
Available for four, eight or 12 people, with or without bar accoutrements, the cocktail features hibiscus-infused Broken Shed vodka with homemade cherry and allspice cordial.
It doesn’t get much more festive than that, tbh.
Breville the Smart Oven Pizzaiolo
Ok yes let’s get the first thing out of the way – this baby is EXPENNY.
But maybe someone’s gone above and beyond for you this year, or you just know a family who really, really likes pizza. Whatever the case, this really is the ultimate Christmas present – the ability to make a pizza, from raw dough, in two minutes.
The Pizzaiolo can reach temperatures of 400 degrees celsius – yes, CELSIUS – which means you can make a pizza that has the leopard wood-fired spotting of a proper pizza place at home (as well as flatbreads and even roast veges).
There’s also settings for frozen pizzas and reheating pizza. It’s just fun and perfect for summer parties when all your guests can make their own pizza just for themselves, with all their favourite toppings.