Holidays

Locally Sourced Host Gifts That Will Make You Everyone’s Favourite Guest

November 28, 2022

Party season has begun and, hopefully, you’ve got a few invitations! We will all be gathering with friends and family once again and, while you may have been off the hook for gifting these past couple of years, you will now want to show up with something memorable in hand. Why not support local businesses with one of our suggested host gifts that will make a far bigger impression than a bouquet of flowers, or another poinsettia? —Cassandra Anderton

Grandpa J’s Greko Lemon Roast Potatoes Seasoning

If there’s one “secret sauce”, or in this case, seasoning, that should be in any kitchen, Grandpa J’s Greko Lemon Roast Potatoes Seasoning. Originally billed for elevating your roast potatoes to the level you experience at Greek Restaurants, we’ve been sprinkling this into soups, using it as an added flavour enhancer for tray-baked veggies and a rub for roasts. They have a trio of seasonings that are available at many retailers around the province, that any party host would be thrilled to receive.

Preservatory Jams and More

If you’ve been down to Granville Island lately, you may have noticed the newest vendor at the entrance to the market, Preservatory Provisions & Toast Bar. The shop is a hyper-local specialty food market and toast café serving up toast made from bread from local bakeries with all sorts of toppings. You’ll find the best of BC here in their shop, including preserves from Vista D’oro Farm and products from other especially BC food purveyors, including honey and pickles. Grab a selection of these artisan jars and don’t forget to stock your own cupboard for when it’s your turn to entertain.

Osake by Artisan SakeMaker

While you’re on Granville Island, don’t miss a visit and tasting at the Artisan SakeMaker in Railspur Alley. Since 2007 Sake Master Masa Shiroki has been spreading the love of sake and Japanese culture with his locally made sake. Sakes made onsite now include two made with rice grown right in the Fraser Valley. The Osake Fraser Valley Junmai and Junamai Nigori are specialty sakes, best served cold, and priced at $24 for 375 ml. The Junmai pairs very well with charcuterie and cheese boards. Sake is not just for sushi!

Tradish Medicinal Jams and Bannock

Jam Maker Sarah Meconse Mierau provides traditional indigenous nourishment in the form of medicinal jams and bannock mixes. The Blueberry Lavender Jam is sweetened with maple syrup and thickened with chia seeds, while the Smokey Juniper Cherry Jam is crafted to help relieve chest congestion and sore throats. Raspberry Dandelion Jam has detoxifying properties and helps reduce inflammation, and you’ll find many other concoctions. Package up a couple of jams and the bannock mix and your host will know you care. Purchase online directly from Tradish HERE or at the Skwachays Lodge Artisan Gift Shop at 29 West Pender in downtown Vancouver. $16 a jar.

Wine Tote by TheBag.ca

You could bring a bottle of wine or two in a nice gift bag, but those bags can be reused perhaps only once, at best. Why not pick up a reusable wine tote from TheBag.ca? Choose from a variety of styles, with “Vancouver”, or one of its neighbourhood branding on the bag. They are wipeable just in case of any spills and you can purchase these online for $60 or at some of The Latest Scoop locations. Throw some wine in there too as your host is sure to be thirsty.

Culmina Iconic Wines 2-Bottle Gift Set

Speaking of wine, we just did a tasting of Culmina Family Estate & Laughing Stock Vineyards and were very impressed with these Okanagan wines. These two wineries hold their wine back until it is ready to drink, as some, reds especially, need time in the bottle. Culmina has a beautiful gift set this year containing the 2017 Hypothesis, a Bordeaux blend, the 2018 Dilemma, an oaked Chardonnay, and a custom-branded pen set. Usually only available for wine club members, they’ve got a few of these boxes designated for regular consumers. Purchase online HERE for $90.

Five Bottle Bar: A Simple Guide to Stylish Cocktails by Jessica Schact

From the co-founder of Vancouver Island’s Ampersand Distilling comes this smart collection of cocktail recipes that rely on just five bottles from your bar to create all sorts of magic. Space is at a premium these days and why shell out hundreds of dollars on dozens of bottles? You’ll need gin, whiskey, sweet and dry vermouth, and Campari to create these elevated drinks. The photographs are beautiful and hopefully the hospitality will surely be returned with a cocktail made for you. $29 online HERE, or at Your favourite bookstore.

Tallu & Co Fa la la la Love Box

The essential oil blends from Tallu & Co are some of the most delightful scents we’ve come across. Vancouverite Katharine Evans crafted bath oils, meditation rollers, linen, room and kitchen sprays and hand soaps, that we use here daily. For the holidays the Tallu & Co Fa la la la Love Box makes an amazing host gift and includes a beautiful candle, room spray and hand soap that smell like a freshly cut Christmas tree with some floral notes for $95. There’s also a pet care line, and the collection is popping up at Brunette the Label for the month of December.

Oh Sweet Day

If you are looking to bring something sweet to the party, Oh Sweet Day has the loveliest cookie boxes, starting at $38, gorgeous cakes, and superb single serve cheesecake. They are conveniently located at 1706 East 1st Avenue and are open Wednesday to Sunday from 12-6. This year’s cookie boxes include six flavours of shortbread, ginger spiced cookies and snow balls.

Chef Ann Kirsebom’s Paris in a Chocolate

Paris In A Chocolate artisan chocolates are filled with aromatic ganache handcrafted with France’s finest dark chocolate and that legendary French orange and cognac liqueur. They are divine! There are boxes of eight and single servings of one, the singles make the ultimate table-setting addition on top of the plate, and the ultimate gift if you are a guest. Available at The Nooks in Kitsilano, North Van and Gastown and on sale for $48 for eight, and $6 for one.

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