Edible Pssst: Put a Bow on It
Homegrown Holiday Gifts
By Carolyn White
Photo by Kelli Pennington
Venture outside the box during the holidays by giving the food lovers in your life an edible gift that showcases and supports Portland’s craft and DIY food scene. Here’s a roundup of how to keep gifts homegrown and heartfelt.
The Basket, 2.0
Kick the mass produced gift baskets to the curb in favor of a handpicked version featuring homemade edibles from local producers that highlight the seasonal bounty of Oregon. Venture to Saturday’s Portland Farmers’ Market to find edible gifts like Marshall’s Haute Sauce gift packs, Freddy Guys Hazelnut Oil, Nectar Creek Honeywine, Reister Farms’ lamb pepperoni sticks and Choi’s Kimchi.
To add a splash of color and childlike sweetness to your basket (or stocking!), pay a visit to Candy Babel. Amani Greer has filled her adorable shop with gummies, hazelnut toffee, chocolates, licorice and hard-to-find traditional candies, all displayed in 1930s-era hand-blown glass candy jars. All sweets are non-GMO with plenty of vegan and gluten-free options. Another candy castle is Quin, a new venture by Jami Curl of Saint Cupcake. This small storefront packs a punch with high-quality, small-batch candy made daily with local ingredients. Customer favorites include Jacobsen Sea Salt caramels and Water Avenue Coffee marshmallows.
If you’d rather avoid venturing from shop to shop or find yourself stuck in a time crunch, there’s no need to panic. Give Portland Gifts puts together an excellent selection of baskets filled with Duker’s Dills, Chop charcuterie, Sahagun chocolates, Hot Lips Soda and plenty more.
Never forget, all baskets have room for a treat or two of your own concoction and a copy of Edible Portland. In December, your gift subscription comes with a free pint of Salt & Straw ice cream.
Portland Farmers’ Market | portlandfarmersmarket.org
Candy Babel | 1237 NE Alberta St. | candybabel.com
Quin | 1025 SW Stark St. | quincandy.com
Give Portland Gifts | giveportlandgifts.com
Edible Portland | edibleportland.com
Kiss the Cook
Every good cook lives for a well-stocked kitchen. For the master of kitchen projects, search for something useful at Mirador Community Store. Every nook and cranny of this cozy shop is packed with supplies for cooking, baking, canning, fermenting, drying and preserving, plus it has a nicely curated selection of kitchen and house wares.
Head a bit farther south to the Portland Homestead Supply Company in Sellwood to peruse a mother lode of gifts for the DIY dynamo in your life. From cultures and starts for yogurt, cheese, sourdough and kombucha to a huge selection of grains and grinders, this shop has everything to supplement or create a well-stocked project kitchen. PHSC also offers a packed schedule of unique how-to classes from herbal spirits and vinegars to kimchi and sauerkraut.
For the pastry chef or baker close to your heart, there’s a good chance you’ll find something perfect at Sweetwares, a shop that specializes in fine baking supplies and ingredients. They have a splendid selection of supplies from pudding molds, pie plates and popover pans to edible decorations, cookbooks and locally sewn linens.
Have a friend or family member whose knives are duller than a week-old fruitcake? Keep things on point by getting their knives sharpened at one of Portland’s favorite spots, Sharpening4U. The shop also offers chip repair, retipping and reshaping for knives that have seen brighter days.
Mirador Community Store | 2106 SE Division St. | miradorcommunitystore.com
Portland Homestead Supply Company | 8012 SE 13th Ave. | homesteadsupplyco.com
Sweetwares | 6306 SW Capitol Hwy. | sweetwares.com
Sharpening4U | 3429 NE Sandy Blvd. | sharpening4u.com
Keep it Classy
Nothing beats the gift of experience. Portland has a remarkable number of culinary classes that are perfect for sparking newfound kitchen inspiration. Portland’s Culinary Workshop offers an extensive variety of cooking, baking and butchery classes, including tasty international options like Thai street food, regional Mexican cuisine and dumplings from around the world. Katherine Deumling of Cook With What You Have teaches not only classes but a cooking philosophy based on using a limited number of whole, unprocessed foods that puts our local bounty to good use.
For meat lovers, Portland Meat Collective offers a rotating schedule of in-depth fish, lamb and pig butchery classes, while the folks at The Bent Brick host pickling, cocktail and sausage-making courses. The creative chefs at Hipcooks design lively classes that are perfect for those intent on perfecting the art of hosting dinner and cocktail parties.
For the libation lover, there’s plenty of home brewing, wine making and mixology classes to choose from. Stop in at F.H. Steinbart to pick up a gift certificate for one of their numerous brewing classes and to peruse their large selection
of home brewing equipment. The Homebrew Exchange offers unique workshops that guide participants through the creation of hard cider, mead and yeast. Or if you’d prefer to mix things up, the swanky 820 hosts group and private cocktail classes taught by award-winning mixologist Lucy Brennan, who is known to make some of the best boozy potions in town.
Portland’s Culinary Workshop | 807 N Russell St. | portlandsculinaryworkshop.com
Cook With What You Have | cookwithwhatyouhave.com
Portland Meat Collective | pdxmeat.com
The Bent Brick | 1639 NW Marshall St. | thebentbrick.com
Hipcooks | 3808 N Williams Ave. | portland.hipcooks.com
F.H. Steinbart | 234 SE 12th Ave. | fhsteinbart.com
Homebrew Exchange | 6550 N Interstate Ave. | homebrewexchange.net
820 | 820 N Russell St. | mintand820.com
Carolyn White is a Master of Public Administration student at PSU, specializing in natural resource policy.