It is the most wonderful time of the year. Okay, it's usually the most wonderful time of the year and you know what? We are sticking with that notion. So it’s time to start thinking how you’re going to make those you care about most merry & bright. We started curating a list here. As we gather more interesting things to buy and places to shop, we will share the love with you:
Baked by Yael Challah Subscription
Give the gift of fresh baked challah from a local, woman-owned small business. Made from scratch, their kosher challah is the perfect addition to your Shabbat dinner or any special occasion. In the event you don't gobble it all down on the first day, turn it into challah French toast later. For more information, visit bakedbyyael.myshopify.com.
Cooler Gifts From the Boss
What do you do when your company has transitioned to a work-from-home model, and there can’t be an employee holiday party or white elephant gift exchange in the office this year? One DC based company has an alternative to a run-of-the-mill employee gift this year -- Cooler -- a monthly, subscription-based perk box that shows appreciation, boosts morale, motivates, and delivers shared experiences regardless of how distanced your team. Each month, team members receive a curated box filled with artisanal beverage and craft snacks from small makers throughout the US along with a purposeful, fun object for the home office and supercharged with signature Conversation Cards focusing on staff engagement, resilience-building and personal development. Whether you sign up for monthly subscriptions or just send a one-time Holiday Appreciation box, Cooler brings your team together. For more information about or to order boxes, visit cooler.work.
Cork Wine Bar Virtual Wine Tastings
A great gift to bring people together, even when they are apart. Cork ships or delivers the wines and prepares the tastings, along with tasting notes, a tasting “how to”, and a live Zoom tasting event. These tastings start at $50 per person, and are available for groups of 4 to 50 people. For more information, contact [email protected]
Downtown Holiday Market
The Annual Downtown Holiday Market, presented by DowntownDC Business Improvement District, Diverse Markets Management, and Events DC, has returned for its 16th year. Located at F Street NW between 7th and 9th Streets NW, Downtown DC’s spacious, open-air village will feature small businesses, local artisans and entrepreneurs from across the region. This year, additions to the market include an exciting mixture of interactive digital experiences, which include an awe-inspiring lumina projection show by artist Zak Forrest titled “Chroma” blanketed on the National Portrait Gallery. ARTECHOUSE presents a first-of-its-kind mixed reality (XR) adventure throughout the market, utilizing smartphone technology and the museum’s XR app to unveil Instagrammable surprises at various checkpoints hidden among vendors. Shoppers will encounter an 8’x16’ jumbotron screen illuminating the heart of the village, replacing live center stage performances with curated, streaming entertainment including holiday-fun films, Saturday Morning Theater Shorts from The National Theatre, and musical acts. Returning favorites and new food vendors for visitors to savor include the Taste of Germany, Alexa’s Empanadas, Old Blue BBQ, The Capital Candy Jar, Bindaas, and Migue’s Magnificent Mini Donuts. The market is laid out with a single entryway and streamlined one-way, distanced foot traffic to ensure safe circulation around the market's back-to-back retail vendor tents. All affiliated market workers, exhibitors and shoppers will be required to wear masks or other personal protective equipment (PPE) upon entry and at all times within the market. Hand sanitizing dispensers will be widely available, and easily accessed throughout the market. Market is open daily through December 23rd, and is closed on Thanksgiving Day, November 30th, and December 7th and 14th.
Events by Danny Lledó
The most awarded paella chef in the US is currently offering paella kits and virtual classes nationwide. Share the gift of teaching your foodie friends how to make the notoriously tricky yet delish Spanish dish by sending them a paella, kit, and tutorial. Kits include everything you need to make award-winning paella in your own home plus a live Zoom link where Chef Lledó will take you step by step through the process. For more information, visit exploretock.com/specialeventsbydannylledo
You Want This Filibuster
Filibuster Distillery has the ultimate gift offerings: For the newbie that deserves an upgrade: Filibuster Dual Cask Bourbon pushes traditional bourbon aging methods to a new level through its dual cask process. Finished in French Oak barrels, the expression enhances the caramel and vanilla nuances that fans come to recognize from bourbon flavor profiles and adds complexity to the overall taste. For the person always up for a challenge: Filibuster Boondoggler Whiskey is far from traditional. Finished in five different barrels, this expression takes unique qualities of the barrels to form a complex yet well-balanced liquid. This expression offers an unparalleled sipping experience and makes for the perfect base to any modern-day twist on a cocktail. For an individual you're looking to impress: Filibuster Single Estate one of the finest whiskeys from Filibuster Distillery released to date. This special, limited-edition release was created from one farm, one distillery and one barrel in order to achieve the ultimate bold yet balanced flavor. For packages and more information, visit filibusterbourbon.com.
Hoptimist Holiday Market
Like much of 2020, the holidays will be a little different this year, but we’re being “hoptimistic!” DC Brau has teamed up with the Heurich House Museum to create a fun way for you to still buy unique gifts for everyone on your list while supporting your favorite local small businesses like you normally would at their annual holiday markets. Plus, now you can do it all from the warmth and comfort of your own home. In lieu of Christkindlmarkt and DC Brau’s Holiday Market this winter, shop the first-ever Hoptimist Holiday Market. This festive, two-week virtual holiday store will feature hundreds of curated creations from some of the National Capital Region’s best artists and artisans. The Hoptimist Holiday Market “opens” at noon on Black Friday. Want to get a jump on your holiday shopping over Thanksgiving? Early Bird Ticket holders will get pre-sale access two days before anyone else, starting on Wednesday, November 25th. Early Bird shoppers will also receive a small gift from Heurich House Museum and DC Brau as a token of appreciation! Tickets are now available on the Hoptimist website at for $15 each.
Mah-Ze-Dahr Sweets & Kits
Nationally acclaimed bakery Mah-Ze-Dahr is offering all sorts of goodies this year. From scone making kits to premade cookie dough, boxed brownies, cookies, and pastries, Mah-Ze-Dahr has something for everyone. Gourmet gingerbread making kits will be available specially for the holidays as well. Check out their packages here for more.
Holiday Market in Mount Pleasant
Mola, the Mt. Pleasant-based, Michelin Bib Gourmand recognized eatery, is hosting an outdoor holiday market featuring handmade goods from local artists and festive food and drinks to enjoy while shopping. Mola’s Eat + Shop Holiday Market will take place every Saturday from November 21st through December 19th from 10:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The event will feature a host of items from local makers, including: mugs, planters, plants, plates, bowls, salt cellars, spoon rests, cutting boards, rolling pins, and face masks. The holiday market will set up outside in front of the eatery. Mola will also offer gift packages from its wine shop and pantry, including curated natural wine bundles, cocktail kits featuring local favorites like Republic Restoratives & Capitoline Vermouth, and specialty Spanish food & pantry items. Saturdays through Dec 19 10-1:30. For more information, moladc.com.
Olio2Go Italian Gift Selections
If you can’t travel to Italy, this is the next best thing to an Italian holiday. Olio2go features fine Italian gifts for the foodies on your list with selections of extra virgin olive oils and vinegars, as well as fun extras and gift boxes. Shop online or in their Fairfax store’s bountiful table of treats, including panettone, panforte, biscotti and amaretti, figs, and Modica chocolates to celebrate the season.
Olive & Loom: Kin & Care Collection
Olive & Loom is a Mediterranean lifestyle brand featuring a curated selection of home and gift items. Its retail and online shopping experience evokes a love of discovery and gift giving as well as creative inspiration for unique home and entertaining décor. Olive & Loom’s founder, Ferzan Jaeger, built her business on the belief in a consumer’s “power of purchase” by partnering with organizations who benefit from sales proceeds of select items, as well as employing refugees to develop her signature Kin & Care candle collection. Kin & Care is a maker of handcrafted small batch candles, soaps, and scent diffusers located in Silver Spring, MD. They use sustainable, cruelty-free ingredients poured skillfully into reusable containers and have ten fragrance blends that bring warmth to any setting. Each Kin & Care product is made exclusively by refugee women resettled in the Washington DC region. Additional signature items developed by Olive & Loom are their Turkish robes, towels, woven bowls, scented hand sanitizer sprays, perfumes, and more. For more information, visit oliveandloom.com.
Park View Holiday Market at Hook Hall
A holiday market will take place at Hook Hall during December featuring items from local and regional artists and specialty food producers. The Park View Holiday Market will be held December 5th, 12th, and 19th from 10:00 a.m. until 2:00 p.m. Vendors range from candles to ceramics, jewelry to honey and cookies to hot sauce, the exhibitors offer a wide range of locally and regionally made goods. Among the vendors are: DC ‘s RavenHook Bakehouse; Baltimore’s Personal Best Ceramics; Silver Spring, MD’s Soul & Ink ; DC’s Sauce City USA Mambo Sauce and Chantilly, Virginia’s Family of Nuts. The market planners recognize the ongoing nature of COVID-19 and are dedicated to making the market a safe shopping environment for all. Masks must always be worn, strict capacity limits will be in place, and the market layout will be conducive for one-way traffic flow and social distancing between both customers and vendors.
Relish Catering Gratitude Gifts
As the holidays approach, people are reminded of the many things for which they are thankful. In the spirit of giving thanks, Relish relishcateringdc.com is offering their latest concept in holiday entertaining: Gratitude Gifts. Whether you wish to show appreciation for your employees, members of your book club, the PTA volunteers or simply those really good friends, Gratitude Gifts can help you send that message. Individually wrapped gift boxes featuring sweet treats, date night supplies, regional fare, and more offer options for everyone on your list. For more information, contact [email protected]
Pour One Over with Santa Lucia
Because everyone deserves to treat themselves this holiday season, Santa Lucia Estate Coffee is taking its wholesale coffee program to e-commerce. Guests who have long enjoyed one of Washington DC’s original sustainable Coffee companies can now have the option to enjoy the coffee they’ve loved in so many area restaurants and hotels in the comfort of their home. Perfect gift for your favorite coffee lover, The Santa Lucia Sampler, includes three one lb. bags of Santa Lucia Estate favorite roasts (Classic, Vienna and 2014). Whether it’s the Holiday Sampler or the “Classic” medium, “Vienna” bold or “2014” deeper roast all Santa Lucia Coffees are available in three and five pound packages with pre-ground or whole bean options. All include free expedited shipping.
Shop Small Georgetown
Shop Small Georgetown kicks off on Small Business Saturday (November 28th) and runs through Saturday, December 12th. The Georgetown BID is encouraging everyone to shop small and support local during this time, with participating businesses offering special promotions, gifts with purchase, raffles, curbside pick-up and more. The Georgetown BID is also celebrating the season with several holiday gift guides. Each guide will highlight curated items and experiences from Georgetown’s shops, services, and food retailers, featuring categories such as Self-Care, Buying on a Budget, Local Love, and Eat, Drink and Be Merry. View their guides at georgetowndc.com/guides. Retail and experiential specials include a free mini Daylesford candle with a $100 purchase at Pillar and Post, holiday cards at Just Paper & Tea, and an open exhibition, in the company of silence, at Jewelers'Werk Galerie. Food favorites include hard hot cider and mulled wine at Georgetown Social, one 12" pizza and an appetizer for $25 at Pizzeria Paradiso, and a bonus $10 with the purchase of a $50 Brasserie Liberté gift card.
Taste Hungary Hungarian Wine Shop
Give the gift everyone on your list will like - especially those who would have been traveling Europe this year! Taste Hungary, a DC-based importer and retailer of fine Hungarian wine, offers a variety of terroir-driven, small-batch Hungarian wine. Free delivery/shipping available for purchases of 12 or more bottles. For more information, visit tastehungary.us
Tea Drunk Classes & Gifts
Tea Drunk is the producer of some of the world's most prized teas, and they go to the deepest mountains in China to eat, sleep and work alongside the heritage farmers to ensure the highest quality product. Find the perfect gift for your tea aficionado with the options like the Tea Crash Course, Classic Tea Sampler or a variety of other teas and tea-related products. The tea available through Tea Drunk is truly one of a kind. Like nature cannot recreate itself, no two batches of tea are the same. Some tea leaves are picked from ancient tea trees which are 200-600 years old with the actual harvesting season containing only 10-15 days per year. Every tea is prepared with lots of love and hard work by Shunan Teng who heads to the deepest mountains in China in the Spring Season.
Todd Thrasher’s Rum-Ron-Rhum Shoppe
It's never been easier to "Have a Blast" as the front bar at Tiki TNT is transformed into the Thrasher's Rum-Ron-Rhum Shoppe. Special holiday gifts include Thrasher's Rum and Thrasher's Rum Custom Cocktail Cases, seasonal cocktails to-go, handcrafted mixers, elixirs, and bitters, hard to find rums, Tiki TNT apparel, and limited edition custom Tiki Mugs and Flasks. For more information, visit tikitnt.com
Wigle Whiskey Spirit Gift Set
Wigle Whiskey’s limited edition three-flask "Medicinal" Spirit gift sets offer quarantine relief in a tongue in cheek nod to 2020. A flask of Straight American Whiskey is labeled as Quarantine Solution and promises to “maximize mirth among relations in close quarters", joined by a flask of Straight Rye Whiskey, called Conversation Fluid “to conquer chronic cases of conversation cowardice", which might strike at the Thanksgiving table. Third, a flask of Eye Opener Extract, or Wigle Organic Gin, promises “to elevate excitement and eradicate ennui,” which might hit during your 11th Netflix hour. The flask set comes beautifully packaged in a Prohibition themed gift box, harkening back to the last period in America in which whiskey was offered for its “medicinal” values. Only 500 kits are available for shipping throughout Pennsylvania and DC. Visit takeout.wiglewhiskey.com for more information.
Women’s Food Fest Holiday Market
A collection of women-owned food businesses in Washington, DC, Women's Food Fest grew from a James Beard Foundation program and decided to take collective action, and help each other survive the present economic and health crisis. This Holiday season, they are highlighting women entrepreneurs who now need your support by your patronage as they navigate the new "normal" and try to keep their businesses open during this pandemic. Exclusive holiday offerings include these gift baskets: Bubbly and Sweet Gift Basket (Walnut Biscotti from Ruth Gresser, chef/owner Pizzeria Paradiso; Organic Earl Grey Tea and Ginger Scone Mix from Linda Neumann and Michelle Brown, owners Teasim; Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough from Doron Petersan, chef/owner Sticky Fingers Sweets & Eats; Best Loved Plant Based Recipes in Decorative Box from Ellen Grey, owner Equniox; Cranberry Orange Bread from Ris Lacoste, chef/owner, RIS; Baklava Mini Box from Yamrot Ezineh, chef/owner Letena; Oatmeal Cream Pie from Shannan Troncoso, chef/owner Brooklands Finest; Ice Cream Sundae Toppings from Victoria Lai, owner Ice Cream Jubilee, and Blanquette de Limoux from Diane Gross, owner Cork Wine Bar) or the Savory Snacks with Rich Red Gift Basket (Ben’s Original Half Smoke Pack from Sonya Ali, owner Bens Chili Bowl; Marinated Olives from Ruth Gresser, chef/owner Pizzeria Paradiso; Hog Smoker Packet (two BBQ sauces and spice rub) from Mandy Neuman, owner SloppyMamas; Infused Organic Olive Oil Dip from Yamrot Ezineh, chef/owner Letena; Brookland’s Finest Pasta Sauce from Shannan Troncoso, chef/owner Brooklands Finest; Pasta from Jamie Leeds, Hanks Oyster Bar; Eye Gift bag from Rose Privite, owner Maydan; and Red Wine from Diane Gross, owner Cork Wine Bar). With more to come, visit exploretock.com/letstalkdc to support fabulous local women in food.