Special Gift Packages at Piccolo Range from Impressive to Ridiculous

Categories: Great Gifts

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Give the gift of small food in a grand package at Piccolo

The foodie on your list already has a Zoodle-maker, a lifetime subscription to Lucky Peach, an autographed copy of the Prune Cookbook, and a standing reservation at Spoon and Stable.

What can you do to impress him or her? Gift certificates for a splendid meal are always a welcome stocking stuffer, but it doesn't necessarily carry the gravitas you need to truly make a memorable impact. You want hugs and high-fives in return for this gift, and Piccolo has truly thought of everything -- both are included in the tailored dining experiences they've packaged for your favorite foodie.


See also:
Best Chef Minneapolis 2014 - Doug Flicker of Piccolo

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The Essential Holiday Gift Guide for Local Food Lovers

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Eric
A tin full of cookies is always nice, but how about fancy cheese or a night out on the town? Read on.

In an alternate universe somewhere there is a better version of you, a version who says, "Hooray! Holiday gift-giving time! I know exactly what to get Grandpa Lou even though he gave up drinking Scotch and Scotch was virtually the only thing he truly loved so that's all we ever bought for him! It's cool! I got this!"

Friends, this is not that alternate universe and you are not that better you. You need help and we are here with just the thing: food.

Lucky for us, it's a wonderful time of year for the local food lover -- special treats, both delicious to eat and pleasingly packaged, abound. And though Grandpa Lou might not care where the truffles you bought were made, you can feel good about keeping it local.

See also:
The Essential Holiday Gift Guide for Local Beer Lovers

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The Essential Holiday Gift Guide for Local Beer Lovers

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Danny Nicholson

Shopping for a fanatic can be nigh impossible -- they already have everything, right? Fortunately, the beer fan consumes the collection, so there's always room for more.

Still, to give the best gifts one needs a background on the subject, and not everybody knows the difference between Centennial Hops and Cascade, nor cares about why a tulip glass is superior to a shaker. The Hot Dish is here with a guide to what your closest beer-loving friends want for the holidays.

See also:
Bad Weather Brewing is bringing its taproom to downtown St. Paul

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Travail's 2015 Sexy Chefs Calendar Is Hot and Ready

Categories: Great Gifts

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Travail Kitchen and Amusements
Who says Christmas can't be sexy?

If you're the kind of girl or guy with a mad crush on your fave chef and have always wondered what he might look like in his skivvies, now's your chance to find out.

The second annual Sexy Chef Calendar (it was a Kickstarter incentive for last year's wildly successful Travail Kickstarter campaign) can be yours for the low, low price of $18.

See also:
Best Kickstarter Minneapolis 2014 - Travail Kitchen and Amusements


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Brasa Rotisserie Gets Its Own B.T. McElrath Chocolate Bar

Categories: Great Gifts, News

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It appears Brasa Rotisserie is not just content to offer up some of the best, smokiest meats and Caribbean-inspired side dishes around. Now they've teamed up with local chocolatier B.T. McElrath (best known for the otherworldly Salty Dog, as well as other chef-driven approaches to chocolate making, like balsamic-zinfandel truffles).

The move seems like a good fit for the restaurant, which has long touted the use of local, natural, and organic products. Chocolate has enjoyed a recent resurgence in health circles -- high-cocoa chocolate is known to contain powerful antioxidants and offer myriad other health benefits.

Plus, you know, chocolate.

See also:
Best Chocolate 2014 -- B.T. McElrath's buttered toast bar


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5 great Father's Day gifts for the foodie dad

Categories: Great Gifts
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Looking for that last-minute gift item for your foodie father? Well, look no further. We did the scouting for you. Here are several options to choose from. More »

Last-minute Mother's Day gift ideas for the foodie mom

Categories: Great Gifts

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Shower mom with delicious gifts this year.
Still trying to find that perfect gift for mom? Is she the kind of woman who appreciates a meal of many courses, served in small but exquisite portions? When she comes over to your house, does she dump out your salt cellar and refill it with Maldon Sea Salt? Does she love to cook but already has every kitchen gadget ever made, and you're wondering if you'll ever find a gift to convey how much you appreciate her?

Well, have no fear. Any of the items from the following list are sure to thrill and delight foodie moms everywhere.



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The 'Splendid Table' duo is back with another splendid cookbook

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"We emphasize taking pleasure in the doing," Lynne Rossetto Kasper says. "This is not about 'it's got to be right and it's got to be perfect.' "
One of the very best things I ever ate was an appetizer made by Lynne Rossetto Kasper. She cracked open a wheel of Parmigiano-Reggiano and drizzled it with a syrup-thick balsamic vinegar. That's it. Creamy and sharp, sweet and salty, the shards of cheese and vinegar startled my senses awake. It was exactly what I wanted at that moment. It was perfect.

The spanking-new cookbook that she and Sally Swift have written, The Splendid Table's How to Eat Weekends: New Recipes, Stories & Opinions (Clarkson Potter, $35), is like that deceptively simple dish.

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Rogue Chocolatier offers free shipping through January

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Rogue Chocolatier
70% cacao, 100% delicious
If you enjoy high-quality chocolate that's made locally, here's your opportunity to stock up on the best of the best. To celebrate winning the Good Food Award, Rogue Chocolatier is offering free shipping on all web orders over $20 for the remainder of January.

The Good Food Awards recognize outstanding American food producers and farmers who support sustainability and social good. Rogue's Sambirano, made with cacao from a single family-owned estate in Madagascar, took the award earlier this month at a ceremony in San Francisco. The bar was up against 180 entries for the chocolate category in a blind taste test by an impressive group of judges.

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Chocolate

Mrs. Kelly's Tea gives free tasting this weekend

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Liz Potasek
Sample 100 different varieties of Mrs. Kelly's custom blended tea this weekend.
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Keep that pinkie finger planted firmly on your tea cup. While coffee seems to be getting snobbier by the day in this town, one local tea distributor sets out to prove that tea is not fussy.

Meet Mrs. Kelly, a.k.a. Mindy Kelly, the co-owner and founder of Mrs. Kelly's Tea in Minneapolis. Kelly started making herbal teas about 18 years ago and selling them in farmers' markets, and before she knew it, she had a full-blown business.

Kelly imports the tea leaves and custom blends them with various flavorings to hundreds of flavors of tea. She also mixes up special orders, and can even try to duplicate your favorite tea based on a description of it or a small sample. "We can do whatever you want," Kelly says.

And this weekend at Mrs. Kelly's Tea's warehouse (77 13th Ave. NE, Minneapolis) tea drinkers can sample what they want. The warehouse will be open for a free tea tasting from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday with more than 100 hot teas to sample and plenty of other local goodies. The Hot Dish got the scoop on what to expect at the event and some suggestions for what to do with that tea-- other than drink it.

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