We’ve all hosted a holiday party and received the standard bottle of wine, box of chocolates or bouquet of flowers. ‘Tis the season to get creative with your hostess gifts and bring her something that is unique and memorable.
Colorado Proud is making it easy to give the perfect host or hostess gift. The organization, started by the Colorado Department of Agriculture, encourages Coloradans to support local businesses by buying local. Locally grown and made items make for a personal gift that really says “thank you” and is a great gift to acknowledge a hostess’s hard work.
1. Gift baskets
Give the gift that gives back with the decadent baskets and bundles from the Women’s Bean Project (www.womensbeanproject.com). Whether you select the Chili & Salsa Bundle or the Chocoholic Basket, you’ll soothe the hostess’s taste buds and make a difference in the lives of women in Colorado.
If you’re looking to give a “Taste of Colorado,” look no further than the Colorado gift baskets from RegionalMakers.com (www.regionalmakers.com). From cheese and crackers to dried fruits and chocolates, these baskets are filled with delicious local products and come in a ready-to-ship Colorado gift box.
2. Gourmet spreads
Homemade, Italian-inspired spreads, vinaigrettes, pestos and marmalades from Loredana’s (www.loredanas.com) are sure to tantalize the most refined palate. The gourmet trios of spreads are blended with herbs and spices in an infused olive oil that packs a rich and unique flavor. It’s the perfect gift alone or in a basket with cheese and crackers.
Help the hostess relax after throwing a party. The Lavender Love Set from Colorado Aromatics Skincare (www.sagescript.com) includes hand and body lotion, Shea soap, and face and body mist. It’s great for local hostesses because the products are made specifically for Coloradans whose skin faces the high altitude, dry climate and 300+ days of sunshine.
4. Homemade Baklava
The secret family recipe from Baklava Unlimited (www.baklavaunlimited.com) uses local honey and authentic flavors and contains no preservatives. A variety of flavors, including chocolate, coconut and cherry chocolate complement the delicious traditional baklava recipe. The gift is easily complete when packaged in a decorative cake or truffle box.
5. Gourmet Teriyaki Sauces
Help the host become chef connoisseur with these savory, healthy, ready-to-use contemporary Asian sauces from East-West Specialty Sauces (www.eastwestsauces.com). Made right here in Colorado, these delicious sauces make for a great gift and turn any home-cooked meal into a gourmet masterpiece in minutes.
6. Cheesecake in a Jar
It should be called cheesecake with a twist. Individual gourmet cheesecakes baked fresh and shipped right to your door. With more than 25 flavors, like German Chocolate and Red Velvet, Decadence Cheesecakes (www.decadencecheesecakes.com) lets you mix and match flavors to create the perfect gift package.
7. Distilled spirits and liquor
Palisade, Colorado is home to more than just peaches. Bourbon, brandy, grappa, gin and vodka are all distilled locally at Peach Street Distillers (www.peachstreetdistillers.com). Whether you bring a bottle to share or leave behind for a host and hostess to enjoy post-party, spirits in unique-looking bottles always make a great gift.
8. Salted Caramels, Peppermint Bark and Nut Brittle
These deliciously sweet treats are made to order by a local chef. From fresh mixed nuts and sea salt to peppermint oil and vanilla extract, 5280 Culinary (www.shop.5280culinary.com) goes to great lengths to perfect each batch, making gift giving a cinch.
9. Roasted Walnuts
Forget chestnuts roasting on an open fire. Roasted walnuts made with agave nectar and seasonings like cinnamon, cayenne and curry are all natural and rumored to boost immune systems and overall wellness. NutsEveryday (www.nutseveryday.com) has created the perfect gift for those health-nutty hostesses.