What to Give Dad for Father’s Day

He wants
something tasty

By Roxanne Webber

Vosges Ice Cream
Vosges Ice Cream

La Tienda Deluxe Tapas Sampler Gift Box
La Tienda Deluxe Tapas Sampler Gift Box

Pappy Van Winkle's Family Reserve 20-Year Bourbon
Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve 20-Year Bourbon

It’s easy to get cynical about Father’s Day; it’s merely a tagalong to Mother’s Day, right? But that doesn’t mean you need to be cynical about Dad, too. Just buy him a gift—any of these food items are totally appropriate, whether it’s his day or not.

1. Penzeys Steak Seasonings Gift Box. Eight jars of quality meat seasonings, including an Indonesian saté spice mix that’s perfect for skewers, an English prime rib rub, and a French mignonette pepper blend. For veggie dads, there’s also a Salad Lover’s Gift Box that will help them blend their own dressings.

2. Heritage Foods. Instead of sending the typical pack of steaks, opt for something from Heritage Foods, the arm of Slow Food USA dedicated to preserving heritage breeds of animals. Try the pork chop breed variety pack, with cuts from three different rare piggies, or a four-variety burger pack with elk, bison, Piedmontese beef, and Wagyu beef patties.

3. Vosges Ice Cream. A four-pack of interesting ice creams from the adventurous chocolatier, featuring dark chocolate, cinnamon, and chile; fresh young coconut and sweet curry; chocolate and pandan; and wattleseed and roasted macadamia nut.

4. La Tienda Deluxe Tapas Sampler Gift Box. A decadent gift box filled with everything to host a tapas party for six people. There’s sliced Serrano ham, roasted piquillo peppers, dry-cured chorizo, and a bunch of other tasty bits.

5. Four Months of Intelligentsia’s Roaster’s Choice Program. Intelligentsia’s director of coffee will pick out three coffees each month and ship them to your pop. The first shipment also includes a mug, a stainless steel coffee scoop, a French press, and a binder of info on the coffees, with new pages to add with each shipment.

6. Food Charities. There are a lot of great food-related charities you can make gift donations to. A few we like are the Global Crop Diversity Trust, which funds seed banks; the UC Davis Honeybee Research Fund, which aims to save the bees; and Heifer International, which gives livestock to those in need.

7. Fromagination Medium Cheese Box. Fromagination, a Wisconsin-based cheese shop, will ship two local artisan cheeses along with honey, locally made organic crackers, chocolate-covered cranberries, and jam, all tucked into a wooden box.

8. Pappy Van Winkle’s Family Reserve 20-Year Bourbon. This bourbon is a bit pricey, but the Beverage Tasting Institute called it “monumental,” while Eric Asimov, the chief wine critic at the New York Times, cited it as his favorite in a tasting of 25 bourbons, noting that it was “rich and creamy” with aromas of “caramel and bright fruit.” Or, if Dad’s not into the hard stuff, try toasting him with this sparkling Chambourcin, an inexpensive red bubbly wine from Australia that’s great with barbecue.

9. LaLaBoodle’s Dark Chocolate Toffee. A buttery toffee from New Jersey that’s chock-full of almonds, and coated with dark chocolate and crushed walnuts.

10. CSA Subscription. Enter your dad’s zip code into LocalHarvest’s CSA (community supported agriculture) finder, and it will give you a list of farms in his area that offer subscriptions. He’ll get boxes of farm-fresh, local, and organic produce delivered to his house, or to a nearby pickup point, and you’ll both get to support sustainable small-farm agriculture.

Roxanne Webber is an associate editor at CHOW.

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