While food has always been popular for Valentine’s Day gift-giving (hello, boxes of chocolate), why not go further this holiday and consider something culinary and travel-inspired? Because we’re still spending more time at home nowadays, these things can hold even more meaning for loved ones missing their favorite destinations right now.
The Omsom Flight, $89
Founded by sisters, daughters of refugees, and first-generation Vietnamese-Americans Kim and Vanessa Pham, Omsom makes preparing flavor-forward, restaurant-style dishes from the comfort of home a breeze. And this bundle, which contains six signature starter packs, lets you whip up some of Southeast and East Asia’s most iconic dishes, from Filipino Sisig to Korean Bulgogi, with ease.
Marky’s Caviar Russian Osetra Caviar Set, $97.39
Since being founded in 1983, Marky’s Caviar has made high-quality, sustainably-harvested fish roe accessible to everyone. But since Valentine’s Day is an occasion worthy of a splurge, why not treat your loved ones to this set? In it, you’ll discover a jar of Russian Osetra Caviar (widely considered as one of the world’s best with its unmistakably earthy, nutty profile), crème fraîche, and handmade blinis.
Verve Culture Moroccan Cooking Tagine for Two, $60
Utilized for cooking the North African dish of the same name, tagines are handmade conical, clay-bassed vessels typically used over an open flame or stovetops. (Though they’re completely safe for ovens, too.) Their distinctive shape condenses the steam, circulates it, then returns it back to the bottom – lending the dish extra moisture and flavor. You can use it to cook other savory recipes, too, like shakshuka.
Cuzen Matcha Maker Starter Kit, $369
Named one of TIME’s 100 Best Inventions of 2020, Cuzen creates quality, barista-worthy matcha drinks from home by grinding fresh leaves during every use – which means bolder, more flavorful matcha ready to be incorporated into hot and iced beverages. And just in time for your Valentine’s Day gift-giving needs, Cuzen launched new latte blends and pretty handcrafted latte cups.
In Bibi’s Kitchen, $35
In her first cookbook “In Bibi’s Kitchen,” co-written with Julia Turshen, Somali chef Hawa Hassan explores eight African countries bordering the Indian Ocean with recipes (like Ma Gehennet’s Eritrean Shiro, a vegan ground chickpea stew) passed on from grandmothers – more affectionately called bibis. It offers an intimate look at cuisines and cultures that are oft-neglected by mainstream food media.
Madre Mezcal Ritual Kit, $74.99
Are you curious about mezcal, but unsure of where to start? Consider this kit from Madre Mezcal. The wooden, hand-stamped box contains everything you need to properly enjoy the storied agave spirit: two ceramic copitas, Mayan copal incense and holder, and naturally, a bottle of Madre Ensamble. Made in Oaxaca with espadin and cuishe agave, it’s an exceptionally smooth, soft sipper with hints of vanilla – making it perfect for beginners.
Bona Furtuna Romeo & Juliet, $175
Consider this the ultimate culinary duo. The award-winning olive oil is solely pressed from the Biancolilla Centinara (an olive variety found in Corleone, Sicily), for a fruity, grassy profile, while the accompanying traditional, 12-year aged balsamic vinegar is finished in wood barrels for a tangy, caramelized flavor. And like Romeo and Juliet, the two products especially shine when used together.
Chinola Liqueur, $38.99
Blended with ripe passion fruits sourced from Dominican Republic’s Samaná peninsula, this bright orange liqueur – each bottle is packed with the juice of 12 to 18 fruits – is more tart then sweet. Meaning: it’s a bright, bracing addition to cocktails and food with endless possibilities. Use it top off sparkling wine, shake a bit into a margarita or mojito, or drizzle some onto vanilla ice cream.
Cúrate at Home Premium Conservas Experience, $132.00
From Katie Button and her husband Felix Meana, the owners of Asheville’s beloved tapas spot Cúrate Bar de Tapas, comes Cúrate at Home. The online market brings the finest Spanish specialty goods to your doorstep, including this set of premium tinned seafood and signature tangy sauce. Want a vermouth pairing to complete the experience? Then order “La Hora del Vermut,” which is available to ship to select states.
UmamiCart East Asian Lunar New Year Feast, $91.12
Founded by Andrea Xu, Umamicart makes it a breeze to stock up on Asian staples from brands old and new. And just in time for Lunar New Year, which kicks off Februrary 1, comes this bountiful feast of steamed fish, longevity noodles, tteokguk, and other auspicious foods available for next-day delivery across the country and same-day delivery in New York City.
Diaspora Co. The Full Flavor Makeover, $98
For years, Americans have mindlessly stocked their pantries with bland, expired spices without giving any care to where they come from. But with Diaspora Co., Sana Javeri Kadri is changing that by offering ethically-sourced, fair-trade spices by small farms in India. The result is a more vibrant, concentrated, and flavor-driven product that enhances everything you cook.