Dish Cult's 2020 Gift Guide

By Grace Noles
pohutakawa at the beach in mission bay auckland

We're creeping closer to the big day, and we can't deny Christmas shopping hasn't been on the front of our minds considering the tumultuous year 2020 has been. We want to help you out in any way possible – and so, we've taken on the burden of what to buy your food-obsessed friends and family! Don't just stick to what you know, opt for any item or experience from the list below and rest assured they will love it.

We're all about supporting local this year, therefore we've tried our best to include as many local New Zealand businesses as possible, so you can purchase the best gifts while supporting Aotearoa. Kia kaha and Meri Kirihimete!

For The Sweet-Tooth

The Entire Range from Bad Baker
Source: Bad Baker NZ

We've recently come across this magnificent New Zealand brand, and we're hooked! The tongue-in-check cookie brand is made right here in New Zealand with premium local ingredients creating the rich buttery flavours. What sets Bad Baker apart from the rest is the care and love put into each and every packet, from the luxurious packaging to the wonderfully decadent flavours, each cookie has a feeling of love to it. They say 'try one, then try stopping' and we can vouch for it – these guys are hard to put down.

The Bad Baker range carries two types of flavours; their Premium boxes including Double Dark Fudge, Marlborough Sea Salt Chocolate Chunks, and Macadamia White Chocolate, and then their Classic range including Berry & Dark Chocolate, Salted Caramel Oat, Double Chocolate Chip, and Ginger & Dark Chocolate.

The best thing is, these guys are available from your nearest supermarket (the Premium range carries in New Worlds only), and they come in at a very cheerful $5.49. The combined luxurious feel, delicious cookies, and kind-on-your-pockets price tag make Bad Baker cookies the ultimate foodie gift this season.

For The Fancy Foodie

A Night Out at the Brand New Onslow
Onslow's Crayfish Eclair is emerging as their speciality.

No doubt you've already heard of Onslow, the latest new opening from acclaimed Kiwi chef Josh Emett and his wonderful partner Helen, but have you considered gifting the experience to a friend? The beautiful restaurant sits in the new International Building on Princes Street, Onslow tells the story of Josh's culinary journey across London & New York, before settling back down in his homeland. The glowing reviews have been pouring in ever since they opened a month back.

The menu consists of rich decadent pieces such as the Fiordland Crayfish Eclair and the Slow Cooked Free Range Pork Belly, as well as lighter dishes such as Kingfish Crudo and Big Glory Bay Salmon Gravadlax on rye. It wouldn't be a Josh Emett venture without a phenomenal wine and dessert list – which is exactly what Onslow delivers on. The service is yet to be faulted, with a chance of being greeted by Josh & Helen themselves. If you're hoping to gift an experience of absolute grace and comfort, an Onslow gift card is your ticket – check them out here.

For The Enviro-Conscious Foodie

Korstra's Edible Sustainable Straws
Source: Wise Food Official

Taking the work out of monitoring where your collapsable stainless steel straw is at all times, Korstra has upped the sustainable straw game with an edible version, leaving no waste. Founded in New Zealand (and manufactured exclusively in Germany) Korstra is the first company worldwide to use apple fibres to combat the contemporary struggle of soggy paper straws. Lasting the test of time (literally), Korstra straws sit comfortably in a cold drink or iced cocktail for up to 2 hours, with an impressive wait time for hot drinks too. Each straw is 100% vegan, biodegradable, sustainably made, planet-friendly, and made from natural ingredients.

Here at Dish Cult, we're big fans of anything that reduces our carbon footprint and impact on our earth, which is why we want to keep a clean focus on our gift-giving this year. Korstra is available in handy packs, ranging from 50 to 1,000 straws, arriving sleek and able to be easily popped into your bag as you head out the door. Add a pack to your cart as an eco-friendly stocking filler or Secret Santa gift and know you've done your part.

For The Foodie Who Needs A Vacation

Cordis' Foodie Staycation Package
Enjoy the rooftop pool in the height of summer. Source: Cordis Auckland.

While we won't be gifting any overseas holidays this year, a 5-star experience in our own city is not a bad match. Cordis Auckland offers a Foodie Staycation package with all the trimmings to make a wonderful couple of days to remember in Auckland City. The staycation includes an overnight stay in a room of your choice in the heart of the city, a buffet dinner and breakfast for two at Eight Restaurant, a bottle of Méthode Traditionelle in your room, valet parking, complimentary use of Chuan Spa amenities including the heated rooftop pool, spa pool, sauna, herbal steam room, and fitness studio, as well as a Go Play card to unlock 200 discounted activities in Auckland, and an ultimate guide to the best food spots in Auckland.

The Foodie Package starts at $599 for a Superior King Room, making for a luxurious night away with impeccable service and an array of Auckland's best dishes on your doorstep.

The Wine Connoisseur

Taylor's Sparkling & Rosé Range
Taylors' Sparkling Brut Cuvée for the bubbly-fans.

Wine is the easiest go-to when it comes to presents. Most Kiwis enjoy a nice crisp glass, especially around the holidays. But it can be awfully hard to select a nice bottle to suit the wide range of taste each of your friends and family members may have. Have the whole gift list sorted with a one stop shop with Taylors Estate. The Australian vineyard has come out with their summer range, keeping the idea of the perfect gift in mind. Not only are the bottles simply beautiful, but they've thought through every step with a temperature-controlled sensor that tells you when your wine is ideal for drinking.

The six wines in this particular range cover all bases for each type of wine drinking. Opt for the Shiraz for the bold and daring wine-drinkers who enjoy a sprinkle of Christmas spices, the Pinot Noir Chardonnay Brut Cuvée for bubble-lovers, with clean, vivacious citrus flavours, or the Cabernet Sauvignon for seasoned wine-drinkers, those you know can handle a rich, matured wine with hints of dark chocolate and cedar. If you simply can't pick, the Pinot Noir Rosé is the crowd-pleaser. Sitting perfectly between a red and white, it's the all-star of the range; the one people will be pleased with no matter their usual preferences. The range is available at supermarkets and liquor stores, with an RRP of $19.99. Pair a bottle with a sweet collection of chocolates or artisanal cheeses and crackers and you've got a well-thought-out care package.

If quality time is more your thing, check out our most romantic restaurants, best Christmas-do spots, or best BYOs to hit this December!

Related categories
ChristmasNew ProductModern New ZealandGreat Wine SelectionSustainabilityLocally Sourced
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