16 Local Gifts the Frolic Team Is Giving Foodie Friends for Christmas

Crispy beef jerky? Musubi giclee prints? Local Crocs charms? Furikake cookies? Read on for the tastiest presents we're giving this year.

 

Bakin’ Me Krazee breads

Bakin Me Crazee Pumpkin Smores Bread Pc Bakin Me Crazee

Photo courtesy of Bakin Me Krazee

I’ve always preferred savory treats to sweet ones (bring on the salt!), but I admit I’ve gone crazy for Bakin’ Me Krazee’s banana and pumpkin breads, which come in a variety of fun flavors (cookie butter, Almond Joy for $8). My favorites, though, are the plain versions ($7). I sampled these breads in early November, while wandering around the Mom Made Market at Kāhala Mall, and I couldn’t believe how moist, yet firm, the bread was, with a true home-baked taste. I regretted only buying two loaves at the time (regular banana and salted caramel), so when I spotted the breads at a recent craft fair at Koko Marina Center, I made a beeline for the booth and loaded up with four more loaves, this time trying the pumpkin bread too (equally great). I’m planning to go back to the Dec. 10 craft fair at Koko Marina for more, with an even larger haul in mind, this time as gifts. Well, mostly … —Diane Seo

@bakinmekrazee

 


 

The Cookie Lady Hawai‘i furikake mix cookie

Cookie Lady Furikake Credit Martha Cheng

Photo: Martha Cheng

Of all The Cookie Lady’s sweets, these are my favorite. They’re so light and crisp, and the furikake cookie has just enough salt to make it so ridiculously craveable. I have hauled these as omiyage all the way to Italy—quite possibly the most fragile and impractical gift, but that’s how highly I think of them. —Martha Cheng

$11, 808 Sheridan St., cookieladyhawaii.com@thecookieladyhawaii

 


 

Jeff Chang pottery

Jeff Chang Pottery Maria Burke

Photo: Maria Burke

When it comes to one-of-a-kind kitchen accents that add warmth and color, I always head to Jeff Chang pottery. From colorful saimin bowls that hold your chopsticks to dainty, spouted shoyu pots, big-bellied pa‘akai jars, sponge holders, mugs and more—it’s super fun to gift a family of kitchen accessories to a loved one, in hues that match their spirit. You’ll always have something to get them until their set is complete! —Maria Burke

$35 to $65. Windward Mall, 45-056 Kamehameha Highway, (808) 235-5150

 


 

Knives from Compleat Kitchen

Whether you cook often or here and there, few things are more important than a nice, sharp knife. I always go to Compleat Kitchen during their holiday sales to pick up a few special knives for people high on my nice list. My favorites to gift? The super useful and durable German-made 5-inch utility knife or a slim and swift Japanese santoku for effortless chopping. Cooking really is more fun once you have one—making this a best-gift-ever kinda thing. —Maria Burke

From $100 to $180. Kāhala Mall, 4211 Wai‘alae Ave., compleatkitchenhawaii.com, @compleatkitchen

 


 

Lauren Trangmar Florilegium prints

Lauren Trangmar Musubi Print Credit Thomas Obungen

Photo: Thomas Obungen

For the foodie friend with a nerdy sense of humor, frame up these freaking adorable florilegium giclee prints of local grinds by Hawai‘i-based Kiwi artist Lauren Trangmar. I especially love the musubi and manapua prints, which detail different flavors while other prints show exploded views of saimin and loco moco plates. —Thomas Obungen

$55 each. Available at Nohea Gallery, Fishcake Hawai‘i, Mori Hawai‘i, Honolulu Museum of Art Gift Shop, Roberta Oaks, Na Mea Hawai‘i, Arts and Letters Hawai‘i, Da Shop Hawai‘i, Hemptuary and Aloha Green

 


 

Mānoa Chocolate

Ho Manoa Chocolate Robbie Dingeman

Photo: Robbie Dingeman

Mānoa Chocolate makes it easy to get ‘ono gifts for my family and friends. Some of my favorites are the Waimānalo ($12) bar or lilikoi, mango and and vegan coconut bars with the pop of Punky Aloha artwork ($10). And I love that Dylan Butterbaugh and the team constantly concoct new twists (Pistachio Sea Salt!) AND seasonal treats (Peppermint Crunch) to try at the Kailua factory. I know I can count on consistent quality and local ingredients from my neighborhood business. Did I mention the pumpkin pie crunch bars, in dark and white chocolate ($10) and the creamy nutty chocolate macadamia spread ($15)? The hardest part is deciding who gets which flavor. —Robbie Dingeman

333 Uluniu St., Kailua, (808) 263-6292, manoachocolate.com, @manoachocolate 

 


 

Mānoa Honey & Mead gift sets

Manoa Honey And Mead Gift Set Pc Manoa Honey And Mead

Photo courtesy of Mānoa Honey & Mead

There’s something about the clear linearity of a honey-and-mead gift set—or maybe it was because I’d just sipped my way through a half-dozen Mānoa Honey meads and was sampling the honeys when I spotted the gift sets. You don’t have to journey to the Wahiawā tasting room to get them (though they run $10 cheaper if you do); you can order them online—just make sure an adult is home to sign for the delivery. My favorites from the tasting? The classic Liliko‘i Session Mead and newer (and yes, ginger-forward) Ginger Honey Hopper, both fizzy and excellent with sushi; and honey infused with cacao nibs—all made on-site with honey from hives on O‘ahu. —Mari Taketa

Liliko‘i Session Mead with Royal Jelly honey and Kiawe Creme honey gift set, $55 online or $45 in store; Pineapple Sour Mead with Cacao Nibs honey and Macadamia Nut honey gift set, $45 online or $35 in store. Website lists retail locations for individually sold mead and honey. 930 Palm Place, Wahiawā, (808) 493-9081, manoahoney.com, @manoahoneymead

 


 

Angelo Pietro dressings

Pietro Dressing Robbie Dingeman

Photo: Robbie Dingeman

These plastic, bullet-shaped bottles of Angelo Pietro Japanese vinaigrette salad dressings might be distributed from Texas now, but will always seem like a piece of Honolulu for my niece who lives in Seattle and other family members. These dressings take us back to when the restaurant was on Kapi‘olani Boulevard in the ’90s, when Japanese-style pasta was less common and we’d buy these dressings at Daiei. They taste bright with ginger, lemon or creamy with sesame miso, and they’re gluten-free. –Robbie Dingeman

$10. Available at Times Supermarket, Longs and most supermarkets, sometimes on sale for less than $8. angelopietro.com

 


 

Maui Fruit Jewels

Screen Shot 2022 12 08 At 15954 Pm

Photo courtesy of Maui Fruit Jewels

For a sturdier, but no less delicious gift than The Cookie Lady’s cookies, Maui Fruit Jewels’ Guava or Liliko‘i Fruit Paste are great stocking stuffers. Made entirely of local fruit, they round out a charcuterie and cheese platter beautifully and bring a touch of tropical sweet elegance to cheese and crackers. —Martha Cheng

$7.49. Available on Farm Link Hawai‘i; website lists retail locations. mauifruitjewels.com, @mauifruitjewels

 


 

Paradise Jerky chips

Paradise Jerky Credit Thomas Obungen

Photo: Thomas Obungen

Can you say stocking stuffers?! These are the perfect protein-packed treat for the carnivore in your life. Paradise Jerky makes by far the crispiest beef jerky chips I’ve tried in recent months, and they’re seasoned right, too. I prefer the smoked pepper flavor, which has lots of black pepper and other seasonings, but the Japanese-style wafu jerky is their number one seller. —Thomas Obungen

$15 a bag (with kama‘aina discount). Paradise Jerky, 2238 Lau‘ula St., (808) 762-3983, @paradisejerkyhawaii 

 


 

Snack Addicted beef chips

Screen Shot 2022 12 08 At 20211 Pm

Photo courtesy of Snack Addicted

The craze has been around a while, but as someone who loves savory food and snacks, one of my go-tos is Snack Addicted Crispy Beef Chips (their freeze-dried sweet treats are also da bomb). There are so many unique flavors, from the ultra-spicy Phoenix Feather to Pepperoni Ranch to Shiso to Yakiniku, that it makes an interesting and addictive gift for any meat-eater on my list! —Tracy Chan

1234 Kona St., snackaddictedhi.com/collections/core-flavors-crispy-beef-jerky, @snackaddicted

 


 

Steve’s Akaka Falls Farm spreads

Steves Akaka Falls Farm Array Katrina Valcourt

Photo: Katrina Valcourt

Every time I make eye contact with the guy at Steve’s Akaka Falls Farm booth at the Kaka‘ako Farmers Market, it’s over. Even when I know exactly what I want, the samples of marmalades, jams and preserves just keep coming and next thing you know, I’m adding more and more delicious spreads to get a better deal. I’m sitting on seven unopened jars as we speak, so don’t be surprised if you receive poi coconut butter, blueberry maple whiskey sauce, or Meyer lemon-smoked pineapple-habanero pepper marmalade from me this season. —Katrina Valcourt

Kaka‘ako Farmers Market, makai side, Saturdays from 8 a.m. to noon, (808) 747-0539, stevesakakafallsfarm.square.site, @akakafallsfarm

 


 

Troy Yoshimoto ceramic mugs

Mug Troy Yoshimoto Credit Thomas Obungen

Photo: Thomas Obungen

Gift your caffeine-addicted loved ones a blue-hued mug made by the hands of local ceramicist Troy Yoshimoto. I spotted these beauties while waiting in line at Morning Glass Coffee. Mornings would be so peaceful getting lost in this calming color palette, with ridges and waves that wrap each one-of-a-kind piece inspired by the sea. —Thomas Obungen

$45 each. Morning Glass Coffee, 2955 E. Mānoa Road, (808) 673-0065, @troy.yoshimoto 

 


Kona Sea Salt

 

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A post shared by Kona Sea Salt (@konaseasalt)

I love salt and appreciate the legacy of wonderful salts we have in Hawai‘i, some gleaned from folks who still gather it the traditional ways, with many flavors and styles and colors. In recent years, I’ve found a local salt that can work in place of imported Maldon sea salt. Kona Sea Salt produces a coarse salt that comes in a little grinder for $13, as well as medium-grind sea salt that works great as finishing salt, adding a bit of crunch just before serving a dish. When it seems like the holidays come glazed in sugar, the simplicity of salt can seem like a different kind of indulgence. –Robbie Dingeman

$11 for a 6-ounce jar. konaseasalt.com, @konaseasalt

 


 

Wholesale Unlimited snacks in an Eden in Love Collab Tote

Wholesale Unlimited Eden In Love Collab Tote Pc Lee Tonouchi

Photo: Lee Tonouchi

I fully love all Eden In Love’s collab totes. Dis Wholesale Unlimited one doubly rocks cuz our family goes dea at least once a month. Dis bag so perfect for giving Christmas gifts cuz can just wrap ’em man style, just throw da present in da bag, tie ’em and tie one bow, pau! When I went for get da bag dey nevah have any out on display. Luckily I wen go ask da salesgirl. She said she had ’em behind da counter. Da ting selling so fast she said that dey no like put ’em out on display. So it’s truly if you know, you know, li’dat, you know da kine. Da ting come in one color, red, and get medium size only. —Lee Tonouchi

$18. Multiple locations, wholesaleunlimitedhi.com, @wholesaleunlimitedhi

 


 

Zippy’s shoe charms

Zippys Shoe Charms Square 2 1400x

Photo courtesy of Zippy’s

My friends and I used to hate Crocs with a passion. Now we’re way past our quarter-life crisis and desperately seeking comfort in everything we buy, especially shoes. Hook your Croc squad up with the coolest charms that scream loud and proud local foodie cred from Zippy’s and Aloha Charms. Charms include saimin and chili rice bowls and there’s even a Zip Pac, too. —Thomas Obungen

Three-pack, $10. Five-pack, $15. Online at shop.zippys.com. @zippys