gifts from your neck of the woods.

When we went on our trip to visit the Southern relatives a few weeks ago, we brought with us a large plastic tub full of gifts for the in-laws and all the nieces and nephews. Because we didn’t want to bring stuff that’s readily available in the South, I shopped around for some local things.

The adults all got half-gallon bottles of pure New Hampshire maple syrup and Vermont maple candy. The kids all got some New Hampshire gourmet “granite” chocolate in rock-colored shells. I suppose we could have brought a cooler full of lobsters too, but it would have been a bit of a challenge to keep them alive that long.

If you had to do the same sort of family visit to relatives in Far Off Other Region of the Country, what kind of uniquely local gifts from your area would you bring along?

18 thoughts on “gifts from your neck of the woods.

    • In addition to the Blue Bell Ice Cream, I’d add a few jars of HOT Pace Picante Sauce (made in Paris, TX). And a bag full of Whatburger hamburgers.

  1. Wisconsin. Cheese. Beer. Italian sausage. Brats. And surprisingly, wine. Wollersheim Winery was named Winery of the Year in the San Diego International Wine Competition in March.

  2. Old Bay seafood seasoning, the primary use of which is steamed crabs and crabcakes, but is also good on french fries, popcorn chicken/tuna salad, fried/scrambled eggs, etc. Second would be Berger cookies, which is a shortbread cookie topped with some dark chocolate fudge. Evil and habit-forming, I’ve never known them to go stale, since I can’t stop eating them.

  3. With the Shiner, Blue Bell, Pace Picante mentioned already, some of the Boiling Pot’s spice mix and some hand made mesquite wood trinkets

  4. From the Far-Away, Exotic Puget Sound basin, I’d bring several pounds of alder smoked salmon, A growler of Ellersick’s “Big E” Root Beer and a case of Red Hook IPA.

  5. I’m bringing scarves, brass, and camel items for friends & family back home in Canada. The carpets and sand can stay here in Saudi Arabia. Heard they like maple syrup here a lot, maybe I’ll pack that next time.

    Yanbu Al-Madinah, KSA

  6. I moved out to Missouri last month. As gifts, I brought four quarts of maple syrup that was made on a single farm in Guilford, Vermont.

    (And two half-gallons for my private stash..)

  7. A while back, a friend of mine and I took some Japanese foreign students out to dinner. As we live in Arizona, I gave the girls necklaces of carved turquoise, and little dreamcatchers. If I wanted to share regional food, I’d probably bring several bags of prickly pear candy and scorpion lollipops. (Fresh tortillas, although yummy, don’t keep long enough to survive a road trip.)

  8. Something made locally with the XIT brand on it, the small photobook about Caprock canyon lands, and some Red River Mud BBQ sauce and Plum Line jam. The local BBQ doesn’t travel well, or should I say, it would not make it very far.

  9. San Diego is beer country. Coronado Brewing Co’s Idiot is always a winner. It’s an IPA. That, or whatever batch my girlfriend has last brewed, if there is any surplus on hand.

    Then again, I’m generally the beer importer. I’ve been known to make a weekend run to Seattle to pick up a few cases of necessaries.

  10. Juneau, Alaska:

    Alaska brewery’s Alaskan Amber beer – brewed right here.
    Smoked Alaskan wild salmon
    and for really good friends or family – a pair of Alaskan sneakers

  11. Planning on bringing rhubarb, parsnips, and cold climate garlic to Cali later this year when I move back to that hell hole. If I get really lucky, venison, bear, etc. And if I get the fat settlement from some stupid cops in Florida that I’m hoping for – a Ruger LCP for the lady I’m moving to be with as it can’t be purchased in CA.