The holiday season is here in full force: with parties, decorations, grand dinners, and of course, presents! Finding the perfect gift however for family and friends can prove challenging. To add some island flair to your shopping list, we’ve rounded up our favorite Caribbean gifts. For the serious Caribbean foodie in your life, check out these special Caribbean culinary gifts to stick under the Christmas tree. Here, we highlight the amazing culinary producers in the region, creating truly unique products that will uplift any occasion.
The Caribbean is spoilt for choice when it comes to rum, but we love the warm spices of this Haitian artisanal brand–just perfect for the holidays. The distinct flavor comes from special infusions of all-spice, clove, cinnamon and natively foraged barks. This brew proves perfect for drinking straight, but always works beautifully as an addition to your favorite Christmas punch. Plus, the stunning blue bottle makes a pretty gift, and a nice addition to any rum collection.
Nothing beats waking up in the morning with a good cup of joe. And it’s hard to improve on the sweet and mild flavor of Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee. This specialty coffee only gets the Blue Mountain mark if it grows in the Blue Mountains at elevations between 3,000 ft and 5,500 ft. Yes, these beans attract a healthy price tag as one of the most expensive coffees in the world. But one bag won’t set you back so much, making it a special treat for true Caribbean foodies. And more and more producers are selling their coffee online for easy access.
No holiday season feels complete without a few (or a lot) of sweets. We love the luxurious flavors and beautiful designs of Forteza Chocolate. Established since 1929, this brand has long taken a farm-to-bar approach to chocolate production (before it became a buzz word). Forteza partners with farmers in Puerto Rico and The Dominican Republic to produce local cacao. Order a few bars online of their special dark chocolate, combined with simple but flavorful additions like sea salt and spicy caramel. And if you happen to be in San Juan, do pick up their speciality bon bon boxes, with tropical combos like passion fruit and coconut.
Odds are your foodie friends also enjoy cooking. And they’re always on the lookout Caribbean cookbooks. We love “My Modern Caribbean Kitchen,” written by Chef Julius Jackson and released just this summer. An Olympic boxer and head chef of My Brother’s Workshop in St. Thomas, USVI, Jackson offers a bright and accessible survey of Caribbean cuisine. The book offers his modern take on 70 classic Caribbean dishes like sweet and savory pumpkin fritters, coal pot saltfish cakes and spicy coquito.