Consider these local gifts for the food lovers in your life

Consider these local gifts for the food lovers in your life

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Each week on Radio Milwaukee, Milwaukee Magazine dining critic Ann Christenson and 88Nine’s resident foodie Tarik Moody discuss Milwaukee’s culinary and restaurant culture on This Bites.

On this week’s episode of This Bites, our final of the year, we’re talking about Ann’s holiday gift guide and sharing news of some holiday carryout meals you can pick up for Christmas and New Year’s Eve. I also share some updates on my culinary journeys — I got some cool ingredients in the mail that I’ve been playing around with.

Christmas is next week, which is almost hard to believe. I’m not buying gifts this year, but if you are, Ann has some suggestions from the food and culinary perspective.

Among her picks are a cheese board from Milwaukee ceramic artist Geryn Roche. They have a distinctive vintage look thanks to their decorative monotype print with underglazes, and they are dishwasher- and microwave-safe.

You also can’t go wrong with a cookbook. “The Well-Plated Cookbook” is a hardcover release from Milwaukee home cook Erin Clarke, who blogs at It features 130 healthy recipes, and Ann reports that it’s been a hot seller at Boswell Books.

People love maple syrup, and Stevens Point’s Tapped Maple Syrup offers some varieties you’ve probably never had before, with flavors like hops, espresso, turmeric and black umami garlic. They also offer some truly great cocktail syrups that pair well with dark liquors.

And finally you can’t go wrong with a tote bag, and Odd Duck has a really cute one. For $15 it’s an affordable gift for your friends who love fine dining.

The Diplomat and Sanford offer holiday takeout

The Diplomat has expanded its menu in some great ways, adding an incredible burger. They’ve also added some pot pies, with classic flavors like beef and chicken and also more adventurous ones like a shrimp and lobster pot pie.

This year they’re offering holiday meals, including a beef wellington — which I’ve actually never had before. There’s also a ham wellington for those who’d prefer pork instead of beef. And for vegetarians, there’s a also sweet potato wellington.

Sanford, meanwhile, is sold out of Christmas meals, but it’s offering a New Year’s Ever meal for two, which includes lamb and apricot stuffed grape leaves, sake-cured sea scallops, a shellfish bisque and a stuffed-beef tenderloin with a caramel and toffee chocolate cake for desert. Now that’s a festive way to ring in the New Year.

We talk about all that and more on this week’s episode.

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