Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Last Minute Gifts: Give a Piece of Austin

Please note that I was given a sample box courtesy of Batch Austin for review.  All thoughts & opinions, as always, are honest & my own.  

The stockings have been hung, the tree trimmed, the baking marathon is about to begin & that means....only a few more shopping days left before Christmas!?!?!  Have you checked everyone off your gift-giving list yet?  If not, you're not alone...I still have one or two items to pick up & a massive pile of goods waiting to be wrapped up & nestled under the tree.  For those last minute gift grabs, might I suggest a few fun ways to give a little taste of Austin to your loved ones both far & away?

These presents just take a moment to find & are sure to put a Texas-sized smile on anyone's face, whether they're a few blocks or a few hundred miles away.

Five Fantastic Austin Gifts

1.  Local-Made Goods Delivered to Their Door.

Batch Austin, which will begin shipping in January, is the easiest way to sample a taste of Austin's finest handmade products.  They offer a monthly service, available in 1, 3, 6 or 12 month increments,  that will deliver some of Austin's best & brightest to anywhere nationwide.  Every package is filled with four local items & each month will offer a different theme. 

I was sent a sample box recently & it was a wonderful mix of tasty treats & indulgent home goodies...I immediately thought of several people who would flip for this Austin-centric subscription.  I was also pleasantly surprised that 3 of out of the 4 items were from companies I hadn't tried it when I can discover new hometown companies!

My favorite item was the San Saba River Poppin' Pecan snack mix.  It's a buttery praline popcorn with plenty of pecans (my fav!) was so delicious, Andrew & I gobbled it up on the first day we opened it!

2. An Eclectic Mix they'll be playing well after New Year's.

Each year, one of Austin's most beloved radio stations, KGSR, puts out an exclusive, limited edition compilation of  some of their hottest in-studio recordings.  It always sells out & it's always a beautiful blend of lots of different styles of music, big names & Austin favorites.  This year is no exception with local legend Bob Schneider lending a tune, as well as some of the most talked about Austin-based musicians Max Frost, The Wind & the Wave, Shakey Graves & much more.  KGSR Vol. 22 is sold exclusively at Waterloo Records & proceeds from the sale of this CD will be donated to the SIMS Foundation.  This year’s CD also benefits the Seton Medical Center at the University of Texas. A small portion of the proceeds also go to support KGSR'S Blues on the Green series.

3. Anything from the local section of Book People.  

Book People is a place Andrew & I can spend an afternoon in.  The spirit of Austin can be felt as soon as you walk in the door & they have the best round-up of Austin-based, Texas themed & hometown authored books around.  My favorite section of the store is the local Cookbooks.  I can get lost thumbing through the pages on books about everything from Austin dining guides to BBQ tips.

My top recommendation for Austin Cookbooks is the Trailer Food Diaries series by Tiffany Harelick.  There are three volumes, each filled to the brim with recipes on how to make your favorite dishes from some of the most popular food trucks around the city.  It's the perfect gift for the foodie on your list.


4. A Good Social Calendar.

Just about every week in Austin brings another unique event, & during certain times of the year (hello Spring!) there can be multiple big-name festivities happening on the same day.  It can be tough to keep it all straight, so you never miss out!  That's where the Austin Events calendar comes in handy.  For year's it's been an easy way to see what's going on from week to week & can be found everywhere from Central Market to Costco. 

5. Texas-Made Candy Bigger Than Your Head. 

Millionaires, made by Pangburn's of Texas, is celebrating it's 100th year & what better way to join in on the festivities than giving someone a gigantic Texas shaped box (see my foot in the photo below for a scale of just how big this baby is) of these creamy caramel, pecan filled, chocolate cover treats!  Millionaires have been a staple in my family for years & are a go-to when it comes to giving giving the gift of chocolate.  I've seen these big-as-Texas boxes in HEB, though I am sure there are other stores that carry them as well. 


  1. Great post! I'm excited to learn more about Batch. Happy holidays!




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