So many dads have tapped into their culinary creativity in the past year. Some have learned to sear the perfect steak, others mastered the art of mole sauce. No matter what skill level your dad has- master chef or mac n’ cheese master- he will enjoy these Father’s Day gifts for foodies!
A Little Pepper on My Paprikash
One of my favorite foods EVER is a pepper-crusted steak, medium-rare. Pair it with a wedge salad topped with blue cheese and bacon crumbles and I am in HEAVEN. I have learned, though, one of the secrets to truly elevate food that I prepare- freshly ground spices, pepper in particular.
If you taste the difference between that tin of pre-ground basic pepper and truly gourmet pepper, freshly ground, you will be blown away. It is like night and day, both when used in cooking and as a final touch on a dish. The Paris Electric Pepper Mill from Peugeot is one of my top Father’s Day gifts for foodies. It is elegant, functional, and carefully crafted with over 200 years of history. Peugeot produced their first pepper mill in 1874, and the style is still manufactured today. The Paris model is of course updated- it is powered via a rechargeable Lithium-Ion battery, but still looks exactly like a manual pepper mill.
Pair this pepper mill with any of the varieties of pepper that Peugeot carries- Tan Hoi from Vietnam is woody and warm, pairing well with red meats, oily fish or mashed potatoes. Sichuan are red peppercorns that come from China- they have flowery, citrus notes that pair well with duck and fish, but also ideal for sweets like chocolate and fruit. Go for something a little lighter like the Sarawak white peppercorns from Malaysia!
The Paris Electric Pepper Mill is available in Black Lacquered (pictured), Natural, and Chocolate and retails for $125…and this is something dad can pass down from generation to generation, along with his recipe for Cacio y Pepe. Here are some recipes for dishes with pepper as the star, you can pair the mill, peppercorns, and ingredients for one of these recipes as the perfect gift!
Take a Tour
When you ask dad what he wants most, a common response is probably, “Time together!” Why not treat dad to an experience he will love, and join him along the way? I have taken dozens of food tours in my lifetime, in cities all over the world, and Chicago Food Planet is absolutely at the top of my list in terms of professionalism, quality, and production value, not to mention the incredible food I have tasted.
They have a number of incredible tours to satisfy every type of taste bud:
Personally, I have gone on every tour except for the Iconic Foods and the Tacos & Tequila (top of my list). Tours are 3 hours in length, and cost from $65-$85 per person, depending upon the tour and inclusion of alcohol. Kids are allowed on all tours for a reduced fee, which makes it an ideal multi-generational family outing. (And PS- this is the perfect last-minute gift for dad!)
If dad isn’t in the Chicago area, you can still send him a taste of Chicago with their Chicago-centric food boxes, shipped right to his door. Chicago’s Ultimate 3-1-Chew box is a sampling of some iconic and new Chicago food brands- from Garrett’s Popcorn to Chicago Deep Dish Pizza Seasoning from The Spice House to Lemonheads from Ferrara, dad will enjoy these Father’s Day gifts for foodies!
Too Cool for School
Want to learn some new skills with dad that you can use for years to come? Take a cooking class together at The Chopping Block! I remember learning the technique for properly chopping an onion at The Chopping Block in the Merchandise Mart. I went to a class with my mom and sister when I first moved to Chicago, and we all enjoyed the relaxed yet focused atmosphere…as well as the ability to have some wine with our instruction. They have two in-person locations: the Mart, and Lincoln Square. They also have a library of online videos from Chef Shelly Young- take a crack at making dad an Apple Pie!
In addition to in-person classes, of which there are MANY different offerings, they also host virtual classes via Zoom. This might be a fun way to connect with your dad long-distance- send him the ingredients or a shopping list, and you can cook virtually together. Fried Chicken class, Philly Cheesesteak class, Cocktail/Wine Classes or even a virtual Father’s Day Brunch are Father’s Day Foodie Gifts on offer currently.
Send Him on a (Culinary) Trip
Yes, getting dad tickets to Portofino or Rome would be incredible…but might not be in your budget or in dad’s ability. Help him connect with the tastes of Italy through his senses! Eataly, the stateside capital of all things history and food culture of Italy, is as close as you can get without hopping on a plane. They have curated a collection of Father’s Day Gifts for Foodies that are perfect for sending to dad.
Eataly has locations in Chicago, New York, Boston, LA, Vegas, Dallas, and abroad. Osteria di Eataly is on my list of places to visit this summer- this Italian bar experience in the Chicago location has a burrata bar *swoon* as well as seven different spritz options (I fell in love with the spritz in Venice, on a food tour). Bring dad to an Eataly location, for a tasting, or order pickup or delivery for an at-home experience without all the effort.
Cheers to treating dad to a Father’s Day gift for foodies instead of the same ol’ same ol’ tie or socks. Show him you care by sharing his love of all things culinary- whether it be a gadget or cooking class, box of goodies or food tour, he will love it!