Unique Gifts for People Who Love Food and Wine

If you have friends who are just as keen on trying new food and drinks as you, it might be a good idea to surprise them with a unique present for their birthday or a special occasion. You simply cannot stick to the general gift voucher; get something that talks about your relationship and makes them smile. If you are stuck with food and drink related ideas, below you will find a few great ones that will get you thinking.

Cooking Classes

Whether your friend is keen on the Indian cuisine or sushi, you will surely find a few cooking classes in your area. Contact the organizers and find out whether or not you could get a voucher with your friend’s name on. This will not only make your gift personal, but also be useful and interesting for the person who is getting it.

Wine Tasting

Image via PxHere

There is nothing better than a wine tasting tour. If you are keen on this drink, and your friend seems to be an expert, always knowing what to serve at dinner parties, you might want to impress them with a wine tasting experience. No matter if it is held at the local restaurant or a vineyard nearby, they will appreciate the thought and remember you when they attend. If you want, you can even join them on the day and spend a few great hours together, talking about one of your favorite drinks.

Wine Cooler

In case your friend is a collector and has loads of different special wine, they certainly deserve a wine cooler. Unfortunately, not all of us have the opportunity to store our bottles in an air conditioned wine cellar, so a wine cooler might be a great idea for your boozy friends. If they know what the ideal serving temperature of each type of wine is, they certainly need a temperature controlled wine cooler in their kitchen.

Brewing Kit

Microbreweries spring up in every part of the country faster than you could notice. If you love the special spices and aromas that local producers create, why not encourage your friend to give brewing a try? There are plenty of small scale brewing kits available from local gift shops and breweries, and you will give your loved ones an experience to remember for a lifetime, even if their beer turns out to be less than perfect.

Whiskey Kit

Those who love something with a kick and more alcohol, a great whiskey kit is a perfect gift idea. From guide books to training and a make our own whiskey kit there are loads of options to choose from. However, you will need to ensure that your friend has the space and the ventilation system they need to complete the project, as malt whiskey needs the right storage, and it can let out some strong fumes and smells.

Spice Mixes

In case your friend enjoys cooking, you will need to find the right spice mixes they can use and experiment with. Next time you visit a tropical island or an exotic country, make sure that you visit a local market where you can pick up some authentic produce and quality spices your friend could not get their hands on otherwise. From tea leaves to special aroma and spices, dried flowers, there are plenty of things you can pick up from local markets.

Wine Guides

Wine lovers love showing off their expertise. If you would like to help your friend get to know more about their favorite region or type of wine, you can visit a local book store or a gift shop at a farm and find the right book for their taste. From a guide to match the wine with every meal to one that focuses on the traditions and the most valuable bottles, you can choose the one that is more likely to impress them.

Culinary Course

There is a difference between a cooking class and a culinary course. You will get more insider information about what traditions and cultural aspects played a part in creating a dish, and you will also find out the best way to consume every dish. In case your friend is just as interested in the origin of the dish as the taste, you can get them a culinary course as a present, and they will love you for it.

Getting the present right for a foodie and a wine lover is not easy. Try one of the above ideas, and see if you can impress your friend.


E-Creamery: Ice Cream for any occasion

At eCreamery you can create your own flavor of ice-cream, gelato or sorbet.They have more than 30 flavors and 40 mix ins to choose from. Dream up your own custom flavor with add ins; design and personalize your label; eCreamery will make it and have it delivered to your door .The sorbet is to die for and the other ice creams are very flavorful.
 I am in love with the personalized pints they provide and would recommend it for any birthday party, class party or any occasion where ice cream is served.  Surprised the birthday boy or girl with a personalized pint of their own.

This is not only for kids.  Adults will enjoy, too!  Imagine the look on thier face when they see their name on a pint of ice cream!

Thanks to eCreamery for providing 4 personalized pints.


Happy Yummies

This is a sponsored post on behalf of Review Wire Media.

Happy Yummies Worlds Best Tasting Gourmet Gummies Super Bear Assortment 
The Best Tasting Gummies packed in an exclusive 14 oz bear package makes a great gift for someone special! Includes 14 flavors of gummy bears plus two extra special flavors. MSRP $9.50
Happy Yummies makes a great gift a great stocking stuffer, gift for the foodie, gift for the candy lover and much, much more

Everybody loves gummy bears and Happy Yummies delivers with 14 flavors plus two extra special flavors!

 Happy Yummies Website:

A&W Root Beer Float: The Perfect Family Fun Night Treat

The product, information, and gift card have been provided by A&W so that I could try the product and share my thoughts and information about A&W Root Beer. The opinions expressed in this post are my own and do not reflect the opinions of A&W

A&W Root Beer has a long history of helping my family create some beautiful memories. When I was a child, we got to make root beer floats on our family fun nights.  Now, I might give away my age when I tell you our movie nights were in the age of no cable TV.   But, on Sunday night, "The Wonderful World of Disney" was on TV and we were allowed our special treat of the week, an A&W Root Beer float.

We would watch in awe of the great movies and Disney specials while we sipped our floats.The unique, creamy taste of A&W Root Beer is a simple treat that creates fun, care-free experiences for families and can help make any moment special. I loved being able to make my own float.  My Mom would make sure we had all the ingredients to make these nights special.  Vanilla ice cream, whipped cream and cherries, along with the creamy taste of A&W root beer were set on our kitchen counter.  

Making an A&W Root beer Float is as simple as it comes!   Pour A&W Root Beer in your favorite glass or mug until it is about 3/4 full and then a scoop of ice cream. Top with whipped cream and of course, the cherry on top. Insert a straw and sip away!  Now, you can top with as many ingredients as you like:  colored sprinkles, nuts, cookie crumbs, and flavored syrups.  The possibilities are endless.  Personally, I just enjoy the traditional A&W Root Beer float!

As a child, there were not many times we were allowed to make anything in the kitchen.  But,we looked forward to those weekly A&W root beer floats.  Not only was it our only indulgence, we looked forward to it all week. I have two sisters and Mom and Dad would pick who got to go first each week.  After making our floats, we would gather round and watch TV and sip on our floats.  Those are some great memories when times were simple.

I have carried this tradition on with my kids and now my grandchildren.  I let the kids pick out what movie we are going to watch and we make our A&W root beer floats, just like I did many years ago.  I hope my children and grandchildren will continue this tradition for many years to come.

For “float how-tos” and recipe inspiration visit,


Surprising Benefits Of Tropical Fruits

Surprising Benefits Of Tropical Fruits

If you’re a fruit lover like me, you know how refreshing it is to bite into a ripe piece of fruit.  Personally, I like to start my mornings by snacking on a tropical fruit, like an orange or a banana, followed by a big glass of ice water.  Not only is fruit delicious, but including a piece of fruit in your breakfast is a great way to kickstart your metabolism and fuel your body for the long day ahead.  Here are just a few tropical fruits with surprising benefits, and why you should be including them in your daily diet!


Pineapple is one of my favorite fruits, and not just because it tastes amazing.  One cup of pineapple contains over 100 percent of your daily vitamin C requirement, as well as B vitamins, dietary fiber, and manganese.  Pineapples also have anti-inflammatory properties that aid in reducing inflammation associated with arthritis, making it a great fruit for people who struggle with these issues.  Like many other tropical fruits, pineapples can also be used topically as an ingredient in age-fighting face masks, since pineapple contains antioxidants that fight skin-damaging free radicals. 


While some people might argue that avocados are actually vegetables, they are in fact tropical fruits.  Another misconception is that avocados should be avoided because they are high in fat, but what many people don’t realize is that avocados are high in monounsaturated fat, which is classified as a “healthy” fat.  Avocados have become commonplace in many people’s diets because of this, and the fruit can be found on the menu at any health retreat on the Gold Coast.  Avocados contain more than 40 percent of your daily dietary fiber requirements, and also have high levels of copper, potassium, and vitamins C, B, K, and E. 


Guavas are often thought of as a little more “exotic” than other tropical fruits, and they’re sometimes difficult to find in the grocery store.  However, guavas are delicious fruits that everyone should try to include more in their diets.  Guavas contain amazing skin benefits, and can help treat dark circles, splotchiness, and skin redness.  Guavas also contain notable amounts of vitamins A, C and B6, making it a worthy fruit to include in your daily diet.  Guavas are also popular components in smoothie bowls, the latest health craze that has many fruit lovers buzzing with excitement.

Passion Fruit

Passion Fruit is another mysterious fruit that seems to be growing in popularity thanks to the smoothie bowl craze.  When eaten alone, Passion Fruit is quite tart, which is why it is more commonly paired with other fruits.  One of passion fruit’s biggest superpowers is that it boosts immunity, due to its heavy presence of vitamin C.  Passion Fruit can also be linked to eye health, since the fruit is rich in vitamin A.  This can also help reduce wrinkles and keep skin hydrated and healthy!  If you’re someone who likes to take special care of your skin, try adding passion fruit to your diet. 


Baked Green Cheese Grits

Baked Green Cheese Grits

In Georgia, we take our grits seriously.  Whether it's Shrimp and Grits or Cheese Grits, we are ready for anything.  Show them how much you love them this St. Patrick's Day with this recipe for Baked Green Grits.  

Items needed:

3 cups Chicken Broth
1 cup Jim Dandy Quick Grits
1 stick Margarine (1/2 cup) (cubed)
Green Food Coloring
2 cups Shredded Cheddar Cheese
2 large Eggs (beaten)
1 teaspoon bottled Minced Garlic
Pepper (to taste)
½ cup Shredded Parmesan Cheese
Non-Stick Cooking Spray

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Spray an 8x8 inch or 2 quart glass baking dish with cooking spray and set aside. Over medium heat, bring chicken broth to a boil, then add grits. Stir and cover. Turn heat to low and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and add margarine and stir until melted. Stir in desired amount of green food coloring. Add cheese and stir until melted. Add eggs and stir until blended. Stir in minced garlic and pepper until combined. Pour into baking dish. Top with parmesan cheese. Bake covered on the 3rd middle rack for 25 minutes.


Bourbon Balls

Make this special treat for your significant other this Valentine's Day!  Chocolate and bourbon always have a special place in my heart! 

·         9 oz. 60% dark chocolate chips
·         1/4 cup heavy whipping cream (or coconut milk for dairy free)
·         2 tbsp bourbon

For Caramel Swirl:
·         1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/8 cup water
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 tbsp butter
For Coating:
·         Cacao powder
·         Sprinkles
  1. Combine sugar and water for caramel in small saucepan on med. Heat for 10 min (1/4 cup sugar + 1/8 cup water)
  2. Add 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  3. Simmer 2 min, then add butter and remove caramel from heat
  4. Chop chocolate into small bits
  5. In a small saucepan heat 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream to simmer, remove from heat, pour over chopped chocolate in heat safe bowl
  6. Stir until smooth
  7. You may use the microwave in 15 second increments for additional melting help if necessary
  8. Let cool for 2 min and pour in bourbon, mix
  9. Swirl in about 2/3 of the caramel, marble style.
  10. Cover and place in fridge to chill for 1 hr
  11. Scoop out chocolate using a melon baller, roll gently between hands until round
  12. Coat in cacao or sprinkles by rolling ball on plate

Recipe courtesy of Brynn HouskaBreaking Bread XO

Thanks to David Nicholson Reserve for providing the bourbon to make this special treat! 


Gifts for the Kitchen They will Love

The Ninja® Intelli-Sense™ Kitchen System with Auto-Spiralizer™ features a smart and powerful base that transforms into four high-performance appliances. Intelli-Sense Technology delivers optimal results every time—all at the tap of a touchscreen. Features include:

  • 12 Smart Programs: Chef-designed automatic recipe creations deliver optimal results every time. Precisely calibrated patterns of pulsing, pausing, and speed create everything from fresh salsa and pizza dough to margaritas and decadent ice creams—all it takes is a simple touch.
  • Smart Vessel Recognition: Automatically adjusts speed, power, and torque for each attachment, and the touchscreen changes to display a unique menu of Smart Programs, enabling one Smart Base to become four high-performance appliances.
  • Intuitive touchscreen: A sleek, flat screen responds to your touch and lets you select between vessel-specific Smart Programs and manual options.
  • 1200-watt base with four interchangeable vessels, including a 72 oz. Total Crushing® Pitcher; a 24 oz. Single-Serve Blender Cup; a 64 oz. Precision Processor™ Bowl; and an Auto-Spiralizer
All attachments are BPA free and dishwasher safe
Ninja® Coffee Brewer with Auto-iQ® One-Touch Intelligence and Thermal Flavor Extraction® Technology unlocks your coffee’s full flavor potential. Features include:
  • Choose a Size: Cup, Travel Mug, Half Carafe, or Full Carafe
  • Choose a Brew: Classic, Rich, Over Ice, or Specialty
  • Pod-Free Single Serve
  • Auto-iQ One-Touch Intelligence adjusts the brew cycle based on the brew size and brew type you select
  • 43 oz. Glass Carafe and Intelligent Warming Plate
  • Removable water reservoir

Both products are available at major retailers everywhere. Get that Ninja gift for your loved one.

Crown Royal Gift Set

One WINNER will win a The Crown Collection – Crown Royal Gift Set Read review here
Sponsor by: The BroBasket
Hosted by: Night Helper
Open to: USA only 18yrs. +
Start date: 12/04~12/11 12am
The winner will be notified via email and will have 48 hours to reply
Disclosure: We reserve the right to make revisions, to cancel, or suspend this contest for any reason. We are not associated with any of the companies named above. The odds of winning are based on the number of entries received Open to the US 18+ only. Confirmed Winner(s) (by will be contacted by email. Winner(s) have 24 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. The sponsor(s) will be responsible for product shipment to winner(s) of this giveaway. Night Helper Blog (and any other blog participating) is not responsible for product shipment/delivery. This event is in no way administered, sponsored, or endorsed by, or associated with, Facebook and/or Twitter, Google, Pinterest. This disclosure is done in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 10 CFR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements. Entrants must only enter with either one email address, IP address and/or Facebook account, anyone found violating these rules will be disqualified. It is at the sole discretion of the admin of the giveaway if the winner has met the rules or not.

Pearson Farm Taste of Pecans Gift Box Giveaway

If you live in the South, you know pecans are a staple in the kitchen during the holidays.  For those of you that want to give the gift of pecans, I bring you Pearson Farm  Check them out for ALL of your holiday gifting needs.  I received this delectable  Taste of Pecan gift box with four bags of pecans. 
Flavors include: Toasted & Salted, Cinnamon Roasted, Southern Praline, and Seasoned. Packaged in a  resealable poly gift bags, boxed and tied with a bow!

My fave was the toasted and salted.  If you have a pecan lover on your gift list, hurry and order now!

 One of my readers will win this Taste of Pecans Gift Box gift box from Pearson Farm!
Enter the Rafflecopter below. Winner will have 48 hours to respond to email or forfeit prize.
 Pearson Farm will ship the gift box to the winner.

Dixie Vodka for the Holidays

Dixie is crafted from vodka 6x distilled from non-GMO corn. Dixie  then utilizes an innovative process called TerrePURE to strip out additional impurities post-distillation. Dixie comes in our base vodka, plus three all-natural flavors: Citrus, Black Pepper and Mint. As a corn-based product, Dixie is gluten-free.  Dixie Vodka is proudly blended and  bottled in N. Charleston, South Carolina. Contact your local package store to get The South's Best Tasting Vodka!

Here is my fave recipe from Dixie Vodka:

Just a Pinch Punch
1 bottle Dixie Mint Vodka
3 large tea bags (or 12 individual bags) for iced tea, or purchase your choice of pre-made sweet tea
4 cups water
1 cup sugar
fresh mint sprigs
4 cups of lemonade
8 lemon slices
Bring 4 cups of water to a boil. Remove from the heat and add in tea bags. Let tea bags steep for 5 minutes then remove. Stir in one cup of sugar until dissolved. Pour tea, lemonade, and vodka into preferred punch serving bowl. Add additional 3 quarts of water and stir together. Muddle handful of mint leaves in a separate bowl and add to punch ingredients. Cover and chill until cool. Fill mason jars with ice and pour in tea. Garnish with mint sprig and lemon slice.

Please drink responsibly.  


How To Cook The Best Thanksgiving Turkey

Everyone wants to know how to cook the best Thanksgiving turkey. First, you have to buy a Butterball turkey!  This is one time of year I am brand loyal.  Consider this Sweet Spiced Tarragon Roast Turkey.  This succulent roasted turkey is sure to please your palate and your guests.  Make sure you have your roasting pan, your spices,  basting brush, aluminum foil, just to name a few.  If you have questions, Butterball will is here to help!

·         Text Help (844-877-3456): Send the Turkey Talk-Line a text! Holiday cooking text help will be available starting Nov. 1, with extended hours starting the week of Thanksgiving.
·         1-800-BUTTERBALL (1-800-288-8372): Turkey Talk-Line experts will be available this season starting November 1, 2017, through December 24, 2017, to answer questions and assist all Thanksgiving cooks.
 Make sure you are prepared with the rest of your meal!  Here are a few interesting facts from Butterball:

Butterball conducted its first-ever consumer survey this year for a pulse on Thanksgiving preppers’ expectations and realities when it comes to one of the most important meals of the year. I wanted to share some interesting findings for you to include. The survey found:
·         Two-thirds of Americans rank Thanksgiving as one of their favorite holidays.
·         Two-thirds of Americans like to incorporate new traditions into their celebrations…many of which include cooking up new and different recipes for loved ones to enjoy.
·         Out of all things Thanksgiving preparers cook up, they’re most proud of the turkey. And 88 percent prep it the old-school way: in an oven.
·         84 percent feel excited about preparing the meal, and 74 percent of Americans don’t expect Thanksgiving to be perfect.
·         It’s the turkey!  Despite the overall positivity around the holiday, first-time millennial preparers are still feeling the pressure. Eight in 10 first-time cooks worry about cooking the turkey correctly.  This number drops among experienced preparers, but still 43% worry about getting it right.

Please reach out to Butterball with any questions!  Butterball has offered 2 gift checks to buy your Thanksgiving turkey! Winner will have 24 hours to respond to email.  
I was provided promotional items in exchange for this post.
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