From Jonathan Riethmaier @DistrictBean or email him at jonathan[AT]borderstan.com.
I like to think of coffee as a way to build community and share something special with folks I care about. It’s often the case, then, my holiday gift giving includes a number coffee-related items for friends, family, and coworkers. I suppose this is my way of sharing a little bit of me and my proclivities.
But coffee has such a universal appeal. What better way to spread the love than by warming the hearts (and mugs) of those on your shopping list? There’s perhaps no better place to do just that than right here in Borderstan. Among the local coffee merchants are an abundance of gift options, from clothing to brewing equipment to just darn good coffee. So consider visiting your neighborhood cafes this holiday season, and be sure to check out Borderstan’s Rachel Nania for other great local gift ideas.
Looking for something classic and comfy for a holiday surprise? Blind Dog Cafe has a set of eye popping guy/gal t-shirts featuring the cafe’s signature “blind dog” (who is real, by the way) on black tees with mesmerizing white stripes. Peregrine Espresso also has a snazzy design on its new blue t-shirt, which coordinates the company’s three DC locations along the U Street-Garfield “90 Bus” line. For something a little “cooler,” Pleasant Pops is selling its paleta-adorned t-shirts, available in pink or blue. Each is available from $17-20.
Packaged gift sets are great for office or personal gifts. At Kafe Bohem you can find an assortment of coffee gift sets including items like Julius Meinl coffee, collectable coffee tins, mugs, and other treats. Pleasant Pops is also preparing gift sets for the holidays by packaging its “hot pops” (delectable chocolate squares that melt in warm milk!) with specialty coffee and other goodies. Sets are available from $25-40.
For aspiring baristas and avid coffee lovers, Filter Coffee House and Espresso Bar has everything needed to outfit a serious home coffee setup. Give the gift of superior home brewing with an electric or manually powered burr grinder, Hario V60 pour over brewer, or specialized brewing kettle. Peregrine Espresso also carries the popular Bee House coffee dripper and you can find Chemex brewers over at Blind Dog Cafe. Prices vary from $40-300, with electric burr grinders fetching the highest price.
The Borderstan area features an impressive array of the country’s top specialty coffee roasters, and many coffee shops feature limited-release coffees that are sure to impress. Throughout the area you can find bags of PTs Coffee (Bean & Bite, Blind Dog Cafe, Dolcezza), Ceremony Coffee Roasters (Pleasant Pops, Filter), Counter Culture Coffee (Pitango Gelato, Peregrine Espresso), Vigilante Coffee (Vigilante Pop-up @ Mr. Yogato), MadCap Coffee and Intelligentsia (Bean & Bite, Dolcezza) and Ritual and Verve coffees (both at Dolcezza Gelato).
Can’t make up your mind? Several coffee shops also carry gift cards, or you can treat your friend or loved one to an espresso and croissant! Visit this Borderstan guide for coffee lovers and explore the coffee goodness available at neighborhood businesses this holiday season.