Los Gatos merchants offer festive gifts for foodies

That festive time of year has arrived in Los Gatos, complete with extended shopping hours, holiday parties and carriage rides. Local merchants are ready to help trim the tree, deck the halls and assist shoppers in playing Santa.

Need a stunning cheese or charcuterie board? It doesn’t get easier or more delicious than at The Tasting House, where their highly knowledgeable cheese mongers and somms can help you curate the perfect party tray or gift basket. Their cheese of the month club is also good for gifting.

Some of their more exotic offerings this year include Recchiuti Champagne truffles—dark chocolate ganache infused with Schramsberg Vineyard’s Blanc de Noirs—Dolce & Gabbana panettone with almonds (no candied citrus), Grand Cru Champagnes for under $70, 2018 Akatombo Cabernet from Howell Mountain, and Giacomo Borgogno and Figli No Name 2017 Nebbiolo (declassified Barolo for $45). Foodie accessories include Peas on Earth tea towels from Neighborgoods, bread warmer baskets, books and serverware.

In addition to their multitude of catering offerings, Grocer + Goddess has some adorable Night Before Christmas porcelain teacups made in England with matching aprons, as well as Los Gatos-themed tea towels, canvas bags with leather handles and gigantic ornaments to deck the most voluminous of halls.

Want a gift basket brimming with local goodies or a taste of New York? Montebello Market has themed baskets, like Christmas Morning Breakfast, ready to go and tied with a bow. Or you can choose from their incredible selection of wines, beers, premium spirits and sauces, rubs and condiments and build your own bundle of joy. Store manager Laura DiSilva says the Bottled Baking Company’s cakes in a bottle are the bomb: Just add milk and eggs and bake a festive cake.

The market’s shelves are brimming with treats like cookies in a jar, candies in cans, Sugar Bob’s Maple Siracha, cocktail cubes, lavender lemon cocktail syrup, cherrywood smoked sea salt, Cosentino Farms spiced apple butter, Whistlepig maple syrup, Ernest Hemingway’s Rum Runner marinade and Frey Ranch straight bourbon. On the cookware aisle, Montebello Market has Le Creuset in giftable abundance.

Remember, you can drink while you shop, and cocktails include the Boot Warmer—hot cocoa infused with butterscotch Schnapps and topped with whipped cream. Check out the premium liquor cabinet in the back, where you can pick up holiday-worthy spirits like Remy Martin 1738 or Whistlepig 15-year rye finished in Vermont state oak. You know, for Santa.