OPR’s guide to the giving season

Have a notoriously difficult person on your holiday shopping list? No fear! Every year, Obsidian releases a gift guide that is guaranteed to impress even the person who already has everything, and this year, our team came through! From edible delights to philanthropic investments, there is something on this list that will undoubtedly spark joy. See what our team recommends and check out these amazing goodies before the holiday rush.

Gifts you’ll crave all year long

Whitney: Beneva Mayweather Foods. From its delicious yeast rolls to its flavorful seasoning blends, Beneva Mayweather Foods offers a slew of must-try products. You can pop the yeast rolls in the oven, spread a little butter on top, and you have the perfect side item for your family meal (or an afternoon snack)!

Kelli: Jay Ducote’s Louisiana Outdoor Cooking. As Obsidian’s Louisiana-based all-remote employee, I’m here to offer a little Gulf Coast spice to this year’s list. In the year of the pandemic, we’re encouraged to spend time with other people outside, right? And in Louisiana, most of us are still reeling from all these hurricanes and simultaneously pretending it’s still the 2019 LSU football season. Luckily, we can social distance outside and party like it’s 2019 on the back patio with this cookbook. Jay’s been a finalist on Next Food Network Star, once Beat Bobby Flay and is an LSU tailgating legend. (Bonus, cookbooks purchased directly from his website come signed by Jay!) 

Bluff City Toffee Co. PopcornMurray: Bluff City Toffee. Who doesn’t love a sweet treat?! Bluff City Toffee is made from scratch in small batches with minimal ingredients. You can’t go wrong with any of the three varieties this woman-owned brand offers.

Carlee: Nothing says “happy holidays” like a bottle from Old Dominick! Whiskey, vodka, gin, bourbon – you name it, Old Dom’s created it. 

Brittany: Gift cards to some of my Memphis favorites, including BABALU and Brookhaven are a no-brainer. Food is the way to everyone’s heart, especially during the holiday season. From BABALU’s Black Bean Burger to Brookhaven’s wide variety of pub snacks, you can’t go wrong when gifting a certificate to these local faves! 

Gifts that set the vibe

Taylor: Give me a gorgeous mug from Paper & Clay. This mug is the perfect gift for the coffee or warm beverage lover in your life. This mug is both a piece of art and a vessel for your favorite cozy drink.

Buff City SoapGracie: Buff City Soap. Buff City Soap creates handmade bath and body products that are free of harsh ingredients and full of nourishing plant-based goodies. The soap shop has the perfect gifts for men, women and even pets!

Christina: People often don’t think of artwork as a gift, but it truly is the gift that keeps on giving. Binder Projects sells works by both established and up-and-coming artists from Memphis and throughout the South. Each month opens a new exhibition with a wide selection, making it easy to find a piece that fits anyone’s aesthetic. Plus, with their virtual gallery, they make it easy to purchase any piece no matter where you live in the country. If you want to play it safe, there’s always the option for a gift certificate, too! 

Jenna: I know the pandemic has made SEVERAL of us explore more of our green thumb. And, even if you’re not much into gardening, having greenery around is very relaxing, homey and inviting. Terra Cotta is a Black woman-owned business that recently opened on Summer Avenue, and they sell plants, handmade pottery and jewelry. 

Addison: J. Brooks Coffee Roasters is a Memphis-based coffee company that creates unique roasts that fit a diverse range of personalities, or as they say, “roastinalities.” J. Brooks can be purchased at a range of Memphis locations including Miss Cordelia’s and The Majestic Grille. 

Ashley: Go practical, cute and local this season with this adorable set of Memphis state map marble coasters from ARCHd that will steal the show and protect the table! 

Gifts that give back

Courtney: OPR is full of animal fans, so I couldn’t think of a better local holiday gift than helping out the Humane Society of Memphis & Shelby County. There are so many ways to support the mission and the organization’s furry friends. Feel good in your soul and get some great stuff too by checking out their 2020 Gift Guide for the Animal-Lover. If fun pet-inspired merch is your bag, don’t forget to peep out their Holiday Shop. 

Lauren: MIFA’s annual holiday card project. For $10, you can send a beautiful card designed by a local artist to honor someone during the holiday season. MIFA raises funds through this campaign to “help vulnerable seniors and families in crisis remain independent and in their homes,” and you can add an extra donation on someone’s behalf, as well. This year’s card was designed by Rob Threlkeld, a 15-year volunteer for MIFA’s Meals on Wheels program.