APB - gift for friend [Greater Boston]

Dear Greater Boston HO friends - long story that I’m trying to condense…I borrowed a friend/neighbor’s car yesterday to pick up Spring Onion from school as we are a 1-car family, which B needed unexpectedly. I got t-boned on my way to Route 2. The other driver was cited. And now I feel terrible because my friend’s car was not driveable and who knows when it’s going to get repaired. She and her husband are awesome neighbors and they are into food and beer. So, aside from trying to minimize their efforts during this ordeal, I’d like to get them a food-centric gift, definitely fancy and not your everyday kinda thing. They’re well-off (their other car is a Tesla just to provide some context). Does anyone have any suggestions? I would love something local-ish because they would appreciate supporting a local business (we’re both in Arlington).

Please help me feel less loser-ish.

APB = all-points bulletin


Oh, how stressful and miserable! I would outsource- call Formaggio, give them a dollar amount, and have them put something together. The last thing you need is another project. Alternately, Butternut Bakehouse- in your neck of the woods- they could do a dessert and pastry basket.


I was going to say recommended ‘based solely on her Insta’ but I believe she’s also active on another food forum I frequent. In other words, I haven’t tried the product but I have reasons to believe it’s good :wink:


Both of @Parsnipity’s ideas are awesome. There’s also Cookie Time bakery and I’m sure Bermans could put a great gift box together.

ETA: you could ask Bermans to collaborate with Ma France across the street.


I was about to make that very same suggestion. Really, with FK in the neighborhood, it’s hardly worth looking elsewhere, and you (addressing you now @digga) can give them not just a price point but you can also tell them what your neighbors like (caviar? blue cheese? stinky cheese? fancy condiments?, etc., etc., etc.). Their website is woefully unrepresentative of what they have so I’d call them or drop in. If you need a car, I’ll lend you mine.

But, what a frightening experience. Glad you’re OK, and I hope so is SO.

Edited to add: If they like chocolate, EH Chocolatier gets my strongest vote.


So sorry to hear about this, those are some good neighbors!
Perhaps if they are carnivores there is a butcher in the area that might be a consideration?
Or seafood?
A gift card to Sarma or Oleana would set me right but that might not be their cup of tea.
Be well and I hope SO is handling this well too!


I’ll third FK, hard to go wrong. I made a gift basket out of things from MA France, Arlington, recently, but it was for Japanese people and they are typically Francophile. Speaking of Japanese, Mariuchi is close by, maybe a selection from Penzey’s Spices, some nice things from Praline in Belmont. Lots of choices.


I’d suggest Formaggio, too. If you know them well enough to know what they’d like, choose stuff yourself. Or, give them a gift certificate. Formaggio has all kinds of cool stuff and yes, it’s expensive. Also, Burdick’s Chocolate in Harvard Square has great git boxes if you think they’d like something sweet.

So sorry this happened.


Digga, most important thing is you are OK!
I agree with the emerging consensus, Formaggio Kitchen is the way to go. Their catering platters are awesome.


I’m glad you’re not hurt!

If the FK route, maybe ask them to include some non- or less-perishable items in case the folks aren’t feeling it this week.

Or, if not the FK route, maybe stuff from Sofra, although given the location that might now be special for them


Oh, @digga. :disappointed: I am so sorry that happened to you.

I’m with the Formaggio consensus because of ease and choice (of very nice things). There’s already enough to deal with after such a stressful event.

It’ll likely take a couple days to regain equanimity after something like that—at least it does for me—so do be good to yourself, too.


Dear HO friends - Thank you all for your suggestions. I decided to take a diametrically-opposed route and get my friend and her hubby (also a friend) a set of private yoga lessons from a local yoga studio (I’m not a yoga practitioner but I’m friends with the owner, who is a lovely person).

Incidentally, my friend is turning 60 in 2 weeks and there is a BBQ party at their house next weekend, making me feel even worse (we can’t attend as we’ll be out of town). I’m going to go with @anon6418899’s suggestion of a gift basket from MA France in time for the party. At least I can walk/bike there, as I am rather car-adverse at the moment. And it’s keeping my gift hyper-local, which brings me a glimmer of joy.