How to Speak Southern

Hostess Gifts SST Style

October 1, 2013

As a born and bred Southerner, I understand the importance of a good hostess gift. Whenever I go anywhere and stay at another person’s house, I always make sure to bring a thoughtful present  that the host/hostess will like, but that is also affordable. To get the biggest wow for the least amount of money, I use a little creative thinking to really make sure they feel appreciated.

One gift that I have given before was a jar of red pepper jelly, a box of nice crackers — I used Carr’s — and a little cheese spreader I found at Marshall’s. I added a note that said Spread Over Cream Cheese! and wrapped the foods in a clear plastic bag and tied it with a ribbon. The total came to $15 and it was both affordable and delicious. The Stonewall Kitchen Red Pepper Jelly from Sur La Table is a personal favorite. I gave this gift to Wilson’s grandmother “Mimi” and it was a hit. Brownie points.


plus a pretty cheese spreader and you have yourself a perfect hostess gift that aims to please.

Another go-to hostess gift I give is a bottle of well-priced wine with a package of cocktail napkins. These gray napkins from Caspari are some of my favorites. A fantastic bottle of red wine that I highly recommend — and often enjoy myself — is Rockus Bockus.

I love the label. Very cubism-meets-grape.

A blend of cabernet, zinfandel, syrah, merlot, petit verdot and — my personal favorite — malbec, it is a great tasting wine that won’t blow the bank. Retailing for about $13, this wine paired with a $5 package of cocktail napkins makes for a great hostess gift that doesn’t look cheap.

What are your favorite hostess gifts? Got any go-tos that I should know about? Let me know of any other cheap ideas that I can steal to impress my future host and hostesses. A true Southerner is a perfect host and, more importantly, a perfect guest.

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