Last-minute Christmas gifts to buy online for foodies
It’s that time of the year again, when the city is decked in white fairy lights and Michael Bublé’s crooning voice can be heard in every shopping centre wishing you a Merry Christmas. Escape the large crowds and shop, stress free in the comfort of your own home with these five online stores.
With a Japanese name that means “ingredients”, Zairyo offers a wide range of freshly-imported Japanese food produce. On our Christmas wish list is the premium Omakase Uni ($90 for 90g), hand-picked by the uni specialists at Tsukiji Market's uni auction; plus the lip-smacking Kyoto Matcha Jam ($25.50). Apart from selling fresh food products, Zairyo carries kawaii (Japanese for "cute") tableware such as the animal-shaped spoons ($5.50) and printed manga plate ($24.90) to complete the Nippon experience. The produce is flown in twice a week (Tuesday and Friday) to ensure you are ordering the freshest stock Japan has to offer. Order online and then head down to their warehouse for collection. zairyo.sg
A home-grown lifestyle brand that celebrates fine living, IUIGA is your (and also our) one-stop place for kitchenware, travel accessories and home and living goods. What we’ve got our eyes on: their Belly-good Foodie Christmas bundle ($99), which includes a French casserole pan, a wooden cutlery set plus pizza board, a Japanese wooden dipping bowl, a set of Scandi soup spoons and wooden plate. Perfect for the domestic goddess or god in your life. Place your order one working day in advance. iuiga.com
Inspired by a family’s formidable tea collection, TEASPEC is Carole Tan’s ode to her mother-in-law’s love for the classic Chinese tea, Pu’ er. With over 35 years of collection, Tan decided to set up an online store to showcase and educate those who are interested in Pu'er. The TEASPEC Jubilee ($180) is the perfect gift for tea connoisseur, the set contains a dome-shaped aged 2005 raw tea that has an aroma that is both floral and engaging - and extremely pleasing on the tongue. Place your order two working days in advance. teaspec.com
Like its name, Naiise is indeed “nice”, with its wide selection of quirky food items, both locally made and imported. Think sugar-free chia strawberry vanilla jam (50ml for $5.50; 200ml for $14) or a wine-inspired tea gift set which includes six wine-inspired teas (Scotch, piña colada, sangria punch, rose moscato, Baileys and Martini), a bamboo tea spoon and a tea infuser stick ($50). Still not sure what to get? Go for the safest bet: Speculoos cookie butter ($14). Order online and have it shipped to you, or head down to one of their outlets for free collection. naiise.com
Known to many as the online curator for some of the finest produce, Hipvan is the “hippest” place to get cookware and food. Expect brands such as Marchesi Di San Giuliano for handmade organic biscuits (almond, ginger and hazelnut, $19.50), Bahen & Co’s traditional stone-ground chocolate ($11.50), and Kent & Fraser’s decadent cookie treats (spicy ginger, chocolate chip and toasted almond, $8.90). Place your order two working days in advance. hipvan.com