Most of us are in a holding pattern waiting for vaccines to be readily available to the majority, so we can get back to the friendly skies and explore the world. In the meantime, here are a few gift ideas for your valentine, many with foreign flair. They may remind you why travel is good for the soul, not to mention your taste buds.
Caviar Co. tasting flight
While visiting St. Petersburg’s Hermitage or Moscow’s Red Square may have to wait for now, San Francisco-based purveyor of fine caviar, The Caviar Co. has a signature tasting flight containing scrumptious Hackleback, Classic White Sturgeon and Russian Osetra caviars coupled with tasty French blini and dreamy Vermont crème fraiche, all arriving in a chilled signature gift box. To make it an actual date on Feb. 14. The Caviar Co. will air a virtual hosting with its owner to educate viewers on pairings and caviar pleasures. $140. https://thecaviarco.com/
Soul of a Lion by DAOU Vineyards
If your valentine is your soulmate, or you’re hoping they will be, the 2017 Soul of a Lion Magnum gift set with a regally-inspired lion’s head pourer/aerator is just the ticket. Soul of a Lion is produced on DAOU Mountain in Paso Robles’ glorious Adelaida district by wunderkind brothers Georges and Daniel DAOU. Originally hailing from Lebanon by way of France, the brothers named this perfectly balanced wine after their father Joseph, whose strength and courage has continuously been the brothers’ north star. Scoring in the high 90s by discerning wine critics, smooth and silk come to mind, it’s a perfect Valentine’s Day combination. $350. Daouvineyards.com
Etched glass bar wear
Whether you’re dreaming of Fiji, Bermuda or Singapore, Well Told creates all manner of etched glassware, coffee mugs and tumblers with your favorite international destination or topography map. With these you can simultaneously sip, savor and strategize all the details of your next voyage with your valentine. Starting at $14.50. Welltolddesign.com
Hearing that Red made chocolates with half the calories of other fine chocolates, as a die-hard chocoholic, I was skeptical. With Swiss and German-engineered custom manufactured equipment, green-certified factory and Ivory Coast-sourced cacao, Red produces guilt-free chocolates that made me fall deeply in love. With pralines in the shape of a 50-carat diamond, what could possibly go wrong? $14.99. red-chocolate.com
If like the regal Lord Jameson or Rerun my Lab, your true valentine – sorry hubby – has fur, four legs and says woof at night, you’ll want to get your beloved canine these small batch, non-GMO, preservative-free treats. The Valentine’s Day bundle has Berry Best made with red beets and coconut, while Coco Crush contains oats and peanuts. These have been wholeheartedly endorsed by Rerun. $26. LordJameson.com
Uber Chill Mini Fridge
As many are working from home and on endless calls, having this retro chic mini fridge within arm’s reach may well become your valentine’s favorite gadget. In valentine red or four other shiny finishes, it’s lightweight, has a small footprint and keeps six 12-ounce cans or four 16.9-ounce ones cold. It includes a home outlet and 12V car plug so its uses are nearly endless. Personally, it made me dream of Iceland. $59.99. Uberappliance.com
Flax4Life baked goods
If your valentines want to eat healthily while satisfying their sweet tooth, the Flax4Life gift basket produces certified gluten-free, nut-free, dairy-free, high-fiber goodies such as chocolate, dark cherry and cappuccino brownies, coconut, blueberry and carrot raisin muffins and snacking granola. Individual packaging makes them easy to take along whether hiking or road tripping. Adding to their allure, they are guilt-free. $26.99. Flax4life.net
Don Pablo Coffee
For the coffee aficionados among us, you and your valentine can travel to Guatemala and Italy at least in your coffee mug with Don Pablo’s 100% Arabica specialty coffee sampler box. These non-GMO coffees are available in six different grind types including French Press and Cold Brew Ground. $29.99. donpablocoffee.com
Happy Valentine’s Day!
Julie L. Kessler is a journalist, attorney and legal columnist and the author of the award-winning travel memoir “Fifty-Fifty: The Clarity of Hindsight.” She can be reached at vagabondlawyer.com.