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The ultimate Philly holiday gift guide

Our experts have come up with fantastic gift picks for pretty much anyone you could be shopping for, from food to music to clothes to sports games.

Show some love this year. Here are some gift pics handpicked from our experts for anyone on your list.
Show some love this year. Here are some gift pics handpicked from our experts for anyone on your list.Read moreSwayne B. Hall / AP

According to every expert out there (and real-life experience after last year’s holiday shipping stories), you need to start your holiday shopping early. This year, especially, with supply chain issues affecting everything from running shoes to cars, you have to have a plan.

Throughout Philly, there are many places to get gifts that are ideal for anyone on your list — plus, it’s a great way to support local businesses that have been hit hard during the pandemic.

Our experts have come up with fantastic gift picks for pretty much anyone you could be shopping for — avid readers, fashion fans, restaurant regulars, home cooks, and more.

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1. Get a gift card for one of Craig LaBan’s top 10 restaurants

For your friends and family who are fans of good food, treat them to dinner at one of Craig’s top 10 restaurants in Philly from this year’s Inquirer Dining Guide by buying them a gift card. Restaurants on the list range from Italian eateries to places specializing in Israeli flavors. You can purchase a gift card with just one click below.

2. Buy top-notch pantry items from a Philly restaurant

Selected by: The Inquirer food team

Our food team chose their favorite pantry items from Philly restaurants and chefs, ranging from hot sauces to spice blends. Get one of these items for the home cook in your life who’s looking to add some more flavor to their dishes:

  1. Poi Dog hot sauces, $8.50-$15, 🎁 Buy it

  2. La Boîte spice packs from Zahav and Abe Fisher, $18-$25, 🎁 Buy it

  3. Revolution Taco hot sauces, $7.99-$9.99, 🎁 Buy it

  4. Franklin Fountain’s ice cream toppings, $3-$9, 🎁 Buy it

  5. Kalaya spice blends and curry sauces, $15, 🎁 Buy it

» READ MORE: The 10 best Philly-area hot sauces, if you can handle them

3. Get some warm clothes from a Philly boutique

Selected by: Style columnist Elizabeth Wellington

Everyone wants new cozy clothes as we head into winter. It’s the best time to wrap ourselves in the softest, coziest sweaters, sweats, and knits. Fashion and beauty writer Elizabeth Wellington has found the best local spots to buy for comfort. Plus, you’re supporting local businesses, which should also make you feel warm inside. Here are Elizabeth’s picks:

» READ MORE: The 9 best places in Philly to buy cozy (and stylish) sweaters, sweats, joggers and more.

4. Send Philly specialties across the country

If you want to send a taste of Philly across the country, you can. Yes, even cheesesteaks. We found the Philly-est food gifts, from Lore’s chocolates to La Colombe to some DiBruno classics, that ship across the United States.

  1. Philly cheesesteaks. 🎁 Buy it: Pat’s, Jim’s, Donkey’s Place, Campo’s, John’s Roast Pork, Joe’s Steaks, Questlove’s Cheesesteak, all via Goldbelly ($79-$109 for a four-pack)

  2. Philly chocolates and confections. 🎁 Buy it: Aurora Grace, Lore’s Chocolate, Mueller Chocolate Co., Shane Confectionery, Fiore Fine Foods

  3. Baked goods. 🎁 Buy it: Jezabel’s Alfajores Gift Boxes ($25), Metropolitan Bakery Gift Boxes ($30-$83), Essen’s Jewish Bakery Bundles ($49-$89),

  4. Cheeses and meats. 🎁 Buy it: DiBruno Bros. gift baskets (price varies), Fox & Son Gluten-Free Corn Dog Kits ($29.99)

  5. Philly coffee. 🎁 Buy it: Ultimo, Reanimator, Rival Bros., Greenstreet, La Colombe, Ox, Càphê Roasters, Nilaa

» READ MORE: The best coffee shops in Philly

5. Get a good book from a local bookstore

Browse the selection at one of the area’s great independent bookshops during your holiday shopping. A bonus: many locally owned bookstore staffers will help you find the best title for your loved one. If not, Inquirer contributor Patrick Rapa shared his picks for the best books coming out this month.

In the city:

  1. A Novel Idea. 726 E. Passyunk Ave., 🎁 Shop now

  2. Amalgam Comics & Coffeehouse, 2578 Frankford Ave., 🎁 Shop now

  3. Brickbat Books, 709 S. Fourth St., 🎁 Shop now

  4. Big Blue Marble Bookstore, 551 Carpenter St., 🎁 Shop now

  5. Hakim’s Bookstore, 210 S. 52nd St., 🎁 Shop in person

  6. Harriett’s Bookshop, 258 E. Girard Ave., 🎁 Shop now

  7. The Head and the Hand, 2644 Coral St., 🎁 Shop now

  8. Head House Books, 619 S. Second St., 🎁 Shop now

  9. Joseph Fox Bookshop, 1724 Sansom St., 🎁 Shop now

  10. Uncle Bobbie’s Coffee & Books, 5445 Germantown Ave., 🎁 Shop now

In the suburbs / New Jersey

  1. Narberth Bookshop, 221 Haverford Ave., Narberth, 🎁 Shop in person or by email

  2. Reads & Company, 234 Bridge St., Phoenixville, 🎁 Shop now

  3. The Doylestown Bookshop, 16 S. Main St., Doylestown, 🎁 Shop now

  4. Main Point Books, 116 N. Wayne Ave., Wayne, 🎁 Shop now

  5. Inkwood Books, 106 Kings Highway East, Haddonfield, 🎁 Shop now

  6. Labyrinth Books, 122 Nassau St., Princeton, 🎁 Shop now

  7. Second Time Books, 114 Creek Rd., Mount Laurel, 🎁 Shop now

» READ MORE: The best indie bookstores in Philly

6. Support a Black-owned business

Support Philadelphia’s Black-owned businesses this holiday season. The city’s variety of Black-owned shops sell everything from soaps and body oils to books and tea. We have a guide to Black-owned shops where you can do your holiday shopping this winter, here are a few to check out for your holiday shopping.

  1. Freedom Apothecary. The sleek space that makes up this Northern Liberties shop is made up of giftable items for the skin care fan on your shopping list. Browse toxin-free cleansers, serums, makeup, moisturizing lotions, and even some candles and other home items. 736 N. Second St. 🎁 Shop now

  2. Gold + Water. In March 2019, Chartel Findlater launched Gold + Water Co., a line of handmade body products that includes body butter, beard balm, and soaps that resemble small slabs of Italian marble with accents of gold mica — a natural shimmering pigment. 🎁 Shop now

  3. Mount Airy Candle Co. What started out as Marques Davis’ small, made-to-order Etsy shop now produces hundreds of candles a month in scents like white tea & ginger, grapefruit mimosa, golden teakwood, and tobacco noire, spice poached pear, and black pepper & cardamom. 🎁 Shop now

  4. Harriett’s Bookshop. On Girard Avenue, shop best-selling books, classic novels, kid’s books, and more at Harriett’s Bookshop. There’s even a selection of fun shirts and sweatshirts for the reader in your life. 258 E. Girard Ave. 🎁 Shop now

  5. Mitchell & Mitchell Wines. One of Philly’s only Black-owned wine shops, Mitchell & Mitchell wines sells more than a dozen kinds of red and white wine. 🎁 Shop now

  6. Jeantrix. Deric “Nyce” Crawley and Muhammad “Homm” Abdul-Basit officially launched their luxury streetwear brand, Jeantrix, in 2006. The brand’s signature look is graffiti-styled artwork and calligraphy applied to mostly denim and leather fabrics. 🎁 Shop now

  7. Viva Tea Leaf Co. “Drinking a cup of tea is a form of introspection,” says Viva Tea Leaf Co. owner Christa Barfield. “When I’m doing my meditations and praying, … drinking tea allows me to sit in the moment and be present.” 6730 Germantown Ave., 🎁 Shop now

  8. Grant Blvd. Kimberly McGlonn’s one-of-a-kind, upcycled, sustainably made garments are both sustainable and chic. 3605 Lancaster Ave., 🎁 Shop now

  9. Cultured Couture. Erik Honesty relishes the art of menswear — the blazers, topcoats, cufflinks, ties, bow ties, pocket squares, tie clips, and capes — “the whole gauntlet of getting dressed up.” 2639 Girard Ave., 🎁 Shop now

  10. Trunc. At Trunc, a Northern Liberties artisan boutique, there are requirements for artists who aspire to sell their work there: All items have to be handmade and their art has to tell a story. 929 N. Second St., 🎁 Shop now

» READ MORE: 14 Philly Black-owned businesses to support right now

7. Support an AAPI-owned business

There are many Asian American and Pacific Islander makers and business owners in the Philly region who have one-of-a-kind items available for your holiday shopping needs. Check out our guide to AAPI-owned businesses in Philly for places to find cool sneakers and boots, glassware by modern Japanese designers and artisans, Korean-inspired beauty and skin-care products, and more. Here are a few selections from our guide.

  1. Rikumo. The all-online shop is owned by a husband and wife team who opened Rikumo to connect locals with Japanese artists and makers. Browse writing and paper goods, cups, plates, its line of binchotan charcoal products, and more. 🎁 Shop now

  2. Inked Vintage. Inked Vintage is an online shop of bold, unisex ‘80s and ‘90s streetwear and goods curated by Laura Kao. 🎁 Shop now

  3. Sabbatical Beauty. Adeline Koh’s small-batch, handcrafted, Korean-inspired beauty and skin-care products have amassed a deeply loyal following. 1901 S. Ninth St #308, 🎁 Shop now

  4. Japanese pottery by Shinobu Habauchi. Tokyo-born potter Shinobu Habauchi makes each piece by hand using traditional methods and local resources, sourcing wild clay from Maryland, and makes glazes with ash from wood, rice straw, and rice husks. 🎁 Shop now

  5. P’s and Q’s. Styles that reflect skateboard culture and the look of local designers are available at this shop, which sells a range of sneakers, backpacks, boots, and grooming products. 820 South St.. 🎁 Shop now

  6. Kayuh Bicycles & Cafe. Henry Sam started fixing and thrifting bikes when he was 14 because “as a first-generation immigrant living in poverty, I didn’t have money to spend at the bike shop to get my bike repaired.” At 17, he got started in the bike industry at Kayuh in Francisville, quickly rising to head mechanic, and then taking over the reins in 2019 when the owner moved back to Malaysia. 1900 W. Girard Ave., 🎁 Shop now

  7. Vault+Vine. Shop a wide selection of local plants and flowers, in addition to items made by local makers at this East Falls hybrid shop-cafe. 3507 Midvale Ave. 🎁 Shop now

» READ MORE: AAPI-owned businesses in Philly to support all year round

8. Get a ticket for one of these hand-picked Flyers or Sixers games

What sports fan doesn’t like rooting for their favorite Philly team in person? Get the sports fan in your life tickets to see one of 2022′s anticipated games. Here are the staff picks for the most anticipated games coming up.


Selected by: 76ers senior editor DeAntae Prince

  1. vs. Clippers, Jan. 21. Tobias Harris plays against his former team, a roster with Paul George and Kawhi Leonard in the fold. 🎁 Shop now

  2. vs. Lakers, Jan. 24. LeBron and his star-laden roster arrive for a showdown with Joel Embiid. 🎁 Shop now

  3. vs. Celtics, Feb. 15. The Celtics bring a young, talented team to town in Jayson Tatum and Jaylen Brown right before the All-Star break. 🎁 Shop now

  4. vs. Nets, March 10. The Sixers face another Eastern power — equipped with Kevin Durant and James Harden on the roster — in a late-season game with potential playoff implications. 🎁 Shop now

  5. vs. Bucks, March 29. The Sixers get a late barometer game against a Milwaukee team ramping up for a title defense. 🎁 Shop now


Selected by: Flyers and soccer editor Gustav Elvin

  1. vs. Pittsburgh, Jan. 6. It is no secret that the Flyers and Penguins don’t like one another — even if this game falls just after the holidays. Expect some fireworks and a whole lot of physicality between the Metro rivals. 🎁 Shop now

  2. vs. Washington, Feb. 26. A Saturday matinee against Alexander Ovechkin and the Capitals. Need I say more? 🎁 Shop now

  3. vs. Edmonton, March 1. Connor McDavid, the most electrifying hockey player on the planet, only comes to Philadelphia once a year. Don’t miss your chance to see him in person against the Flyers. 🎁 Shop now

  4. vs. Nashville, March 17. St. Patrick’s Day with the Flyers? Sounds like a no-brainer. 🎁 Shop now

9. Buy a ticket for one of 2022′s best Philly concerts

Selected by: Music critic Dan DeLuca

DeLuca shared 15 of the best concerts coming to Philly in 2022 — all of which still have tickets available from the venue or artist, not from expensive ticket resellers, so you can get the music fan on your shopping list tickets to an anticipated concert next year.

  1. Kacey Musgraves at the Wells Fargo Center. Jan. 26, $35.50-$125.50 🎟️ Buy tickets

  2. The War on Drugs at the Met Philadelphia. Jan. 27-28, $30-$100, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  3. The Weather Station at World Cafe Live. Jan. 29, $20-$30, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  4. Courtney Barnett at the Met Philadelphia. Feb. 4, $35-$65, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  5. Boyz II Men at the Met Philadelphia. Feb. 12, $39 and up, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  6. Yola at Brooklyn Bowl Philadelphia. Feb. 15, $30, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  7. Dua Lipa at the Wells Fargo Center. Feb. 19, $94.50-$144.50, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  8. Tyler, the Creator at the Wells Fargo Center. March 6, $55.50-$65.50, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  9. Bad Bunny at the Wells Fargo Center. March 16, $51-$191, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  10. Mitski at Franklin Music Hall. March 25, $30, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  11. Snail Mail at Union Transfer. April 5-6, $25, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  12. Coldplay at Lincoln Financial Field. June 8, $59-$179, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  13. Bikini Kill at Franklin Music Hall. July 13, $39.50, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  14. Elton John at Citizens Bank Park. July 15, $249.50, 🎟️ Buy tickets

  15. Rammstein at Lincoln Financial Field. Aug. 31, $54-$144, 🎟️ Buy tickets

» READ MORE: The 15 best concerts coming to Philly in 2022

10. Shop for a good dog (or cat) at one of these local boutiques

Between treats, toys, and even clothing, there are plenty of items you can purchase for your pet this holiday season. We have a guide to all of the best pet shops in the Philadelphia region.

  1. Amelie’s Bark Shop. Shop here for “puptarts” and custom-made pet-friendly cakes and cookies, along with a selection of toys. 1544 E. Passyunk Ave. 🎁 Shop now

  2. Doggie Style Pets. If you live in the city, you probably already know Doggie Style, which has 10 locations in the area (with two more coming to New Jersey). 861 N. Third St. 🎁 Shop now

  3. Baltimore Pet Shoppe. Baltimore Pet Shop has been a staple for Cedar Park-area pets and their people for years. The small shop has an extensive, curated range of food, toys, and supplies for your cat or dog, and it also partners with local shelters and rescue groups for adoptions. 4532 Baltimore Ave., 🎁 Shop in person

  4. West Pets. This small, indie pet store in West Philly has only been around since 2017, but it’s quickly become a neighborhood favorite. 4015 Lancaster Ave., 🎁 Shop in person

  5. Sewell’s Hot Diggity Dog. This South Jersey shop is the place to go for all-natural pet food and supplies. 425 Salina Rd., Sewell, N.J. 🎁 Shop now

  6. BONeJOUR Pet Supply. BONeJOUR has long been the spot for Old City dogs and cats, thanks to its focus on all-natural pet food and treats, as well as its wide range of toys, accessories, and other supplies. 53 N. Third St., 🎁 Shop now

  7. Rittenhouse Pet Supply. With about two decades under its belt, this Center City shop is one of the longest running on the list. Here, the stock is handpicked to focus on natural products, including pet food and treats from brands such as Fromm, Royal Canin, and Halo, plus all the toys, medication, and accessories you could need. 135 S. 20th St., 🎁 Shop now

  8. The Bone Appetite. As its tagline goes, this Chestnut Hill shop is “the store for the serious pet owner” — particularly if you’re the pet parent to a cat or dog. 8517 Germantown Ave., 🎁 Shop now

  9. Pet Friendly Dog Bakery. Manayunk pups with a sweet tooth are in luck at this Main Street shop, where locally baked, hand-decorated treats run the gamut from doggie-safe “brownies” and cookies to carrot and grain-free peanut butter cakes. 4324 Main St., 🎁 Shop in person

  10. Braxton’s Animal Works. Running strong through 75 years and three generations, this Wayne pet shop is here for your dog, cat, other small animal, or even if you have some wild birds to feed. 620 W. Lancaster Ave., Wayne, 🎁 Shop in person

  11. Pabby’s Pet Pantry. If you’re a dog owner with a mind toward eco-friendly and uber-healthy options for your pet, Pabby’s is the place. 319 W. County Line Rd., Hatboro, 🎁 Shop in person

  12. Perk Valley Pet Eatery. Founded in 2003 as Trappe Feed & Pet Supply, this store converted from a full pet store (that once offered live tropical fish) to a pet food and supply shop in 2009. 130 W. Main St. #102-104, Trappe, 🎁 Shop now

  13. K-9 Kakes. Jersey dogs looking to celebrate a birthday — or just have a little well-earned dessert — are the target for this Sicklerville pet bakery. 649 Cross Keys Rd. Ste. 14, Sicklerville, N.J., 🎁 Shop in person

  14. The Principled Pet. It’s all about quality at this small Collingswood shop, which bills itself as the go-to place for “proper provisions for particular pets and their people.” 2 Powell Ln., Collingswood, N.J., 🎁 Shop now

  15. Hot Diggity Dog. Tucked in behind Zimmerman’s Country Market, Hot Diggity Dog is a hidden gem for pet owners in Sewell. 425 Salina Rd., Sewell, N.J., 🎁 Shop in person

» READ MORE: The best pet shops in Philly

11. Shop at one of Philly’s best gift stores

Ah, so it’s Dec. 23 and you’re reading this list? We’ve got you. Here are our favorite stores for giftable goods. These spots always have items that are perfect for last-minute gifting, and many even offer in-store wrapping. So, it’s really all that with a bow on top.

  1. Occasionette. Shop here for candles, cards, cookbooks, holiday decor items, cute bar cart items, decorative trays and plates, funny knick-knacks, toys for kids, and more. 1825 E. Passyunk Ave. and 724 Haddon Ave., Collingswood 🎁 Shop now

  2. Ritual Shoppe. Go to this perfect-pink shop for handmade jewelry, astrology-themed items, crystals and gemstones, incense, face oils, cool art prints, and more. 2003 Walnut St. 🎁 Shop now

  3. Philadelphia Independents. At this Old City boutique, browse handmade items by Philadelphia makers. Items range from Eagles necklaces and Gritty t-shirts to wood cutting boards and cozy pillows. 35 N. Third St. 🎁 Shop now

  4. Open House. Dainty jewelry, Philly-themed coasters and prints, candles, fun drinkware, totes, and more are all available at 13th St. shop Open House. 107 S. 13th St. 🎁 Shop now

  5. South Fellini. Here, find t-shirts, hats, tank tops and more apparel and accessories that scream Philly thanks to design centered around the word jawn and the Wawa logo, nods to moments in Philadelphia history, local sayings, and more. 1507 E. Passyunk Ave.🎁 Shop now

  6. Mitchell & Ness. Head to this sports apparel company to shop retro jerseys, new release jerseys, fitted hats, hoodies, t-shirts, and more. You can browse their huge selection, which draws shoppers from around the world, and get a gift for anyone on your list, whether they are a Philly sports fan or not. 1306 Walnut St. 🎁 Shop now

  7. Duross & Langel. Handmade soaps (including holiday-themed options) are the main attraction at this Midtown Village store. Stop by to pick out some delicious-smelling soaps, shampoos, and bath bombs. 117 S. 13th St. 🎁 Shop now