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Gift to bring a German hostess?

Littleton, Colorado
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1,554 posts
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Gift to bring a German hostess?

We will be on a river cruise next November that makes a stop near Heidelberg and we have a home visit-a kaffeeklatsch! What small gift from the U.S. might our hostess appreciate?

Munich, Germany
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1. Re: Gift to bring a German hostess?

I'd bring her some food that is typical for your region and not sold internationally. These large American cookies with chocolate chunks are quite good. They can be bought in Germany, but not everywhere, and they are quite expensive. So this would be one example.

Littleton, Colorado
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2. Re: Gift to bring a German hostess?

You mean chocolate chip cookies?! Really? They are so ...ubiquitous here! I'd make some if they'd stay fresh.

That reminds me-we had a Brazilian exchange student years ago who loved them and I wrote out the recipe for her. She said she couldn't even buy chocolate chips (Nestle-in a 12 oz bag) in Brazil! I was shocked. I told her she'd have to find milk chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate and try to chop it up.

Pittsburgh...
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3. Re: Gift to bring a German hostess?

Good question and not easy. I have visited the US booth at Christmas Markets in Germany and been embarrassed by what they sell. I have given maple syrup to friends, but then found it unopened years later. Some older Germans think of the terrible post WWII years when they are presented some things. Sometimes that is good and sometimes not. I often bring frozen, thick steaks to Germany - possibly illegal. But they are not appropriate for the setting you describe. I generally spend 23-40 Euros on flowers. German flower shops are soooo much better than ours and flowers are always appreciated. I also bring good bourbon, but again, not appropriate for a ladies' group. There have been so many US troops in Heidelberg for so long that most Germans there have been exposed to most US products. I look forward to reading other suggestions. Germans use reusable shopping bags. Possibly you find a nice one with a logo from your area. Light and easy to pack. Or an apron from your local botanical garden.

Frankfurt, Germany
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4. Re: Gift to bring a German hostess?

A cookery book with typical American receipes maybe?

New York City, New...
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5. Re: Gift to bring a German hostess?

It is especially polite to bring flowers to the hostess in Germany. Maybe you can bring along a vase from USA or a small packet of seeds from US flowers (columbine?). Of course you would get the flowers in Germany, but something to go with them is nice. Or bring a small bouquet anyway, and a US gift. My German friends enjoy when I bring mugs or cups from famous places in US, and also, they enjoy USA spices. Perhaps a small assortment of spices and other foods from Colorado:

madeincolorado.com/Foods-from-Colorado_c_90.…

Frankfurt
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6. Re: Gift to bring a German hostess?

You can't go wrong with flowers.

Some other ideas:

- something from one of the previous stops on your cruise (wine, chocolates)

- local food is always good (nuts, fried fruit, seasoning salts,)

- Germans have great beer but so does Colorado ;-)

Las Vegas, Nevada
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for Stuttgart, Baden-Wurttemberg
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7. Re: Gift to bring a German hostess?

Something that might really be appreciated is a magnifying lens that suspends from your neck and chest and allows free use of your hands, and some even have built in lights. These are available from Michael's, and I've probably taken over a dozen of them over the years to Germany for gifts for friends which are extremely appreciated as you can't buy them there. Also, refrigerator magnet potato chip bag clips are unknown and useful even if you don't eat potato chips, and you can get ones with some type of logo from where you're from although a not very appropriate gift. But flowers in Germany are inexpensive and always make a nice gift. Oh, as to cookbooks I would forget it. Even though my German wife is fluent in English, she always bombards me with questions, and I don't really understand why she can't easily convert between centigrade and fahrenheit. Also, obtaining correct recipe items may be difficult or impossible.

Frankfurt, Germany
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8. Re: Gift to bring a German hostess?

I would wonder what I am supposed to do with a magnifying glass, that's considered to be for very old people with really bad eyes over here.

Fridges most of the time have front covers so that they blend in with the kitchen cupboards. Magnets won't stick

Las Vegas, Nevada
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for Stuttgart, Baden-Wurttemberg
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9. Re: Gift to bring a German hostess?

#8 This magnifying glass is excellent for doing such things as sewing, embroidery and small calligraphy, anything where you need a close-up magnified view and want your hands free. I'm sure that if the recipient doesn't need it, it would be appreciated by one of her friends or relatives.

I realize that many refrigerators have a nonmagnetic covering in front of them, ours had a wood one, and therefore didn't suggest refrigerator magnets in general, but the ones that also serve as potato chip clips which you obviously don't suspend the bag from the refrigerator. But the magnet can perhaps serve as an easy storage feature elsewhere, such as a portion of the side of our refrigerator was exposed metal.

Littleton, Colorado
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10. Re: Gift to bring a German hostess?

So many good suggestions! Thanks!

Is it true you can't get salt water taffy in Europe?

I don't know if there are any uniquely American/Colorado spices.