My favorites this year span the range from music to salumi, all products I've tried and loved or distributors and producers I know personally that do great work:
1. Cured Meats Convert: Know a diehard salami fan? There's no better place to turn than Boccalone, purveyors of "tasty salted pig parts." Choose from a 3-month, 6-month or 12-month membership to the "Salumi Society", which includes an assortment of fresh sausage and salumi selected from among more than 20 varieties of artisan meats.
2. The Coffee Lover: Sightglass Coffee, the much-loved San Francisco brewer, is now offering a coffee subscription service. You can choose to have coffee delivered to your door weekly, bi-weekly or once a month, opting for an espresso blend or a seasonal selection of their choosing.
3. Music & Food Afficionado: Turntable Kitchen's Pairings Box, a project by Kasey Fleisher Hickey and Mathew Hickey, is sent to your door each month for a mere $25 and includes a custom 7-inch vinyl single, three original seasonal recipes, 1 or 2 premium dried ingredients and occasional treats and accompanying notes. It's a great deal for your resident music lover, and a truly unique box for the hard-to-shop-for baker or cook in your life.
4. Cheese for Life! New-York based Murray's Cheeses are known for outstanding quality cave-aged and artisan cheeses. Now they have a great Cheese of the Month Club. While a bit of a splurge, their 4-month, 6-month or 12-month options include 3 limited production cheeses (totaling 1.5 pounds!)
5. Chocolate Connoisseur: To receive decadent artisan chocolate at your doorstep each month, Chicago-based Vosges chocolate has you covered. Their Haut Chocolate Lunar Club is structured around the full moon each month (it signals the time to expect new chocolate treats). Choose from a 3-month, 6-month, and 13-month option.