Food & Drink

The Best Cookbooks To Give Your Super Snooty Foodie Friend

These books are real beauties.
11/19/2014 07:57am ET | Updated November 19, 2014

We all have them. The hard-to-please family member or friend. We love them for their strong opinions, but come holiday time they are always the hardest ones to nail down gifts for.

The only thing worse than having someone so difficult in your life is when that person also happens to be food obsessed. Not only does eating out reach a whole new level of snobbery, but gift giving becomes downright impossible. You know they only want something food related, but what to buy that they won't scoff at?

We are here to help. We have just the gift for your super snooty foodie friend: cookbooks. And not just any cookbook -- you had better not give this loved one Ina Gartner's latest book -- but the fanciest, most innovative books of 2014. Bonus: most of them won't set you back more than 30 bucks. Happy holidays!

Heritage
Amazon
James Beard Award-winning chef Sean Brock has put together one of the most stunning cookbooks we've seen all year. Your food-loving friend will love it not only for Brock's tales of making sustainable food possible, but also for the thorough instructions on how to make grits. Available for $24 at Amazon.
Relæ: A Book of Ideas
Amazon
Nordic cuisine is at the top of the cooking world right now, and this cookbook demonstrates just how fancy it has gotten. There's a section in this book that's just about the textures of food. Available for $31.63 at Amazon.
Dominique Ansel: Secret Recipes From The World Famous New York Bakery
Amazon
This is Dominque Ansel's cookbook. The Cronut recipe is revealed in this book. Enough said. Available for $19.37 at Amazon.
Flour + Water
Amazon
This book is for your friend who has to eat everything from scratch, even their pasta. It's written by Thomas McNaughton, the chef of the SF Italian restaurant that goes by the same name. The restaurant is wildly popular for his fresh pasta, and this is his guide for the pasta maker novice.Available for $22.14 at Amazon.
A Boat, A Whale & A Walrus: Menus And Stories
Amazon
The glories of food from the Pacific Northwest are beautifully presented in this book from acclaimed chef Renee Erickson. Available for $25.30 from Amazon.
Liquid Intelligence: The Art And Science Of The Perfect Cocktail
Amazon
From the creative mind behind Momofuku's cocktail bar Booker & Dax, comes this guide on making the perfect cocktail. This book is for only the serious cocktail enthusiast -- one who is willing to pay attention to even the shape of ice. Available for $22.14 at Amazon.
René Redzepi: A Work in Progress
Amazon
Okay, this cookbook is from 2013, butjust barely. And, it's Rene Redzepi's -- one of the world's most influential chefs -- collection of recipes, personal journal and photo book. This collection of books will never be dated, and they will always be appreciated. Available for $36.90 from Amazon.
The Slanted Door
Amazon
Not only does this cookbook offer some of the most beloved dishes from the SF-based restaurant, but it also shares stories from the chef Charles Phan. Plus, it's Vietnamese food. This one is a winner.Available for $23.40 from Amazon.
Brooks Headley's Fancy Desserts: The Recipes of Del Posto’s James Beard Award–Winning Pastry Chef
Amazon
Here's the thing you need to know about this cookbook: it doesn't look like all those other fancy cookbooks. The aesthetic is different; there's less gloss and the photos are not so perfectly shot. BUT the recipes come from Del Posto's pastry chef, and that is enough reason to make this book a must in any cookbook collection.Available for $20.23 from Amazon.
Dabbous: The Cookbook
Amazon
Dabbous is one of London's hottest restaurants and its cookbook has been long awaited. It focuses on seasonal eating. We're talking SUPER seasonal. At Dabbous, you'll find dishes like "ripe tomato in its own juice" during the summer and "acorn purees" in the fall. Serious stuff. That's what you'll find in this book.Available for $51.87 from Amazon.
Massimo Bottura: Never Trust A Skinny Italian Chef
Amazon
Every lover of Italian food needs this book. Massimo Bottura has been called the "Jimi Hendrix" of Italian chefs. And this book is a tribute to his 25-year-long career.Available for $42.85 from Amazon.
A New Napa Cuisine
Amazon
In this cookbook chef Christopher Kostow touches on the influence that the Napa Valley region has had on the craft of cooking. This cookbook is a perfect introduction to Napa cuisine and also serves as a beautiful tribute for the long-time fan of the food from this region. Available for $31.63 from Amazon.
North: The New Nordic Cuisine of Iceland
Amazon
With cheap flights abound to Reykjavík, Iceland is trending. And naturally, so is its cuisine. This cookbook justifies why with its beautiful recipes and stunning images. Available for $25.30 from Amazon.

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