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Food Gift for French Colleagues - ???

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So I am moving to Marseille, France (!!!) to start a new job. I work internationally a lot, but usually in Africa or the Caribbean. I usually bring some kind of food giftie to share for the local employees who I will supervise - frankly, I usually bring candy from the drugstore. It's always appreciated, and it always gets things off on the right foot. But I just don't think drugstore candy is gonna cut it in France, and chocolate from a fancy chocolatier seems a little silly. They HAVE it already. Along with everything else that is delicious and awesome.

I am at home in SF preparing to leave, and wracking my brain for something shareable for about 14 people in my office. I need it to be packable in a suitcase. My mother suggested that I bring sourdough starter and then bake bread for them. Not gonna happen - too busy. So, what? Any ideas?

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  1. dried fruit and nuts .... including dates, pistachios, almonds ....?

    1 Reply
    1. re: gordon wing

      plentiful and cheap (and really, really good) in France, especially in Marseille -- the places that grow those things are just a short hop across the Med.

    2. As a French person I think it's sweet you want to do this but not necessary. Best instead to pay for the drinks when you go to the cafe post work.

        1. Pepperoni from Molinari or Columbus. That's an American invention that's unknown in France.

          1. What's wrong with candy? maybe you could get some fun stuff from a sweet shop rather than basic drug store candy; maybe mix in some asian sweets/rice candy.

            Bring a bottle of a locally-made spirit, like a nice gin, and share it at the end of the day.

            Better yet, bottles of California wine. That would go down well.