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The Fifth Taste

December 15, 2015 By Diana

It’s always around this time in December when there is at least one tab open on our web browser dedicated to finding the perfect gifts for the last few people on our list. Although, I am a little relieved I crossed majority of the names off my list earlier than usual, I still have at least four names staring back at me. I asked a few people in our office what is the one item in their kitchen they cannot live without. The responses have been so helpful (links included) I have to share them with you!

Shun Stone, Chef at The Grove.
Favorite item: Waring Electric Wine Opener
“Wine is one the best parts of the meal for me, cooking with it and enjoying it during a meal. You can easily turn a wonderful dish into a unpleasant one when you find out you just broke the cork off into one of your favorite bottles of wine… and you knew you were looking forward to drinking it.  I decided to buy an electric wine opener to eliminate the problems that could occur and increased the enjoyment of a meal that I should be having with family and friends.”

Krit Maroj, Designer/Website Updater Guy at Home Office.
“An item I can’t live without in my kitchen is a cast iron pan. I simply can’t live without it. You can use it anywhere from the stove top, to the grill, to the oven. If you take care of it, it will last you years. I’ve had the same one for 6 years already and I use it at least a couple times a week. I even take it camping with me! It’s the most versatile pan I think and creates a great sear on meats…which I eat a lot of. Plus, you can always bake a delicious cobbler in it as well.”Gift-Card-Blog-3

Gavin Bates, Assistant Controller at Home Office.
“I can’t live without my crock pot. It’s really easy to prepare a meal in the morning or night and have it ready when you need it. For the most part, you don’t have to worry about timing or using a lot of pots and pans. For someone with a time crunch, you set it and forget it. Plus there are a ton of recipes to use for every kind of diet.”

Sean Salvador, Events Manger at Home Office.
“I can’t live without my French Press. It serves all my caffeine needs. I can make a quick hot cup within a few minutes and in the summer I use it for cold brewed iced coffee.” You can find it at Crate and Barrel at The Grove.


Nicole Merizalde,  Purchasing Manager at Home Office.
“It’s all about the little things for me. I love small kitchen gadgets designed to make cooking a bit more convenient and fun! A Garlic Peeler,  place garlic cloves inside, roll and they come out peeled. Being part Italian I need to get creative about how eat “pasta” while not eating “pasta” so I spiralize zucchini instead.

Meghan Dwyer, Brand Manager at Home Office.
My ‘Ninja’ – I use it almost every day! I love using it to make my morning smoothies, and it’s also great for chopping vegetables (I HATE chopping onions). AND Williams-Sonoma Spiced Chestnut Hand Soap & Lotion Set.  This time of the year, I always find myself washing my hands more often to ward off any Holiday cold! I love the seasonal scent of this soap, and the lotion is fantastic!


Sheera Goren,  Manager, Business and Legal Affairs at Home Office.
An immersion blender.  Soups, smoothies, froyo concoctions, sauces all with one tool! How fun! It’s so easy to use and clean and I really just couldn’t live without one.  Why?  Because one time I was trying to make a soup puree (yes a la baby food which I love the consistency of. Oh, TMI?), and I burned myself transferring the hot veggies into the blender to blend it into a soup.  I thought NO MORE! My hands are my moneymakers (I mean I use them to type and redline all the documents like a real legal loser) and so I couldn’t risk any more burns or, more importantly, wasted soup.  You’re welcome and enjoy.”

Of course, if none of this is up your alley, you can’t go wrong with an Umami Burger gift card! We hope this helped cross some names off your list. Follow us at @umamiburger