You want local for your hostess gift. Very local.
It's lucky that you live in land rich with regional food purveyors. A favorite of ours -- scratch that -- a favorite of everyone's around these parts is E. Waldo Ward.
Please please say you've been to that quaint, clapboard-y farm in Sierra Madre for the full-on tour. Because if you haven't seen how jam is made you must at once.
Jam. Being made. Oozing, strawberrily, merrily, into little glass jars. Magic? Yes.
E. Waldo Ward purveys in all sorts of jams and jellies and things in jars that have local flair. We could rave just about marmalades alone, but today we'll highlight the Sierra Madre's Own box. It's got a selection of fruit spreads, including olallieberry, and it just wafts Southern California to us.
Have you ever eaten an olallieberry? Nope. We haven't either. Must change that. Asap.