For the Warm Beverage Connoisseur
McNulty’s Tea & Coffee Co., Inc.
109 Christopher St. (betw. Bedford & Bleecker Sts.),
Since 1895, McNulty’s Tea & Coffee, Co. has been serving up choice blends and rare leaves to the good people of Greenwich Village (and beyond). The store has a Dickensian feel to it, and is a true blast from the past. Java per pound ranges from $10.40-$40, and the teas go from $14 to $100 per pound. A perfect place to buy a wild collection of tea and coffee at Victorian prices!
For the Apartment Therapist
250 Elizabeth St. (betw. Prince & E. Houston Sts.),
Haus Interior is a wonderful collection of unique and witty odds and ends. The Nolita gem sells everything from chalkboard napkin rings (to write the name of your guest) at $36.50 each to a canoe wire basket ($35) to add some industrial spunk and storage to any room. Particularly amusing is a line of humorous notecards ($6 each). Our favorite? “Dear Noah, We could have sworn you said the ark wasn’t leaving till five. Sincerely, The Unicorns.”
For the Analog Reader
McNally Jackson Books
52 Prince St. (betw. Lafayette & Mulberry Sts.), 212-274-1160, www.mcnallyjackson.com
For anyone in your life who refuses to use an e-reader, McNally Jackson Books offers up plenty of old-school tomes (plus the satisfaction of spending money in an independent bookstore, and not throwing your dollars at a chain or Amazon.com). Enjoy a coffee at the café while you wait—and maybe ogle one of the good-looking staff members, too.
For the Vinyl Fan
15 E. 4th St. (betw. Broadway & Lafayette St.), 212-477-8150
In addition to gently used LPs, you can find all the coolest, least-heard of bands you didn’t even know you wanted at this East Village store. A bonus is the aloof but helpful staff, who are willing to talk about music in a way even iPhone’s Siri isn’t capable of.
For Your Beer-Loving Brother
Whole Foods Market Bowery Beer Room
95 E. Houston St. (at Bowery), 212-420-1320
In olden times, men would take a growler with them to the local pub and fill it with delicious beer. Now, Whole Foods Market Bowery Beer Room offers the same service, with probably way better beers. Try Peak Organic Brewery’s New York series ($11.99 for a 64-oz. Growler, plus a small fee for the bottle) this year for your frat brother. The best part? He can refill it himself with whatever he wants.
For the Serious Film Lover
323 6th Ave. (at W. 3rd St.), 212-924-7771, www.ifccenter.com
IFC Center has been screening both the coolest new indie films and the craziest cult faves for the last six years. This year, instead of offering up a slew of pricey Criterion DVDs to that film snob in your life, give the gift of an IFC membership. The Cineaste membership ($75) gives the member $5 off tickets, free preview screenings of upcoming releases, four free small popcorns and 20-percent of theater merchandise. The next level, The Auteur ($175), comes with free admission to the Weekend Classics series plus four free guest passes. Either choice will probably earn you a free popcorn as a thank you.
FOR THE CHOCAHOLIC
Roasting Plant Coffee Company
81 Orchard St. (betw. Grand & Broome Sts.), 212-775-7755,
This downtown java institution has teamed up with local chocolatier Tumbador to produce a collection of in-store, handcrafted chocolates for their holiday gift boxes. The treats come in four distinct flavors: Praline Crunch Brasil, Fleur de Caramel, Purest Dark Chocolate and Ethiopian Berry Crush. Also, concocted onsite are caramelized honey and caramel bonbons. Gift boxes range from $20–$55 (plus shipping and handling).
For a Hippie Relative
Museum of Natural History gift shop
Central Park West at 79th Street, 800-671-7035, www.amnhshop.com
Here’s the place where fashion and design meet elegant science. The shop at the Museum of Natural History is replete with gifts inspired by their exhibits, so you can find a petrified wood cheese tray ($120) as well as a remote-controlled flying shark ($50). If nothing strikes your fancy at the shop, you can always give a gift membership to the museum ($95 individual, $125 family).
For the NYC History Buff
N-Y Historical Society Gift Shop
170 Central Park West (betw. 77th & 76th Sts.) 212-873-3400,
The newly re-opened Historical Society also boasts a brand new gift shop, where you can grab presents that speak to the serious appreciator of New York City lure and imagery, or anyone always referencing “the good old days.” Select a solid old-fashioned kids’ toy favorite like a bag of colorful marbles ($9) or cuff links made from ancient subway tokens ($80), not to mention the selections of history-rife books, appropriate both for heavy readers and coffee table adorners. Membership to the New-York Historical
Society costs $75.
For the Beauty Obsessed
Malin & Goetz Apothecary
455 Amsterdam Ave. (at W. 82nd St.) 212-799-1200,
Founders Matthew Malin and Andrew Goetz work with chemists to develop each new product and utilize local and sustainable ingredients for their beauty concoctions. They focus on simplicity and scientifically-based formulas to come up with products like the best-selling grapefruit face cleanser ($30), eucalyptus deodorant ($18) and cannabis candle ($52)—which is entirely legal, we promise.
For the Person Who Loves the Outdoors
But Hates Camping
1283 Madison Ave. (betw. E. 92nd & E. 91st Sts.) 212-369-2583,
Blue Tree arose from the proprietor’s desire to have a store stocked with the random things she adores, and that’s what you’ll find inside. While the shop specializes in women’s clothing and accessories (a beautiful purple silk Prova dress with beaded detail goes for $595), they also carry beauty products and items for the home sure to start conversations, like the pig-shaped butter dish ($140).
For Your Too-Cool, Town-Touring
The New York Shaving Company
202B Elizabeth St. (betw. Prince & Spring Sts.), 212-334-9495,
Named by GQ Italia as the “best shaving shop in the world,” The New York Shaving Company attracts men and man-lovers on the Upper East Side. And it’s packed with some of the sexiest, most aromatic hygiene-finds—Tonsorial After Shave Balm ($28) will leave your player-brother’s face hydrated and smelling of cocoa butter and tea tree oil. Or, for a more conventional holiday shave-gift, consider the Elizabeth Street Traditional Shave Kit ($70), which includes shaving cream, a silver-plated razor and a pure badger hair brush. Yes.
For Your Always-Cold Coworker
138 Wooster St. (betw. W. Houston & Prince Sts.),
At the girliest store downtown, you’ll find gorgeous gowns, shrugs, wraps, jackets, bracelets and bras; everything is pink and winter-white and gray. The Yodell Short Floral Cowboy Boots ($150) will keep the fashionable working girl’s feet cozy; for your edgier friend, Betsey Johnson’s Rose Petal Stud Earrings ($30) are sure to stun, but the tried and true cold weather accessory is the “Keep Me Cozy” thigh highs ($30).
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