New York's Finest (Gifts, That Is)

December 5, 2014 | Posted by Stephanie Banyas

There are gorgeous artisan and handmade products coming out of every city in the good ol' USA...but we decided to play favorites this year and feature gift picks from our home state, the one and only New York! There's something for everyone on our list below, which highlights beautiful, small-batch products from across the state. Happy gifting!

Sfoglini Pasta This Brooklyn-based company makes some of the best pasta we have ever tasted -- and how could it not be awesome when the owner, Steve Gonzalez, started his career working for pasta superstar (and super nice guy) Mark Vetri? We are obsessed with the odes to NYC, Rye Reginetti and Everything Bagel Fusilli.

Fruition Chocolates Bean-to-bar chocolate made in the Catskills? Yes please!

Chai Mookie Tea The B-Team and Bobby love tea. and we especially love chai. Chai Mookie tea, made in NYC, uses an exclusive mix of Fair Trade spices, and is packaged the day that it was blended.

Butternut Brooklyn We’re smitten with the classic, minimal design of these lovely cutting/serving boards, handcrafted in Gowanus, Brooklyn. We love using these as fruit and cheese boards for holiday entertaining (or stylish afternoon snacking).

Maya's Jams These lovely jams are made with fresh fruit, real fruit juice and non-GMO cane sugar by three generations of women in the Hudson Valley in New York. Most of the fruits come from their organic orchard or from nearby family farms. The B-Team is particularly fond of Concord Grape-Raspberry and Roasted Plum-Cinnamon. Bobby loves the Peach-Bourbon-Vanilla, of course!

Amagansett Sea Salt This finishing salt is crafted entirely by hand from seawater harvested from the Atlantic Ocean in Amagansett, New York (aka The Hamptons). We love sprinkling the pure sea salt on just about everything (buttered popcorn!) and we are completely obsessed with the Bridgehampton Blend (dill- and fennel-flavored) sprinkled on roasted vegetables and in a Bloody Mary. Try the Merlot blend sprinkled on grilled ribeye!


Brooklyn Slate We have been fans of Brooklyn Slate for years -- their slate cheeseboards are even used at Gato to serve all of the bar dishes! Owners Sean Tice and Kristy Hadeka make regular trips to a quarry in upstate NY, then cut and clean the stone in their studio in Red Hook, Brooklyn. Their stylish bottle openers and cheese knives make perfect stocking stuffers!

P&H Soda Co We love homemade syrups for soda (in fact, the B-Team even dabbles in soda making from time to time). P& H Soda Company makes their small-batch syrups in Brooklyn in a variety of really interesting flavors (hibiscus, lovage). If you love rootbeer (and who doesn’t?), you must try the Sarsaparilla Syrup for the best rootbeer float you ever did have!

Liddabit Sweets This small, Brooklyn-based candy company specializes in handmade candy bars, caramels and other yummy confections. Every item is made with by hand with lots of love -- and we love every item!

Z Crackers These handcut crackers made in NYC are all-natural, freshly baked to order, certified Kosher….what more could you want in a cracker? We love pairing them with cheese, dips and spreads and just eating them on their own. Of the seven flavors, we’re extra fond of the Kalamata Olive and Sea Salt and Olive Oil.

Bedell Cellars We love the light and fruity flavor of First Crush 2013 from this family owned vineyard on the Northfork of Long Island. The Merlot-Cab Franc blend is made with sustainably farmed young vine fruit and aged in stainless steel to preserve its easygoing character (and how about that rad label collage by New York artist Mickalene Thomas?).

Granola Lab Granola Alex Crosier, a librarian by trade, founded Granola Lab in Brooklyn in 2010 -- and we are glad that she did! Her Mediterranean Mix is a pantry staple, and Get Gingersnapping (flavored with molasses and ginger and chock full of pumpkin seeds, coconut and cashews) puts us in the holiday spirit all year round.

Freckles and Honey These amazing soaps and body scrubs for women and men are made in Brooklyn NY by Bobby’s make-up artist, Dahlia Warner. We are addicted to her food flavored scents, especially sweet fennel and orange with vanilla bean (Bobby loves the lime-cilantro scent, natch).

Winter Water Factory This Brooklyn-based design and manufacturing company makes organic kids’ clothing from some of the coolest, cutest screen printed textiles we’ve seen.

Hazel Village We love these sweet animals, made from soft organic cotton with hand-stitched features.

Maptote The fabric for this charming totes is cut, sewn and printed in Brooklyn, New York -- and The B-Team is partial to the Manhattan tote, of course!