Can you give me some NYC-centric gift ideas?
December 20, 2010 8:08 PM   Subscribe

Another gift thread: I'm looking for NYC-centric gift ideas for Christmas. Anything from a bag of pistachios from Zabar's to...who knows! You name it. I am trying to stay under $50.
posted by helios410 to Shopping (17 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
More details would definitely help, but for fifty bucks, you could put together one heck of a Canal Street grab bag. It would all be junk of course, but within budget and totally NYC.
posted by blaneyphoto at 8:13 PM on December 20, 2010

A Crack Pie from Milk Bar.
posted by Threeway Handshake at 8:33 PM on December 20, 2010

MUJI has some NYC map playing cards, neat paper cut-out skyline cards, and little wooden "city" sets. They all seemed too...useless for my target audience, but they were nice.
posted by dreamyshade at 8:33 PM on December 20, 2010

This is an object and not a service, right? No gift certificate to Peter Luger or tickets to something at Joe's Pub?

Is this something that needs to travel a long way or be shipped? If it can be perishable, I vote some kind of H&H Bagel, Russ & Daughters, Barney Greengrass basket of awesomeness and lox.

If it really does have to be a Thing which cannot be perishable food (all of these ideas skew towards someone who does not live in New York):

A tote bag from the Strand or the Metropolitan Museum full of misc. local swag. A t-shirt from the Chinatown Ice Cream Factory. A copy of the New Yorker, or maybe the Voice if you're cutting it close pricewise. A black & white cookie. A Yankees cap. A subway map. An I <3 NY coffee mug, or better yet if they have spent time here, a mug from Grumpy's, Gorilla Coffee, 9th Street Espresso, Gimme Coffee, or the like. Brooklyn Bridge stationery. On and on and on until your tote is full of cheap/free local trinkets.
posted by Sara C. at 8:35 PM on December 20, 2010 [1 favorite]

I have had great success giving out-of-towners stuff from the NYC Transit Museum store. They have some very cool shirts. And hey! Xmas tree ornaments! I'm so getting those next year!
posted by CunningLinguist at 8:37 PM on December 20, 2010

A box of biscotti from Bis.Co.Latte.
posted by yellowcandy at 8:39 PM on December 20, 2010

Oodles of stuff available at NC CityStore - from Grade A aprons to NYC Manhole cufflinks to ceramic subway tiles to individual letter subway line magnets (great if the recipient's initials match up with subway lines), they've got you covered. Many of these items are available at the NYC Transit Museum store in Grand Central.
posted by Frank Grimes at 8:51 PM on December 20, 2010

There's a booth in the Columbus Circle Holiday market run by Scott Jordan of New York Artifact Art. Among his stuff, he's got a great collection of pendants made from antique glass and pottery excavated from underneath the city.
posted by mrsshotglass at 9:09 PM on December 20, 2010 [1 favorite]

Fishs Eddy has some fantastic dishes, glasses, housewares, umbrellas, etc that feature NYC motifs. Some are pretty accessible, like designs based on the NYT crossword or the Brooklyn skyline. Others are more insidery, like jokes for the "Bridge and Tunnel" crowd. I've bought many gifts there over the years, including a few things for myself, and they've always gone over well and held up to daily use.
posted by Narrative Priorities at 11:17 PM on December 20, 2010 [1 favorite]

An I [heart] NY coffee mug

No, a Greek Diner coffee mug.
posted by Jon_Evil at 12:13 AM on December 21, 2010 [1 favorite]

I second the Greek Diner coffee mug. That is about as NYC as you can get.

And if you are going to be transporting food, maybe a Papaya King hot dog? (or a shirt from there)
posted by darkgroove at 6:40 AM on December 21, 2010

Response by poster: I should be more specific: I am looking for food oriented items. As I mentioned, something in the vain of a bag of pistachios from Zabars, or donuts for Donut Plant, etc.

posted by helios410 at 7:51 AM on December 21, 2010

I have successfully sent a salami from Katz's. There's a big markup, but for someone who hasn't been in NYC in a while, it is completely worth it.
posted by soy_renfield at 10:28 AM on December 21, 2010

Then I'm going to second my suggestion for some kind of bagels/lox/fixins setup. (Yes, I know a million Yiddish speakers are rolling over in their graves because I referred to all the various and sundry things people eat with bagels "fixins")
posted by Sara C. at 10:32 AM on December 21, 2010

I brought people back reusable shopping bags from Trader Joe's. They have some NYC-themed bags. A buck each and actually useful!
posted by pyjammy at 11:36 AM on December 21, 2010

Smoked salmon from a place like Russ & Daughters with bagels and cream cheese is a great gift but an actual R&D gift basket is over your budget. And logistically more difficult.

Some more ideas, less perishable:
- A jar of pickles from Brooklyn Brine Co., Rick's Picks, or McClure's Pickles - all available at Murray's Cheeses and other stores around town
- A small box of filled chocolates from Kee's or Bespoke Chocolates - call for availability, they're swamped right now
- Salsa from the Brooklyn Salsa Company - available at the Brooklyn Flea's Gifted market
- A bar or two of chocolates from Mast Brothers - they have a shop in Williamsburg, Brooklyn and are sold at Whole Foods as well as Murray's, I like the olive oil/sea salt ones
- Handmade candy bars from Liddabit - available at the Brooklyn Flea's Gifted market
- NYC honey from Andrew's Local Honey, which is grown on various rooftop hives throughout the city - available at various Greenmarkets
- Also at the Greenmarket: Oak Grove for grains (and I think they have some interesting flours and pancake mix, as well as corn for popping), Catskill Merino for hand-dyed yarn, 3 Corner Field for wool, milk soap, hats, sweaters, sheepskins, etc., Jams from Berkshire Berries (he has unusual ones like garlic jam and pepper jam) or Beth's, Deep Mountain's maple syrups, Wines from Anthony Road, Buzzard Crest, Hawthorne Valley Farm for granola. Some farmers may still have apple butter, and/or kimchi. Check GrowNYC for who'll be at the Union Square Greenmarket this Wednesday.
- Vacuum sealed pastrami from Katz's with instructions on how to reheat, perhaps a salami as well, and a loaf of rye from Moishe's
- William J. Greenberg Black and White cookies
- A bottle of Fox's U-Bet with instructions on how to make an egg cream
- Junior's, Two Little Red Hens, or Eileen's cheesecake
- Zabar's chocolate babka
- Some jams from Sarabeth's bakery
- Hot chocolate mix from Jacques Torres or MarieBelle
- A pound of coffee beans from Gimme! Coffee, Ninth Street Espresso, Abraco, maybe Stumptown which didn't originate in NYC but is very popular in NYC now
- Breuckelen Distilling Company's gin, Fire Island Beer Company or Brooklyn Brewery beer, or some local NY State or Long Island wines
- Cookies from Levain Bakery (chocolate chip) or Momofuku Milk Bar (chocolate, cornflake-marshmallow)
- Momofuku Milk Bar is also selling stollen and cornflake-marshmallow-peppermint cookies at the Union Square Holiday Market
- Pretzel croissants from City Bakery
- Pretzels from Sigmund Pretzel Shop
- A copy of Edible Manhattan, Brooklyn, and/or Queens
posted by kathryn at 12:56 PM on December 21, 2010 [1 favorite]

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