Slideshow

Raise Your Game

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  • Make Your Own Bitters by Easy & Oskey
    Photo by Becca Sabot
    Bitters are the thing driving contemporary cocktails; this kit lets you brew your own custom blend. Make Your Own Bitters ($40), by Easy & Oskey, from Cooks of Crocus Hill, 877 Grand Ave., St. Paul, 651-228-1333; 324 S. Main St., Stillwater, 651-351-1144; 3925 W. 50th St., Edina, 952-285-1903, cooksofcrocushill.com
  • Rice Cube
    Photo by Becca Sabot
    This little gadget makes it so easy to create rice cubes, that even your 10-year-old can become a sushi master. Rice Cube ($19.95), from Patina, six locations including 2057 Ford Pkwy, St. Paul, 651-695-9955, patinastores.com
  • Pickles, Pigs & Whiskey by John Currence / Photo by Becca Sabot
    Photo by Becca Sabot
    Don’t just get the guy another barbeque book— get him this bestseller that speaks to the three main food groups. Pickles, Pigs & Whiskey ($40) by John Currence, also from Cooks of Crocus Hill
  • Razor Clams
    Photo by Becca Sabot
    Found on many a hot menu in town, these long, slender clams are grilled in Spain, paired with pasta in Italy, and eaten raw in New York. Razor Clams ($11.99), from France 44 Cheese Shop, 4351 France Ave. S., Mpls., 612-278-4422, france44cheeseshop.com
  • Flask by Give Studio
    Just because someone totes libations about in a purse or pocket, doesn’t mean they can’t make a stylish statement once they flash the flask. Flask ($26) by Give Studio, from Walker Shop, 1750 Hennepin Ave., Mpls., 612-375-7600, walkerart.org
  • Garlic keeper by Now Designs / Photo by Becca Sabot
    Photo by Becca Sabot
    This stylish little bin can sit prettily on your counter or be mounted to the wall while it keeps garlic fresher longer. Garlic keeper ($15.95), by Now Designs, also from Patina
  • Bottle Chandelier, from Patina / Photo by Becca Sabot
    Photo by Becca Sabot
    If you keep empty bottles of the amazing wines you’ve loved, it’s time to let them shine with this bottle chandelier ($110), also from Patina.
  • Cutting Board by Totally Bamboo / Photo by Becca Sabot
    Photo by Becca Sabot
    It’s time to get rid of the old plastic cutting boards and opt in for this durable bamboo beauty that can sit out on your counter and do double duty as a serving board. Cutting Board ($59.95) by Totally Bamboo, also from Patina
  • Stainless steel chef’s knife by Global from Kitchen Window
    Photo by Becca Sabot
    A good knife is the essential splurge in the kitchen. Forget the German brands you registered for when you got married, it’s all Japanese these days. Stainless steel chef’s knife ($168.99), by Global, from Kitchen Window, 3001 Hennepin Ave., Mpls., 612-824-4417, kitchenwindow.com
  • Roll up bartender kit
    Photo by Becca Sabot
    A portable bar kit means the owner can roll up to any party and be the star mixologist, handlebar mustache or not. Roll up bartender kit ($59), from Honeyshine, 2720 W. 43rd St., Mpls., 612-377-7300, honeyshine.net
  • The growler koozie from The Beer Dabbler
    Photo by Becca Sabot
    Grab your growler from the newest taproom, and sling it over your shoulder while you sip a fresh pint, keeping everything cool. The growler koozie ($18), from The Beer Dabbler, 1095 W. Seventh St., St. Paul, 651-528-8752, thebeerdabler.com
  • Pressure cooker from Ethnic Foods Co. / Photo by Becca Sabot
    Photo by Becca Sabot
    Don’t fear the pressure cooker, this simple 2-quart version is easy to use and makes healthier meals faster than you’d believe. Pressure cooker ($89), from Ethnic Foods Co., 208 Central Ave., Osseo, 952-593-3000, ethnicfoodsco.com

It’s time to take things up a notch in the kitchen, time to turn the burner to high and really dig in on what it means to be a foodist. These gifts are hot, spicy, cutting edge and will help take an edible life to four stars.

Winter Luxuries

Perks of Minnesota living: It’s easy to justify cashmere and leather.

The New Dude Essentials

After decades of buying—and destroying—piles of watches, coats, and bags, I’ve finally come around to the less-is-more notion of buying stuff.

Gold Standard

Sequins and Sparkle will always hold a place in my heart, but it’s the rich, warm glimmer of gold on my vanity or in my makeup bag that makes me (momentarily) feel like an Upper East Sider.

Happy New Year!

Wishing you wonderful things from sparkling parties to beautiful resolutions.

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