Gift Chalet cheers up homesick Viking-Americans with an array of home, kitchen, and clothing products that stir memories of the homeland's snowy winters, hammer-wielding thunder gods, and majestic fjords. Honor the ancestors with a knit hat flying the Norwegian flag ($8.50) or a T-shirt proclaiming one's hatred of lutefisk ($18). The best-selling almond cake pan and recipe gives Danish dessert fans all the tools they need to bake a traditional treat and present it as a housewarming gift to the next home they pillage ($10). Otherwise, add a sense of fun to a gray cubicle with a Finns Have More Steam mousepad ($5) or ward off cowardly ballpoint-pen thieves with a Lommedalen troll Viking figurine brandishing a Swedish shield ($40). Gift Chalet also supplies all the necessary Christmas accouterments for an Ultima Thule–themed Yuletide, including Lucia candleholders ($40) and accessories. Fans of international footwear can apply their Groupon toward a pair of Dansko clogs ($110-$120).
Fresh, colorful fruits and vegetables fill the shelves of Weepin Willies, a local market that stocks produce and meats at two locations. Shoppers can find high quality cuts of beef, chicken, and pork, or opt for Boar’s Head meats and cheeses and prepared soups, salads, and sandwiches from the deli.
Staff members at Performance Nutrition fuse their training in nutrition and fitness with a broad knowledge of the science of protein powders, multivitamins, and nutritional oils. After listening to clients explain their fitness goals, staff members flip through the encyclopedia in their skulls to pick out products—gluten-free supplements, herbal remedies, workout-recovery bars, and more—that match individual needs.
As autumn descends and the surrounding trees take on the color of an ever-earlier sunset, George Hill Orchards is at its most active. The branches are heavy with ripe apples, the myriad varieties including cortland, northern spy, and empire. Visitors carry these juicy orbs home by the basketful, along with cider donuts and fresh pies. At the petting zoo, calves, llamas, rabbits, and sheep let kids rub their fuzzy heads. A hayride trundles along, maintaining a casual speed so as to not draw the attention of a scarecrow highway patrolman.
Amy's Apples is a purveyor of gourmet chocolate, caramel and candy-wrapped apples and pears, and other confections. Apples, which feed four to six, can be dipped in milk chocolate and studded with Heath bar chunks or crusted with pecans and pralines ($11.75) to fool sweet teeth into piercing a healthy core. For the non-fruit enthusiast, Pure Passion pretzel twists get enrobed in caramel or milk or dark chocolate, rolled in a candy or nut topping, and then drizzled with white or dark chocolate ($3.50 a piece).