The Untapped Holiday Gift Guide – NYC Edition

Looking for NYC specific gifts? We've compiled quirky and non-cheesy gift ideas.

Still looking for gift ideas? Been so busy with final exams or end of the year reports that you haven’t had time to pick up anything for Mom/Dad/that special someone? Don’t fret, we’ve put together a New York City specific gift guide, a follow up to our holiday gift guide.

1. The New York Coffee Cup designed by Graham Hill. This now quasi retro Grecian design has been ubiquitous in New York since it was introduced on the paper cups in 1963. Forget Starbucks, this is the true New York coffee cup. The ceramic version is available at the MoMA store. $15 or $13.50 for members.

2. Historic Maps and Views of New York. Got a history buff in the family? This book, available at the New York Public Library Shop  and on Amazon, is composed of 24 historic maps and views of NYC and its environs. The prints, which include one of the earliest maps of Manhattan, fit easily into an 11″ x 14″ frame. There are also views of Brooklyn and Queens, an early subway map, and a topographical map of the island of Manhattan. $19.95 or $17.95 for members of the NYPL, $13.57 on Amazon.



3. Subway Map Umbrella. Give the gift that will help your loved ones stay dry in style AND help them navigate the subway. The Transit Museum Store has lots of great gifts from jewelry made of old subway tokens to boxers  and shower curtains  featuring that ubiquitous map. $22 for the umbrella. The Transit Museum is located at the corner of Boerum Place and Schermerhorn Street, Brooklyn Heights, gifts can also be purchased online.  

4. Holiday Cupcakes by Magnolia Bakery. A NYC cupcake obsession since the first bakery opened in Greenwich Village in 1996. Magnolia has been featured on Sex & the City, The Devil Wears Prada and Saturday Night Live. Bring home a box of four or get a cake for your next holiday party. Be sure to check out their holiday specials, including red velvet Rockette cupcakes. Classic cupcakes are $3, specialty cupcakes are $3.50, cakes range from $32-$50 depending on the size. Locations at 401 Bleeker St., 1240 6th Ave. (at Rockefeller Center), in Bloomingdale’s at 1000 3rd Ave., 200 Columbus Ave., and in Grand Central Terminal.

5. The city of New York runs CityStore with gifts sporting familiar New York City graphic designs, like Sanitation Grade A on a mug, prints of park signs, quirky taxi and NYPD oriented gifts.

6. The New Brooklyn Cookbook: Recipes and Stores from 31 Restaurants That Put Brooklyn on the Culinary Map by Melissa Vaughn & Brendan Vaughn. This book proves that Brooklynites have a reason to celebrate their borough and will have gourmand Manhattanites crossing the Bridge to sample their delicacies. Available at bookstores around the city, on Amazon.

7. Give a plot share through Local Roots NYC, an organization dedicated to supporting local farms and bringing quality produce to New Yorkers. They work with farms within 250 miles of NYC that specialize in fruits & juices, vegetables, meat, cheese, eggs, grains and bread. Buying a plot share entitles you to pick up fresh food every week at one of the designated locations in Brooklyn or Manhattan. In addition, Local Roots gives you the opportunity to meet your farmers, share recipes and volunteer for the community. Prices range. Buy plot shares directly from the website or give a gift certificate.

8. Kings County Distillery‘s whiskey. Whiskey connaisseurs will appreciate this Brooklyn distillery. It’s the oldest operating whiskey distillery in NYC, since before Prohibition. Their award winning whiskey, bourbon and moonshine are available in liquor stores throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn. See their homepage for a list of locations. They also offer distillery tours and tastings at their location in Brooklyn.

9. Accessories by Studio Manhattan Art+Design. Inspired by street scenes in NYC, Studio Manhattan creates products ranging from wall art to iphone cases. They have accessories for women and men. You can find their products at holiday fairs around the city, including Bryant Park, Grand Central, Union Square, Columbus Cirle, South Street Seaport, Soho and Noho or order online. Prices start at $18.  



10. Notecards by the Downtown Doodler. If you haven’t been following the Downtown Doodler’s column here on Untapped Cities, you definitely should. She has a keen eye and a precise pen. Check out her blog for more doodles and photos from around the world. Unfortunately, her products won’t be ready in time for Christmas, but check back in January when you need to send out a bunch of thank you cards for all those gifts. Untapped Cities will be launching an etsy page with mugs and other great gifts.



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