From a purveyor of luscious jams in Los Angeles to an artisanal NYC boutique with in-house classes, here are the best gourmet and specialty shops to open in 2013.
Sqirl; Los Angeles
Although jam-maker Jessica Koslow’s Silver Lake store had been open for less than a year, by last September she had to overhaul the entire space to add 20 new seats. Now she can accommodate more of the diners clamoring for a taste of her luscious, hyper-local preserves, like Black Mission Fig & Red Wine and Wild Blueberry and Tarragon. The seasonal jams are paired with brioche toast and house-made ricotta on Sqirl’s small breakfast menu. The shop also retails Koslow’s full line of seasonal jams and offers canning and cooking workshops. sqirlla.com
Umami Mart; Oakland, CA
A crew of Japanophile friends turned their popular online shop into a brick-and-mortar store selling everything from a special pan for oyako donburi (a type of Japanese omelet) to seeds from Kitazawa, a brand specializing in Asian produce like shiso. In 2013, they added U-Mart, a special section inspired by Japanese convenience stores, which carries packaged noodles, snacks and teas that are hard to find in the US. umamimart.com