Once upon a time, on a tiny island called Manhattan, there was a little shop where gourmet treasures lined the walls…

What is this, a food fairytale? That’s what we asked ourselves when we stumbled into The Meadow, a charming gourmet sundries shop that specializes in salt, chocolate, and bitters. We also learned a new word, when we found out that owner Mark Bitterman, is a selmelier, a professional specializing in salt and its culinary uses. We love when we learn a new word.

First: the salt. With more than 120 varieties, with origins from Hawaii to the Himalayas, The Meadow is a mecca for the most important mineral in our kitchen. The windows are lined with gorgeous pink salt blocks, which the friendly staff will help explain how to use (We’re going to use ours to sear steak tableside, NBD). But it doesn’t stop there: there’s a full wall of salts in attractive jars that boast unexpected flavors: bacon salt, buttery popcorn salt, and the prettiest and pinkest pinot noir salt.

Turn around, and you’ll face a wall stacked with another vital sundry: chocolate. Expertly crafted, from all over the world, and wrapped in colorful, patterned paper, these bars are far from the banal candy bars you’ll find elsewhere.

In addition to all this, The Meadow’s got gourmet bitters, cocktail condiments, oils, and other specialty kitchen items.

Every single item in the shop would make a fantastic gift… if you can make yourself give it away.

With his store and his books, Salted and Salt Block Cooking, and an upcoming project that focuses on cocktail bitters, Mark Bitterman’s expanding our culinary horizons in a major way. This is a rabbit hole we’re totally ready to fall down.

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