Food, booze and small favors like soaps and scented candles make great gifts without costing a fortune. Plus, they can be easily mailed to friends and family members across the country. The Catskills is filled to the brim with local producers, making it ever easier to shop locally for the holidays. The Catskills also have some of the best local artists selling everything from small works to large pieces in studios across the region. Watch this space for features on local artists selling their wares during the holiday season. We’re also compiling a list of places you can cut your own Christmas tree. It’s never been more important to shop locally. For every dollar you spend locally, the community will benefit to the value of five to seven dollars. Industry in the Catskills is strictly regulated because we have to protect New York City’s drinking water. Spending money on the Catskills’ small producers keeps our regional economy afloat. Shop Upstate for the holidays.
Specialty Food & Drink
Bebert’s Moroccan Cafe in Fleischmanns has a wealth of beautifully packaged herbs, sweets, condiments and spices that make fabulous gifts for the home cook. Special items are the Spices Des Fes blend for making tagine, preserved lemons, fruit compotes and Casablanca chutney. Perfect stocking stuffers or make great gifts for friends and colleagues.
Grab a bottle or two of Wayside Cider when you’re next in Andes and, maybe stop awhile for a quick refreshing apertif on your way to a dinner party. Wayside will debut a new cider early in December.
Enjoy their tap room and pick up a bottle of locally distilled vodka at Union Grove Distillery in Arkville.
If you’re in Margaretville and feel like something sweet or need a sweet gift, The Cheese Barrel stocks mouth-watering European cookies like Bahlsen, Italian chocolate, nougat, jarred condiments, tea, coffee and jams that make great stocking stuffers or dinner party gifts.
Tay Tea has a shop in Delhi selling all things tea: a large selection of house-blended tea, teapots, arts and crafts. Their tea is beautiful and stylishly packaged. If you’re looking to give up coffee, their Coffee Lover’s Tea is a wholesome, flavorful alternative with light caffeine content.
We’re gradually getting more vegan options. Cheezehound does delicious nut cheeses that are stocked locally and in NYC.
Fruition chocolate is winning awards for its small-batch, handmade chocolate made in Shokan, New York, but stocked in retail stores across the region.
Tremper Hill Farms, 5224 Route 28, Mt Tremper, NY 12457 is a farm stand that does a wide range of local specialty foods.
For authentic local maple syrup go here to read local guide published a few years ago.
The Catskills have the finest lotions, potions and unguents on offer made by hand by local artisans. Click here for our comprehensive guide published last year.
Catskills Northern Essentials
Northern Essentials products are fabulous. Perfect for small gifts and wedding favors, they are beautifully packaged, make a creamy lather and contain comforting essential oils like rose and invigorating lemongrass. There’s a wide range of soaps to choose from, using speciality ingredients like goat’s milk, sea buckthorn, pine tar and activated charcoal.
Local & General Stores
Here are our favorite stores to support this holiday season, stocking all your essentials.
Just Shop Boutique, 43270 Route 28, Arkville, NY 12406 (845-586-6040)
This discount clothing store opposite Jack’s Caboose in Arkville stocks modern, contemporary clothing at low prices and part of our 48 Hours in Arkville post. They do gift cards.
The Blue Barn, 7053 Route 28, Shandaken, NY 12480
The Blue Barn has always been reasonably priced and a great go-to for antiques and more modern items from local furniture dealers and craftspeople. A no-brainer if you’re passing through or for locals: an Upstate Dispatch favorite. Read our write-up of the Blue Barn here. Check their facebook page for their winter hours which are usually weekends only.
Lucky Dog Farm Store, 35796 State Highway 10 (Main Street), Hamden, NY 13782
This delightful general store is a one-stop shop for all manner of high-quality food, condiments, clothing, kitchenware, lotions, soaps, candles and wool products. They also deliver and offer case orders at a 20% discount. Go here to see their extensive product list.
Roxbury Wines & Spirits
Roxbury Wines & Spirits stock the best collection of wines and spirits in the Catskills – an eclectic selection with something for everyone that’s carefully, thoughtfully curated, including a robust range of local and regional options. Superb and reasonably priced.
The Roxbury General Store, 53537 State Highway 30, Roxbury, NY 12474
The General Store has some seriously classy, high-quality local gifts for everyone your life, whether it’s a colleague, friend or family member.
Homegoods of Margaretville, 784 Main Street, Margaretville, NY 12455
At Homegoods of Margaretville you’ll find everything the modern cook could want from cute salt and pepper shakers to Le Creusette pans and everything in between. They also stock tea, lotions, cookbooks and spices.
Arts, Crafts & Conservation
Catskill Mountain Artisan’s Guild, Main Street, Margaretville, NY
The Artisan’s Guild offers an extensive range of high-quality arts and crafts like painted silk, leather goods and jewelry and has the benefit of being open all week long.
MURAL on Main, 631 Main Street, Hobart, NY 13788
The Gallery Gift Shop at MURAL began several years ago as a way to support their endeavours to promote art in the region. Proceeds from the gift shop keep the fine art gallery open to the public free of charge, keep the costs of their invaluable workshops and events low, and provide an additional revenue stream for local artisans. You can also find Solveig Comer’s Most Precious Pottery here.
Bovina Brown Bats, Bovina Center, NY
Bovina Brown Bats is run by owner John Virga, a graphic artist and carpenter who makes custom bat boxes in addition to other things. Bat boxes help us rehabilitate our bat population following the onslaught of white nose fungus. The best time to put up a bat box is in the Spring.