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New Mexico Tea Company on Mountain Road Northwest is a great place to visit for tea lovers. This store was originally established in 2006. Here you will find an extensive selection of tea blends that are imported from different parts of the world. Some of the varieties sold here are green, white, oolong, rooibos, herbal and black. They also sell a selection of tea ware like teacups, tumblers, spoons and teapots.
Support small indie stores by shopping for your used and new vinyl, CDs, cassettes and books at Mecca Music and Books. Jazz, hip-hop, indie rock and country are the specialties, and you can take advantage of the cozy seating area while browsing the excellent collections. Debates rage among locals as to whether this is the best used record store in New Mexico or a place to avoid due to the notoriously unfriendly demeanor of the owner, who is also renown for opening at whatever hours he sees fit from one day to the next. If you can handle these factors, you might just find the place lives up to its name. - Pip Lustgarten
Flea Mart is—as the reader may already have deduced from its no-nonsense name—a sizeable indoor flea market, where more than eighty vendors sell their wares on consignment. It might be easier to attempt to describe the contents of this place by what they do not have, rather than attempting the impossible feat of listing everything they do. A little poking around can yield awesome bargains on clothes, books, music, furnishings and much, much more. Past amazing finds include a pair of two-tone, sharkskin men's cowboy boots and a beautiful antique treasure chest. - Pip Lustgarten
Perusing the shelves and refrigerators of Fremont's Fine Foods, you can find all the goodies you miss from back home or got hooked on during trips abroad. There is Italian (in the form of colorful pastas in interesting shapes), Danish (bacon), Australian (the infamous, love it or hate it, vegemite) a touch of French (snails) and a smidgen of Scottish (haggis). English dominates though, so if you have a hankering for Hula Hoops, spotted dick and custard or Yorkshire pudding, you've definitely come to the right place. There are also candies and cookies from all over the world, plus sandwiches and boxed lunches made fresh to order. - Pip Lustgarten
The influence on New Mexico arts, crafts and architecture by Mexican artisans is evident at Potteryland. You will find an amazing assortment of home decorating items that have been imported from Mexico. Check out the Chimineas. These patio fireplaces, made from pottery in different shapes and sizes, are a wonderful addition to a backyard gathering. You can spend hours here strolling through the handmade garden tables and benches that sit alongside bird baths, flower pots, sun faces, fountains and statues. You will not find better prices unless you go to Mexico.
The Old Town Emporium stocks New Mexican tourist souvenirs in every form. Some items, such as painted pony figurines, Southwestern patterned socks, and slogan tees, hats and sweatshirts, definitely constitute stereotypical tourist fare. But there are also décor accents that can lend a Southwestern touch to your home, plus attractive gifts to be found amidst the tat. Gifts include candles, incense, leatherwork, candies, and fiery foods. Options for your home include punched tin light switchplates, unique Southwestern Christmas ornaments, glassware and coasters. Housed in a beautiful building, the store is worth a stop when you're in the vicinity of the historic Old Town plaza. -Pip Lustgarten