Southern New Hampshire Life

Southern New Hampshire Blog by Steve Russo, Realtor


Southern New Hampshire Life - Southern New Hampshire Blog by Steve Russo, Realtor

Unique Shopping Opportunities: The House by the Side of the Road in Wilton

The family owned The House by the Side of the Road is the perfect place to go for plants any month of the year.  During the planting season, their extensive collection of annuals and perennials fills their expansive buildings; perennials spill over to the large area in back, and are grouped into shade-loving, sun-loving, herbs, trees, shrubs, etc.

Looking for a distinctive  plant for a room in your house?  Year-round they offer a huge collection of houseplants; and their greenhouses contain the largest selection of orchids and cacti in the state. The House by the Side of the Road

In December, The House by the Side of the Road has probably the largest selection of holiday plants and wreaths in Southern New Hampshire.  Their poinsettias range from one-inch mini-plants to huge conversation pieces in every color imaginable.  A large selection of other seasonal plants is also available, such as cyclamens and amaryllises, as well as wreaths, garlands, and centerpieces.  If you like to make your own festive holiday decorations, they carry greens, pine cones, ribbons, small ornaments, etc.

The House by the Side of the Road is located at 370 Gibbons Highway (Route 101) in Wilton; it is open seven days a week. They also have an informative  website.

Unique Shopping Opportunities: Twelve Pine in Peterborough

TWELVE PINE can meet all your gourmet needs. This institution in Depot Square features an extensive selection for the food-lover.  In addition to locally made brands such as Stonewall Kitchen, they have many boutique specialties not found in other shops, such as lemon olive oil from Tuscany, chipotle rubs from New Mexico, artichoke ambrosia from California, and fresh-pressed ciders from Farnum Hill Farm in New Hampshire.  Artisan-made chocolates, spice mixtures, teas, condiments, gourmet crackers, and fine wines fill the store.

Twelve Pine also has an eat-in menu that shoppers can enjoy in their café area.  The offerings change daily, and include their fresh-roasted coffees, gourmet salads, paninis, and entrees such as pork loin with leeks and grilled salmon; in-house made pastries and gelati are available for dessert.  All the shop’s prepared foods may be packaged to go.

Twelve Pine also has an extensive catering menu for those that are planning a large get-together.   The shop is open seven days a week; it is located at 11 School Street, Depot Square, Peterborough.  Their website is a multi-paged affair that details all that they can make available.

Unique Shopping Opportunites: Your Kitchen Store in Keene

Your Kitchen Store in Keene

YOUR KITCHEN STORE on 20 Main Street in Keene has the most extensive collection of kitchenware in northern New England. This locally owned store is the place to go if you are looking for anything for your kitchen or for the perfect gift for that gourmet cook on your holiday shopping list. They carry eight major lines of cutlery, seven major lines of cookware, and hundreds of kitchen gadgets and electrical work savers that will amaze you. Your Kitchen Store offers exhaustive collections from All-Clad, Berndes, Capresso, Cuisinart, DeLonghi, KitchenAid, Krups, LeCreuse,Viking,Waring, Wusthof, and many other companies. If it’s been invented for the kitchen, you will find it here.

Your Kitchen Store also stocks a wide variety of gourmet foods, including select olive oils, jams, savory spreads, teas, and sauces. They sponsor several cooking classes every season taught by local experts; details are available on their “Upcoming Events” webpage. One can get a good idea of what Your Kitchen Store has available by visiting their website, which always includes their latest catalog.  Their hours are: Monday – Saturday 9AM to 9PM; Sunday 11AM – 5PM.

Unique Shopping Opportunities: Oak Leaves Studio in Wilton

This is the second in a series highlighting distinctive local shops, artists, crafters, etc., that contribute to the quality of life in Southern New Hampshire. 

Oak Leaves Studio features the high relief woodcarving of master artist William Schnute.  Much of his work is large architectural pieces, but there are often smaller works such as those pictured here on display in his studio-workshop. 

Mr. Schnute works to order; each piece is designed in collaboration with the buyer.  All his pieces are handmade; his larger pieces such as doors or wall-mounted sculptures may take several weeks, but a small box or carving may be finished in only a week or two, depending on prior scheduled commissions.

He carves pieces for outdoor use, such as commercial signs and gates, as well as a wide variety of creations only suitable for indoor use, such as beautifully detailed small sculptures and keepsake boxes. 

William Schnute’s work must be seen in person to be fully appreciated.  However, to give you an idea of his range and talent, you may want to look at the photos on Oak Leaves Studio’s website and the notebook of finished works at his studio.

Oak Leaves Studio is located at 19 Frye Mill Road in Wilton; call the studio at 603-654-7543 or 888-621-2506 for hours and directions. 

Unique Shopping Opportunities: The Cozy Tea Cart in Brookline

It’s very convenient to shop at many of the malls that cover the state, or to order by phone or online.  But if you are looking for something unique to give – or something special for yourself – consider some of the specialty shops that are located in many of the small towns throughout the southern tier of New Hampshire.  This is the first in a series to highlight distinctive local stores that contribute to the quality of life in Southern New Hampshire.

Walk into The Cozy Tea Cart and enter into a specialty store like no other around.   This shop, at 104 Route 13 in Brookline, carries dozens of traditional and not-so-traditional tea blends personally selected by proprietor Danielle Beaudette, who travels to tea fields in China, India, and elsewhere to find the best leaves for her offerings. 

The Cozy Tea Cart is unique not only in the wide variety of tea blends it makes available, but also in its emphasis in popularizing the history, use, and benefits of tea drinking.  Each month the shop offers several programs to introduce different blends and to show how they can be used in new and interesting ways.  Programs include tea tastings, pairing various tea varieties with foods, using teas in cooking, and special events such as themed afternoon teas, author’s and artist’s teas, etc.  A recently begun series, “A Festive Holiday Menu” features the use of tea in baking, cooking, and candy-making.   

The Cozy Tea Cart offers a very comfortable tea room where customers can enjoy their favorite freshly brewed beverage, along with light luncheon fare, baked treats, and Jake’s premium ice creams. In warmer months, visitors can enjoy their refreshments in the shop’s garden.  

In addition to teas, tisanes, and edibles, The Cozy Tea Cart also affords the shopper the opportunity to choose from an extensive selection of tea paraphernalia, including tea cups, pots, brewers, spoons, souvenirs, and accompaniments.  Ms. Beaudette and her knowledgeable staff can ably guide you to the item(s) that will perfectly fit your need.

The Cozy Tea Cart is open Mondays through Saturdays 8AM to 6PM.  To learn more about tea and The Cozy Tea Cart, check out its extensive website.