Shopping & Services

  • Best Clothing Store (Women)

    Opitz Outlet

    What used to be a well-kept secret among couture coveters in the Twin Cities has now become one of the metro's hottest spots to score designer goods: Opitz Outlet. Where else besides a consignment shop can you find a Marc Jacobs sweater for 90 percent off? Opitz has it all, from Prada and Gucci to Anna Sui and Jimmy Choo,… More >>
  • Best Acupuncture

    Attune Acupuncture

    Skeptics, wise up: If you've spent countless frustrating hours and who knows how much money trying to treat your anxiety or insomnia, your acne, indigestion, migraines, or that pain in your neck by visiting doctors of all stripes, perhaps it's time to put down your insurance directory or stop popping pills and instead think about channeling your qi. Acupuncture has… More >>
  • Best Body Supplies

    Intelligent Nutrients

    Parabens, phthalates, sodium lauryl sulfate — these chemicals are linked to a host of health problems, from skin irritation to hormone imbalances, and they're all ingredients you might find hidden in many of your body and beauty products. To add insult to injury, most of these same products are tested on animals, a cruelty intended to discover just how many… More >>
  • Best Antiquing

    Downtown Hopkins

    From Anoka to Stillwater to Red Wing, our region is not wanting for antiques hubs. But for those looking to dig for treasure a little closer to home, the surprisingly charming downtown Hopkins has its own historic Mainstreet, which has also bred a collection of antiques shops. And with more than 200 dealers gathered in a handful of roomy storefronts,… More >>
  • Best Art Supplies

    Art Materials

    Walk into Art Materials on Lyndale and you'll sense a creative energy that hangs in the air. Maybe it's the 12,000 square feet of supplies, or maybe it's the staff who will go out of their way to make sure you've got just the right tool for your project. Of course, the store boasts all the traditional mediums from clay… More >>
  • Best Bookstore (New)

    Common Good Books

    Common Good Books has called the corner of Snelling and Grand avenues home for just under a year, but it's hard to imagine the independent bookstore not being there in the first place. Though Common Good Books has a different look, it's still got the same cozy feel of its old location beneath Nina's Café in St. Paul, where radio… More >>
  • Best Bookstore (Used)


    If you're anything like us, you were probably alarmed last summer when you realized that the old space for Booksmart in Uptown was, well, no longer Booksmart. One more casualty in the ever-growing armada of bro bars and corporate storefronts, right? Well, fortunately, if you're anything like us, you were probably also relieved when you realized that Booksmart had simply… More >>
  • Best Record Store for Vinyl

    Treehouse Records

    Cuing up the old turntable has truly become all the rage over the past half-dozen years or so. Vinyl is in, which means that so, too, is Treehouse Records, a place that was never really out in the first place. Helmed by the store's ever-passionate founder, Mark Trehaus, the Uptown mainstay has never strayed from its roots: a no-nonsense record-slinger… More >>
  • Best Eyewear

    Spectacle Shoppe

    While a number of online vendors offer a wide selection of vintage-looking frames on the cheap, nothing beats going into an actual shop, getting your hands on a pair of sturdy black plastics worn by a Korean War-era Army recruit, a spiffy aqua-colored cat-eye shape worn by a housewife of the same era, or a colorfully fab frame that looks… More >>
  • Best Garden Center

    Tangletown gardens

    The folks at Tangletown take plenty of care to provide the best experience for their customers, offering a mix of annuals, perennials, vegetable plants, and garden tools and decorations. The south Minneapolis center offers more than 3,000 plant varieties — basically anything you may want, be it a simple front flower garden, a backyard full of vegetables, or an entire… More >>
  • Best Hardware Store

    Ace Nicollet Hardware

    Whether they're looking to repair a leaky toilet or replace a window pane following a run-in with a baseball, beleaguered do-it-yourselfers are always within fumbling distance of a friendly Ace Hardware store, and we are partial to the location at 38th and Nicollet in Minneapolis. The staff members are eager to help but don't get in the way, whether you… More >>
  • Best Clothing Store (Men)

    Heimie's Haberdashery

    For Heimie's Haberdashery owner Anthony Andler, dressing the citizens of St. Paul is in his blood. His great-grandfather Heimie first settled in St. Paul with his family, where he opened a tailoring shop on Old Seventh Street. When his son Ralph returned from World War II, the two of them scaled up operations by opening a retail shop, Heimie's Menswear,… More >>
  • Best Lumberyard

    Youngblood Lumber

    With over 100 years in the business, Youngblood Lumber in northeast Minneapolis is where contractors and woodworkers go when they don't want to mess around. As a wholesale and retail supplier of fine hardwood and softwood lumber, plywood, and decorative surface products, Youngblood can be counted on to offer the best selection of exotic and domestic woods. Say you have… More >>
  • Best Salvage

    Guilded Salvage Antiques

    If you've ever looked for an antique drawer pull to match the one that fell off your cabinets years ago, or a funky chandelier to hang in your studio space, you've no doubt visited one of the several quirky salvage shops in the Twin Cities. You've also no doubt been overwhelmed by room after room of floor-to-ceiling junk, as well… More >>
  • Best Home Decor

    Forage Modern Workshop

    As East Lake Street reawakens to new life, Forage Modern Workshop, which opened late last year, has been a fine addition to restaurants and shops that have begun to dot the stretch between Hiawatha and the river. With scores of young families now populating the neighborhood's adorable bungalows, it's no coincidence that the shop, focusing on Midwestern decor with a… More >>
  • Best Kitchen Supplies

    The Foundry Home Goods

    Shopping for your wedding registry ... or wish you were? Don't go nuts with the scanner at a big-box retailer or you'll end up with counters full of clutter and a bunch of junk destined for Goodwill at your next spring cleaning. Instead, repeat the mantra of "fewer and better" and outfit your kitchen by heading to the Foundry Home… More >>
  • Best Pet Store

    Forest Lake Pets

    Sure, it's a bit of a drive to get to Forest Lake Pets if you're coming from Minneapolis or St. Paul, but a trip is well worth the gas. Here you'll find the types of things you would expect from a decent pet store: stuff for cats and dogs (natural food, shampoo, clippers, toys), rodents (from mice to ferrets), and… More >>
  • Best Store Pet

    The Wild Rumpus

    Many well-loved children's books feature animals as main characters. So it only follows that a well-loved children's bookstore should have some animal characters running around, too. The Wild Rumpus, the Linden Hills outpost of kidlike wonder for tots and grownups alike, boasts its own mini-menagerie of pets, which pop out at picture-book browsers from every corner. Some critters, like the… More >>
  • Best Pet Spa

    Bubbly Paws

    Let's face it: Your dog smells, and his hair has taken up residence on all your favorite sweaters and your furniture. Proceed with your pooch to St. Louis Park's Bubbly Paws Dog Wash, Spa, and Grooming for some needed TLC. Whether you'd rather save money and wash your own dog ($10-$25) or prefer one of their friendly staff do the… More >>
  • Best Sporting Goods

    Tradition Creek

    Is your idea of "sporting" a $500 pair of running shoes, a racquet and country club, or a caddy and a cart? No. Your sporting involves a canoe and an axe, a water-purification kit, and a pack of matches. And St. Paul's newest addition to the retail stores on West Seventh, Tradition Creek, is your outfitter. Owned by Boy Scout… More >>
  • Best Toy Store


    You won't find the latest, hottest electronic toys at Peapods. You will, however, find plenty of traditional items and modern riffs on classics that fuel a child's imagination. Wooden blocks, dollhouses, puppets, and puzzles are the name of the game at this family-owned store. Much of the business is focused on the early years of a child's life — the… More >>
  • Best Holiday Shopping

    No Coast Craft-o-Rama

    The holidays always seem to present the dilemma of the hard-to-shop-for friend or relative — the person who has it all, who likes nothing, or whose tastes run so obscure or expensive it's hard to tell just what they're going to love. You really can't go wrong with handmade holiday gifts — cute and out of the ordinary or screaming,… More >>
  • Best Clothing Store (Kids)

    Once Upon a Child

    Procuring a wardrobe for a tiny person can be more difficult than it sounds. Stores (and soon, our closets) are filled with adorable fancy outfits, scientifically proven to be irresistible to grandparents, that you'll be lucky if your kid gets to wear once before outgrowing them. Practical parents soon realize that used is the way to go for most of… More >>
  • Best Wine Shop

    The Wine Thief

    There is no need to feel even a twinge of embarrassment that you're looking for a wine to pair with a jalapeño-and-bacon-topped pizza or eggrolls from the greasy chow mein spot down the street. Even if you're just looking for a wine to pair with sitting on the couch and watching 2 Broke Girls, the staff at the Wine Thief… More >>
  • Best Liquor Store

    Lowertown Wine & Spirits

    An early adopter of the Lowertown neighborhood boom nearly 10 years ago, Lowertown Wine & Spirits is that fascinating cross-section of connoisseurship and here-comes-a-regular friendliness. If you're just stopping in to get a 40 of Mickey's, a case of Natty Ice, or a sixer of Summit, you might find yourself blindsided by just how eclectic its selection is. Nearby Barrio,… More >>
  • Best Natural Foods Grocery

    Seward Co-op

    Seward Co-op hits the sweet spot between luxury grocery store and health-food shop. Its aisles are neither dusty nor cramped, but no space is wasted. The spacious produce section is full of mostly local and/or organic items, easy to navigate but not lacking in DIY charm, often featuring handprinted signs pointing out the best seasonal buys, such as particularly tasty… More >>
  • Best Tattoo Parlor

    Leviticus Tattoo

    Getting a tattoo can be a big step for some people, while others just collect them all over. Either way, the quality of artwork is fundamental, and Leviticus has that in spades. A veritable Lake Street institution, Leviticus Tattoo won us over again this year with its gorgeous designs, precise execution, and awesome decor. The soothing koi pond and brightly… More >>
  • Best Adult Store

    Sex World

    Everyone has his or her own reason for hitting up a sex shop. For couples, it's looking for toys, aids, or accessories to add some spice to their love lives. For singles, it can be for movies and other fun stuff to help get you through those lonely nights. For bachelor and bachelorette parties, it's toys and novelty items to… More >>
  • Best Boutique


    The word "boutique" can sometimes prompt one to worry about how a purchase at that shop may impact the wallet. This is not the case with Primp, a fab store in St. Paul and St. Louis Park. Here the threads and accessories for sale are fashionable, current, and under $100 (most are even under $50). Much like trends in the… More >>
  • Best Thrift Store

    Rewind Vintage

    There's a definite art to proper thrift- and/or vintage-store shopping. Sure, any of us with a passing eye for fashion can put together an outfit, but it takes something extra to do it on the cheap and have it look like you spent a fortune. Specifically, that something extra is called "style." For the stylist in all of us, there's… More >>
  • Best Gift Shop


    It's pretty easy to kill an hour investigating all the cool items found in Bibelot. The shop, located in two spots in St. Paul and two in Minneapolis, sells oodles of things ideal for a variety of gifting needs. There are thoughtful items for foodies (specialty salts, dessert sauces, herb-growing kits, eco-friendly items), for jewelry lovers (engraved bracelets, glass earrings),… More >>
  • Best Salon/Spa

    HAUS Salon

    If you're a meat 'n' potatoes type of guy or gal, you may want to hit up the beauty salon or barber shop down the street. But if you're looking for an experience that elevates you into the realm of fabulous, make yourself standing appointments for cutting, coloring, texturizing, and brow waxing at Nicollet Avenue's nationally recognized HAUS Salon. Following… More >>
  • Best Haircut

    HAUS Salon

    For anyone who's had either a drastic or horrible haircut, you know the importance of a good salon to ease you through the ordeal. HAUS Salon prides itself on expert hair artistry and quality stylists. Walk into HAUS and you'll be met at the door with someone ready to take your coat and offer you a drink, no matter how… More >>
  • Best Massage

    Lee Pepper at Artifex Manuum

    The words "gentle giant" come to mind when you first see Lee Pepper, the owner and head masseuse at Artifex Manuum Spa and Gallery in residential Uptown. Bearded and burly with a shaved head and huge hands, Pepper has a precise and firm approach to massage that is not for clients who just want a few squeezes, a dash of… More >>
  • Best Farmers' Market

    Kingfield Farmers Market

    Every farmers' market can be judged on three factors: its produce, its vendors, and its good old-fashioned charm. The Kingfield Farmers Market excels at all three. It has farm charm to burn. Its selection of fresh produce glows like jewels, passing throughout the growing season from rhubarb to garlic scapes to summer squash to apples. The market also has plenty… More >>

Best of Award Graphics