What's a high-end kitchen store to do when even Target has Michael Graves designing toasters and teapots? Carry hand-made dishware by American artisans, the best of world cookery products, the tastiest gourmet salts and sauces, and the most clever gadgets around, that's what. That's the philosophy at The Kitchen Gallery on Williamson Street, a lovely space in the historic Kaiser Hall building that was also once the home/studio of outsider artist Mona Webb.
Tempters abound. Like a chubby Waechtersbach pottery bowl, from Germany ($30); Donna Toohey's pottery painted with spiky veggie drawings; or Chantal's yellow Livestrong pouring bowl, from the "Livestrong" line ($25). (It's a little goofy to move from sloganeering on rubber bracelets to sloganeering on cookware, but it is a very nice yellow.)
In the gadget department, there's plenty that you didn't know you needed, like the Twist and Chop ($16), which will dice your onions and peppers swiftly with no electricity; or Progressive's rolling slicer ($9), which, with five blades, will mince your basil or cilantro pronto; or the Sleekstor collapsible silicone colander, which looks like a mini lacrosse racket and folds flat for storage. The Kitchen Gallery also carries a wide line of French press coffee makers, All-Clad cookware, Staub slow-cooker pots and elaborately etched teapots from China ($39-$50).
Enough of pots and plates, though. The real temptations are the foodstuffs, like Stonewall Kitchens' mustards and sauces, Cucina Viva gnocchi, Tillen Farms' beautiful pickled veggies, Maggie & Mary's soup mixes, and King's Cupboard Rich and Dreamy Molten Chocolate Cake Mix and Triple Chocolate Frosting. Now that's strong living.
The Kitchen Gallery, 1354 Williamson St., 467-6544, www.thekitchengallery.biz, 10 am-5 pm Tues.-Sat., 10 am-2 pm Sun. or by appt.