Retail shopping is alive and well in Downtown Ann Arbor. In fact, the shops in Kerrytown and Downtown offer some of the deepest inventories of well-curated merchandise anywhere in the county – one of the perks of living in Ann Arbor! Here is where I will be doing my holiday shopping this December in Downtown Ann Arbor.
Found has expanded and now offers a much larger selection of home furnishing, stationery, letterpress greeting cards, local artisan goods, Michigan-themed goods, and household items. If you are furnishing your new downtown Ann Arbor condominium, I would definitely recommend checking out Found. if you are shopping for holiday gifts and decorations, Found should be your FIRST stop! You will love it.
Found’s holiday collection is fantastic this year. Take a look at their Facebook page to see their collection of Holiday decorations, including a great collection of wonderful felt figurines. You will find everything you need for holiday decorating and entertaining. Shopping at FOUND provides an interesting and fun experience as the displays and merchandise always change.
Stop at Zingermans when you visit Kerrytown and pick up a couple of loaves of their fresh artisan-made bread. Their bread is simply the best in town, hands down. I especially like the Roadhouse and True North loaves.
My favorite is Country Miche. This is a 4-pound loaf of bread! Cut it in quarters, and freeze or give away half. It makes the world’s best toast. A thin slice of Miche with lots of butter will improve your day.
About Miche – Zingerman’s Bakehouse co-founder Frank Carollo says, “It’s one of the best bread we’ve ever made.” That’s really saying a lot after more than a quarter-century of baking. “Miche” is French for a loaf and typically refers to the large size and round shape in the style of traditional French country bread. In this case, the loaf is a whopping 4 pounds! Bigger loaves have bigger flavor, a more moist crumb, and longer staying power.
If you are entertaining or bringing house gifts to parties over the holidays, Zingermans will set you up.
Zingerman’s Deli offers locally sourced, premium farmhouse cheeses, bread, unique bottles of olive oil, varietal vinegar, smoked fish, high-quality salami, locally roasted coffees, exquisite teas, and locally sourced vegetables for salads. You can also purchase virtual or in-person tastings and classes – perfect for food lovers! The famous Ann Arbor restaurant and specialty foods store is a go-to spot for food connoisseurs. The quality will surpass your average superstore!
The TeaHaus, owned and operated by Lisa McDonald — who is one of just a handful of tea sommeliers in the US — knows tea! Lisa originally ran a café in the space now occupied by Mindo Chocolate but was forced to close it during the COVID-19 pandemic. She decided to reopen the café on the other side of her shop, renovating and combining the two areas to create a larger, airier space.
The space is voluminous, with soaring ceilings, terrazzo floors, tasteful lighting, and a wall of 180 carefully selected and blended teas to choose from. You can really taste the difference as they quality control and individually select their inventory from all over the world. The environment is relaxing, and there is no WiFi, encouraging relaxation and conversation. TeaHous also offers a great selection of baked goods and tea-related merchandise. The space now occupied by her café was previously home to the Ann Arbor Running Company.
Encore Records has been in its Kerrytown location now for a few years. While the space feels smaller than their old E Liberty location, the selection is well curated with a broad selection of options in all Genres. I can always find a record or two to bring home, either used or a reissue.
Just browsing is a delight, looking at record covers, reading the artist’s notes, and hopefully finding a copy of an old favorite. LP records are not just for oldtimers; 20-somethings are building record collections requesting new vinyl releases and copies of great Jazz and Rock artists too. This time of year, I am always on the lookout for a fun vintage Christmas record. I think I will return and get that copy of A James Brown Christmas. Encore records offer a variety of records by music lovers for music lovers and collectors. Workers enjoy nothing more than sharing our love and collection with the world.
Hyperion coffee offers a top-of-the-line, freshly roasted coffee selection at their newer W Liberty location and their original location behind the Ypsilanti Food Coop. The W Liberty shop is very simple, with only a few tables, a long coffee bar, and a couple of coveted loveseats in the front window.
Hyperion strives to maintain relationships with smaller artisan growers with a goal of consistency year after year while helping these coffee farms innovate, grow, and thrive: “Our long-term partnership with Rolando and Jose Laris is a prime example of our sourcing philosophy. We aim to work with farmers year after year to provide consistent purchases that they can rely on while working to improve quality and experiment with new processing methods and farm-level improvements.”
I will be picking up a few packages of beans for the holidays and housewarming gifts.
Literati, on the corner of E Washington and Fourth, is a nationally recognized independent bookstore in the heart of downtown Ann Arbor. Literati opened in 2013 and is going strong today and hopefully well into the future. This is how retail bookselling is successfully done today. Literati aims to be a place where book lovers can go, talk, and interact with each other. We host author readings, book clubs, poetry nights, children’s story times, and free book clubs. Literati was honored in 2019 as the Indie Bookstore of the Year.
What I love about Literati is that I can find a book for myself or as a gift quickly and easily. I am not a big reader; however, when I go to Literati, I leave with a good book that gets read or a perfect gift for the intended reader. Literati has a wonderfully curated selection of books on three levels. I especially like how they highlight books that are of interest – including their staff pics of the year.
Today Clothing is the best bespoke men’s clothing store in the Midwest and perhaps the country! That’s a lot to say – but it’s true. Eric Harden brings in the best stuff! Hard to find high-quality brands with limited production runs and great styles. The good stuff goes quickly. You will find many US-made clothing and brands from Japan, Sweden, Norway and France, and more.
If you are tired of the mass market, the lowest common denominator clothing, and want clothing with spirit and soul, visit Today Clothing. I am so glad these guys are here! They get a large portion of my clothing business.
“We want items that look good, but we also want items that age well and that our customers can wear for years,” Hardin said.
If you have any Downtown Ann Arbor questions, I am here to help.