By Laura Marrich, Steven Robert Allen, Christie Chisholm, Amy Dalness, Marisa Demarco, Devin D. O'Leary, Hillari Straba
Caviar Set, $59
Fremont's Fine Foods 1100 San Mateo NE 792-3463
Big spending gourmands can drop some spare change on this lovely mother-of-pearl caviar plate and spoon. Add a nice one-ounce jar of Ostra caviar for a mere $20 or go nuts on Russian Sevruga caviar for $67.95. In anticipation of the holiday gift-giving season, Fremont's has expanded beyond mere tasty titdbits. The store has shelfloads of fine imported household goods, including tea sets from Britain, silk tablecloths from India and hand-woven table-runners from the Philippines.
Moon Cakes, $4.99 (on sale)
G&H Oriental Food 129 Pennsylvania NE 255-8880
These ornate little pastries whisper at your wealth and worldliness. Like the Chinese equivalent of fruit cake, no one will jump up at the chance to eat red lotus seed and salted duck egg yolk in a crust of pastry dough; but the wishes of longevity and harmony they symbolize will be appreciated. Plus, the more ornate your mooncake box and utensils, the more financially well-endowed the giver is presumed to be. Yowza!
Travel Humidor Kit, $59Heaven Fine Cigar Flavored Cherubs, $15.99
Rio Rancho Cigars 1520 Deborah Road, Suite C, Rio Rancho 994-9898
No one should ever be without their favorite cigars, whether it's in the comfort of their smoking chair or traveling to the great unknown. A travel humidor helps ensure the best flavor and provides a portable ashtray, quartz clock and a pipette reservoir. Since this small size is best for cherubs or cigarettes, give a couple packs of Heaven Fine Cigar Flavored Cherubs for a tasteful gift package.
Even when you have all the money in the world, you don't necessarily want to buy the most expensive TV—you simply want to buy the best. Baillo's carries televisions pricier than this Hitachi, but they don't carry a better one. According to their sales staff, this baby's got the best resolution and video processing on the market. It's even got a USB input so you can hook up your computer and use it as a giant monitor. Freaky cool!
Gourmet Food Gift Basket, $8-$125
The Grove Café and Market 600 Central SE 248-9800
The basket shown here goes for $55, but The Grove is celebrating its first Christmas with lovely baskets of every size. Pictured are: Elsa's Story Brown Sugared Butter Cookies; Starr Ridge Roasted Garlic and Shallot Hors d'Oeuvre Crackers, which pair nicely with NapaStyle Spicy Roasted Pepper Spread; Al Dente Spicy Sesame Linguine Noodles and Bella Cucina Artichoke Lemon Pesto. The baskets themselves are pretty and useful, sturdy but pliable.
Sandia Ceramic Dish, $75
Gallery of the Sandias 12220 N. Hwy. 14 281-4333
Albuquerque has its secrets. One of them is artist Gary Parker, named one of the top 100 ceramic artists in the country by the Smithsonian. His decadent works can be found at Gallery of the Sandias, which specializes in exquisite trinkets from around the world. Featured here is one of Parker’s serving dishes, which depicts a deep terra cotta-hued landscape, gilded in real gold and platinum. The people on your holiday gift list deserve the best. Stop by the Gallery to peruse the finer things.