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'My Favorite Item' #4: The Salsabol

From the Final Four to the fresh baseball season, and with the Masters starting next week, the schedule is packed with good athletic television——and you know what that means. Snacks. Because nothing says “I’m watching sports on TV” like “I’m eating delicious salsa from a really sweet bowl.” Luckily, our gifting expert Emiliano is here to weigh in with his favorite item from a recent Quarterly box: the tasty and timely Salsabol, from Veronica Belmont's fifth mailing. 

Curator: Veronica Belmont

Box: #NOM05

Item: The Salsabol

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According to the Salsabol guys it’s as simple as this: 1) Scoop your dip. 2) Hit the lip. 3) Celebrate your awesome scoop! After doing some research on vessels to house our salsa we came across this awesome bowl. I can personally attest to its simple, functional, and attractive design.

The bowl was an easy choice because the package was centered around Papalote Salsa, which is from one of the Bay Area’s favorite Mexican restaurants, Papalote, located in the Mission district of San Francisco. When we reached out to the Salsabol guys, they were excited to collaborate and bring the fiesta to Veronica’s subscribers’ doors.

And after personally owning this bowl for a few months it’s become more then just a salsa bowl——it doubles as an awesome conversational piece. So go grab your favorite salsa and chips and get scooping. (Of course, our recommendation would be Papalote’s.)

Thanks, Emiliano! And to get your own tastes of the Bay Area, sign up for Veronica Belmont’s #NOM07.

Check out this gif of a fan trading out her old wallet for the snazzy wallet from #NGQ02, the hit box from Nina Garcia! Then grab #NGQ03 today.

Check out this gif of a fan trading out her old wallet for the snazzy wallet from #NGQ02, the hit box from Nina Garcia! Then grab #NGQ03 today.

#HBT03: Everyday Luxury

What does “luxury” really mean? In your busy life, what counts as “decadent”? In #HBT03, Jesse “Head Butler” Kornbluth pondered these questions——and his answers may surprise you. (They surprised him.)

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That lovely Canal House cookbook is a clue. Its authors, Christopher Hirsheimer and Melissa Hamilton, explained to Jesse that they filled it with fancy recipes (like fried oysters and eggs with truffles) because their real luxury is spending time with family at the table. So they went all out.

What else is a luxury? Something that’s the best in its class——like these incredible Piennolo tomatoes, grown in volcanic soil near Mount Vesuvius. Or the high-grade Yunnan wonder tea, Pu-erh (Alice Waters swears by it). Then there’s that age-old luxury: soul-stirring music in the comfort of your own home. So Jesse finished with a favorite, the Malian artist Smod, which he calls “glorious, exultant, original, melodic, and accessible.”

Great culture, strong flavors, unfussy elegance…sounds like a Jesse Kornbluth box. Let Jesse play head butler for you, starting with #HBT04

#ANM02: Up in Smoke

Working in LA, we’re lucky to be able to visit Animal and Son of a Gun restaurants whenever our hearts desire. (And our hearts desire very, very often.) But with their Quarterly subscription, your zip doesn’t need to start with a 90 for you to taste Vinny and Jon’s cooking. And with #ANM02, they proved it, sending a proper barbecue to your door.

How’d they pull that off? Let’s take a look:

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Killer BBQ starts with a lethal recipe, and continues with a debate over that recipe. So Vinny and Jon started subscribers off with two of their personal standbys. Next come the spices (you won’t beat this mix) and perhaps our favorite item: smoke in a bag, straight from Texas.

Last up is getting sauce on ribs, so they sent a great brush, too. Actually, last up is getting sauce all over yourself——so they finished with some BBQ-grade towels from Hedley and Bennett.

Is your mouth watering yet? Don’t miss more amazing items for aspiring chefs——sign up for #ANM03 today.

Veterinarian Dr. Justine Lee will be sending great gifts for very spoiled canines. But she won’t be curating alone; her dog, Milo, will help make sure every item passes the smell test. In this video, we find Milo hard at work approving boxes. Enjoy, and sign your pooch up for #DOG01 today!

Behind the Scenes at Quarterly

A fun thing about working at Quarterly HQ is that we’re surrounded by great items from Quarterly mailings. Look in any direction, and you’ll spot something from one of our curators. Like Tina Roth Eisenberg's water bottle from #YAY05, cleverly repurposed:

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Or Book Riot's banned books mug, from #BKR02 (paired with our office Tonx coffee subscription, which we highly recommend).

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These tiles are part of an art project for Scott Belsky's latest. (Ask an #SKB09 subscriber to find out more…)

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Virgil did not receive this old tennis ball in a Quarterly box——but he is excited to get canine goodies from Dr. Justine Lee.

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For more glimpses behind the scenes at Quarterly HQ, follow us on Instagram!

#CGQ03: Marking Milestones

Chris Guillebeau's third Quarterly box dropped in January, and if you're familiar with Chris's productivity work, that's a clue: Yes, #CGQ03 was all about resolutions. And since March is a perfect time to check in with those big plans for 2014, let's take a moment to look at what Chris sent.

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Giving his package the theme of “Marking Milestones,” Chris started with a beautiful 2014 wall calendar and a “Make Change” Tattly tattoo. Then to help you with said change-making, Chris put in the book How To Be an Explorer of the World, by Keri Smith, which is stuffed with useful exercises.

And since real milestones are pretty heavy, Chris sent a clever symbolic replacement: a whiskey stone ice mold, which will also aid in celebrations when you reach milestones. See what he did there? Last up: some of Chris’ personal cocktail recipes. So keep striving for those goals, and when you reach them, pour yourself a drink.

For more nonconformist mailings from Chris Guillebeau, sign up starting with #CGQ04!

Now on Quarterly: Justine Lee

It’s not often a curator announces, “My boxes contain nothing for you.” Got your attention, didn’t we? Here, see if this picture helps clear things up:

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Dr. Justine Lee is America’s popular veterinary expert and Quarterly’s newest curator. And the reason her boxes don’t feature stuff for us bipeds is that they’ll be chock-full of great items for your four-legged companions.  In her words, think “bling for Milo” and other items that will keep your canine safe and healthy——and very, very happy.

Ready to spoil your pup? Want to improve dog–mailman relations? Join the fun for #DOG01!

Kristian Bush made a video hinting at what to expect in his first Quarterly box! Curious about #KBQ01? Sign up while you still can.

'My Favorite Item' #3: Foot Petals

It’s Friday, and we’re back with another personal favorite item from one of our gifting experts. Last week, Mark got you ready for the weekend with a dose of his new cocktail go-to: Bittermen’s Bitters from #SGF04. Today, Sarah P. writes about another standby for weekend socializing. No seriously, these literally help you stand. Take it away, Sarah!

Curator: Coco

Box: #CCO01

Item: Foot Petals Heart Shaped Tip Toes

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Click, click, click…you can hear the high heel wearer, or medium or kitten heel wearer, from a mile away. Clickety-clacking down the street, she is usually walking quickly in order to get to her next destination so she can sit down and relieve her feet from the pressure of her heels! Only kidding.

Coco and I are both avid heel wearers. When we were working on putting together her first package a common theme of shoes and shoe obsession kept coming up. We decided Shoe Petals would be the perfect addition! They reduce the pressure placed on the ball of the foot, even in the most uncomfortable, but adorable, shoes. And when you remove whatever may be tickling your fancy this season from your feet, it’s nice to see pink hearts instead of huge orthopedic-looking drug store pads.

I have since purchased more of these fun little shoe pads to soften the blow of the daily grind. They make me smile when I see them nested in my shoes, and I know my feet appreciate them too. They’ve also proved to be great gifts, as my friends have enjoyed the little secrets tucked away under their toes.

Thanks, Sarah P.! To sign up for the next stylish box from Coco, head to her curator page.