Five Boston Stores with Perfect Dinner-Party Host Gifts

Stock their wine rack, display shelves, and pantry with wares from these local shops.

dinner party host gifts

Greenery dresses up the displays at Queen of Swords / Madeline Heising Photography

For the Craft Connoisseur

Queen of Swords

11 Hawkins St., Somerville, 617-718-0373,

Helmed by the talented ladies behind floral-and-event-styling company Forêt Design Studio, the recently opened Queen of Swords celebrates the handmade with an assortment of finely crafted clothing, accessories, and home goods. True to form, many of the indie brands carried by the Insta-worthy shop—which debuted in August—are also female-owned.

Must-Buy: Na Nin “Landslide” handpoured soy candle, $26.

For the Vino Aficionado

Central Bottle Wine + Provisions

196 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, 617-225-0040,

Modeled after the enotecas of Venice, this glass-walled Cambridge shop impresses with a robust inventory of small-batch, biodynamic wines, many sourced from Italy and France. Stop in for any of Central Bottle’s free tastings, held three times each week, to find the perfect bottle to pair with your host’s beef braciole or coq au vin. And did we mention the artisanal cheese and salumi selections? You’ll want to peruse those, too.

Must-Buy: Clos Centeilles “La Part des Anges” red wine, $17.

dinner party host gifts

A sleek marble serving board from Greentail Table / Courtesy photo

For the Entertainer

Greentail Table

343 Watertown St., Newton, 617-244-3510,

Teak bar tools. Porcelain appetizer plates. Charming salt-and-pepper shakers in the shape of birds. You’ll find it all at this design-forward Newton boutique, a Scandinavian-inspired ode to all things tabletop. The hardest part of shopping here? Resisting the urge to keep the goodies for yourself.

Must-Buy: Marble serving board with leather strap, $28.

For the Chocoholic

L.A. Burdick

220 Clarendon St., Boston, 617-303-0113; 52 Brattle St., Cambridge, 617-491-4340;

If there’s a candy heaven, we’re pretty sure it’s brimming with the mouthwatering sweets offered by this confectioner,
which marks its 30th anniversary this year. Breathe in the intoxicating aroma of brewing cappuccino from the in-store café while you scour the tidy displays of rich drinking chocolate, handmade bonbons, candy-dipped apricots and thinly sliced pears, and the shop’s signature ganache-filled penguins and mice.

Must-Buy: Signature bonbon assortment, $18 for 11 pieces.

A box of L.A. Burdick’s tasty signature chocolates. / Photograph by Tom Moore

For the Green Thumb


619 Tremont St., Boston, 857-753-4294; 286 Broadway, Cambridge, 857-706-1164;

There’s something so soothing about walking into Niche’s cozy South End outpost, where lush houseplants, succulent-filled glass terrariums, and shapely ceramic and terra cotta planters gracefully coexist on wooden shelves. Take your pick of any of the covetable flora you see around the shop, or work one-on-one with staffers to create a custom potted arrangement.

Must-Buy: Aglaonema Stripes in a 6-inch pot, $25.