I remember a time in this city when cooking supply stores seemed a dime a dozen. When Stock Culinary Goods opened its doors on Hope Street last November, it was part of a very small lot. “When Williams-Sonoma at Providence Place closed in January, we were the only kitchen store left in Providence,” says owner Jan Dane. “Our plan was always to bring in a lot of appliances and utilitarian items.
If Jan is affable and warm, her school-age daughter is outright charming. As I make my way around the perimeter of the room, the duo warmly greets all who enter, leaving me to browse freely. The first thing I notice is that many items in stock are made in America such as framed Edible Rhody food prints and handmade Lynne’s Whim aprons. But as cute as Lynne’s aprons are, my heart belongs to the burlap ones with silky sash ties, sold inside glass Ball canister jars.
No culinary shop worth its weight in flour would be complete without a multitude of goods from France. One of my favorite items in the store is an imported red Chasseur cast iron cooking dish with a bunny-shaped lid. “I have that with a duck lid too,” Jan says from across the room. There are clear stacking bowls and ceramic stockpots and – what’s that? – a beautiful, made in France tagine, retailing for $299. It’s half kitchen showpiece, half cooking vessel, but for those on a budget, the Emile Henry tagine retails for just $139.
Everything you need to be a domestic goddess is here: food scales, hand turned cherry wood rolling pins, fondue pots, utensils, cast iron pans and griddles, glass pitchers, cloth napkins and hand-blown juicers. Be sure to pick up a Cook’s Journal in which you can track your culinary prowess. As all skilled chefs cook with wine, you’ll want a place to store your wine and a means by which to keep it fresh. You can hang three bottles on Stock’s wine rack, featuring felt horseshoe-shaped holders.
While I truly love most everything in this store, there were two items I covet above all others. The first is an 11.5-inch hand-forged artisan copper pot that is made here in Rhode Island. The handle is crafted of cast iron and attached by copper rivets. It has a pretty hefty price tag, but it’s certainly worth saving up for. Many items in Stock are very affordable, including the colorful Nogent knives. When I notice them clinging to a magnetic burlap knife rack, I gasp in delight and ask Jan its price. “Actually we don’t sell the knife rack,” she says, “but my husband made it from items that are all available in store!” Well, I suppose I could handle a project. Game on.