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Monocle knows their way around the continent a lot better than we do, when they start listing shops, we start taking notes.

The latest piece on their 20 favorite retailers (via PSFK) held more surprises than most. The stateside entries are reduced to New York’s Odin, L.A.’s James Perse, and San Francisco’s Bi Rite, but the best finds are from a bit farther out.

Osaka usually misses out on the West’s Japanophilia, so it’s good to know about Truck Furniture. But most of all, we’re happy Beirut’s Johnny Farah is getting some love. Farah used to consult with Donna Karan, and his handbags still find their way into boutiques around the world, but his flagship shop is in Lebanon, where the artisinal cobbling tradition never went away, and you can get a pair of hand-crafted shoes unlike anything you’ll find in London or Milan.

1) Demasié in Barcelona for beautifully packaged confectionery and great interiors.
2) Roden Gray in Vancouver for its rough interiors but very gentle staff.
3) Folk and Oliver Spencer in London for Made in Britain menswear and good service.
4) JR Leder in Berlin for bespoke men’s leather bags made at the back of the shop.
5) Monmouth Coffee Company in London for loving what they do and knowing their beans.
6) Rough Trade East in London for its handwritten recommondations and outstanding vinyl and CD selection.
7) Truck Furniture in Osaka for when you want to re-engineer your life.
8) Ciclic in Barcelona for its recent renovation and overhaul of art titles, international DVDs and hard-to-source magazines.
9) Eslite in Taipei for every form of printed matter available 24 hours a day.
10) Isetan food hall in Tokyo for the breadth of choice, sensory overload and uniforms.
11) Odin in New York for its ever-surprising and eclectic mix of menswear for any season.
12) Frédéric Malle in Paris for its limited-edition perfumes and focused vision.
13) James Perse’s Beverly Hills branch for its activewear range, laid back but attentive staff and indoor/outdoor interior.
14) Svenskt Tenn in Stockholm because the older we get the better we look in Josef Frank.
15) Hakusan in Tokyo for its perfectly designed ceramics and bijou, museum-like setting.
16) Johnny Farah in Beirut for comfortable house shoes and a handcrafted ethic.
17) Bi Rite in San Francisco. The type of business you’d be proud of if you had the idea to do a neighbourhood grocery store.
18) Pierre Hardy in Paris because their desert boots are best.
19) Lisn in Kyoto and Tokyo’s Aoyama for the best incense, smart staff and packaging.
20) Aspesi’s Milan emporium for its airy rooms, cheeky merchandising and consistency.

List courtesy of PSFK

—R.B.

CONTRIBUTORS

  • Russell Brandom