June Street Smarts: A quickie guide to a few shops on Bow Street in Portsmouth
Short and sweet: two words that define the Bow Street shopping experience. While it’s not much of a walk, there’s enough here for a day of happy browsing.
1. Find gifts, clothing, art, novelties, videos, model kits, all with a tugboat theme at Tugboat Alley on 47 Bow Street. Not enough to satisfy your nautical muse or your inner child? Then you can book a cruise or even plan for a wedding on board Tug Alley Too, a delightfully restored 1966 model tugboat which spent most of its life delivering lobsters. (603) 430-9556
2. Check out Izzy’s on 33 Bow Street when you feel like you’ve earned a break. Have a large waffle cone of their black raspberry chocolate chip (their most popular flavor) or mix it up with one of the 23-or-so other taste treats they have available. You’ll feel like you’ve really indulged yourself, even though, hey, it’s frozen yogurt and not that bad for you. (603) 431-1053
3. Fashion apparel, jewelry and bags at Blue at 67 Bow Street come in a variety of colors, but the emphasis in this store is on women’s denim. Their jeans come in all the classic shades and are designed to enhance one’s assets with this eternally stylish fabric. Among other hot brands, they carry Silver, Miss Me and Sang Real. They’ve just stocked up on light summer tops by Miss Me and Sang Real to try on with a sick pair of sunglasses. (603) 431-7717
4. Beautiful works of glass art like this fantastic leaf from the Gartner/Blade Arbor Series can be found at the NJM Gallery on 8 Bow Street. The storefront allows ample light to illuminate the amazing array of creations by more than 100 glass artists from all over the country, including many made by local artisans. (603) 433-4120
5. Original American handicrafts cover every surface in Tulips on 57 Bow Street, including a wall full of “Herlihedrons” (like the jaunty owl, above) created by Rye artist Nina Fox Herlihy. Her soulful “eco-assemblages” are created from materials she collects beachcombing and otherwise recycling odd bits, either natural and man-made. (603) 431-9445
6. When the shopping day is over, grab a bite at Fat Belly’s, 2 Bow Street. We recommend the Market Street Turkey Condo, a Fat Belly’s salad and a Widmer Hefeweizen (pictured above). Or stick around for a couple of Redhook Long Hammer IPAs or a pineapple cosmo. The place is friendly and fun with smoking allowed upstairs and a lively crowd guaranteed on the weekends. (603) 610-4228