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Rose and Radish

Mixing Unlikely Elements for Your Good Taste

s we come up on the 20th anniversary of the Loma Prieta earthquake, it’s hard to imagine there was a time not long ago that opening a store on what was once a shadowy and cold strip of waterfront would only be met by silence and stares of disbelief. But as the Ferry Building continues to draw throngs of tourists and locals every day, additional stores have slowly been sprouting along the piers, turning what was once a dark thoroughfare to a bustling promenade.

One of the pioneering retailers in this revitalized area is Rose and Radish. An unfortunate flood at their original location in Hayes Valley turned into a serendipitous situation as just last month owner Cate Kellison reopened her store in a brand new spot in the remodeled Pier 3 on The Embarcadero, just north of Washington Street.

For those of you familiar with Rose and Radish from its days as a floral shop, you’ll have to change your mindset as the focus of the store has been altered. Now instead of floral design as the centerpiece, the store is devoted to facets of home design, such as tableware, glassware and pillows, in addition to a small selection of toys, gift cards, and other novel items.

Among the industrial-sized tabletops throughout the store, you’ll find a mix and match of fun or fine and modern or traditional items. Just as the store did previously with floral design, the product mixture here brings varying elements together for a modern and sophisticated look. The elegant and edgy inventory at Rose and Radish is often European in origin, but they do carry items such as tableware from Mud in Australia and even local designers like The Heated.

As with the original store, the merchandise is often organized by theme: color, creature, texture, etc. These themes are incorporated from time to time in works by artists in the gallery-like space.

Throughout the store, many of the products are placed on bright merino wool felt placemats by Domestic Affairs (Daff) in colors like aqua, orange and magenta ($25), but the company also makes coasters ($12 for a set of four) and trivets ($10). The store carries Daff’s felt briefcases in charcoal and black ($220) as well.

The shop also carries, fun, toy-like items for adults, including the Soz Carpenter Block Mini 64 Piece Set from Japan ($44), made to order Clive and Sunshine fabric foxes ($90), and toadstool lamps ($75).

If you want to kick your cooking tool set up a notch, a Tarrérias-Bonjean Absolu stainless steel kitchen knife will run you $113. But as any cook knows, all the money you spend on a knife means nothing if you don’t keep it sharp. Just your luck there’s the porcelain conical Mayer and Thiele knife sharpener in either black or white ($174).

If you’re looking for something a little more affordable to add a little extra whimsy and cheer to your cooking area, the unbleached towels with screen printed owls from local brand The Heated only cost $11.

When your meal is ready, dining from handmade, hand glazed porcelain plates from Royal Copenhagen ($40) or bowls of handmade bisque porcelain and hand-drawn cobalt from Hering ($181) can make any meal an artistic experience. To toast your friends and family, you’ll find crystal flutes and wine glasses from Richard Ginori ($30) or Thomas Eyck cognac glasses made of mouth-blown borosilicate ($63).

When you are done with all your cooking and entertaining, you can lay your head on one of Danish designer Lisbet Friis’ vibrantly hued and hand printed Belgian linen pillows ($199).

If you’re looking to go a step further in your home design, Rose and Radish carries a selection of Cole and Son wallpaper. Recently tree designs, such as the classic theme from the 1950s known as “Woods” by Michael Clarke ($195 for 20.3 inches wide x 33 feet long roll), have been quite popular and can barely be kept in stock.

Most of what you find in the store is not in the budget of the average shopper, but if you want to add a very special piece to warm your home, or the home of someone else, this is an ideal spot.

Should you be getting married, or throwing some other present-worthy event, the store also has a full service gift registry. In addition, Rose and Radish offers their distinctive products online, but currently the website is under construction though should be back up soon.