comScore

Best of

the Twin Cities

BEST HARDWARE STORE

Gardner Hardware

It wasn't only the big-box home-improvement giants that threatened to squash this 45-year-old hardware store last year. In July, condos were slated to move in and promptly boot the hardware store out. Proposed as "Gardner Lofts," the brainchild of a real-estate group called Shamrock Development would've forced the 122-year-old hardware company to find a new spot to sell its assortment of tools and trinkets. Thankfully, the project flopped, and the little hardware store that could still resides with its name intact and at its home in the North Loop. Gardner Hardware is a neighborhood fixture in downtown Minneapolis, where customers are known on a first-name basis and friendly and knowledgeable staff members can help them find anything they need—whether it's a pet wipe for that mess your dog made after being cooped up in the condo all day, or a finial for that lamp shade that's been suffering from a disorder known as "dangling caddywompas" since the last big move. While downtown do-it-yourselfers take solace in the store's wide array of construction and paint supplies, Gardner also stocks run-of-the-mill home necessities like cleaning supplies and toilet paper.

BEST ADULT VIDEO STORE Adult Only Superstore

BEST ART SUPPLIES Wet Paint

BEST ASIAN GROCERY Shuang Hur Oriental Market

BEST BIKE SHOP One on One

BEST BOOKSTORE (CHAIN) Borders Books & Music

BEST BOOKSTORE (INDIE) Magers and Quinn

BEST BOOKSTORE (USED) Majors and Quinn

BEST BOUTIQUE Design Collective

BEST CD STORE (NEW) Electric Fetus

BEST CD STORE (USED) Cheapo

BEST CLOTHING (MEN) Top Shelf

BEST COMIC BOOK SHOP Big Brain's Comics

BEST COMPUTER REPAIR General NanoSystems

BEST DOG TRAINING Obedience Training Club

BEST ELECTRONICS (AUDIOPHILE)

BEST ELECTRONICS (PROLETARIAN) radio shack

BEST FREE PARKING Hennepin Avenue at I-94

BEST GARDEN CENTER Lyndale Garden Center

BEST GAS STATION Pump and Munch

BEST GIFT STORE Patina

BEST GOLF SHOP Golf Club Hospital

BEST HAIRCUT Aveda Institute

BEST LAUNDROMAT Rainbow Laundromat

BEST LINGERIE Fredrick's

BEST LOCALLY GENERATED WEBSITE cursor.org

BEST MUSIC STORE (CHAIN) Guitar Center

BEST MUSIC STORE (LOCAL YOKEL) Groth Music's

BEST PET ADOPTION Midwestern Avian Adoption and Rescue Services

BEST PLACE TO BUY STRIPPER CLOTHES Sex World

BEST PLACE TO BUY VINYL Fifth Element

BEST REASON NOT TO OVERHAUL YOUR MEDIA PRODUCT Star Tribune

BEST REASON TO READ THE PIONEER PRESS Tim Nelson

BEST REASONS TO READ THE STAR TRIBUNE

BEST SHOE STORE Bay Street Shoes

BEST SPIN CLASS The Firm

BEST THRIFT STORE Unique Thrift store

BEST TOBACCONIST Lewis Pipe & Tobacco

BEST TOY STORE Robot Love

BEST USED FURNITURE Succotash

BEST VIDEO RENTAL Nicollet Village Video

BEST YARN STORE The Yarnery

BEST YOGA