You shouldn’t be happy with things, they say. You should invest in experiences.
Thankfully, each “thing” on our list of the 52 best products we covered this year is, in a way, an experience.
It's not just a portable grill that charges your phone — it's a campfire. That pair of boots with a flask in the heel? Calls for a toast.
And don't even get us started on the hot tub boat.
52 Best Products of 2017 Home (7 images)
Few camping chairs do all the things. But here, the hammock-like design lets the chair rock and recline. And, like most Nemo chairs, the Stargaze folds up small enough to fit into a daypack.
Dornbracht Horizontal Shower
Standing up in the shower? Kinda played out. The HS has six shower heads that can dispense water controlled for temperature, intensity and quantity. Since the overall effect is meant to be balancing, energizing and de-stressing, the Horizontal Shower allows its occupant(s) to recline on their back, side or front to enjoy the flows.
Grandview Barrel Sauna
A gigantic cedar barrel detox center that comes with IKEA-style assembly instructions and, optionally, a M3 wood-burning stove — chimney and all.
Made-to-order coffee tables sculpted from a special resin, a single piece of Travertine marble and wood. The topographical layers create the impression of a sea levitating in your living room.
Tole K60 Garden Fire
Your fire pit, elevated. A six-foot-high steel column chimney with brushed steel, and grill options abound, from a standard grill to a wok station to a Teppanyaki griddle.
A set-it-and-forget-it hydroponics grower. Hmmm ... wonder what you could grow in there?
52 Best Products of 2017 Food Drink (11 images)
FOOD AND DRINK
Gochikuru Beef Bento Box
Filled with $2,600+ of premium wagyu cuts from Tottori Prefecture, the cow-shaped compartments in this wooden box are filled with cuts that correspond to their location on the cattle.
Ranger Station Leather + Pine Candles
Whiskey candles. More specifically, candle holders that once depleted can be cleaned, washed, then used as tumblers for your favorite spirits.
Tap up to three growlers with the precision of a keg. Chrome casing and wooden tap handles mean it looks sharp, too.
An unfiltered, unpasteurized blond beer with no additives, coloring or preservatives, utilizing three varieties of hops, presented in a minimalist glass bottle designed and signed by luminary Philippe Starck.
The electric-powered grill gets your charcoal burning at the right temp in 10 minutes or less, while a built-in rotisserie system (equipped with “Cliplock” forks) easily holds your chickens, suckling pigs or really big marshmallows firmly in place.
Keepers Citrus Coffee Soda
Skeptical until we tasted it, this citrus-y coffee drink delivers an energetic buzz that lasts for a few hours while being light and refreshing.
OtterBox Venture Cooler
Viewed as a customizable alternative to the Yeti, these 25-, 45- and 65-quart coolers can hold ice for up to two weeks. The big selling point here — besides being “bear resistant” — is a mounting system that allows you to personalize the coolers with cutting boards, dry storage trays and/or separators, among other add-ons.
Flask 2 from Urwerk and The Macallan is a 156-component, two-tank canister made for discerning imbibers everywhere. After sipping your specialty flask cocktail, simply twist the mouthpiece to switch to a second reservoir filled with your favorite booze.
This is your anti-clutter kitchen here. Built from great materials — Japanese stainless steel, natural woods (walnut, maple, beech) — Material’s “The Fundamentals” set collects six essential cooking tools in a wooden base.
C4 Portable Grill
About the size of a U.S. Army ammo box and just as tough, the C4 Portable Grill is made from 12- gauge steel and also has a handle and hinge constructed from 304 stainless-steel tubing. If cooking out isn’t on the agenda, the C4’s grill can be removed to convert the durable cooker into a firepit.
Glenfiddich Winter Storm
Glenfiddich Winter Storm is the world's first single malt finished in Canadian ice wine casks. The result is a toothsome blend that weds the sweetness and acidity of the ice wine with the crisp oakiness of the Scotch.
Best Products 2017 Gadgets (9 images)
Fender Bluetooth Speakers
Named after two iconic SoCal music festivals, the Newport and Monterey models both have an amp-style metal front grille and tuning knobs to adjust sound, along with a blue LED amp jewel light. Created with the Fender aficionado in mind, the heavy-duty speakers provide a crisp, clean, powerful sound that lives up to the high standards Fender has set for itself.
Crusher Hesh Headphones
They're minimal, they fold up nice and neat, and they provide 22 hours of battery life. These over-ear headphones are also way lighter than most similar models and have surprisingly strong noise-canceling skills.
BeoSound Shape Sound System
Four years in the making, the BeoSound Shape system is made of wireless, hexagonal wall tiles that double as speakers, amplifiers or acoustic dampers. Fully modular, the system can be expanded to accommodate infinite tiles in 10 different fabric colors.
Ember Ceramic Mug
A product that promises to “keep your beverages at the perfect temperature,” the Ember Ceramic Mug pairs with an app that notifies you when your drink reaches the exact degree of your choosing. And it comes with a charging coaster. Because your desk needs more clutter.
At 15 pounds, this highly portable stargazer uses a low light sensor with an algorithm to fast-process the images and amplify them at a 1,000,000:1 contrast ratio. The telescope also connects to your smartphone, stores 20 million star components it its memory and uses Autonomous Field Detection to alert you to the current celestial situation.
C Seed 262
Check out these stats: 262-inch diagonal length, 19-foot-wide LED screen, 1,763 pounds, 10 integrated speakers, 4,096 x 1,716 pixel resolution, 5,000:1 contrast ratio. And the biggest number of all for the 4K TV: a cost of $539,000 (plus $38K more to install).
Samsung Frame TV
Swiss industrial designer Yves Béhar teamed with Samsung to develop a wall-mounted TV that never turns off and displays a rotating selection of more than 100 artistic works when not in use. Talk about tying a room together.
These French audiophiles handcraft a few hundred pairs of their headphones each year, using premium materials to create headsets that are refined, minimalist and unobtrusive.
Belle Portable Speaker
A shiny, black, kettlebell-like take on the boombox, featuring two full-range drivers and dual passive radiators. With the push of a button it becomes a powerful subwoofer, and can also act as a hub, pairing with up to six other Bluetooth speakers from (and this is important) any brand.
Best Products of 2017 Gear (8 images)
Patagonia Self-Inflating Vest
A self-inflating vest for big wave surfers. Made in partnership with FCD Surfboards, it’s worn under a wetsuit and equips two CO2 cartridges that fill the vest and wetsuit with buoyant gas to help submerged surfers stay afloat.
Hailing from Australia, this multitool is suited for the dangers of the Outback. It’s a hatchet, hammer, hook/stake puller, saw and shovel, all of which pack away into a canvas holster (with accompanying belt loop). Rust resistant and lightweight to boot.
Cotopaxi Hiking Pack
Here’s a bag that can roll with the pitches. Made from weatherproof materials, the rugged pack has 35 liters of space to play with, so as long as you don’t pack like Princess Vespa, you can load this sucker up for at least a fortnight on the road.
A collaboration between Oliver Sweeney Boots and Talisker Whisky, this brown Italian leather hiking boot features a 2 oz. hip flask (foot flask?) on the outer left ankle, and comes with a bottle of Talisker’s 10-year to keep your hike well lubricated.
Wingman Pocket Knife
Combine today’s everyday carry culture with an eye to the future and you get this. It’s a mid-sized blade forged from high-quality stainless steel that hides flush inside the titanium handle when the knife is closed.
This cool 19-lb. grill (“If you can carry a cooler, you can carry this”) comes with a USB-rechargeable powerpack, folding legs, a removable grill grate (for hibachi-style meals) and an X-ray mesh for 360-degree viewing. It’s also easy to switch from charcoal grilling to a wood-burning campfire — the charcoal embers even serve as a firestarter.
Cru Clan Inflatable Tent
Tenting, solved. Going on a kayak trip in the fall and need a two-man tent? Take the Crua Duo. Is it going to be cold on that trip? Add the Crua Cocoon, which is basically a liner of insulation that helps winterize your tent. Want to share a covered space with a group of people but not sleep next to them? Take the Crua Core, a 12x16 foot dome that can connect to up to three Crua Duos.
Shoal Tent Raft
Water camping, anyone? Made by fly fishing outfitters SmithFly, the Shoal is an inflatable floating raft topped with a pole-less, inflatable tent. The base is 8’x8’ and a 6”-thick drop-stitched floor on top provides cushioning that’ll beat out the rocky, insect-infested, bear-patrolling land any day.
Best Products 2017 Style (13 images)
Adam Savage Work Bag
One of the Mythbusters made a do-it-all work bag inspired by the Temporary Storage Bag NASA gave astronauts on their first trip to the moon. Savage’s iteration uses a zipper enclosure and magnets to keep the handles together, upcycled sailboat cloth for the body and a Kevlar-reinforced bottom for extra protection.
Live Out There Chamonix Down Jacket
A new direct-to-consumer brand that makes handsome outdoor apparel for the world’s most extreme conditions. We particularly liked this, an extremely lightweight layer so packable it can stuff into its own pocket.
Columbia’s Star Wars Echo Base Collection
A line of officially licensed winter gear inspired by the best (and most stylish) film in the series — The Empire Strikes Back.
Haglöfs V Series Down Jacket
Designed to be “the toughest down jacket in the world,” the shell is made from a Dyneema composite fabric (which is 15% Dyneema, 22% polyester, 44% polypropylene and 19% other fiber) that’s lightweight, strong and waterproof. Its interior is insulated with a goose down blend.
Suitsupply Revenge of the Yuppies Collection
An accessible line that unabashedly channels Gordon Gekko and Pat Bateman through room-commanding three-piece suits, double-breasted jackets and suspenders. Oh, and don’t forget the translucent raincoat.
Chuck Taylor All Star Waterproof Nubucks
Converse swapped the standard canvas for water-resistant Nubuck leather to create a pair of boot-like sneakers that are nearly waterproof.
Paravel Cadet Bags
A canvas exterior (with Italian leather details) that’s stain-proof, waterproof and lightweight, this might not be your bag for whitewater rafting ... but it’s going to look damn handsome during an afternoon rainstorm in the city.
Satchel + Page Port Series
The best-looking, most organized way to get from one place to the next. Everything from your tablet to your pen has its own spot.
Filson x United States Forest Service Collection
A 17-piece collaboration with a portion of the proceeds going to the US Forest Service. Pay special attention to this hard-wearing, 100-percent-twill (and bridle leather) duffel.
Vollebak 100 Year Hoodie
Do you really need a garment that can handle being charred by a blow torch? No. Might you want one, anyway? Hell yes. Made from 100% DuPont Kevlar fiber, this looks, feels and wears just like a regular hoodie, but is virtually indestructible.
Mi Cocina Handcrafted, Selvedge Denim Aprons
Made in the USA, these aprons are strong, versatile pieces for the kitchen/campfire/workshop that get better with age (and stains).
Yeti Panga Duffel Bags
The company’s first travel bags, designed to withstand years of relentless abuse and thunderstorms aplenty. Made from high-density nylon that’s been laminated for extra protection, the fully-submersible bag is also highly puncture- and abrasion-resistant.
Swatch Sistem51 x Hodinkee Vintage 84
The $150 collaboration is inspired by the Spring 1984 collection, all the way down to the open caseback, which lets you see the movement at work. It brings a dash of Hodinkee sophistication to Swatch's acumen for watchmaking innovation.
Best Products 2017 Transport (6 images)
Flux Design Co. Track 1
Or, what happens when you slap ATV-grade wheels on a carbon fiber/Kevlar skateboard deck.
A collaboration between Mark Cuban and an aerospace engineer, the MOOV is meant to take an otherwise everyday toy and elevate it to a viable mode of transportation. More stable than its predecessors courtesy of oversized, shock-eating wheels suited for hardwood floors and the streets alike. And the chassis is molded from die-cast aluminum, which makes for a manageable weight.
Morgan Junior EV
A full replica version of Morgan’s all-electric EV3, the Morgan Junior EV is a miniature trike with a carbon fiber body, wooden dashboard and hand-stitched leather interior that can hit 10 MPH. Take note: this thing is for kids ages six and up. Good thing you're well beyond that.
A flying surfboard? Kind of. It’s really a hydrofoil, a board featuring a winged keel underneath with a motor attached. Those wings — which you'd readily see on an America's Cup boat — help surfers glide through the water at speeds of 25 miles an hour. The lithium ion battery is good for about an hour and charges like a laptop.
Hot Tub Boat
The brainchild of a Seattle-based carpenter, The Hot Tub Boat features a slatted deck handbuilt from African teak, along with a Vinylester hull propelled by a joystick-controlled 24-volt electric motor. Capable of hitting up to 5 MPH in calm waters, the 16-foot watercraft can cruise for up to 10 hours on one charge.
Seabreacher Semi-Submersible Watercraft
This faux orca has numerous tricks up its flipper, combining your favorite parts of a speedboat, submarine and stunt plane thanks to its aerodynamic design and 260-HP supercharged engine. Capable of performing barrel rolls and backflips, with a top speed of 50 MPH on the water and 20 MPH submerged.