Welcome to InsideHook’s Staff Picks, a compendium of all the stuff our editors have been digging on recently.
This week, our staffers pick the warmest thing they own.
The Sanuk Puff N Chill
The only time my old lady will let me leave the house in flip-flops without casting scornful eyes in my general direction is to walk the dog. Which causes a problem come fall and winter: Whence the comfortable, imminently slip-on-able shoe that'll keep my tootsies warm in foul weather? In Sanuk's new Puff N Chill — which can only be described as the bastard offspring of a slipper and a snow boot — I have found it. And while I haven't yet managed to sneak into bed with them on, it isn't for lack of trying. — Walker Loetscher, Editor in Chief
The Stench of Honolulu by Jack Handey
All respect to beach reading — it's wonderful — But these are my reading months. Hot cocoa beside a fireplace, layers on layers, a nice nook to curl up in. And the only thing capable of making it warmer? A book that puts some laughter in my belly. Mr. Jack Handey, king of the intersection between the stupid and the surreal, released a misadventure novel a few years ago about an idiot heading out on an Indiana Jones-esque escapade into the heart of Hawaii. (Extra warmth points here for all the tropical humidity.) It's fun and poorly researched and a perfect way to spend a Sunday afternoon after losing a football game. Expect lines like the following: “I looked around for some bugs to eat. If you get hungry enough, believe me, you will eat bugs. My friend Jerry found that out the hard way. He was slow getting his snacks out for a party once and we ate his butterfly collection.” — Tanner Garrity, Associate Editor
L.L.Bean Classic Ragg Wool Henley Sweater
I have to call out the Bean for misleading advertising here. You see Mr. Touch of Gray strolling around, no bead of sweat to be seen, even though it looks like a 60-degree day? Heed my advice: this sweater is warmer than it appears. We’re talking thick, 100% lambswool beefiness with a rib-knit collar that’ll boil your innards from your neck to your waist if you wear it before it’s cold enough. But when the temps drop, don it and call yourself Ernest Shackleton. Which leads to my bonus picks: whisky (and maybe hot cider) in a diner mug, specifically Shackleton Blended Malt Scotch Whisky in something from Stumptown. — Alex Lauer, Senior Editor
Hario Stainless Steel Drip Kettle
I once drank over 20 poorly made hot toddies (hot water, tea, lemon, honey and whiskey) with my roommate over a single snowed-in weekend. While the alcohol and hot water kept us warm, I would recommend against using a fresh tea bag for each toddy, as by Sunday night I was wired to the point of feeling my eyelashes reverberate every time I blinked. All that being said, the kettle did a great job of making the water hot, so that was cool. And warm. — Eli London, Director of Partnerships and User Acquisition
It's a puffy camping blanket that feels like a sleeping bag ... and it packs down into a hand-sized pouch. Personally, in the three years I've owned one, I've never taken mine outdoors, but the Rumpl is also great as an extra layer on the bed or for keeping warm during date nights on the couch. The company's now started making beer blankets and blanket ponchos. They also just shot a blanket into space. Versatile, they are. — Kirk Miller, Nation Editor/Managing Editor
Uniqlo Ultra Light Down Vest
With all due respect to my colleagues, none of them can touch the dollar-to-toastiness ratio I bring to you today — weighs nothing, warms your core like a hug from ya mama, and packs into a tiny pouch when you don't need it. All for less than 50 bucks. The ideal layering piece. (Speaking of which, have you seen our guide to the 8 most underrated layering pieces for fall?) — Danny Agnew, Creative Director
THE BEST THING WE DRANK THIS WEEK
The Irish invented whiskey (true story!). And Kilbeggan, the oldest licensed distillery in Ireland, just reinvented a rye-based Irish whiskey, crafted in the oldest working pot still in the world. There’s more depth and spice in the Small Batch Rye than the typical smooth sipping Irish juice, and it’s a wonder in cocktails. Good in an Old Fashioned — and great in an Irish coffee, which certainly kept us warm last night.
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