MiN New York looks like a combination of an apothecary, a curiosity shop, and a private club; it's actually a one-stop-shopping destination for men's upscale shaving and grooming products as well as niche perfumes for both men and women. This SoHo boutique's walls of custom-made wood shelving, complete with a rolling library ladder in one alcove, hold the MiN house line of haircare and skincare, male-geared grooming lines (such as Nickel and Proraso), and more unisex products like LaRoche Posay skincare and Marvis toothpaste. Men's traditional shaving accessories, including some very fancy straight razors and an assortment of shave brushes, are neatly arranged in glass-front cases; a few liquor flasks lurk invitingly on a higher shelf. Last but not least, counters and small tables display a well-thought-out assortment of fragrance lines. Despite the store's name, which is a permutation of "New York Minute," there's definitely a European slant to the product offerings. (MiN also acts as the United States distributor for several of these fragrance brands.)
Every corner of MiN is punctuated with antiques, from decorative bookends, crystal candlesticks, and ceramic apothecary jars to a wooden airplane propeller, a model of the ocean liner Normandie, and a vintage tackle box full of fishing lures — all for sale. The overall effect recalls Lafco New York's loft-like interior and Miomia's his-and-hers philosophy, plus the "retro" decor of certain downtown men's haberdasheries. MiN's staff is well-informed about the shop's merchandise, offering plenty of information without an excess of sales pressure. And if you need to gather your thoughts before making a purchase, you can even rest for a few minutes on a comfortable padded leather couch and flip through Roja Dove's Roja Dove's The Essence of Perfume and several other books about fragrance while you make your final decision.
Fragrance brands: Alvarez Gomez, Amouage, Aromatherapy Associates, CB I Hate Perfume, Dr. Harris, Dr. Vranjes, Frapin, Geo. F. Trumper, by Kilian, L'Artisan Parfumeur, Linari, Miller Harris, Musgo Real, Parfums d'Empire, Parfums d'Orsay, Penhaligon's, The Pink Room, Taylor of Old Bond Street
Not to be missed: The counter where you can order an espresso or a cup of Miller Harris tea.
Details: MiN New York, 117 Crosby Street (between Houston and Prince Sts.), New York, NY 10012; (212) 206-6366; website
Nearby: Lafco New York (285 Lafayette St.), Space NK (99 Greene St.), Le Labo (233 Elizabeth St.), Red Flower (13 Prince St.), and a branch of Sephora (555 Broadway at Prince St.). Across the street you'll find Housing Works Bookstore Café (126 Crosby St.), one of the city's best used bookstores.
— photos & report filed by Jessica
See also: Perfume Stores in New York City.