It was a spontaneous stop. I happened to already be in Middletown with some time to spare when I remembered a little shop I wanted to check out for a potential Bloom review. That’s when I met Ellen Munk, co-owner of Middletown Florist and Gifts, standing behind the florist desk cleaning up the last bit of greenery from a bouquet.
“Welcome!” came her greeting. “Feel free to look around and let me know if you have any questions,” she said, moving back to the front of the shop. The unmistakable smell of fresh-cut flowers filled the room as I settled in to being a local tourist for a short time.
The story of Middletown Florist and Gifts all began when Ellen, her sister Mary Costa, and mom Julie Willis heard that the florist shop was closing its doors for good. “I couldn’t let it happen,” Ellen explained, pulling her long blonde hair away from her face. “So I called my Mom and sister and asked if they wanted to buy it with me, and they said yes!” Her bright eyes laughed. “So that’s how we were able to save the florist and bring Middletown another gift store.”
Located across the street from Hardester’s Market, Middletown Florist and Gifts can’t be missed. Its pale yellow and white front is a welcoming spot on Main Street. A crooked house sculpture greets you, its strange shape and artistic nature filled with stories. From there, walking through the front doors feels like going to a friend’s house, dog included. But don’t worry, this resident dog will only treat you like family. The one-time home transforms beautifully into a gift shop; each purposefully themed room has a little bit of everything. To the right stands a baby room with the softest of soft blankets and other hand-crafted gifts. All things candles are just around the corner and not too far away, spa items including lotions, soaps, balms, and more. In the next room are ceramics, both functional and artistic. Finally, a wall hosts a collection of colorful baskets and bags. Just in case you might have forgotten, you’ll find cards for all occasions. And who could miss the grab-and-go bouquets, whether for yourself or a gift? Everyone loves flowers.
“It’s our goal to be that one-stop shopping experience, whether it’s for a wedding, baby shower, birthday, or a treat for yourself,” Ellen continued. “We also want to support local artists as much as possible. For example, look at these gnomes,” Ellen gestures with her hand. “The Middletown High School made these, and I love that we can support them and so many other artists in the community.”
Ellen isn’t kidding when she says there’s something for everyone. I found a linen kitchen towel, exactly what I needed to cover my upcoming homemade holiday dinner rolls and Christmas bread. I truly needed it. Right above the towels was, no joke, bacon jam. Now to say I needed bacon jam could easily be argued. But I grabbed a jar anyway, justifying it for upcoming social gatherings with friends.
I chatted a bit more with Ellen and got some more love from my new puppy best friend, Tripp,just as I would leaving a friend’s home. But my time was running short, and Ellen had more customers to help. Who knew that my last-minute stop would be the highlight of my day?
21057 Calistoga Rd, Middletown, CA 95461