You've geared up for fall with grown-up lunchboxes and accessories—now it’s time to kit out your cubicle with the ultimate at-work larder. Keep pantry essentials like salts, spices and sauces on hand to add zip to everyday lunches and snacks. The workday might be boring, but your office eats won’t be.
Lee Kum Kee sriracha chili sauce
Can’t get enough of the Asian-inflected condiment? Tuck away some of these convenient, travel-sized packets. Available at minimus.biz. 11¢ each.
Jacobsen Salt Co.
Hand-harvested using pure salt crystals straight from Oregon waters, this clean chef’s favorite boasts a bright minerality and a Maldon-like crunch. Available at food52.com/provisions. 4oz bag $12, slide tin (four-pack) $14.
Bacchanal pepper sauce
Scotch bonnets and habanero chilies add rip-roaring heat to this Caribbean-style, Brooklyn-made hot sauce, while tropical ingredients (like tamarind, lime and ginger) smooth it out. Available at By Brooklyn, 261 Smith St between DeGraw and Douglass Sts, Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn (718-643-0606, bybrooklyn.com). 5oz bottle $12.
Kiosk seven-pepper spice
A Japanese izakaya staple, this flavor-boosting mix contains black pepper, ginger, hemp seed, red pepper, roasted orange peel, sansho and shiso. Use it to amp up soups or proteins. Available at Kiosk, 95 Spring St between Broadway and Mercer St (212-226-8601, kioskkiosk.com). $12.
Brass claw bottle opener
Pry off Pellegrino caps—or something harder if you’re having a rough day—with this funky bird’s-claw bottle opener. The hefty brass lever can also moonlight as a paperweight. Available at A&G Merch, 111 North 6th St at Berry St, Williamsburg, Brooklyn (718-388-1779, aandgmerch.com). $19.
Maizal Restaurant & Tequila Bar
With another bustling location in Staten Island, Maizal is certainly succeeding in its quest to bring authentic Mexican cuisine and insanely delicious margaritas to New York’s outer boroughs. The Astoria cafe’s ambiance, all clean lines and exposed brick, mirrors the menu, where handpicked tequilas complement top-quality seafood, steaks and other tasty south-of-the-border fare. Drop by during its generous weekday happy hour for perfectly poured $7 Cassica Margaritas or throw in an extra dollar for the addictively spicy jalapeño margarita, prepared to your liking and topped with a slice of bright green pepper.
Venue says: “Experience a unique Mexican dining experience in Astoria! Fresh cocktails, tequila tastings, and authentic food.”