If you’re like us, you’ve probably wondered what famous people add to their carts. Not the JAR brooch and Louis XV chair, but the hand sanitizer and the electric toothbrush. We asked Brad Leone (a.k.a. #BABrad), the host of Bon Appetit’s “It’s Alive” series, about the pocketknife, fish “spat,” and headlamp he can’t live without.
I was elk hunting in Oregon with my buddy recently, and he had a different headlamp, and when I turned mine on, he honestly could have just turned his off — this one works that well. It has the brightest light, the battery lasts forever, and it’s rechargeable, which I dig. It’s good for camping and grilling when you’re outside and you’re like, Oh fuck, I can’t see what I’m cooking anymore. I keep one in the car at all times in case the car breaks down and I need to change the tire.
I mean, these are just a fantastic pair of shorts. I love Patagonia. You can wear them swimming, around the city, anywhere it’s hot. They dry quickly, they’re lightweight; they’ll be with you for the rest of your life.
I always carry a pocketknife in my pocket for opening boxes, cutting a string, or whatever little thing comes up. And I don’t want to carry around a big, stupid knife. This one is great — the perfect size, very sharp. The company is also owned by Geoff Rowley, who is a pro skater and loves hunting and is also just a total legend badass.
I’m a big tool guy — I have a woodshop and do woodwork and metalwork on the side — and this thing is a fantastic tool. It’s great for sinking screws, putting down decking, or putting up a picture. My kid broke a shelf the other day, and I had to rehang it — this got that done quick. It’s not going to do what a chisel does or what a saw does, but for hang-y, DIY shit, it’s perfect. A workhorse.
Danner is a great company from the Pacific Northwest. The boots are waterproof and super well made, and they’re great for hiking, work, or fishing or if it’s raining — everything, really. They’re comfortable as hell, tough as hell, and have a pretty awesome yearlong warranty. I dig ’em, always have. For straight-up rain boots, I like the ones from XTRATUF. They’re not as good for your feet as the Danners, but you could stand in a puddle for ten days in those things.
I’m a big archery person. I grew up shooting bows. Some people play golf, I do this. With archery, if you have good gear, you can’t blame being bad on anyone but yourself. This bow is fantastic: super-quiet, super-reliable, really well made. I’ve known about Mathews for a long time and decided to finally invest in one about a year ago. I hunt with this, too — I’ll shoot an elk or a deer and harvest the whole animal instead of going to the grocery store and buying meat. It’s a great way to be connected to the food chain, if you choose to do it.
Listen, I’m never going to be the kind of guy who wears Bose headphones on the street. I can’t fucking stand that — I don’t want to be in my own little bubble and drown out the whole world. Except when it comes to flying, I do want to drown out the whole world, and these do a very good job of that. They quiet the engine humming, the people talking. They’re so good that if I got to the airport and realized I forgot them, I’d probably buy another pair. They make the flight that much better.
Before I bought this, I was using a little spice grinder to grind my beans — buying this was a game changer. You can customize the grind of the beans, and it has this giant airtight hopper on top that you can dump a whole bag into.
Rice can be a little intimidating and easy to screw up. Having a good rice cooker means you’ll get nice rice every time. This one is very easy to use; it’s consistent, easy to clean, and just one of those things I will always think is worth keeping around my house. It’s not real big, only three cups, but I have two kids, so it’s the perfect size for my family.
The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best acne treatments, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, natural anxiety remedies, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.