What $100 Buys in Riga

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$1 MagazineSold at convenience stores around Riga, the Vakara Zinas, or Evening News, dishes the latest gossip on local celebs. Kristine Lipina, a former Miss Latvia, is often targeted by the Paparaci. (Photo: Michael Kraus)
$15 SpoonThis antique silver spoon was crafted during the brief period (1920-1934) when Latvia first experienced democracy and independence. H and Partneris, Terbatas iela 33/35, 011-371/722-4545. (Photo: Michael Kraus)
$7 Ankle bandsBecause Latvia is still establishing its identity, both in reaction to Russia and in relation to Europe, folkloric customs are highly prized. Ankle bands are part of the colorful national costume. Laipa, Laipu iela 2/4, 011-371/722-9962. (Photo: Michael Kraus)
$37 NecklaceAmber has been processed in the Baltic Sea region for more than 9,000 years. It is so ubiquitous that dzintars, the local word for it, is common both as a man's name and as a brand name. Belinda, Kugu iela 24, 011-371/927-2675. (Photo: Michael Kraus)
$30 SaltshakerLatvian ceramist Ilona Romule is one of the world's best porcelain painters--her work is on display in shops and museums around the globe. Salons A, Kalku iela 24, 011-371/721-3791. (Photo: Michael Kraus)
$3 Potato masherPotatoes are a staple of the Latvian diet. They're often smashed and served alongside karbonade, which is sort of like pork schnitzel. Laipa, Laipu iela 2/4, 011-371/722-9962. (Photo: Michael Kraus)
25¢ MatchesWhen it was part of the U.S.S.R., Latvia was known for producing high-quality matches. Find them at Riga's Central Market. (Photo: Michael Kraus)
$6 ChocolatesEmila Gustava Sokolade, Riga's best known chocolatier, has several locations in the city. The company's tiny marzipan-filled sweets are studded with candy flowers. Marijas iela 13, 011-371/728-7510. (Photo: Michael Kraus)

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