Sunday, October 02, 2011


Our car-having neighbors were kind enough to suggest that we join them for a shopping trip to Wegman's, and I figured this was a good way to find out if it would be worth going to in the future by shuttle, which is a two-hours-of-shopping commitment, and thus a dangerous one to make if you're not sure what the store will be like.

And it's amazing! It has everything Whole Foods does, but (mostly) at lower prices, as well as everything a normal supermarket would (of the soda-and-cereal variety), as well as a wide selection of gourmet/"ethnic" foods well beyond what even the massive Whole Foods here can manage. Oh, and DeCecco for cheap, allowing me to splurge on basil and pine nuts for the pesto that will liven up the canned-tomato-based monotony. And beer and wine, which are not terrible things to be able to buy when one lives in the woods, although we'd already gone so De Cecco-wild that there was no space left for that this time.

I suppose, to gratuitously put this in NY-centric terms, it's something like Fairway, in its convenient mix of, well, everything. I like groceries that specialize when this simplifies what to make for dinner, say, as with a Sahadi's or a Sunrise Mart, but not when you're shopping at a place despite its "personality," not because of it, which is how I'd always felt at Whole Foods.

Wegman's has this one checkout lane labeled "no candy," presumably for dieters and/or those with commercial-fixated children. And Whole Foods strikes me as one big "no candy" lane of a supermarket - a store for people who might find the mere presence of processed foods - and, well, wine - too tempting, and who are willing to go out of their way (or in the case of Whole Foods, pay extra) for stuff like dry pasta in order to avoid it. Otherwise, I can't picture what the point of Whole Foods would be in places with other options. Where I had been living in NY, "other options" meant bizarrely exorbitant not-so-fresh-seeming horrible at Gristedes, so of course Whole Foods was the way to go, which is how I ended up at the branch here. I was a fool. A fool!

No comments: