Thursday, February 26, 2009

Grocery Woes...

This is sort of a venting post... feel free to skip! Frustration has been brewing inside the BoogieDowner for the past few days after trying to get a few grocery items locally.

This past Monday, I wanted to make chicken soup. I figured there was no real need to go up to the Cross County Stop & Shop... all I really needed was chicken, celery and carrots. Simple, right? NO, not simple at all.

I went to the Pioneer over on Webster Avenue at Bedford Park Blvd. I always hesitate before stepping foot in that place because it has repeatedly let me down by selling expired items and never having enough cashiers to handle their customers in a reasonable time frame. This trip was no different... I left empty-handed and frustrated. Their celery was like rubber and they even had bagged salad on sale that had brown lettuce in it. Gross. They were cleaning the freezer area and had all the chicken stacked in carts not being properly refrigerated... no thanks.

So I went to my trusty C-Town on 204th Street below Mosholu Parkway. Their produce isn't the best, but I can usually find reasonable items there. Carrots, check. Celery, check. Chicken, che... wait, no chicken? How does a grocery store not have CHICKEN? I'm not looking for filet mignon or veal here. For the record, they did have drumsticks and chicken liver. But that's a little limited for your chicken selection, no?

So I didn't get to make the chicken soup. I know I could have found all the items I needed if I invested more time and energy by going up to the various little markets on 204th, but after two tries I was just not feeling inspired anymore.

Oh yeah, I also bought half-and-half over at the Marble Hill Target this week. The expiration date on it was March 9th. I opened it this morning and it was curdled. This is the second time this has happened to me, so it's not just an isolated incident. So Bronx residents beware: Target is not storing their refrigerated items at appropriate temperatures.

The only place that didn't let me down this week was the new Fedel Gourmet Deli on Webster Avenue at E. Mosholu Parkway S. I stopped in there for whole milk for the kid, and they had it and it wasn't expired. Thanks Fedel!

~ErLu

14 comments:

Anonymous said...

Ick, C-Town and Pioneer are disgusting and I never shop there, no matter what I need. Try Foodtown on 204th at Bainbridge:
283 E 204th St, Bronx - (718) 882-7865

Unlearner said...

Whenever I go to the Super Stop and Shop by the Cross County Mall, I run into friends from the Bronx.

Boogiedowner said...

I agree that the Foodtown on 204th has the freshest stuff (relatively speaking), but holy crap, it's soooo stressful in there! The lines are always horrific and they're always 're-stocking' during store hours and clogging the already painfully narrow aisles. Not too many options for us Bedford Park/Norwood folks...

Anonymous said...

Have you tried Garden Gourmet on W 233 & Broadway? I know it's a bit 'out of the way' but if you take the northbound Bx1 and get off at 231st, it's just a short walk. GG is like the Bronx version of Fairway. They have good stuff there and not overly expensive.

Dana said...

Or, if you're really in for an adventure, there's the renovated Pathmark on 10th Avenue / Dyckman Street. The Bx12 stops right at the corner; they have 'basic groceries' but hardly organic or gourmet type foods.

Anonymous said...

You have to be especially careful about the meat at Pioneer. If I buy any meat there, I'll use it that same day. I don't find their vegetables to be that bad. I like Foodtown better too, but I really miss suburban supermarkets.

Boogiedowner said...

I think the thing that frustrates me the most is that these glorified bodegas are allowed to operate as they are. We can all plan better and travel to get to one grocery store or another that we like and trust, but we should also be able to frequent the ones within walking distance - these places make a crapload of money and are essentially providing pretty nasty food at usually pretty high prices. If you fork over your hard-earned money to buy meat, you shouldn't have to use it the same day you buy it! Sorry, more venting!

Anonymous said...

I'm the first commenter. I'm not a huge fan of Garden Gourmet's cheese. They repackage it in-house. I just bought cheese on Sunday (as in five days ago, not a Sunday five months ago) and it's already growing something on it! For other stuff, like my cage free organic eggs, they're great. When I do some serious stocking up on staples, I always go to the Pathmark in Co-Op City.

Dana said...

When I used to live in upper Manhattan (Inwood), I experienced similar problems with neighborhood groceries, such as Fine Fare on Broadway/Dyckman and a few others. Quality failed to exist yet the prices were above board. Now that I see the same predicament in Bedford Park, is it because we're not 'downtown' or the upper west/east sides? I believe we're entitled to have GREAT (not just good) markets within walking distance. Wasn't there a food co-op in Norwood?

Boogiedowner said...

Yep, there is indeed a food co-op in Norwood. We are currently members of their winter share. The pros: great food... it's true to its word in delivering farm fresh, delish produce, diary, and proteins.
However, we're finding that the quantity of the food we get in our monthly delivery doesn't seem to really match the cost of being a shareholder. We're on one income and I don't think we'll be able to afford to continue with it. You're supposed to see a savings as compared to grocery store prices, but that just doesn't seem to be the case. I wish the South Bronx Food Co-op was a little closer... I'd love to be able to stop in to get fresh food on a weekly basis rather than a monthly basis.

Anonymous said...

You should go to the Stop and shop on Broadway on 234th St. It's not as big as the one in Cross County but it's bigger and better than all those supermarkets you mentioned.

Dana said...

I agree, the S&S on Broadway is another good choice, especially since its renovations.

Anonymous said...

I wish Fresh Direct would deliver to Norwood.

Tired of being broke said...

These neighborhood grocery stores all over the Bronx are the same. I ran into a small mouse in Met foods on Archer Street close to Parkchester.
I haven't been back since. Every week I get in my car and drive to the Stop & Shop in Co-op city.
We shouldn't have to travel far for quality groceries but these store owners do not care.