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  • Post #31 - April 29th, 2008, 12:27 pm
    Post #31 - April 29th, 2008, 12:27 pm Post #31 - April 29th, 2008, 12:27 pm
    Ronnie-
    I agree with you on the produce at the Northbrook store. Some stuff can be very fresh and crisp, and other things can be old and wilted. My first couple of visits it seemed like the best bargains were in the worst shape, so I assumed they bought things that no other store would buy. Recently, however, the opposite seems to be the case. The selection is excellent, particularly for the suburbs.

    -Will
  • Post #32 - April 29th, 2008, 1:53 pm
    Post #32 - April 29th, 2008, 1:53 pm Post #32 - April 29th, 2008, 1:53 pm
    :: perk:: salmon caviar? ::

    I have a hard time finding that even at Sunset.

    I have been avoiding the nearest (Mundelein) Garden Fresh Market ever since I brought home some chicken pieces that smelled so bad when unwrapped that I threw them out immediately. But that was a couple of years ago, so perhaps I should scout it out again. Can't promise I'll buy any chicken, though.
  • Post #33 - April 29th, 2008, 4:44 pm
    Post #33 - April 29th, 2008, 4:44 pm Post #33 - April 29th, 2008, 4:44 pm
    I love Garden Fresh and shop regularly at the Arlington Heights store and fairly often at the Mundelein store. They may lack charm, but they have a huge array of ethnic foods at good prices, plus the one in AH has a whole section for things that are $1 or less. Fruits and veggies are good, too, with plenty of exotica -- plus the "about to expire" shelf where you can pick up 8 mangoes, 10 tomatoes, or some other impressive collection for 99 cents or less.

    As noted above, they lean toward Eastern Europe, and if I'm going hardcore Chinese, Indian, Thai, or Korean, I go to stores that specialize in that. But if I just need a tin of panang curry paste or a couple of retort pouches of palak paneer, Garden Fresh saves me a trip -- and money, as Indian specialties are close to the prices on Devon.
    "All great change in America begins at the dinner table." Ronald Reagan

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  • Post #34 - April 29th, 2008, 9:42 pm
    Post #34 - April 29th, 2008, 9:42 pm Post #34 - April 29th, 2008, 9:42 pm
    We really like the deli at Garden Fresh in Northbrook. I can get certain things there that I can't find anywhere else.

    I agree that the produce is hit or miss. I've gotten some great things there and taken a pass on others.

    I have fun looking through the cookie and candy aisles. I'm always up for sampling a new treat.
  • Post #35 - May 2nd, 2008, 11:37 pm
    Post #35 - May 2nd, 2008, 11:37 pm Post #35 - May 2nd, 2008, 11:37 pm
    It took me a long time to discover this store, but I too can lose an hour peering up and down the aisles.

    I give the overall produce selection an solid A. You are hard-pressed to find similar breadth in the general vicinity and overall quality is still high. Produce is how I tend to judge a market and GF devotes more % space than almost any other full-service grocery that I have seen. Only Super HMart dwarfs it in my mind, but that's another show. And while some produce may not be as fresh as you can find, show me another place within spitting distance where you can't count the number of available chilies on one hand. Or that have multiple eggplants? Campari tomatoes for $1.99?

    Plus, they have some products I have not seen elsewhere like 1 lb assorted loose-leaf lettuce in plastic-packaging with air holes (usually $1.99). A good alternative when farmer's markets are not in season.

    I have found their bread selection to be missing some of the more widely distributed Italian bakeries that I like (D'Amatos, Il Mulino and the like). Marketplace on Oakton is my gold standard for bakery selection, and this doesn't really rate with that.

    As befitting the Eastern European bent, their dairy and cheese selection is extensive - from farmer's cheese to a variety of plus-fat Eurobutters.

    I also find their 'bulk' items to be a good value. They are not really bulk in that they come in prepackaged containers. But they have a wide variety of nuts and all manner of roasted and spiced seeds and an assortment of candies. Most of what I have sampled have been pretty good.

    And if you are in the mood for preserves or pickled vegetables, you have oodles of cans and jars to choose from.

    Pound for pound, I am very happy to give this store my business.


    Edited to add that the above comments are about the Northbrook location.
    Last edited by gastro gnome on May 4th, 2008, 2:14 pm, edited 1 time in total.
  • Post #36 - May 4th, 2008, 12:10 pm
    Post #36 - May 4th, 2008, 12:10 pm Post #36 - May 4th, 2008, 12:10 pm
    I have had generally positive experiences at Garden Fresh stores, especially the Mundelein store. I have never been excited about their produce selection but I like the availability of Eastern European products and a selection of offal meats and other soup items (chicken backs and feet).

    The closed Crystal Lake store was one of the most bland stores that I had ever seen. I was as heartless as the Cub store that they replaced. In the last three months that they were opened, they tried unsuccessfully to convert it into a Mexican style market. With Joseph's Marketplace and a newly opened Joe Caputo and Sons, they were doomed.
  • Post #37 - May 4th, 2008, 11:15 pm
    Post #37 - May 4th, 2008, 11:15 pm Post #37 - May 4th, 2008, 11:15 pm
    The new Garden Fresh Market in Skokie, on Touhy west of McCormick - on the north side of Touhy across from Lowe's - looks to be a year away from opening.
  • Post #38 - May 16th, 2008, 3:46 pm
    Post #38 - May 16th, 2008, 3:46 pm Post #38 - May 16th, 2008, 3:46 pm
    The Naperville store does usually seem to be empty, even when I've been there on a Saturday afternoon. There food is of very mixed quality. They have a good selection of Polish and Lithuanian beers, very fresh vegetables, and lots of Indian stuff, from microwavable veggie meals to a big selection of basmatic rices; but their fruit is often tasteless, and their fish is sometimes rank.
  • Post #39 - August 6th, 2008, 11:43 pm
    Post #39 - August 6th, 2008, 11:43 pm Post #39 - August 6th, 2008, 11:43 pm
    Some time ago I complained about the old Garden Fresh Market in Mundelein. Well, that was definitely the old GFM. A little while ago I stopped by the new GFM, which is in a much larger space than before. Off the top of my head I can't even remember all the different ways I was impressed -- with the produce, the seafood, the meats, the ethnic foodstuffs... I have to go back to make a list of things I was impressed with and surprised by. Has anyone else been to the GFM on Route 60 in Mundelein? If so, you know what I mean, right?
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #40 - August 7th, 2008, 11:25 pm
    Post #40 - August 7th, 2008, 11:25 pm Post #40 - August 7th, 2008, 11:25 pm
    You bet. Whenever I'm up that way, I stop there. It's an impressive store. I delight in cruising the aisles of ethnic foods and exotica, find the meat and deli sections to be great fun, and never miss an opportunity to head for the produce section. (Though I will admit that, for me, the best thing about the produce section is the rack of marked-down, "just about to be too ripe" fruits and veggies.)

    So yes, I know what you mean.
    "All great change in America begins at the dinner table." Ronald Reagan

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  • Post #41 - December 28th, 2008, 10:55 pm
    Post #41 - December 28th, 2008, 10:55 pm Post #41 - December 28th, 2008, 10:55 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:Mundelein and Northbrook seem to cater to a middle European and Russian crowd. While Mundelein will have two grades of salmon caviar to choose from, Northbrook often has three.

    I had a craving for salmon caviar today and drove out to the Northbrook store. There was only one type available which sold for 28.99 a lb., so I bought a pound. Good flavor with slightly smaller berries than that which I recently found at Farmer's Best on Milwaukee Ave. for 24 and change.

    Piled high on Wasa whole grain crackers on top of a thick layer of sour cream accented with slivers of red onion, it was outrageously good.

    :twisted:
    "Bass Trombone is the Lead Trumpet of the Deep."
    Rick Hammett
  • Post #42 - January 16th, 2009, 3:34 pm
    Post #42 - January 16th, 2009, 3:34 pm Post #42 - January 16th, 2009, 3:34 pm
    LAZ wrote:Meanwhile, I noticed this item on the Garden Fresh web site:
    Take a ride with Adi to the South Water Produce Market. For more details, call Julie at (847) 520-1200 or set a date at any one of the Garden Fresh Market stores.

    Anyone done that?

    Yes, and so did you!

    A bonus of working as an election judge is meeting a number people I want to meet incidentally. One of those was Adi Mor who was easy to spot in his Garden Fresh Market jacket. I advised my friends and I were very interested in taking this tour. He gave me his card to contact him later, which I did the very next day. A week later, several of us met Adi and several employees at 3:30 AM in the parking lot of the Northbrook store. We were impressed when he asked everyone who was leaving their car to park to the rear of the parking lot. He wanted the choice front spaces reserved for customers.

    We followed Adi's car south to the wholesale vegetable and fruit markets at I-55 and Archer Avenue. Our first stop was to Anthony Marano Company's huge several hundred thousand square foot warehouse. While Anthony Marano may not be generally recognizable name, their move to this location in the early 90's sealed the fate of the older South Water Street market.

    Produce or perish wrote:One of the city's largest produce wholesalers is ready to move from the aging South Water Market, leaving other merchants scrambling for new space and spelling the eventual end of the 73-year-old market.

    Breaking ranks with the mart's other businesses, Anthony Marano Co. has signed a contract to purchase about one-third of Ashland Marketplace, a 557,000-square-foot distribution center planned by real estate firm Hiffman Shaffer Associates Inc. on a 27-acre site bounded by Ashland Avenue on the east, Damen Avenue on the west and the Stevenson Expressway on the south.

    This huge multistory warehouse had a futuristic feel with an eat-off-the-floor spotlessly clean environment. Workers zipped silently around on electric forklifts, including executives who used them for transportation around this vast space. The warehouse is divided into seven compartments with temperature and humidity controlled for optimal storage:
    - Onions and potatoes: Mark
    - Berries: Tony
    - Fruit: Johnieo
    - Tomatoes: Wayne & Jr.
    - Peppers: Jimmy
    - Bananas: Don
    - Lettuce: Art & Damen
    Each of these areas have an executive responsible for relations with the growers from purchase to delivery as well as settling on prices with the buyers. Marano's relies on a network of relationships to stock their warehouse that turns over 150 times a year.

    Marano's had a crew unpacking tomatoes, sorting them for size with custom equipment they built themselves, then repacking those who met the size criteria for their fast food customers.

    Every night managers of the various Garden Fresh Market locations send in their inventory requests. Garden Fresh has several people who work full time at Marano's selecting and negotiating purchases. They walk the floors personally tasting the fruits and vegetables before settling on price and quantity. In the raspberry room, we saw various grades of raspberries from looking picture perfect and tasting sour to those who were sweet, delicate and could quickly tip to over ripe. The Garden Fresh employees doing the wholesale purchases are granted quite a bit of decision making latitude to acquire good deals whenever they avail themselves. This may translate to a price adjustment to help move these deals faster into a consumer's market basket. Those delicate and sweet raspberries might be a candidate to move fast if the price is right. Or there might be fierce negotiations punctuated with shouts or a bit of shadow boxing to reach a price compromise. Occasionally Garden Fresh bites the bullet to purchase desireable seasonal products, like Thanksgiving cranberries, to sell at a loss to attract customers. Once everything is selected, then Garden Fresh Market sends in their trucks to collect and distribute fruits and vegetables to their stores.

    At the conclusion of the tour at Marano's, we were invited to their top floor offices for fresh fruit, coffee and juice. Their boardroom, kitchen, offices and bathrooms were painted entirely in trompe l'oiel, which was rather astonishing. I accidentally walked into the men's room because I failed to notice the male motif painted above the door. They have a barbershop with vintage chairs for the barber who comes once a week to treat their crew and clients a trim. When one of the ladies inquired if they could get a trim, they were advised, "This is a men's world here!" Until that moment, I hadn't recognized the only women present were those in our touring party. They also offer car washes gratis to customer's, too. I asked Adi if he took advantage of these offers, he does not. I can understand his position very well. You don't want a free haircut or car wash to get in the way of negotiating a purchase where a savings of a some cents could translate into hundreds or thousands of dollars in costs and profits.

    We also talked about the business of produce beyond the Chicago marketplace:

    When we were talking about their supply chain. I mentioned the issue with domestic USA rice being sold here and abroad at world prices. They commented for the first time last year, they observed USA grown cherries never sold less than $3/pound at peak season. This was due to the weak dollar and high international demand for cherries with much of our domestic production going to Europe where they commanded a higher price than domestically.

    On the domestic front, they also commented the demand for fruits and vegetables have also increased. Maybe ten years ago, someone visiting a market in Chicago from Iowa would be blown away by the variety available to us. These same varieties can now be found in Iowa and other smaller markets, increasing demand for a these same fruits and vegetables. Increased demand, relatively fixed quantity of goods and prices stay up.

    Markets are competing for the same goods both internationally and domestically. These increased demands creates higher prices, which is quite divorced from the financial markets.

    We next visited the Chicago International Produce Market adjacent to Anthony Marano's, which had very much the hustle and feel I once experienced at South Water Street market years ago. Walking up we saw a number of trucks from various produce markets discussed on this board. While I very self-conciously picked up and wiped the area when I dropped a raspberry at Marano's. I could easily drop any fruit at the International Produce Market and simply walk over it, because there were so much produce debris. While Marano's had a vast space organized for efficent operation. The Chicago International Produce Market was organized into a series stalls with truck size garage openings with tall and narrow warehouse space with produce boxed, stacked and crowded together. What was a departure from the South Water Street were the very elaborate and elegant office spaces in each of the few stalls we visited. One had glass wall separating the warehouse from the office with a floating staircase. When one producer offered a taste demonstration of an exotic fruit, he went to his computer to pull up images of the fruit on the tree and some botanical details. Standing there, you had your foot in the past and present of the produce market.

    Garden Fresh Market's ad pages wrote:Adi's Corner

    Great Quality Produce at a very competitive price is always a challenge in today'a market. I have been buying produce for over 30 years. Here at Garden Fresh Market, I personally oversee our expert buyers who buy our top quality produce at the very best price day after day. We are at the market each and everyday at 4:00 am. We hand pick and taste everything to find the very best quality produce and then secure it at the very price for you everyday!

    Not everybody in Chicagoland spends the time and energy that we do to be the very best! This is why you can count on Garden Fresh Market to have the very best quality and the very best prices.

    Thank you for your business.
    Adi Mor

    From the tour we took recently, there is nothing here I would dispute about the effort they make to stock their produce department. It was definitely a worthy use of our time and a visit to a part of Chicago largely unknown to me and one of the tour guests said, "One of the most revealing glimpses behind the works in the city."

    Thank you, Adi and to your staff!

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #43 - January 17th, 2009, 8:37 am
    Post #43 - January 17th, 2009, 8:37 am Post #43 - January 17th, 2009, 8:37 am
    Cathy---

    I appreciate you giving the LTH'ers a glimpse of the Chicago wholesale produce business. For a real perspective, I only wish you could've seen it firsthand in the old days on the former South Water Market at 12th & Racine, which was the city's produce hub from 1925 until the new CIPM was built a few years ago. With grizzled veterans screaming at prospective buyers out their doors on a cold, winter day, it gave a new meaning to the phrase 'open outcry'.

    However, not to nitpick but I do take exception to a statement made in your post:

    "While Anthony Marano may not be generally recognizable name, their move to this location in the early 90's sealed the fate of the older South Water Street market."

    Not true. The market thrived up until the Teamster's Union Local 703 strike during the winter of 1994, when purveyors were forced to find other outlets rather than get their tires slashed or windshields broken, and basically abandoned the market. Marano & other wholesalers outside the market were merely the beneficiaries.

    Marano has become the 'one-stop shop' for a few of the ethnic retailers that are thriving right now, selling riper but certainly viable produce for half the cost of the major chains. Besides GF, I think that MarketPlace, Valli, Caputo, Pete's, Jiminez & Sunrise, among others all do great jobs in this regard.

    But note that many of these retailers also shop the Chicago Int'l Produce Market daily in addition to Marano because of more variety and (in theory anyway) more competitive prices.
  • Post #44 - January 17th, 2009, 9:39 pm
    Post #44 - January 17th, 2009, 9:39 pm Post #44 - January 17th, 2009, 9:39 pm
    jnm123 wrote:However, not to nitpick but I do take exception to a statement made in your post:

    "While Anthony Marano may not be generally recognizable name, their move to this location in the early 90's sealed the fate of the older South Water Street market."

    Not true. The market thrived up until the Teamster's Union Local 703 strike during the winter of 1994, when purveyors were forced to find other outlets rather than get their tires slashed or windshields broken, and basically abandoned the market. Marano & other wholesalers outside the market were merely the beneficiaries.

    Marano has become the 'one-stop shop' for a few of the ethnic retailers that are thriving right now, selling riper but certainly viable produce for half the cost of the major chains. Besides GF, I think that MarketPlace, Valli, Caputo, Pete's, Jiminez & Sunrise, among others all do great jobs in this regard.

    But note that many of these retailers also shop the Chicago Int'l Produce Market daily in addition to Marano because of more variety and (in theory anyway) more competitive prices.


    I derived that statement from reading Crain's and few other sources. You apparently are directly involved in the business, thus you know the details on the various actors and actions leading to this location shift.

    Garden Fresh also purchases from vendors at the International Produce zone. When we walked into several businesses, they all knew Adi and his employees. They also have contracts directly with some produce growers, such as their bananas, which do not come from Marano's but through their contracted sources local distributor.

    I was only once to the South Water Street market on a conducted tour offered by the Chicago Botanic Gardens. In retrospect, our morning tour was precisely when business was winding down for the day. To give you an orientation how adventurous my tour was: it concluded with dim sum lunch at the Big Three Happiness. On the bus, we were encouraged to order whatever we wanted, though they suggested we might want to avoid ... I shouted from the rear of the bus, "May I guess what you will say next?" "Sure, why not?" "Chicken feet!" "Right!" "I love chicken feet!" Everyone around me groaned, and yes I ordered chicken feet.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #45 - April 1st, 2010, 9:04 pm
    Post #45 - April 1st, 2010, 9:04 pm Post #45 - April 1st, 2010, 9:04 pm
    I happened to be in Northbrook the other day and stopped into Garden Fresh to pick up a few odds and ends of Passover foods. This store typically has a larger selection of Jewish items than the one near me.

    When I shop at my local Garden Fresh, I almost never visit the deli, because I usually get deli items from Harvest Fresh or Shop & Save. But for whatever reason, I happened to look over the deli and see some things that looked good. One of the things I bought was a quarter pound of their beef chopped liver. Now, I don't know if they sell this in other stores. I don't know if they have it all the time, or whether it's special for Passover, but after tasting it, we went back and bought another pound of it, and I will certainly be asking for it the next time I'm at my local store.

    This is terrific stuff. The only better chopped liver I know of is my own, and mine is only exceeded by the memory of my bubbe's.
  • Post #46 - September 16th, 2010, 8:15 pm
    Post #46 - September 16th, 2010, 8:15 pm Post #46 - September 16th, 2010, 8:15 pm
    Unfortunately it looks like the Garden Fresh Market in Chicago on Belmont will be closing October 3rd.
    I was looking at the thread on beef ribs and GFM looked like a good possibility so I looked it up and ran across the announcement. Shame.
  • Post #47 - September 17th, 2010, 12:21 pm
    Post #47 - September 17th, 2010, 12:21 pm Post #47 - September 17th, 2010, 12:21 pm
    I go back and forth on the Garden Fresh Market in Mundelein. I'm usually happy with the variety and quality of the produce, but do occasionally see things that ought to be marked down a lot for how wilted, damaged or overripe they are (e.g., canteloupe, sweet corn, herbs). Several months ago I was consistently finding good values in the meat dept, but lately have been steering clear of it because I don't think they're keeping the area clean - too much blood and liquid and off odors, making me leery of the meat. And GFM is never the place to buy wine - always overpriced even by comparison to the Jewel across the street, and definitely overpriced compared to Di Carlo's Liquors across the other street. Lately I go into the Mundelein GFM only for particular sale items I've marked in the weekly flier.

    Also a bit perturbed by the different sale prices at the Mundelein GFM versus the Northbrook one - the outer pages of the weekly fliers are the same, but the inner pages are different. I presume that means that one place won't offer the other one's sale prices? The Northbrook GFM is definitely smaller, but it *seems* (need to take a more careful look) as though the produce and meat sections are kept cleaner and fresher.

    I'm also bothered by the frequency with which I see employees at the Mundelein GFM take a fresh bread roll or something else from the bakery section and just start munching on it while they're working or walking back to the back. I feel like ultimately I'm paying for that, not the employee. I don't know if it's store policy to allow that, but I've never worked at a place where employees could eat the food for sale in front of the customers' eyes without paying for it.
    "Your swimming suit matches your eyes, you hold your nose before diving, loving you has made me bananas!"
  • Post #48 - September 17th, 2010, 12:57 pm
    Post #48 - September 17th, 2010, 12:57 pm Post #48 - September 17th, 2010, 12:57 pm
    Stopping into Garden Fresh yesterday, I was amused to notice that some of their house-brand Amor products have Adi Mor's picture on them.
  • Post #49 - April 8th, 2012, 3:46 am
    Post #49 - April 8th, 2012, 3:46 am Post #49 - April 8th, 2012, 3:46 am
    As mentioned in the openings and closings thread, Garden Fresh Market has closed its Arlington Heights store. Stores still exist in Wheeling, Mount Prospect, Northbrook, Mundelein, Naperville and Round Lake Beach.
  • Post #50 - January 3rd, 2016, 2:50 pm
    Post #50 - January 3rd, 2016, 2:50 pm Post #50 - January 3rd, 2016, 2:50 pm
    The Northbrook location will be closing at the end of February - as per the letter I saw taped to the cash register earlier today. I had a hunch this would be happening due to Mariano's opening just down the street.
    "At a formal dinner party, the person nearest death should always be seated closest to the bathroom." George Carlin
  • Post #51 - January 3rd, 2016, 4:00 pm
    Post #51 - January 3rd, 2016, 4:00 pm Post #51 - January 3rd, 2016, 4:00 pm
    Dave148 wrote:The Northbrook location will be closing at the end of February - as per the letter I saw taped to the cash register earlier today. I had a hunch this would be happening due to Mariano's opening just down the street.

    I liked this store for all the ethnic foods available there. I brought a friend from Milwaukee who spent quite a while looking over everything. She wished there was a market nearby to her home with this selection.

    A few months ago, I made a Balkan cheese pie for a Culinary Historians meeting. On a hunch, I went to Garden Fresh to buy the filo dough. They had several kinds and sizes. I later checked at Sunset and Jewel to find only one or two types. This is where Garden Fresh is more responsive to ethnic food shoppers.

    I am sure Mariano's was part of the equation, though they probably had a lease renewal contract looming with a price hike they did not like.

    I can get to their location in Mundelein, though Northbrook was far more convenient. I will miss this store.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #52 - January 3rd, 2016, 4:06 pm
    Post #52 - January 3rd, 2016, 4:06 pm Post #52 - January 3rd, 2016, 4:06 pm
    I enjoyed the diverse deli offerings at the Northbrook store (that was a lot of cured meat) but especially for a store named Garden Fresh, I was often astounded by the very poor condition of some of their produce. Carrots should not bend.

    =R=
    Why don't you take these profiteroles and put them up your shi'-ta-holes? --Jemaine & Bret

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #53 - January 4th, 2016, 10:10 am
    Post #53 - January 4th, 2016, 10:10 am Post #53 - January 4th, 2016, 10:10 am
    I have been shopping at the Garden Fresh/Mundelein store for many years. GF's owner Adi Mor is a shrewd businessman, possibly expanding too quickly at times but certainly knowing his clientele. My guess is that his ethnic-driven goods did not do that well in homogeneous Northbrook.

    At GF, no doubt you have to pick your spots. Produce items to watch for: colored peppers (red, yellow, orange) are usually good and half the chain's price. Mushrooms are a steal sometimes. But grapes, lettuce, broccoli, radishes are mostly substandard and must be used in short order. Conversely--deli-wise, the Boar's Head products are top-notch and reasonably-priced, and their potato salad, cole slaw & pico de gallo are also very good. Former Eastern Bloc country sausages products are tasty and exotic.

    Bottom line is I used to be able to shop solely at GF, but the last year or two I've had to supplement at a chain store, which unfortunately signifies an overall decline in quality.
  • Post #54 - January 4th, 2016, 5:56 pm
    Post #54 - January 4th, 2016, 5:56 pm Post #54 - January 4th, 2016, 5:56 pm
    Cathy2 wrote:
    I can get to their location in Mundelein, though Northbrook was far more convenient. I will miss this store.

    Regards,


    Would their relatively new location in Buffalo Grover be closer than Mundelein? Maybe not, since it's farther west then Northbrook, but it's not as far west as the Mundelein store. Not as big as the Mundelein store, but a good size. I love the "spice market" at the Mundelein store, but most of what I need is at the Buffalo Grove store.
    "All great change in America begins at the dinner table." Ronald Reagan

    http://midwestmaize.wordpress.com
  • Post #55 - January 4th, 2016, 7:46 pm
    Post #55 - January 4th, 2016, 7:46 pm Post #55 - January 4th, 2016, 7:46 pm
    We shopped at the Naperville GFM and loved it. Very diverse range of ethnic foods and veg selection that was both fresh and broader than anything else ive found in Chicago so far. That diversity goes a long way in my books....

    We stocked up on tonnes of berries of every kind before the end of summer and are now eating our way through jams, pickles and frozen berries.

    I haven had the poor produce quality others have mentioned here. Although their meat didnt impress me...their charcuterie section did...stuff I havent been able to get since Europe
  • Post #56 - January 16th, 2016, 7:19 pm
    Post #56 - January 16th, 2016, 7:19 pm Post #56 - January 16th, 2016, 7:19 pm
    Hi,

    At the Northbrook store, the Kosher section concluded Friday. They are not yet sure if the Kosher section will go to their Mundelein or Buffalo Grove store.

    Presently, dry goods are 10% off. There is a 20% discount for frozen foods and liquor.

    There was an older gentleman roaming the store talking to customers about the move. He was encouraging them to try their stores at other locations. I never caught his attention, though what I overheard sounded like a warm gesture.

    Regards,
    Cathy2

    "You'll be remembered long after you're dead if you make good gravy, mashed potatoes and biscuits." -- Nathalie Dupree
    Facebook, Twitter, Greater Midwest Foodways, Road Food 2012: Podcast
  • Post #57 - January 25th, 2016, 5:40 pm
    Post #57 - January 25th, 2016, 5:40 pm Post #57 - January 25th, 2016, 5:40 pm
    Stopped by Northbrook on the way home this afternoon. Closing date has been moved up to January 31 per the sign at the cash register. 25% off all dry grocery items, liquor, and frozen items.
    "At a formal dinner party, the person nearest death should always be seated closest to the bathroom." George Carlin
  • Post #58 - February 4th, 2018, 8:42 pm
    Post #58 - February 4th, 2018, 8:42 pm Post #58 - February 4th, 2018, 8:42 pm
    I have a few items for which Garden Fresh is my most reliable source, and I'm usually delighted with their diversity, but today, they succeeded in really blowing me away. (And I posted this under "Today's Discovery" as well -- that momentous.)

    Fermented Mare's Milk.

    Seriously.

    And camel milk and goat milk if you want it. From Russia, so the mare's milk is labelled "Kumis" (would be airag if from Mongolia). But I seriously would never have imagined horse milk and camel milk showing up in Buffalo Grove.
    "All great change in America begins at the dinner table." Ronald Reagan

    http://midwestmaize.wordpress.com

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