Okay, most won't get all worked up over the opening of a new supermarket, but here on the Cape it's hard to go anywhere but Stop & Shop where prices are high, value and service is low, and quality can sometimes be....ahem....marginal to be kind. Sure, there's a tiny Trader Joe's in Hyannis and that is a plus. There are a few Shaw's/Star Markets, too, but they're not much better than S&S and are a bit more pricey. And if you care to make the trek to Mashpee there is the excellent, and slightly upscale, Roche Bros. But bring the wallet as it's pricey.
I had my first ever visit to a Market Basket yesterday. It finally opened it's doors this week at exit 1 in Sagamore after much anticipation. All I can say is W-O-W. Not because it's the biggest store ever. Nor does it have the most unique offerings. (No salad bar, chicken wing bar, fruit bar, seafood bar, etc). The layout's a bit confusing with dairy first and veggies last with the frozen foods. It does have an extensive lineup of hot and ready to cook prepared foods, and everything looked pretty good, but nothing that blew me away. There is a separate seating area, however, called the Market Cafe where one can sit at a table to eat and look at a couple of big flat screen TVs. Some seemed to enjoy this amenity.
So what's the wow? The pricing, quality, and the service is miles above S&S! I mean, it's not even close. I do the food shopping for our household so I'm very familiar with how much everything costs, and every item I picked up was at least 30% less that I'd pay at Stop and Shop. And that's just regular priced brand name items. Sale priced, or store brand items were off the charts. Meats and produce were not only better quality but better variety, and again, priced at about a 30% savings.
It was grand opening week so one would expect a lot of employees there to serve you. But these were happy, enthusiastic, helpful employees, albeit clearly tired due to the constant throngs of shoppers. Every register was open. Every register had a bagger, and even young people who would push a cart out for the elderly and help unload the bags into one's car. When was the last time you saw that at a supermarket?
I left with a smile, and a cart full of groceries for just $80. Last night we had a beautiful fresh wild-caught swordfish steak ($8.99 lb.) on the grill, and tonight I'm cooking up two choice NY Strip steaks ($7.99 everyday) with some sugar sweet corn (5 for a buck!) .
It's about 13 miles away from me, as compared to 3 miles for a Stop and Shop, but I'll do all my weekly shopping there from now on.
I'm loving this place and saving a boatload of money doing it
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