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What Makes a Grocery Store Gourmet?

Gourmet fresh groceries

The jury (well, me) is still out on Gourmet Fresh, the new grocery store in my bizarrely grocery store deficient neighborhood, that’s owned by the same proprietors of the world’s worst Key Food that shuttered a few years back. I want to dislike it but it seems neutral enough, at least upon a cursory inspection. Still not sure what gourmet means, though.

It certainly looks more appealing your ordinary Brooklyn supermarket, it’s tiny and somehow upscale—I think all it takes is using wood floors instead of linoleum and lots of freestanding metal racks as shelving.

I do my real grocery shopping on weekends at more substantial stores (Fairway or Western Beef if I’m staying in the boroughs or Costco, Trader Joe’s and a Shop Rite or Wegman’s if I’m in NJ) but I tested Gourmet Fresh on three staples I eat nearly every day: Wasa crackers, Fage yogurt and oatmeal.

They struck out in an odd way on the yogurt. They carried the brand in every variety: 5%, 0%, full fat, 2% with honey, 2% with jam…but no plain 2%? The 0%, which I broke down and bought, is just sad and now the rest of my week won’t be the same. $1.99 is pretty standard for NYC, I can’t complain about the price.

$3.39 seemed kind of high for the crackers. I’m blanking what I normally pay for them but I feel like it’s under $3.

They had plenty of oatmeal brands and flavors to choose from. I also think the $3.79 price tag was a touch pricey but typical for the area. I can’t really compare it to the boxes at Trader Joe’s since they’re different beasts.

I don’t know what groceries are supposed to cost anymore. Does $13.15 seem about right? I’m incredibly cheap, even by tightwad standards, so it’s hard to gauge.

I might do a comparison at neighboring…hmm…I had no idea the nearby store that was featured in the New York Times yesterday is called Good Food Supermarket. I know they have the yogurt for maybe a dime cheaper but their brands are more basic and I’m not convinced I’ll find the crackers and oatmeal. But I will see.

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