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Old 08-29-2013, 08:31 AM
 
Location: Grapevine, Texas
9,513 posts, read 19,529,556 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigDGeek View Post
Their apple selection will blow. Your. Mind.
Oh yes! I never knew apples came in so many different varieties until I started shopping at CM!
And the HUGE, sweet, juicy Fujis are amazing. I've had several weigh over a pound EACH!
And then the Honeycrisps...
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Old 08-29-2013, 08:31 AM
 
Location: Dallas area, Texas
2,237 posts, read 2,762,302 times
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I live in the eastern Plano area and shop at several different stores each week. Each store has strengths and weaknesses:
Central Market and Trader Joe's in central Plano
Sprout's in Murphy
Super Target (their brand of organic milk is great, as is some of their bakery bread and their meats)
Kroger (the east Plano one and the awesome, new Wylie one as well)
Aldi
I also hit up some of the Mexican groceries and the Asian markets as well, depending on what I plan to cook for the week
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Old 08-29-2013, 08:33 AM
 
Location: Forney Texas
2,119 posts, read 5,491,148 times
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Kroger has remodled most of their stores. I have quoted lots of the roofing work for the remodels. They did most of them last year but I know they still have a few they havent got to yet.
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Old 08-29-2013, 08:36 AM
 
664 posts, read 1,408,842 times
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I feel your pain on meat prices. One of the grocery stores near my home in Georgia ran almost constant steak sales. They rotated t-bone, boneless ribeye, and NY strip at $5/lb. They also sold ground chuck at $1.50/lb and boneless-skinless chicken breast at $2/lb. Those kind of prices don't really exist here, especially the steak. I personally buy meat in bulk from Sams Club and then watch for sales at Kroger and Albertsons.

Kroger quality varies a lot. The one in Bedford is a very middle-of-the-road store. It's nicer than the Euless store but not as nice as the Southlake or Keller stores. Coming from metro Atlanta, I was pretty shocked at how bad some of the older Kroger stores are here. Out there they do a pretty good job of keeping up the older stores. The Kroger in Southlake near Costco is worth a visit next time you're out that way but it's not worth a trip all the way out there just for that.

Albertsons is ok but they're nothing special either. They at least keep most of their stores clean but I think some of their stores don't turn over produce fast enough. I refuse to pretend Safeway is a high end grocer so I don't shop at Tom Thumb. Target is ok when I need a few things but I don't consider them a real grocery store because their selection is so limited (even at the Super Targets).

I've always had good experience with Walmart produce and their dry goods are significantly cheaper than Albertsons or Kroger but their selection is limited. I always get frustrated shopping there because they don't have everything on my list and then I have to wait in that hideously long checkout lane while watching 5 or so Walmart employees mill around the front of the store doing nothing instead of opening additional registers. Whatever I'm losing in money by shopping elsewhere is worth it.

Central Market, Sprouts, and Market Street are all great grocery stores but cheap? Not really. Sprouts has cheap produce and ok sales on meat. They make up for it with how they price everything else. Central Market carries HEB brand generics so things like frozen vegetables and off-brand dairy products are cheap. Everything else is high quality but super expensive. Market Street is priced more like Central Market but set up more like a traditional supermarket.
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Old 08-29-2013, 08:57 AM
 
Location: Mostly in my head
19,643 posts, read 53,545,549 times
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Wal-Mart now has an app that allows you to scan and bag as you go. Then go to a self-check register, transfer the list to the register, pay and go. Super fast.
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Old 08-29-2013, 09:35 AM
 
Location: Southlake. Don't judge me.
2,812 posts, read 3,570,170 times
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Echoing what most other people have posted - I love Sprouts for produce but am "meh" on them for anything else. Aldi's is GREAT for canned goods, eggs, dairy, certain snack foods, cheap "pillow" white bread and english muffins, but is either not great on price or quality for many other things (and I generally avoid their produce). Trader Joe's has tons of great items at good prices and I'm especially fond of their breads, cheeses, frozen seafood and some frozen prepared foods, but with only a couple locations in the entire Metroplex it's not worth the drive for most people. Central Market has a huge selection of produce that's high quality, but it's usually not cheap. In fact, much of CM is a wide array of high quality products at high prices - the hook is their overall selection and quality. If you can afford it, it's a good option to work into your rotation.

Price-wise among the main chains (Kroger/Tom Thumb/Albertson's), Kroger appears to be the best in terms of price/quality. The few Albertson's I've been in have left me unimpressed, and Tom Thumb seems to be darn expensive for what one is getting. Obviously you can work the sales and pick up some good items that way.

I don't like Wal-Mart for a variety of reasons, but used to go to one frequently because it was convenient (and no other store was). Their prices are generally low, but they were lower at Aldi's for similar types of goods that I'd buy there. On produce etc. their quality didn't stack up. Also, on non-grocery items like mouthwash or whatever, I'd prefer purchasing at Target (cleaner stores/more helpful staff/shorter checkout lines) or Costco (same as Target but often lower prices than Wal-Mart) so it wasn't a timesaver. Philosophical issues aside, I rarely frequent Wal-Mart because it doesn’t offer value for my needs. YMMV.

Costco - generally great prices and good quality on many items where buying in bulk isn't an issue. Not terribly impressed by their frozen seafood in terms of price (mainly shrimp), and produce in bulk rarely works for us.

I don't do Whole Foods because I'm not THAT well-off.

Will also hit Asian grocery stores for certain goods (lime leaves, anyone?) and would like to hit more ethnic grocery stores overall but am still looking for ones anywhere near our current location, as we've only been here a few months after living across town.

Hope that's useful - as noted, it echoes what other posters have already said in many instances.
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Old 08-29-2013, 09:54 AM
 
Location: Dallas area, Texas
2,237 posts, read 2,762,302 times
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Sprout's is hit or miss on produce, but I like their meats. The store in Murphy makes great sausages. Their pre-made meatloaf is darn convenient. I buy their free range turkey at Thanksgiving. They also have some bulk items if Whole Foods or Central Market isn't close.

If you need gluten free or other special diet foods, they are also a great place to shop.
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Old 08-29-2013, 01:07 PM
 
3,166 posts, read 4,820,882 times
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Quote:
I've had nothing but trouble with their fruit, particularly their soft fruit (like berries). At my location, berries are displayed at room temperature which promotes mold growth, and all of the produce is roughly handled by the employees there which makes it much more likely to bruise and mold. I've never seen an apple there that wasn't bruised. Most of the packages of strawberries or blackberries have visible mold on them, and the oranges have soft spots that will quickly grow moldy in the fridge. It's awful. I won't buy fruit there anymore at all. Maybe they're doing something different at your location. My local Sprouts is the one in Richardson at Coit and Campbell. I've spoken to the manager there multiple times and gave up; nobody there seems to care. I buy my fruit elsewhere.
I'm with you on the berries, though I only buy them when they are on sale and look pretty carefully before I buy them. Some days they seem better than others.

Otherwise, we haven't had any other issues. The apples are always in really good shape, as are the other in season soft fruits I've been buying, like peaches, pears, etc. I've shop mostly at the Coppell location and occasionally in Flower Mound, though it has been awhile.
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Old 08-29-2013, 01:37 PM
 
Location: North Texas
23,618 posts, read 31,183,401 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mSooner View Post
I'm with you on the berries, though I only buy them when they are on sale and look pretty carefully before I buy them. Some days they seem better than others.

Otherwise, we haven't had any other issues. The apples are always in really good shape, as are the other in season soft fruits I've been buying, like peaches, pears, etc. I've shop mostly at the Coppell location and occasionally in Flower Mound, though it has been awhile.
Just goes to show that the employees really do matter; I've seen them pouring apples out of the box onto displays and heard them thunk-thunk-thunking all over the place. The thunks you hear now will be bruises tomorrow. You're not supposed to do that with apples. Every other supermarket I've been to stacks apples carefully. They don't pour them out of the box.

I have exchanged containers of moldy berries at Sprouts before and they exchange them with no hassle, but why drive to a store further away to buy produce of inferior quality that I'm more likely to have to bring back to the store when I can get it at Kroger for around the same price on average...and it's a lot closer?
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