This Ain't Yo Mama's Grocery Store

For those of you who live in a big city, this post will seem rather blase. 

For those of you in My Little Corner of East Texas, if you haven't already done so, run, don't walk to check out this store. 

It. Is. A. Maze. Ing!

Our local grocery chain, Brookshires, opened a 'new', new for these parts, style of grocery store. The brand name is Fresh. The store lives up it its name. There are all sorts of fresh foods to buy and sample, as well as some of the exotic that they will also let you sample. 

Let me begin with a few pictures of the exterior of the store.

Only in its dreams did Piggly Wiggly hope to look like this.

The entrance Art Teacher and I used took you in through the produce department. Art Teacher and I went here last week, yes we were desperate for something different to do.

The produce is unlike anything you'll see at Wal-Martsss. Check out the potatoes

Nope, these are not your typical russet potatoes. Husband said these look like the ones he saw, and ate, while he was a missionary in Peru.

Here's a very colorful and fresh bell pepper display. A.T. commented that she'd never seen white bell peppers before, neither had I.

Have you ever eaten a rambutan? I have. 

I saw this display and asked the grocer, who was working nearby, what it was. 

He not only proceeded to very knowledgeably tell me that it was a rambutan from Guatemala but he also cut one open so I could taste it. 

The texture is that of a grape, the flavor is sweet, very sweet, and refreshing. There is a pit in the center which he said was bitter so you wouldn't want to eat that, well unless you like bitter, which I don't. At 13.99 a pound, I'll have to settle for the free one the grocer gave me or wait for an über special event to buy them.

You like cheese? Well, they have cheese, all kinds of cheese. Mickey Mouse would be happy here.

Then there were the beverages. Oh, the beverages.

You want different, they have different.

What the heck is burdock? It'd be best that I not sample the above, a little fermentation has taken place, if ya know what I mean.

Oh, yes, then there's the salt. Morton's this is not.

Before I forget, if you need pink Himalayan salt, Fresh has it in stock. They had an ample supply the day we were there.

Now for the section that really, really, really spoke to me.

Don't they look yummy? Be still my heart.

There were things to sample, a deli section that is out of this world, organic foods coming out your ear (Baby Sis, we will shop here next time you're in these parts), organic cleaning supplies, did I mention the water?

There are bottled waters from all over the world. These are from the Catalan region of Spain.

A.T. and I each bought a bottle of the water to do a taste test comparison between Spanish bottled water and East Texas bottled water. I've performed my test, the verdict: they taste the same. I'll save some money and stick with Ozarka.

Fresh carries the regular stuff, you know, Fritos, Kraft Mac 'n Cheese, Mr. Clean, etc. but it's nice to know that there's a local store that carries the unique and hard to find. Yes, even though it's forty five miles away it's still a local store. A.T. and I had a blast touring this place, I think you will too.  The staff is super friendly and helpful too.

One last thing. 

I know you've been on the search for mushrooms. Not the plain ol' button mushrooms but the Shitaki and portobello type mushrooms, Fresh has them. They also carry these

Next time you're looking through Bon Appétit magazine and the recipe calls for truffle mushrooms, you'll know where to go.

The good folks at Fresh didn't pay me to say all these good thing about them, they have no clue who I am, though if they want to send some tambutan my way, I wouldn't turn it down.


  1. Wow...truffles. Who in East Texas even eats those? And those potatoes look creepy. Great for some weird halloween decoration.

  2. I have heard of this store but haven't been there yet. It looks like a lot of fun! The kiddos might even get a kick out of looking at the different things they have! :)

  3. Ben went last month. It reminded him of H-E-B which I sooo wish were in ETX. Wish Fresh wasn't so far away...but I'll have to check it out sometime.

  4. I can't wait to check it out! I think it might have to be a date night activity for me and the hubby. -Amy

  5. L, who does eat truffles other than in candy form? I'm not brave enough to try them.

    Kadie, it would be a super fun place to take the kids. Be prepared though, there is a lot to see, their little senses might overload!

    Liz, if H-E-B is like this, then let's lobby to get one in L'view at least, I'd shop there. Or better yet, let's lobby for Brookshires to put a Fresh in L'view.

    Amy, this would be the perfect date night with the hubs. He would love it. You wouldn't even have to go to a separate restaurant, the deli looks THAT good. And, hey, dessert is, well you saw what dessert would be like.

  6. OMG! Woman, eat the truffles, they're soooo good! And despite what your Hubs says, you have to try the rainbow-selection of potatoes...they're especially good when roasted with some EVOO and S&P and served up with some chevre. Yum.

    Where is this new culinary-heaven located? In Gilmer? Donde?

    btw...welcome to grocery heaven.

  7. Baby Sis, if only this culinary-heaven were in my spec-of-a-town. It's in Tyler...only a fifty minute drive, just a stone's throw.

  8. V., H-E-B will only build in Longview if it can get the land in "wet" area of town, I know one developer that had some land H-E-B wanted but he wouldn't sell to them, and according to the folks at Fresh, so much of their clientele are from Longview that there are talks of opening one up there... Ben

  9. Oh, wouldn't that be wonderful, Ben! I know I'd be taking a cooler or two to do my grocery shopping in L'view.