Town Square

Post a New Topic

We want a large grocery store

Original post made by Safeway Shopper, Another Palo Alto neighborhood, on Oct 20, 2010

I have been keeping track of basic groceries that I am unable to get at Midtown Safeway and are always available at larger Safeways. These range from Safeway own brand items to major brands. They range from coffee, yeast, frozen lasagne, frozen pizza, chips, bottled beverages, all the type of things that are not considered gourmet, unusual or ethnic. I have spoken with the Safeway Managaer, sent off their postcards to their head office and had the head office call me.




I have been told that it is the manufacturers who decide, shelf space, repackaging, and store size that are the problems. I suspect that if a flavor is more popular they take it off the shelves to get a less popular flavor to increase, because I know that these are popular items rather than things people seldom buy.




But, the real problem is that we have a small branch and they can't carry everything that their customers want regularly.

I live near the Midtown Safeway. It is convenient on my way home. I do not want to get stuck in rush hour traffic to buy a few groceries for dinner or next day's lunches by going to Mountain View or Menlo Park. I don't want to have to go to several different stores to buy a handfull of items. I use Costco and out of town stores for large shopping trips and I do go to Piazzas and other stores for some items. But, I dearly want a decent sized basic grocery store in my own town, on the way home.

This is causing me frustration, wasting time, wasting gas, and making me buy items I don't really want or to change my plans for dinner because the item I want isn't available. This is Silicon Valley, the heart of a well educated, well traveled, and demanding demographic population. At times, I feel as if I have traveled back in time or to some small town hundreds of miles from the nearest big city warehouse.

I don't want, need or like lots of gourmet, boutique grocery stores. I want a large Safeway less than 5 miles from my house.

Comments (81)

 +   Like this comment
Posted by anonymous
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Oct 20, 2010 at 10:52 am

I also find this particular store unacceptable, which is unfortunate bc the location is great.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Too Much Traffic
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 20, 2010 at 10:59 am

Welcome to Palo Alto, where no grocery store can be bigger than 20K square feet. That is apparently, so that JJ&F will not face to much competition--as I understand from what people have told me.
Anyway, forget about any chain opening a large store in town--the NIMBYists, naysayers and obstructionists have made sure that the last chance for that to happen at (Alma Plaza) was thwarted. ALso, no large chain would want to have to jump through the hoops that the city puts in front of them, aka The Palo Alto Process.
Plus a large grocery store will create "too much traffic" in Palo Alto--another non-existent complaint that elected officials, neighborhood leaders and others who feel we are still in the early 20th century use to stifle development.
Anyway, the stores have learned that all you need to do is build right at the Palo Alto border--why bother dealing with Palo Alto when you can get things done with much less fuss from friendlier, neighboring municipalities.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Neighbor
a resident of South of Midtown
on Oct 20, 2010 at 11:04 am

Stores cannot be any larger than 20,000 sq. ft. in Palo Alto. When the issue of larger stores comes up; friends of JJ & F and the small store (yet to be built on Alma) say that larger stores will put the little stores out of business!!

Anyway remember Palo Alto wants little neighborhood stores to be within walking or bicycling distance, so residents won't drive to the store, so bike or walk!!

Meanwhile, I shop at Mountain View Safeway, and I can't wait until they get their really big new store up and running on San Antonio Road.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Too Much Traffic
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 20, 2010 at 11:28 am

"Anyway remember Palo Alto wants little neighborhood stores to be within walking or bicycling distance, so residents won't drive to the store, so bike or walk!! "
Not very feasible. If you have to buy a large amount of groceries, biking and/or walking does not work very well. I guess the "too much traffic" crowd in PA just expect you to go everyday and buy a small amount of groceries.
The whole "walkable neighborhood" concept is a joke. It has been parroted for years by our council members and neighborhood activists, however only lip service has been paid to the concept. Otherwise why would Alma Plaza be gone and Edgewood Plaza be sitting empty for so long.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Midtown shopper
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 20, 2010 at 1:50 pm

Personally, I think that the Midtown Safeway has improved tremendously since its remodeling a couple of (a few?) years ago.

It used to carry only basic, mostly junk, products. Now the quality of its offerings has improved tremendously. For instance, many more natural and organic products.

As a matter of fact, I had stopped going there and I am going there again now that it's improved so much. I am probably not the only one who thinks so because there is much more customer traffic there now than a few years ago. I don't want it to go back to selling mostly junk as it used to.

That said, yes it is smaller, and it does not carry everything because its size does not allow it. Is it a bad thing? I don't know. I know that a big shopping trip once in a while to a larger/other store would allow to pick up most other things I need.

By the way, I can do just about all my food shopping between the Midtown Safeway, Trader Joe's and Piazza's... All three being in PA now. (I also go to Milk Pail Market and of course that's in Mountain View). Bur if someone wants to shop only once a week, at one store, then yes, it probably takes a trip to Mountain View or Menlo Park. Not such a big deal except for the lost tax income for our city.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by another Safeway shopper
a resident of Palo Verde
on Oct 20, 2010 at 3:01 pm

I wish they had a bakery here for fresh bread.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Susan
a resident of Community Center
on Oct 20, 2010 at 4:10 pm

Isn't it wonderful there is a Trader Joe's in town? Let's celebrate the positive. For once!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Safeway Shopper
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 20, 2010 at 4:23 pm

Trader Joe's meat selection is poor to almost non-existent. Prepackaged meat in small quantities isn't what we want. There isn't even anyone there who knows about meat and how to cook it.

Trader Joe's produce is all prepackaged.

Trader Joe's does not have very much outside its own brands.

Trader Joe's has a few items which I like, but not very many staples that I would buy all the time.

Trader Joe's is a boutique, not a full service grocery store.

What does it take for us to get a decent grocery store? I wish I had the time to stand outside Midtown Safeway with a survey/petitition to ask Safeway customers if they want a larger store and what it is they find limiting in this particular store.

I don't think I am the only one who thinks that we have limited shopping in Palo Alto. I have told the City Council. I have told the Safeway Manager. I have told Safeway regional office.

I am tired of going to 3 different stores to buy my basic grocery items. I am tired of needing to go out of town to buy the brands I want which are easily available in larger stores. I am tired of having to make do with an alternative, or a flavor/variety/brand/size that I don't want. I am tired of being treated like a second class citizen for not liking the boutique grocery stores we have in Palo Alto.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by WilliamR
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Oct 20, 2010 at 5:22 pm

'Politics' aside, Safeway wouldn't be likely to build a big store in Palo Alto, since they already have close-by locations in Mountain View and Menlo Park. Another chain, such as Nob Hill, might be an alternative here.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by palo alto mom
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Oct 20, 2010 at 6:05 pm

I would love, love, love a Nob Hill! Great produce, beautiful store, good prices, delicious to go items, etc.

It won't happen in Palo Alto because any site large enough must be used for housing! We must keep our developers, the ABAG and the anti-traffic police happy!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Jarred
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 20, 2010 at 8:52 pm

The midtown Safeway is ok, and it has definitely gotten better lately. My only real complaint is that if I buy a pack of gum they give me receipt that is 2 feet long. Sheesh!

If you want *good* food, you can always go to Piazza's.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by jd
a resident of Adobe-Meadows
on Oct 20, 2010 at 10:17 pm

let's build mega costcos in every neighborhood - see what it does to property values and quality of life.........

What a clueless thread...........


 +   Like this comment
Posted by PA
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 21, 2010 at 12:44 am

Come on, this is just silly, we have Andronico's, Molly Stone, Piazza's, Whole Foods, two farmer's markets, etc. We are lucky to have these great stores in our town and still have huge Safeway on the outskirts of town in Mt. View and Menlo Pk and an amazing Mi Pieblo on the other side of 101 in EPA. Palo Alto rocks when it comes to grocery shopping!!!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Fry's
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 21, 2010 at 5:26 am

I want a Fry's on Middlefield or somewhere in Midtown. Yes, there's one in Ventura but I have to cross Alma and the railroad to get to it. You would think in Silicon Valley that there's enough demand for another Fry's for C. sake. And it shouldn't have 4 different types of music blasting all over. It's Palo Alto! It should be classical music and jazz and The Grateful Dead. And it should carry Ted.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Too Much Traffic
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 21, 2010 at 6:44 am

WEll, JD, if PA really wanted to carry out the mantra of "walkable neighborhoods", then each neighborhood would have a library branch and a nice shopping center with a decent sized grocery store and other shops. No one is saying we should build mega-costcos everywhere--just some decent sized grocery stores--the fact that PA has chosen to protect a small store at the behest of a very selfish and demanding neighborhood to the detriment of the rest of the city is laughable.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Safeway Shopper
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 21, 2010 at 7:58 am

This is to those who scorn the need of one decent grocery store in Palo Alto.

Of course we don't need huge grocery stores in every neighborhood. In fact, if we had one decent grocery store and it was more than 5 miles from my home but in Palo Alto I would not be so upset. If we had very few stores compared to the large number of stores, I wouldn't be so upset.

But what does upset me is the attitude that Palo Alto is so "lucky" to have so many carbon copy boutique, run of the mill, pitifull choice stores, and the powers that be in this city will not accept that there is a need and that people who live in this city want something better than what we have got.

My family is not a designer family with designer needs. We are a family of 6 who eat at home practically every day, who take lunches with us every day, who have lives that require that we don't spend time going out of our way to drive 20 minutes (at least and that is in good traffic) to get to a neighboring town to buy the type of frozen pizza, breakfast cereal or lunchtime individual frozen meal, that is not available in the local minimart (Safeway) or boutique food outlet.

We are not the type of family who cook gourmet meals from scratch, who like untried yuppy store brands, or want to show off our designer food labels to our friends while we eat our lunch.

The fact that a certain group had for many years been wishing for a TJs in Palo Alto and got their wish - possibly in the hardest location for a grocery store to be classed as handy, doesn't mean that there is a large number of residents who are still wishing for our needs to be met.

I do not begrudge anyone who is delighted in their local designer minimart boutique. Please do not begrudge the rest of us the luxury of having a decent grocery store to meet our needs within the confines of our own town.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Neighbor
a resident of South of Midtown
on Oct 21, 2010 at 12:19 pm

If you have one mega grocery store people might drive to it. Come hear Jaime Rodriguez our new Transportation Manager tonight at Terman School; he's a huge advocate for bicycles and wants us all to ride or walk - that's why he was hired!!!

You cannot have one large grocery store without all the other neighborhoods expressing their opposition because that neighborhood has been favored to the detriment of the small stores in all the other neighborhoods.

Safeway Shopper: I'm afraid you don't get it, our Mayor and City Council wants Palo Alto to be known as the number one bicycle City of California. Just see what the future has in store for bicycles in Palo Alto to the detriment of automobiles, and that will mean walking or biking to your favorite small neighborhood grocery store.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Too Much Traffic
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 21, 2010 at 12:31 pm

"he's a huge advocate for bicycles and wants us all to ride or walk"
Mr Rodriguez can advocate all he wants. This is a car community--driving is part of the lifestyle here. What about the additional cost of shopping at small boutique stores? I guess that fact does not concern the bike/walk, walkable neighborhood crowd, who filter everything through their green glasses/


 +   Like this comment
Posted by PiazzasFan
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 21, 2010 at 5:47 pm

I love Piazza's...it has everything I need, and the meat and produce are fantastic. One trip per week to one store is no problem.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Poster Boy
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 21, 2010 at 6:50 pm

I'll be frank. I want a big store with a big selection close by in Palo Alto, but I don't want it built in my neighborhood.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by To Safeway Shopper
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Oct 21, 2010 at 6:56 pm

What you've written makes sense for a family of 6! I'm in a very small family, so TJ's and a few trips to Safeway per month often fit our needs. But really, if there was one large Safeway that people could hit just once a week, if that was their style, the traffic wouldn't increase. As it is, for many of the larger families, I know they go to Costco or Safeway, or both, plus TJs or Piazza's and sometimes also a drugstore.

I love going to the Farmer's Market when I can, but seriously, I'm lucky because I'm not feeding kids.

Too bad PA won't likely have a larger store. It's seriously inconvenient. The way that school and other traffic is around Palo Alto, I'd rather stay in and eat from a can!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by NorthPA Mark
a resident of Professorville
on Oct 21, 2010 at 8:32 pm

"Of course we don't need huge grocery stores in every neighborhood. In fact, if we had one decent grocery store and it was more than 5 miles from my home but in Palo Alto I would not be so upset."

From my location, I can get to both the Menlo Park and the Mountain View Safeway stores in ~5 miles or less. Both of those seem pretty convenient to me for when I need a big Safeway. Why does it *have* to be in Palo Alto? Typically less than 10 minutes for me to either, unless during rush hour. There are plenty of other areas in the country where one would be quite lucky to have even a single big store so close.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Marie
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 21, 2010 at 9:53 pm

Marie is a registered user.

Let's keep the record straight. Alma Plaza was zoned for a 30,000 sq. ft. grocery store (unlike the rest of PA that is restricted to 20,000) but Lucky's/Albertsons wanted a 40,000 sq. ft. grocery store. So they upgraded their Mt. View store across from Safeway, and sold Alma Plaza to a developer with the restriction that only a tiny grocery store could be put there, presumably to reduce competition with the Mt. View store. Since the developer was interested in putting ultra-dense housing, that was fine by him. Thanks largely to Palo Alto being under a quota from ABAG to increase housing here, he finally succeeded in wearing down the council over some number of years (10??? or so) and getting an ultra-dense housing development with narrow streets (20 ft I think but am not sure) approved. He never submitted anything that came close to complying with existing zoning for the property or the surrounding neighborhood.

Ironically, after Lucky's was acquired by Albertsons, they closed down the Mt. View store, with Safeway becoming the dominant store in the area. In the meantime, the developer, despite neighborhood opposition, got planned community status, and permission for high density housing, inadequate parking (no driveways I think) and narrow streets in exchange for some small retail stores and a community room, that he then tried to make available for only a small number of hours. I forget the final compromise. It is particularly ironic as there is no mass transit nearby. You have to walk over the tracks to El Camino to catch a bus. The train station is 1.6 miles away.

The narrow streets are no longer allowed under a new ordinance that requires wider streets but we are stuck with it nonetheless. In fact, the proposed builder went bankrupt and lawsuits between him and the developer have ensued. The developer is now in the process of laying out the streets and lots -even though I haven't seen that a builder has been selected. He is probably doing this so he doesn't lose the ability to put in such narrow streets, greatly enhancing his profits.

If Lucky's had been willing to put in a 30,000 sq. ft. store, with adequate noise mitigation, the issue would have been settled long ago. If the council had not capitulated to a developer unwilling to comply with existing zoning, which was in effect when he bought the property, we might have a reasonable development at Alma Plaza instead of the mish mash we will get that will be of no benefit to anyone but the developer.

Why do so many posters believe that developers should have the right to purchase property zoned one way, and be able to get the zoning changed for the cost of some minor "public benefit" in order to make a much higher profit on an ultra-dense development, that worsens traffic and parking throughout the neighborhood? And I'm not even getting into the impact on the schools. Please explain this to me.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by bk
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 21, 2010 at 10:53 pm

I moved to PA just over a year ago from 5 miles down the road in Sunnyvale. I was appalled by the lack of decent grocery stores in PA. The midtown Safeway is awful, feels like 1960's in there and most of the other stores are small and expensive. I finally settled on the Mtn View Safeway because it is near but in no way compares to the excellent full service Safeway ( 3 of them, yes 3) that were 1/4, 1 mile and 2 miles away from my old home. These stores had excellent produce , alot of organic food: fresh and packaged: cookies, crackers, etc and a Starbucks inside. I cannot believe that the Alma plaza has sat vacant for so long. Until PA gets a decent Safeway I'll keep going to Mtn View. I can also easily get to the Trader Joe's and Whole Foods as well.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by local
a resident of Green Acres
on Oct 21, 2010 at 11:34 pm

CA Ave farmer's market and a trip to Country Sun (with my coupons), Piazza's during the week and an occasional trip to Whole Foods -- I wouldn't personally see a need for more grocery.

Piazza's in particular does an incredible job of stocking and has laid things out so well that they have selection you often seen in stores twice the size. It's an easy trip, easy to check out, good quality food, and Piazza's is so incredibly supportive of local schools.

Country Sun carries stuff I can't even find at Whole Foods. Small, but lots of good stuff and very customer oriented.

That said, I wouldn't mind a Target in that Fabian Way area...


 +   Like this comment
Posted by PatrickD
a resident of Barron Park
on Oct 21, 2010 at 11:57 pm

I just wish there was a green grocery like the Milk Pail by the Trader Joes. I'm halfway between TJs in Mountain View and the one here in Palo Alto, so I always end up going to MV.

Since I often take my cargo bike, I'd actually prefer to go to the one in PA since the bike paths around San Antonio Shopping Center are kind of sketchy.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 22, 2010 at 4:45 am

Walter_E_Wallis is a registered user.

We had Starlight, a small family grocery on El Camino near California and one on Forest near the Channing House. I believe we even had corner saloons and gas stations at one time. All neighborhood, all gone. Man on Hamilton speak with forked tongue.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Too Much Traffic
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 22, 2010 at 7:38 am

"Why do so many posters believe that developers should have the right to purchase property zoned one way, and be able to get the zoning changed for the cost of some minor "public benefit" in order to make a much higher profit on an ultra-dense development, that worsens traffic and parking throughout the neighborhood?"

You are being selective in your accounting of the history of Alma Plaza. Let's not forget that the original plane was for it to remain a shopping center with no housing and a larger Lucky store. Then the "neighborhood leaders" got involved. One group was formed that whined that the store was going to be too big. Then Alma Plaza was included in a last minute development moratorium forced on the city by another "neighborhood leader" who was eager to drive the Hyatt from town ( and we see what we ended up with at that site). I should point out that at that point they were real close to having an agreement on Alma Plaza. Afterward we had a new group formed to delay Alma Plaza (of course they thought that by starting a 'new" group with different figureheads we would not realize that certain people were hell bent on keeping Alma Plaza vacant) who whined that the new proposed store was too small. And we now have nothing there--thanks "neighborhood leaders".


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Safeway Shopper
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 22, 2010 at 7:57 am

Just thought I would point something out to some of you who think a small grocery store with an occasional larger trip to Costco or an out of town Safeway.

When you get a couple of teenage boys your needs will change dramatically. Mine did. When our home becomes the house of choice after school for your 14+ year olds and a couple of their friends, your refrigerator and/or freezer and/or pantry will empty for a mid afternoon or later evening snack. Frozen pizza, frozen chicken wings, bread and sandwich fillings (including the current fave of fried egg sandwiches), bunches of bananas and even bags of grapes (used for throwing and catching in the mouth competitions) are what comes to mind. And cereal and milk is not just a breakfast item. Ramen, mac and cheese are good standbys. The more food in the house seems to mean the more they will eat. And this happens several times a week.

Having a good selection at a grocery store which is close enough for an impromptu shopping trip for supplies for dinner and the next day's breakfast and lunch frenzy is a requirement for a home with teenage boys.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 22, 2010 at 11:25 am

Suppose we wanted a 60,000 square foot Super Safeway. Do we have a 3 to 4 acre site in mind?

El Camino near Charleston? Behind San Antonio near the JCC? Off Foothill near the VA?

Would you shop at Safeway on Foothill in Palo Alto rather than Mountain View or Menlo Park?


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Sarah
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 22, 2010 at 2:52 pm

I don't understand why people whine so much, we have so many stores around us: TJ, wholefoods, mollie stones, safeway..... I don't understand why we make such difficult meals with so many ingredients. Do you know simple is beautiful?


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Nayeli
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 22, 2010 at 4:14 pm

I would love for a Wal-Mart Supercenter to be built somewhere nearby. The Wal-Mart in Mountain View is awful...so our family will sometimes make a trek to Gilroy just to go shopping at the Supercenter for groceries! Their prices -- when compared with Safeway or some of the other unbelievably expensive grocery stores around here -- make the trip worthwhile.

Now excuse me as I duck from the anti-Walmart stones being thrown.

:-P


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Me Too
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 22, 2010 at 5:41 pm

@Nayeli, I for one agree with you. A great Wal-Mart would be a total joy - a miracle of shopping. I can't imagine one in PA (it would drive the liberals too crazy) but one in MV or RWC would be terrific. We can only hope.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Midtown resident
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 22, 2010 at 10:09 pm

I could never understand how can Walgreens and Longs Drugs (now CVS) compete in such close proximity to each other in Midtown. We do not need two stores carrying basically the same stuff within a stone throw from each other. Wait till one of them goes out of business and offer the site to Trader Joe's and perhaps a butcher shop like Diettmer's in Mountain View.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by anon
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 22, 2010 at 11:53 pm

Hi, please don't assume that because you want chips, soda, frozen pizza and lasagna that everyone else does. I want produce and better fish, both of which are at Piazza, which is just as small as midtown Safeway. In addition, i want whole wheat, brown rice, soups without sugar.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by JD
a resident of Adobe-Meadows
on Oct 23, 2010 at 12:57 am

Too much traffic or should it be Too much entitled arrogance

"the fact that PA has chosen to protect a small store at the behest of a very selfish and demanding neighborhood to the detriment of the rest of the city is laughable."

You want to live next to a big grocery store then move to MV, you ought to fit in fine...........don't move to PA then complain you don't like it so it needs to change for you.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Safeway Shopper
a resident of Palo Verde
on Oct 23, 2010 at 9:09 am

anon
The point is that we all have our own needs and requirements when it comes to groceries. I realise that we have various needs, some want organic, some want bakeries, some want great frozen foods and others want great ready made to take home and eat straight away.

Because we have various needs and because our requirements change over the years (I didn't always have teenage boys that could eat non stop) our supermarkets should meet our needs.

JD
All places change and move forward. Palo Alto tries to stay stuck in the 50s. Not a good thing in my book.

When we moved to Palo Alto 20 years from the East Coast ago it was very like Mountain View, Sunnyvale, and Redwood City. The grocery stores seemed old fashioned compared to what we were used to. These places have changed with the times. Palo Alto is very little changed and stuck in a rut when it comes to shopping needs.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Too Much Traffic
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 23, 2010 at 9:34 am

"You want to live next to a big grocery store then move to MV, you ought to fit in fine...........don't move to PA then complain you don't like it so it needs to change for you."

Thanks JD for your comments. I think Safeway Shopper, above, summed it up quite nicely how cities, except for PA change with the times.
I have been living here for more than 15 years,so I did not just move in and complain. In that time we have large stores having been built in Los ALtos, Mountain View and Menlo Park for the benefit of the residents. In Palo Alto, we have obstruction by a vocal minority aided and abetted by a city council unwilling to take a stand. And we have people like yourself, JD, who tell people that are upset with the status quo to move, so that we end up with drones like yourself.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Hmmm
a resident of East Palo Alto
on Oct 23, 2010 at 1:22 pm

Too Much Traffic, you make some good points. I have lived here all my life, except for the going away to school time. Much of the change I've seen isn't good. But when an area grows, services have to grow with it. I'm not a big fan of Safeway for many reasons, but that's me, and I don't put that opinion on others. It's inconvenient for me, w/a small family, to run around to a bunch of different stores, so I can only imagine what it's like for someone w/a larger family. I understand the fear of traffic, but the traffic is here already! Why not make things more efficient and profitable? It's not about having a city change for you, it's that you've noticed how out of synch it is w/the surrounding communities, in a way that's problematic. I have friends who've commented to the negative about the PA libraries, for ex., how behind the times they are in some ways. No airconditioning, such old buildings, that sort of thing. The lack of one good grocery store is similar.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Zeleni
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 23, 2010 at 1:43 pm

I recently moved here and am fairly satisfied with my grocery store selection. Safeway, Piazza's, Country Sun, Whole Foods, etc all have their positives. Not to mention the incredible Farmers Market. I come from a community with a strong food co-op, which is unfortunately and surprisingly lacking here. However, I'm surprised that anyone would be unsatisfied with the availability frozen pizzas, lasagna, chips, and bottled beverages. I've seen them all in spades at each of these establishments. I don't think you realize the variety available compared to other communities across the country. I appreciate Palo Alto's commitment to smaller, community level stores. That increases the likelihood for you to have a grocery store in your neighborhood, since the town can support more stores.

And another Fry's? A Walmart? C'mon people, let's have some creativity. Let's support local businesses run by people from our own community.

Palo Alto still has a lot of work to become truly bike and pedestrian friendly, but from my short time here it's obviously a priority. The Bryant Ave bike boulevard is great and has encouraged me to bike to get groceries and other errands when I wouldn't otherwise.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by pat
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 23, 2010 at 10:15 pm

"I do not want to get stuck in rush hour traffic…."

"I don't want to have to go to several different stores…"

"I dearly want a decent sized basic grocery store in my own town, on the way home."

"I don't really want or to change my plans for dinner…"

"I want a large Safeway less than 5 miles from my house."

No wonder people call the city Shallow Alto and mock our sense of entitlement!



 +   Like this comment
Posted by Capbreton
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 24, 2010 at 9:02 am

Big Safeways offer nothing over Midtown-sized Safeways except an additional eight brands of toilet paper and four laundry detergent size options instead of two. Big whoop. What souless places these places are. More of the same offers no choice whatsoever and they are depressing places to shop as well.

Trader Joes is brilliant and offers things like frozen pizza from Italy and frozen tarts direct from France. You'd rather have a mega-Walmart? That would not be cheaper than TJs and, again, would offer tons of the same.

So shop at something like TJs and supplement with a trip to Dietmers or Shaub's at Stanford if you want a broader meat selection. If you're afraid to buy food brands that haven't thrown millions of dollars at you in marketing and ads at you ahead of time that's your loss.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by palo alto mom
a resident of Embarcadero Oaks/Leland
on Oct 24, 2010 at 9:39 am

There are terrific, small stores in Palo Alto, but the point the initial poster was trying to make was that you need to go to all of them to get your shopping done. Comparing the Safeway in Midtown to the large one in Menlo Park - the Menlo Park safeway a bakery, floral department, gift department, large selection of produce, large selection of organic items, kitchen items, ten times the magazines, cards, toiletries, etc. There is a bigger selection of everything. There are sodas, canned good, frozen foods, snacks, etc. that are just not in the Safeway in Palo Alto.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Me Too
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 24, 2010 at 9:48 am

The post by Capbreton above represents the arrogance that some in Palo Alto display. He thinks the limited choices we have are fine and if you don't, you don't just disagree, you are wrong, ignorant, and a bad person. Wow, you don't appreciate TJ's frozen tarts direct from France or want to pay the meat prices at Dietmers? What a peon!

Luckily the most of the Palo Alto and the rest of the world does not share this view. Unluckily, our City Council listens primarily to the vocal few who spout their very firmly held opinions about what is right. Someday perhaps the many can take back the town from the few and we will have a happier place.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Safeway Shopper
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 24, 2010 at 10:02 am

If and when the two adults are the only adults in our home, or going back to the time when our kids were still in elementary school, the present options for grocery shopping in Palo Alto will probably be great just like they were 10 years ago.
True, I love Piazzas for many things, their butchers are great and know their product and offer helpful advice. Their baked goods are good even if they are not baked in store. Their produce is great.

There are some great things at TJs, even my Paly students come home with them from school with some of their favourites.

But neither of these stores will do it all for me and my teenagers in particular.

What you have to realise about teenage boys if you don't have any, is that they are motivated by food to a large degree. If they have a day off school or have to work with friends on a project or even have time to grab a snack before heading off to sports practice, is that they go to the home with the best food options and the best video game options. If you want to see your teenage boys and their friends you need (and I mean need) to have the food they want to eat available in your home or else they go somewhere else. The fancy type of pizza - even cheese instead of pepperoni - healthy brown bread instead of white bread - the wrong chips or sodas, can all make the difference of whether you get to see your son for the weekend or not.

I never realised it worked like this, but it does.

Of course, you just may prefer your son to spend his time eating at friends' homes rather than your own.

As a result, a really good full service grocery store close to our home that can be depended on to have whatever you need is a must. Midtown Safeway sells out of popular items often by late afternoon and at 8.00 pm you can be in big trouble. I have checked this out with other parents so I know I am not alone. I may sound picky, but it is my sanity that is at stake.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Too Much Traffic
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 24, 2010 at 1:43 pm

"Big Safeways offer nothing over Midtown-sized Safeways except an additional eight brands of toilet paper and four laundry detergent size options instead of two. Big whoop. What souless places these places are. More of the same offers no choice whatsoever and they are depressing places to shop as well."

I got a good chuckle out of that comment. Has the poster even been to the Safeway in Menlo PArk? The Nob Hill on Grant?
Trader Joes is overpriced.Maybe other's want imported Tarts from France. I am talking about a nice and large selection of basic items--that i shard to get in PA at one store.
Sorry I guess I will never meet Capbreton's standards.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Alexander
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 24, 2010 at 6:08 pm

Every time one is proposed, Palo Alto Nimby's shoot it down.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 24, 2010 at 6:36 pm

Ok TMT and Alexander: where do you want to put your Super Safeway?

Stop whining about the city council and Capbreton. Get specific. All you need is 3 acres. I'll start: Park Blvd across from Agilent (a little too small)? Replace the Buena Vista Mobile Park? Deer Creek Road next to SAP? Fabian Way?

Let's see if everyone agrees on a site.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Too much traffic
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 24, 2010 at 6:59 pm

Anonymous--well the boat has sailed on having any kind of decent sized Safeway or other grocery store in town--all the chains have built right near us, so there is little interest to build here now.
You will also note, I never called for a "super Safeway" to be built. I just want a decent sized grocery store. We could have had one at Alma Plaza--but the "neighborhood activists" and our city council took care of that.
How about Edgewood Plaza--near the highway, karge enough plot I think. Or we can wait for fry's to leave. That whole area of Park Blvd. is blighted--a nice grocery store there would work. The shoppong center where Piazza's is can be redone to build a larger grocery with a nicer selection of other stores.
Enough detail for you, anonymous?


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Emily
a resident of Downtown North
on Oct 24, 2010 at 8:18 pm

What is so great about Safeway? It's more expensive and full of unhealthy food. It's all pre-packaged crap full of sugar. Honestly, I'd rather see an expanded Whole Foods in Palo Alto. I find myself stopping at the Mountain View or RWC one when I'm in those areas because of the larger selections. Safeway also only seems to sell really crappy brands of meat, like Foster Farms.

I'm actually also finding myself buying a lot of the 'staples' at Target- things like hot sauce, toilet paper, water, even some produce! It's waaaay cheaper than Safeway and I get get all of my other Target-needs there too.

Also, those on here saying that Trader Joe's is expensive need to open up their eyes. Trader Joe's is remarkably cheaper than Safeway and always a higher quality. The only thing that bothers me about TJ's is their over-packaging of items.

And can I also mention, that those saying all these things HAVE to be in Palo Alto are being ridiculous. How freaking hard is it to drive a couple miles to RWC, Menlo Park, Mountain View, etc, for all of these Safeway needs.

Oh, and how can we forget about the BLESSING that is Mi Pueblo in East Palo Alto? That grocery store is FANTASTIC! It has tons of the same things you can find in grocery stores, for much, much cheaper. And they also have a killer 'fresh' area where you can get the best salsas in town!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by chris
a resident of University South
on Oct 24, 2010 at 8:43 pm

I second Emily all around.

People who are stuck on a Safeway in Palo Alto should look around and smell the roses. There is more to life than Safeway.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Capbreton
a resident of Old Palo Alto
on Oct 24, 2010 at 9:34 pm

To Too Much Traffic.

The Menlo Park Safeway is exactly the store I was referring to when I said large and souless. What a horrible place -- unless you need a 25-yard-long display of hair dyes to choose from. The Midtown Safeway is just as good for doing a basic shop.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Walter_E_Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 25, 2010 at 6:29 am

Walter_E_Wallis is a registered user.

With much of the sentiment above I'm surprised that Co-op isn't still thriving.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Too Much Traffic
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 25, 2010 at 6:30 am

"The Menlo Park Safeway is exactly the store I was referring to when I said large and souless. What a horrible place -- unless you need a 25-yard-long display of hair dyes to choose from. "

Boy what an exaggeration--you have hot food, salad bar, sandwich place, bakery etc, plus a large selection of items.
If you find the Midtown Safeway okay for you, then go there. If you find the Menlo Park Safeway soulless then stay away. For me, I would like something larger than the Midtown minimart (aka Safeway)


 +   Like this comment
Posted by K
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 25, 2010 at 10:20 am

Agreed!!! the tiny safeway sucks!!
no selection. they don't carry their own cheaper brand.
sure do have a hell of a lot of wine though! not that wine drinkers purchase from safeway of all places.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by LOCAL GURL
a resident of Charleston Meadows
on Oct 25, 2010 at 10:35 am

Why would anyone want a Safeway in the first place, much less a bigger one? Doesn't it frigthen you that such a big conglomerate is controlling our access to food? Plant a garden!!!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Like Safeway!
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 25, 2010 at 10:41 am

I know lots of people who hate safeway in midtown. Please stay away so I can continue to buy my basic grocery needs quickly. I'm so happy not to live by a big wasteland of a grocery store. Now it's true that the midtown safeway does not meet _all_ of my grocery needs. But nowhere else does either. So I drive there!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Colleen
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 25, 2010 at 10:46 am

Midtown Market with Ducca and Hanley inside was the perfect storm with Safeway and Co-Op back in the day - but we had to have a Rite Aide AND a Longs. What small business got promoted there??


 +   Like this comment
Posted by resident_midtown
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 25, 2010 at 11:14 am

This is ridiculous we're debating on size/location of GROCERY stores.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by neighbor
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Oct 25, 2010 at 11:34 am

This blog is hilarious. All these people who want a big grocery store are also the ones likely to complain if someone actually tried to build it and it was too close to THEIR house.

Seems like people have alot of free time if they can do this much complaining about driving 10 minutes, vs. 5 minutes to a grocery store.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by mmmmMom
a resident of Downtown North
on Oct 25, 2010 at 11:41 am

Way to go, "pat" - you hit the nail on the head!!! Too funny!

Palo Alto has PLENTY of grocery stores. And best of all, THE FARMER'S MARKET! One on Sat AND one on Sunday. And if that is not enough, you can also do CSA deliverys.

Lastly, I echo those who call for there to never, ever exist another Walmart.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Too Much Traffic
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Oct 25, 2010 at 11:49 am

"This blog is hilarious. All these people who want a big grocery store are also the ones likely to complain if someone actually tried to build it and it was too close to THEIR house."
Glad you are enjoying yourself.
As i said it is all academic, since no large grocery chain will want to build in Palo Alto now. But just to show that you are wrong, I am in favor of a large grocery store in town and would not object to having it built near my home. But you are correct that complaints about large grocery stores is what has driven two shopping centers to shut down (Alma and Edgewood) despite the city always talking about walkable neighborhoods.

"Seems like people have alot of free time if they can do this much complaining about driving 10 minutes, vs. 5 minutes to a grocery store. "
You are clearly missing the point--the issue is not the drive, it is, for many people, the size of the store.

"Palo Alto has PLENTY of grocery stores. And best of all, THE FARMER'S MARKET! One on Sat AND one on Sunday. And if that is not enough, you can also do CSA deliverys. "
Yes, PA has many small, undersized markets (how else to make sure that JJ&F does not have too much competetion). What some of us are asking for is a large grocery store.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Former PA resident
a resident of Mountain View
on Oct 25, 2010 at 12:15 pm

C'mon, do a little meal planning and shop at the store(s) of your choice. I used to live in PA and always shopped at Safeway in Mt. View. I also went to Piazza's, TJ's, JJ&F and Molly Stone's.

I don't think I've ever heard so much whining about the inconvenience of not having a large grocery store "next door." What we really need to worry about is Whitman possibly moving into the Governor's mansion in January! Let's get real here!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Shopper
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 25, 2010 at 1:08 pm

I agree about the Midtown Safeway being too small to cary all the items I want. We use a lot of low fat products and have to go to other stores to get them. I am not interested in the gourmet items the store seems stacked with. It is difficult to reach the fruit the way it is stacked for display, and the quality of it isn't as good as in Mt View.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by palo alto mom
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Oct 25, 2010 at 2:00 pm

I just made my second trip to Safeway today, went to the one in Palo Alto, no 1% organic milk, not gallons of oj, none of the pre-made salad my kids like for lunch (these were just the things they were out of that they actually carry...

Off to Menlo Park, got everything I needed!


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Midtown Native
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 25, 2010 at 2:29 pm

Unbelievable! Who forced you to move into this neighborhood? Did you not notice what the community was like before you moved here, or did you figure you would change it to suit your needs once you had arrived? If you want to live next to WalMart move back to Tracy.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Bargain Shopper
a resident of South of Midtown
on Oct 25, 2010 at 2:33 pm

Safeway Shopper, I'm with you. My main beef is that, with a family of four to feed (two boys exiting their teen years and now at Foothill, so I feel your pain), I look for bargains and shop the ads. So many times I have gone to the Midtown Safeway and been told that they don't carry an item in their ad because they're a small store. I, too, have sent them a customer complaint card on this point, and not received a constructive response. To my mind, a store should, at minimum, CARRY THE ITEMS THEY ADVERTISE. (I know they sometimes run out — I'm talking about not carrying the items at all, ever!)

By the way, I run into the same problem with the CVSs here, especially the one in Midtown, and am told the same thing about them being a small store that cannot carry all the items they advertise. (The Palo Alto Walgreens stores are a bit better in that regard.)

As for those who advocate walking and biking everywhere — are you feeding a family of, essentially, five adults? (I say this because my nineteen-year-old son eats about two adults' worth of food.) Do you regularly buy four 12-packs of soda (the quantity you usually have to buy to get the sale price at Safeway) and carry it home on your bicycle, or on the bus? (To those of you who think soda is evil, well, I have a husband who works at home and who lives on Diet Coke instead of coffee or tea. To each his own.)

To those who say Piazza's, Mollie Stone's, Whole Foods, and Schaub's serve your needs — how many people are you feeding? Do you think every family here can afford to shop the way you do? And that if they can't, they should be happy to leave town, or just eat less?

What I do is that I end up shopping at the Safeway in Menlo Park for most of my everyday needs, even though the one in Mountain View is closer to me. (Even the MV Safeway does not carry Safeway's full line of items, and they also run out of sale items more often than the one in MP.) I supplement that with trips to Costco for the items our family uses in Costco-size quantities that are cheaper than sale prices elsewhere, and I also buy most of my produce at the Milk Pail in Mountain View, which has very good prices on not-so-pretty or slightly-overripe produce that local growers couldn't sell elsewhere. Once in a while, I make a pilgrimage up to Grocery Outlet in Redwood City to see what they have on deep discount. (I find the Wal-Mart in MV so unpleasant an experience that I have not been there in years.)

I use the Midtown Safeway or CVS only for quick trips when I just need an item or two that I know they carry.

We've lived here in Palo Alto for a quarter-century, and as my family has matured, the shopping options around me have not. If we ever achieve a financial position that enables us to buy a home, it probably won't be in Palo Alto, and shopping options are part of the reason why.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by palo alto mom
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Oct 25, 2010 at 4:03 pm

Just as an FYI - the Target in Redwood City redid its grocery department, it is large, includes a variety of items including produce and the prices are really great.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by jb
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Oct 25, 2010 at 4:18 pm

What you need to do is make a serious cooking schedule and involve your family in the effort. For the whole of human history eating has taken a substantial amount of time out of life. (Thank heaven you don't have to raise it and kill it.) It can't be done on the run without serious expense and disappointment to your cravings.

Most of the things on your list can be made at home in steps with raw ingredients that can be got anywhere.

Gather the recipes. I had a friend who had a schedule: chicken on Monday, Lamb on Tuesday, spaghetti on Wednesday, Fish on Thursday, etc. It didn't vary. I was astonished, because I thought food needed to be varied over perhaps a month. Her pattern was common in the '60s.

Now, I try to cook a pot of plain dried beans on the weekend, I cook a chicken or large turkey-part, I make a pasta sauce with meat. These form the beginning of things that can be finished for dinner the following week. Double the recipe for a meat loaf (I know, how '60s) and make it up. Mash a couple dinners' worth of potatoes and roots. Make a simple rice pilaf side dish. Then on one or two nights warm up some pilaf, saute some fast meat, cook some frozen veggies, and have the kids wash and make a salad. Put
most of a stew together on the weekend and then add some peas or other last-minute veggies to it that only need a brief cooking as the pot heats up.

Whatever you cook, make a double recipe, some for now and some for the future. Freeze stuff. Cook a whole winter squash. Warm some of it up with sauted onions for a side. Put the rest into a vegetable soup of broth and all the leftover veggies from the week (including the beans), and have soup for lunch on Saturday.

This is the kind of stuff that home economics classes used to teach. Or county extension agents—which is something a home ec. major could become. No more of that stuff though.

The above methods are some of the reasons people in the past were less fat also, and eating often cost less. But you have to be serious about cooking and eating. Dinner can't be an afterthought on the way home from work. This way you don't need a Safeway that is too big to run in and get milk because it takes 20 minutes to run to the back and get the milk and stand in line to check it out.

The plan I'm describing requires serious cooking a couple times a week—perhaps something roasting or simmering on the back burner while you finish tonight's meal. Lots of sides that can be microwaved. And anyone who eats has to help cook, just like the Little Red Hen. Plus, kids often eat more of what they helped make.

This plan is doable and more likely to be gettable from any local market.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Jake
a resident of another community
on Oct 25, 2010 at 5:42 pm

If it was completely up to demand and if it was not prohibited, there would be a large major grocery store in Palo Alto. Ignoring the fact that millions of dollars from PA residents are spent in MV,MP,EPA, etc every year at large grocery stores that are not in PA.
It's got nothing to do with demand and or need, a large grocery store like the ones PA residents patronage in those other cities is not an option in PA.
Did anyone ever wonder why those large stores were built right on the border of Palo Alto the first place? Its the next best thing to actualy being able to putting one in PA.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by mmmmMom
a resident of Downtown North
on Oct 25, 2010 at 5:45 pm

Great post, "jb"

That is exactly how my family eats. Bet I'll probably see you @ one of the Farmer's Markets! BTW, did you know that if you wait until the end, you will get some good bargains? And if you order a full box of something (such as beans to freeze, or stuff to can), you will get an even better deal.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Safeway Shopper
a resident of Palo Verde
on Oct 25, 2010 at 6:54 pm

JB and MMMom

Our family used to eat something like you described when the kids were in elementary school. Do either of you have teenagers? I can tell you, the more food you cook, the more they will eat. Anything leftover from the night before becomes an afterschool snack.

And yes, they do love to eat what they cook. Pancakes, fried eggs, brownies, TJs orange chicken with loads of sticky rice. Veggies, salad, we try but it is an uphill battle. I am told teenage girls are easier.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by anon
a resident of Mountain View
on Oct 25, 2010 at 10:34 pm

As someone who has lived in Palo Alto from 1986 - 2001 and now in Mt View, I can tell you the stores in Mt View on the PA border were built to also serve Mt View, not just PA!!!! The stores have been here a looooooong time (except Whole Foods/TJ)! There are loads of us in Mt View that live here and shop at our own grocery stores. So I don't see your logic that they were deliberately built to serve "rich" PA. In fact, my mom used to leave PA to shop the AlphaBeta that used to be at Middlefield in Mt View, but stopped when a recycling center went in, and then turned into a gross Luckys.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by EcoMama
a resident of Community Center
on Oct 25, 2010 at 10:34 pm

The Midtown Safeway is a disgrace. Next time you're there, check the expiration dates on the huge, overflowing tortilla rack. You'll definitely find some past date, some on-date, and some within a day or two -- but that's it. Forget about shopping for the week when things (even milk!) are often at or near their expiration date.

I live in the Community Center neighborhood, and, time-wise, the drive to the huge Menlo Park Safeway -- which has everything fresh and in-stock -- is about the same time-wise as my "local" Safeway. With everything it has, including vast specialty foods and organic sections, I no longer need Whole Foods, or Trader Joe's, or really even CostCo. Plus, it's clean and well-lit. Local's only as good as meeting my family's grocery needs, and the Midtown branch doesn't cut it.

As for Trader Joe's -- ha! Next time you're in there, read where your food is packaged. Take, for example, Himilayan Salt, mined in Pakistan, shipped to South Africa for packaging, then shipped to the U.S. Many more products are packed in China and other faraway places. It's a joke to me that people in such a liberal place shop there -- it's about as un-environmentally friendly as one can get! I like my food from here, thanks -- and I can find local stuff at Safeway or at the Farmer's Market.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by laura
a resident of Midtown
on Oct 26, 2010 at 6:48 am

I used to think we would never have a large market here because there was not enough land. But there are several spots where a large market would thrive, several of them already mentioned above. But, the citizens of this town will shoot down anything and the city council willl not listen to the majority. Remember the All American Market? It did well in its day and even it is gone, along with Coop and Midtown Market. I don't mind driving to Mountain View, Los Altos or Menlo Park for groceries and other errands. It is my way of "getting back"" at Palo Alto for being so short sided.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Jake
a resident of another community
on Oct 26, 2010 at 12:05 pm

"anon"
I did not write or mean to imply that grocery stores were build just outside the PA border solely to serve PA residents. They were put there or expanded is size and sevices to take advantage of the fact that millions of dollars a year are spent there by PA residents.
Did anyone ever consider that residents of those other cities may resent the increased traffic in those towns by PA residents driving there to buy groceries?
I've even seen PA City Council members shopping in Menlo Park Safeway. Like it or not, acknowledge it or not. Many PA residents shop in those cities for groceries on a regular basis.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Bike commuter
a resident of Ventura
on Oct 26, 2010 at 2:32 pm

The Menlo Park and Mountain View larger Safeway stores are only 4.7 miles apart! Is 2.35 miles too far to go to get a week's worth of groceries?

I don't mind mixing it up when shopping for groceries. I'll drive to Mountain View once a week to get staples from Safeway, Trader Joe's and Milk Pail Dairy. I bike to work and stop at Mollie Stones for meat, milk etc. We bike with our trailer to the CAL Ave. Farmer's market for most of our produce and enjoy the community vibe there.

We are lucky to have so many good choices.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by mmmmMom
a resident of Downtown North
on Oct 26, 2010 at 4:40 pm

To: "Safeway Shopper"

Yeah, I am feeding teenage BOYS..... absolutely no leftovers in this house! As "jb" says, you have to do some planning. But what is more important than good, healthy food - made with love - for your kids?
Yeah, it is a pain sometimes when that early alarm clock goes off, but getting up early means my kids have a full, hearty breakfast, & a homemade lunch packed for them. And yes, I pack with re-useable containers.

And "EcoMom" - is that Eco for ecology, or economy? Because if it is for ecology, I think a new moniker is due. Your driving/shopping habits are not ecological. And while I agree with you about the origins of numerous TJ's items, Safeway is no angel in that dept. I would suggest, however, you check out the TJ artisan organic bread (the demi-lune.) Best in town, & made in the Bay area. It is pretty much the only thing I ever buy there. And try the Farmer's markets; they are the best of all. Fun,too.

Good luck, all


 +   Like this comment
Posted by jb
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Oct 26, 2010 at 8:39 pm

Yes, I did have teenagers—about the time the new contraption called a microwave came onto he market. I never got one because they offered so little scope for cooking, took up too much space, and would only be used to heat up food that was not good for anybody. And most of my cooking needed to be "finished". If you want plain boiled chicken, OK. But you have to finish it to get pollo verde, and yes, that was gone at meal time. Cereal was the only regularly available snack food, and we went through bananas as if we were raising chimps. They're grown now, and mostly on their own, and calling home for recipes.


 +   Like this comment
Posted by WilliamR
a resident of Fairmeadow
on Oct 26, 2010 at 10:11 pm

@ EcoMama--

Himalayan Salt ?????


 +   Like this comment
Posted by Try Mi Pueblo
a resident of Duveneck/St. Francis
on Oct 27, 2010 at 10:52 am

After reading and hearing about Mi Pueblo I gave it a try. What a great market!
Big, spacious, and with a huge variety of groceries, vegetables, meat, fish, everything! Lots of staff keep everything orderly and attractively displayed.
Even a very long counter with prepared foods.
The place is light, clean, orderly, it's busy with people and cheerful music. Fun place!
It is right across the street from the entrance to IKEA.


Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.

Email:


Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields

Local picks on 2015 Michelin Bib Gourmand list
By Elena Kadvany | 7 comments | 3,492 views

Ode to Brussels Sprout
By Laura Stec | 20 comments | 2,668 views

Go Giants! Next Stop: World Series!
By Chandrama Anderson | 1 comment | 1,986 views

Politics: Empty appeals to "innovation"
By Douglas Moran | 9 comments | 1,470 views

It's Dog-O-Ween this Saturday!
By Cathy Kirkman | 2 comments | 501 views