Grocery stores

8 06 2009

I need to grumble.  I do most of my grocery shopping at MOMs or The Common Market, depending on whether I’m feeling more loyal to my former employer and friend or my vague socialist leanings.  But sometimes I do need to go to a “regular” grocery.  Leaving aside the heart palpitations I get when I see what other people are eating or, worse, feeding their kids (and this is not a money thing, really, non-organically-grown apples are still FAR better for your kids than green apple fruit gushers.  Whole wheat gross soft bread costs the same as the same brand of white),  the check out is leaving me snarly.  I’m a union supporter (see “vague socialist leanings,” above), so I like to go to a store with unionized employees.  I used to shop at Giant before Izzy retired and it all went to crap.  When I lived downtown, I shopped at the 7th street Safeway, where the employees never. ever. change (that’s the sign of either a good employer or a hostage situation).  Now that I’m in Braddock, my conventional grocery needs could be met by the Middletown Safeway.  But oh  my  god  it is the slowest store in the world.  When gas was $10 a gallon, I shopped more at Giant Eagle so that I could get gas credits and I came to looooove that self-scan thing where I can ring up my groceries as I go and check myself out in about 2 minutes.  Love.  To go from that to the…European service at the Middletown store?  Oh the pain.  I have rung groceries and I have bagged (see “former employer,” above) and it is not that hard, people.  It doesn’t even require a lot of focus, really. Ringing should not take that long.  Bagging should not be that…”inept” is too passive.  It was almost aggressively contemptuous.  Bananas never go on the bottom.  Ditto tomatoes.  Someone bringing her own bags is not license to shove every thing in one bag, with the apples on the tippy top, ignoring the PILE of spare cloth bags just laying there.   GAH!  Friendly and relaxed is nice.  It is.  But efficient really is what I’m looking for.  Rant over.  I thank you for your time.


More on the coffee….

1 11 2008

Tried the Ethiopian today and it was even worse.  Sour notes, the roast was too light…blech.   I’ll try this Black Dog by mail, but I’d sure like someplace local for when I run out and panic.

Ice cream update! With coffee rant bonus!

31 10 2008

Last summer, I was going on about ice cream.  In the comments, I was asked if there was Gelato anywhere in town.  At the time, I did not think so, but now there is!  Gelato at the new coffee place: The Baltimore Coffee Company opened in a new shopping center on…Corporate Drive?  Or is it Crestwood?  I can never keep them straight.  Anyway, it’s behind MOMs.  We met a friend for coffee there yesterday.  It has that nasty flavored coffee whiff and the espresso was burned and the brewed coffee weak…but we’re serious coffee snobs.  People who are able to just enjoy coffee without judging may be perfectly happy.  Steve was bummed to see that they keep the beans in open bags, as light and air are the enemies of roasted coffee.  We went home w/half pound each of Tanzanian Peaberry and Ethiopian Yergacheff. Made the Peaberry today–bleh.  I’ve been getting Peaberry from the Frederick Coffee Co.  It’s better.  But still not great.  We used to get Peaberry from a roaster in Leesburg, but the actual roasting machine set the building on fire so we can’t get THAT anymore.  After that, we got Arabian Mocha Sanani from Starbucks, but they discontinued it and we don’t like any of their other coffee.  So now we are adrift, trying coffee here and there.  Steve roasted his own for a while, but his rigged up roaster broke so THAT was out.  Being a Polly Pickipants can be troubling.

Oh, the Gelato was pretty good.  I had Tirmisu, Steve had Chocolate Hazlenut.  Not stellar, but good.  It looks gorgeous in the case, though.  I’ll try a fruit flavor next time, since those are generally my faves with gelato.   I just wanted a flavor to go with coffee.

So.  yes, there is gelato.  Anyone got a great coffee secret?

Update: Nola

10 10 2008

Okay, twice now I’ve gone to Nola and gotten HORRIBLE service.  Today we went in and saw the sign that said “Wait to be seated.”  It didn’t specify how long, but after a couple of minutes we went up to the bar register and asked for menus.  We sat down, figured out what we wanted.  And sat.  And watched a waitres attend to one of the other TWO tables that were occupied.  Then she sidled away, with her back to me, not making eye contact.  Steve went back to the bar and placed our order and paid.  Mistake.  Because if he hadn’t paid upfront we’d have left when our sandwiches did not arrive for 15 min.  It was a grilled cheese and a baked tofu and there were more staff than patrons.  Put the bong down, Maynard, and bring me my food.