Bob Sheppard, a former Dominick’s employee who also is in store operations for Mariano’s, said the store was one of Dominick’s strongest performers.
We also stopped at a recently-opened Shop & Save Market in Downers Grove. This location opened last year before the Dominick’s departure, but the Chicago-based chain also picked up some new locations thanks to the sale, said produce buyer Patrick Morales, who met us for the tour.
Shop & Save presents a very different environment than Mariano’s, with each of its stores strongly focused on the ethnic populations in surrounding communities.
The retailer focuses on price and a wide range of offerings for the different demographics for each community.
The Downers Grove store offered a lot of Polish foods, with much of its signage dual language Polish and English.
One thing these stores had in common would appeal to our panelists, however. They both featured very reasonable prices. Mariano’s, for example, offered bananas for 39 cents a pound and kale for $1 a pound. Shop & Save had a special on seedless watermelons, an amazing $1.49 each, and grapes for 99 cents a pound.
We wrapped up with a stop at Strube Celery & Vegetable on the Chicago International Produce Market and a tour through the facility guided by Lisa Strube, director of finance and administration, and a lunchtime stop at Eataly.
With its high end foodie-focused selection, I don’t think Eataly would be a regular shop for our price-conscious panelists, either.
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