Supermarket Sweep at Whole Foods

Following my last Whole Foods post I simply HAD to head back there on Friday after work. The last thing I ever want to do is cook dinner after a long work week, and trying to get a dinner reservation at a decent hour on a Friday evening is practically impossible in my neck of the woods. Plus, I wanted a second gander at that prepared foods section.

Armed with the knowledge that my guided media tour gave me, I headed to the rooftop parking lot where dudes with little flashlights were ushering cars into their spots, air traffic controller style. The store was a madhouse, packed to the gills with fashionista moms and their screaming progeny. One loudspeaker annoucement made me giggle: “ Would the driver of a white Lexus please report to the parking lot? You left your car running.” It didn’t surprise me that one of my fellow foodie shoppers had abandoned their vehicle in haste, desperate for a free sample of organic pineapple from the produce department. The prepared food section was an absolute mess. I made the rounds of the prepared food bar five times before I could figure out what to do and what to buy. The spread ranged from goat cheese scalloped potatoes to tofu stroganoff, with generous pitstops at Indian, Chinese, and Japanese cuisine along the way. Don’t even get me started on the salad bar. I tried to stay strong, stay focused, and get dinner and dessert as quickly as I could before I abandoned all reason and started filling a cart with goodies. On my way out I chatted with the cashier. “Man, if it’s this crazy on a Friday night, imagine how it’ll be during the day on the weekend,” I said. His eyes widened in horror. Then a piece of wood fell off his brand-new cash register counter. I couldn’t have timed my escape better. -- Patrice Yursik

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Chuck Strouse is the former editor in chief of Miami New Times. He has shared two Pulitzer Prizes and won dozens of other awards. He is an honors graduate of Brown University and has worked at newspapers including the Miami Herald and Los Angeles Times.
Contact: Chuck Strouse