Toledo Talk

Grocery Business

We talk about the grocery business quite a bit on this board. Speculation about new Whole Foods, Trader Joes have become their own meme's, while Kroger's motivation and methods are oft speculated about. There was a very interesting article in the Dayton paper today about the competition they're seeing locally. Dayton has been a comparable market to Toledo for years. The sprawl (think Troy to Montgomery, about 40 miles north to south) and the now uniopolis of Dayton/Cincinnati has created an interesting market to be watched. Lots of transients without entrenched loyalty, grocers are effectively outspending each other grabbing market share. We are very much on the verge of a similar grocery war. We will see hot beds in West Toledo, Sylvania township, Maumee and Perrysburg/ Rossford. I suspect the relocation of Kroger's will continue, and an inevitable reinvestment in Meijer. Whether we see Fresh Thyme, Trader Joe's or additional Whole Foods or Fresh Markets In the not too distant future will be interesting to see.

http://www.mydaytondailynews.com/news/news/grocery-wars-shoppers-benefit-while-supermarkets-d/nnhDj/?source=ddn_skip_stub

created by ahmahler on Sep 19, 2015 at 12:57:01 pm     Food     Comments: 142

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Comments ... #

Nice link! I was surprised to see Aldi mentioned, and then I realized that the last store I shopped (an Aldi in Grand Rapids, Michigan this morning) has the gluten-free line of snacks AND grassfed, organic beef. I am really doubtful that good old Aldi is sourcing grass-fed, organic beef ... I thought that type of meat was expensive to produce and hard to find!

posted by viola on Sep 19, 2015 at 04:58:47 pm     #  

currently living in Chicago and the biggest change in the way we grocery shop from back home in Toledo is that we now have about 75% of our regular groceries delivered via https://www.instacart.com (there are other services as well, including a new google https://www.google.com/express )

Granted services like that will only exist in markets that can support them but heck, Chicago also has same day delivery from Amazon prime now http://www.amazon.com/b?node=8729023011

While I do not think traditional groceries stores will ever go away completely, it will be interesting to see how the different delivery trends / options will eventually end up in most major markets. As much as I love grocery shopping (weird I know!) the ease of online ordering really makes it a no brainer.

posted by upso on Sep 19, 2015 at 05:05:17 pm     #  

You know, I remember about 20 plus years ago, Food town was offering grocery deliveries. They actually had a several page form with pretty much everything in the store on it. You just checked off everything you wanted delivered.

There was a delivery fee of course, but I remember I still saved money because it cut down on all the impulse purchases.

But for the life of me, I can't remember how I got the order form to them . This was pre-internet for most of us. Probably early 90's.....?

Does anybody remember this? Did we just call the order in ?

posted by foodie88 on Sep 19, 2015 at 06:19:55 pm     #  

In case anyone thinks I'm crazy, it was definitely around early -mid 90's. I'm not talking about the 50's where a kid in a white hat on a bicycle delivered your groceries to you in a big cardboard box.

posted by foodie88 on Sep 19, 2015 at 06:26:29 pm     #  

You're not "mis-remembering". Food Town did indeed offer home delivery of groceries for a period of time. I never used the service but I do remember the form you speak of. AS for getting the form to them - that, I do not recall.

posted by Foodie on Sep 20, 2015 at 04:21:27 am     #  

Speaking of Fresh Thyme, looks like they're coming to Monroe St at the former Office Depot location.

Devonshire REIT has named that plaza Fresh Thyme Center.

http://www.devreit.com/wp-content/uploads/0152_OfficeDepot.pdf

posted by tk29 on Sep 20, 2015 at 06:16:47 am     #  

Wonder how these new entrants in the Toledo market will impact The Andersons? They've reduced the retail group's losses recently, but....

posted by bam2 on Sep 20, 2015 at 12:07:58 pm     #  

Actually as far back as the 1940's there were markets in Toledo that delivered groceries. In the 60's when we lived in the Detroit-Central neighborhood the Red and White on the corner delivered.

posted by Wydowmaker on Sep 20, 2015 at 01:20:09 pm     #   1 person liked this

I remember the Food Town delivery service. I don't think it lasted very long.

I believe it was done through online services like AOL and CompuServe and/or was a direct dial in service (like what the library used to have). I remember my roommate and I looking at and there were quite a few items you could order online (I remember condoms were even something you could order). The delivery fee was absurd (which is probably why it didn't last long) and sure wasn't it worth it for us to order online and I'm sure that didn't include the tip.

Seeing Kroger delivers prescriptions, I am sure surprised they don't have a grocery delivery service. With such poor public transit in this city, I think grocery delivery would be a welcome service here

posted by classylady on Sep 20, 2015 at 05:50:41 pm     #  

Wonder how these new entrants in the Toledo market will impact The Andersons? They've reduced the retail group's losses recently, but....

! posted by bam2 on Sep 20, 2015 at 12:07:58 pm

I strongly suspect the losses in the retail division of The Andersons have more to do with the non-grocery sections. The grocery section is doing just fine, or at least as well as other similar competitors.

posted by Bandito on Sep 20, 2015 at 09:30:28 pm     #  

Bandito posted at 09:30:28 PM on Sep 20, 2015:
Wonder how these new entrants in the Toledo market will impact The Andersons? They've reduced the retail group's losses recently, but....

! posted by bam2 on Sep 20, 2015 at 12:07:58 pm

I strongly suspect the losses in the retail division of The Andersons have more to do with the non-grocery sections. The grocery section is doing just fine, or at least as well as other similar competitors.

As recently as 2 years ago the Sylvania Market was not profitable. All they sell is groceries. Admittedly I don't know how they have faired in the last two years, but I'd be surprised if it turned around.

posted by slowsol on Sep 20, 2015 at 10:55:09 pm     #  

tk29 posted at 06:16:47 AM on Sep 20, 2015:

Speaking of Fresh Thyme, looks like they're coming to Monroe St at the former Office Depot location.

Devonshire REIT has named that plaza Fresh Thyme Center.

http://www.devreit.com/wp-content/uploads/0152_OfficeDepot.pdf

If they indeed come to town and their selection, quality and prices are as good as they appear, Fresh Market's days may be numbered.

posted by Foodie on Sep 21, 2015 at 09:05:34 am     #  

tk29 posted at 06:16:47 AM on Sep 20, 2015:

Speaking of Fresh Thyme, looks like they're coming to Monroe St at the former Office Depot location.

Devonshire REIT has named that plaza Fresh Thyme Center.

http://www.devreit.com/wp-content/uploads/0152_OfficeDepot.pdf

Is this a marketing proposal for Fresh Thyme or is this confirmed?

posted by slowsol on Sep 21, 2015 at 09:45:14 am     #  

Foodie posted at 09:05:34 AM on Sep 21, 2015:
tk29 posted at 06:16:47 AM on Sep 20, 2015:

Speaking of Fresh Thyme, looks like they're coming to Monroe St at the former Office Depot location.

Devonshire REIT has named that plaza Fresh Thyme Center.

http://www.devreit.com/wp-content/uploads/0152_OfficeDepot.pdf

If they indeed come to town and their selection, quality and prices are as good as they appear, Fresh Market's days may be numbered.

I think Whole Foods will have a greater impact. Fresh Thyme is a little more "affordable organic", but you could be right. I can tell you that they are having a big market impact in a very short time in the areas they've already opened.

The concept is "farmers market" type stores. Lucky's falls into this category. They expect to have about 25% of sales come from produce, everything organic.They would like to focus on Local products and produce, availability dependent. First store opened in Chicago 2 years ago and they have a 5 year plan of 50 stores in the midwest-OH, MI, IN, IL, MO, MN, WI. They're halfway to that goal in just 2 years. They haven't officially announced the Toledo store yet, but they just opened their 6th Columbus store last week.

I get the sense they are taking a lot of business away from Whole Foods, and along with other regional specialty grocers, have forced WF to change their pricing strategy.

As far as Anderson's goes-*deep sigh*. I'm not sure they have a clear vision. The housewares/ bed Bath and Beyond has been weird, to say the least. The money spent in the grocery areas certainly made the stores more shop-able and appealing. They seem to have meandered in what the Sylvania store's aspirations might be. They've never established a firm identity, and that store always feels so empty. They seem to have let that bleed into what the other locations are doing-grocery-wise. They House of meats isn't exactly top end product, the seafood departments often stink up the entire store and the pantry is a mishmosh of major brands and fringe-y specialty stuff. The cheese is huge, but largely sub par for a specialty store. I'm biased, but the only thing they completely kick-ass at is Wine and Beer, and believe me, that's been reluctant. They're a bit of a dinosaur and they'll eventually start losing large chunks of market share as their clientele dies out and the younger move to the more upmarket stores coming into the area. However, for as large as the stores are, and there are 4 General stores and 1 market, they are a drop in the bucket relative to the overall revenue of that corporation. They can afford to reboot and maybe all of the changes will force them to change.

posted by ahmahler on Sep 21, 2015 at 09:48:10 am     #  

This is a rumor but comes from an employee of over 20 years at Andersons who has met with the new CEO just named a few weeks ago.

There new CEO is HUGE into agriculture and has expressed a BIG desire in selling off the retail business as it doesn't fit his vision, the business model and produces little to no income.

His guess was that in 5 years the retail side will be disposed of.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Sep 21, 2015 at 10:06:08 am     #  

I have heard that about Anderson's for many years. The retail side is kept open only for the community aspect with little or no profit. They make their money on the other sides of the business.

posted by Hoops on Sep 21, 2015 at 10:27:46 am     #  

I'm hoping the rumors are false about the Anderson's. I enjoy shopping there and at SOFO's when I make my twice a month Costco trip to the west end.

I think Whole Foods will have a huge impact on Fresh Market seeing how close by they will be. I would rather see Trader Joe or Plum Market come here over Whole Foods though.

I love our Farmer's Market. My boyfriend and I make it a Saturday ritual to walk down in the summer every weekend. Great produce for a reasonable price and I like being able to help out the local merchants

posted by classylady on Sep 21, 2015 at 10:30:15 am     #  

Hoops posted at 10:27:46 AM on Sep 21, 2015:

I have heard that about Anderson's for many years. The retail side is kept open only for the community aspect with little or no profit. They make their money on the other sides of the business.

Well now that there is no family member left in management you can expect it to happen. The new CEO, Pat Bowe, from Cargill has no experience or interest in retail....

posted by Xbuckeyex on Sep 21, 2015 at 10:39:32 am     #  

So basically within a 2-3 mile radius West Toledo will have the following:

Whole Foods
Fresh Market
Fresh Thyme
Andersons
Monnetts
Sofo's
and many other little markets

Plus Krogers wants to build there mega store which features a lot of organic foods, cheeses, etc.

No idea how these all survive. Likely lose a few small markets and 1-2 larger ones over the next 3-5 years.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Sep 21, 2015 at 10:42:44 am     #  

"and many other little markets"

We shop at the Toledo Farmers Market year-round, but our favorite little markets in West Toledo include:

  • Al Habib - (groceries and hot meals to-go.)
  • Zavotski
  • and of course, the Phoenix Earth Food Co-op, although I don't know if that counts as West Toledo, but it's close enough for us

Is the Toledo Meat Market considered West Toledo or South Toledo?

We shopped a few times in the past at Lai Lai Asian Market, located at Cricket West.

posted by jr on Sep 21, 2015 at 11:09:50 am     #  

Xbuckeyex posted at 10:42:44 AM on Sep 21, 2015:

So basically within a 2-3 mile radius West Toledo will have the following:

Whole Foods
Fresh Market

Fresh Thyme

Andersons

Monnetts

Sofo's

and many other little markets

Plus Krogers wants to build there mega store which features a lot of organic foods, cheeses, etc.

No idea how these all survive. Likely lose a few small markets and 1-2 larger ones over the next 3-5 years.

Thats pretty what happened in the Alexis area between Powertrain and I75 with all the home improvement stores and lumber yards.

posted by MIJeff on Sep 21, 2015 at 11:14:10 am     #  

I know it's apples and oranges, but Ann Arbor has 2 whole foods, trader joes, fresh market, Plum market, not to mention a handful of local grocers, like Arbor Farms, and The produce station. Of course, they also have the requisite Kroger, Meijer and Busch's. That adds up to a ton of competition, but all do well. My suspicion is, the larger chains here will take the biggest hits. It speaks to consumers' changing shopping habits. I'm certain there will be casualties. If Fresh Market survives the onslaught, I think that mean we were not over saturated yet.

posted by ahmahler on Sep 21, 2015 at 11:41:17 am     #  

A minor nitpick - The Fresh Market has no locations in Michigan. The only one they had was in Grand Rapids and it closed up several years ago.
And you are correct that it is apples and oranges. The $$ and age demographics between the two cities has to be huge. There's a potful of $$$ sloshing around the A2 area.

posted by Foodie on Sep 21, 2015 at 12:04:06 pm     #  

Yeah, here's the money difference-Lucas per capita $23k, median household $41k. Washtenaw $33k & $59k respectively.

Population approx. 450k Lucas, 350k Washtenaw. However, our metro area ticks us up to about 650, while A2 is pretty much just Washtenaw county.

What does it add up to? No idea. Could have sworn there was a Fresh Market by Rei, what am I thinking of? Maybe the other whole foods?

posted by ahmahler on Sep 21, 2015 at 12:25:13 pm     #  

In about a five minute drive from my house, I can get to the following big grocery stores:

Meijer
Sautter's
Walmart
Kroger -King / Sylvania Ave
Kroger- Bancroft/Holland Sylvania Rd
Kroger- Harroun/Monroe St

Giant Eagle was on that list too, until they closed a couple of years ago. That's a lot of grocery stores.

Also, in about a five minute drive, I can get to Sofo's, Fresh Market, Andersons in Sylvania. ( I know you are thinking, "she must drive really fast", but it just depends which direction I head in, everything really is about 5 minutes)

It's ridiculous. It wasn't a big surprise that Giant Eagle couldn't make it.

If Anderson's Market isn't doing well, that's not a big surprise either. People tend to go in there for the wine/beer selection, or the specialty foods only. There's also the House of Meat fans that frequent that location. Other than that, people tend to go to the Kroger right across the street for everything.

Honestly, I don't see Fresh Market making it once Whole Foods opens up around the corner. I only stop in Fresh Market maybe once a month, but whatever time I go in there, there's only a handful of shoppers there. You can't buy everything there, I think they rely on a lot of neighborhood regulars (who get their fancy stuff there, then Kroger Monroe/Secor for everything else) to keep them going, and I predict those regulars are going to start shopping at Whole Foods .

It will be interesting to see what happens.

posted by foodie88 on Sep 21, 2015 at 12:33:29 pm     #  

You know which grocery store does a damn good business ? The Kroger store at Miracle Mile.

That is close to my office, so about twice a month I will stop in there. I don't care what time of day or night I go in there, they are packed. I mean packed.

posted by foodie88 on Sep 21, 2015 at 12:40:13 pm     #  

@ahmahler: "Could have sworn there was a Fresh Market by Rei, what am I thinking of? Maybe the other whole foods?"

Yep, the other, smaller WF is right next to REI on Eisenhower Pkwy. I rather like that WF. You can get a (draft) craft beer to sip on while you do your shopping. And, before you leave, don't forget to stop by their Gelato bar.

posted by Foodie on Sep 21, 2015 at 01:13:10 pm     #  

Foodie-yeah, I believe that was a "Wild Oats" before WF bought them. I used to get those 2 confused. Thanks for clarifying.

posted by ahmahler on Sep 21, 2015 at 02:02:00 pm     #  

Another player coming into the game (at least on a somewhat smaller scale) is Village Food Markets. Main store is in Grosse Pointe Farms. The Lambertville Foodtown closed down and is being remodeled into a Village Food. Their website describes them as a "gourmet food and beverage market..."

http://www.villagefoodgp.com/index.php

Average median income is just over 105k for a population of 9,300

posted by daddyg on Sep 21, 2015 at 02:09:04 pm     #  

Think the difference between A2 and Toledo can best be described as $$ and Age.

posted by MIJeff on Sep 21, 2015 at 02:28:08 pm     #   1 person liked this

ahmahler: A trivial point- the second Whole Foods was a Mervyn's department store that had been vacant for a few years. As far as I know, Ann Arbor never had a Wild Oats but I may have missed it.

posted by suz on Sep 21, 2015 at 04:36:30 pm     #  

Suz-i'm definitely confused. No Wild Oats was ever in A2, confirmed. I have memories of going into that building as a whole foods-like store many years ago. Clearly, I've been in too many stores like that. Must have just been the whole Foods, and I thought it was one of the other competitors for some reason. Under-caffeinated that day perhaps

daddyg-I've been to that store before. It's pretty tired and dated, but the clientele are pretty recession proof. Wonder why they're opening downstate and down market.

More on Fresh Thyme-interesting Meijer connection
http://www.mlive.com/business/west-michigan/index.ssf/2014/08/new_retailer_is_cross_between.html

posted by ahmahler on Sep 21, 2015 at 04:58:49 pm     #  

ahmahler: Before they built the store at Washtenaw and Huron Pkwy, Whole Foods was in the building that Trader Joe's is in now. It was a very different store back then. Maybe that's what you remember?

posted by suz on Sep 22, 2015 at 09:42:40 am     #  

Suz-Yeah-I walk into so many stores and restaurants in the region that sometimes they blur together. I can't tell you how often I walk into a place, stand in the front door and try to remember how/ when I'd been there before. Who knows, what I was thinking.

posted by ahmahler on Sep 22, 2015 at 10:03:41 am     #  

Having both Fresh Market and Costco in my neighborhood has made it unnecessary for me to travel around town to other grocers. I used to get an item or two at each of the stores mentioned above (Sofo, Anderson's, Meijer, Claudia's). I look forward to the new entrants in the market for comparison purposes ... but honestly, to make the most of my free time, I want "specialty" and "proximity."

There is a new Lebanese grocery and bakery complex going into a moribund strip mall on Bancroft Street a few miles west of the university. It looks like a well-funded operation and I look forward to seeing what they become.

A tip of the hat to Muna Market on Monroe Street -- their storefront is the most attractive of the middle-eastern establishments around town.

posted by viola on Sep 23, 2015 at 09:45:51 am     #  

@viola:
"A tip of the hat to Muna Market on Monroe Street -- their storefront is the most attractive of the middle-eastern establishments around town."

True. And the quality of their offerings is high and priced very reasonably. Their Halal butcher(s) are very accommodating as well. They also bake their own unique pita bread daily.

Fresh Thyme's entrance into the local market was confirmed by Fred on this morning's show. I can't wait for them to get here. As one of The Fresh Market's most vocal supporters over the years, I've been disappointed on more than a few occasions lately.

posted by Foodie on Sep 23, 2015 at 10:02:08 am     #  

I feel you, Foodie. I believe Fresh Market is pursuing a Trader-Joe's-like policy of having all house brand, prebagged snacks. They've started with the nuts and trail mix.

The bakery goods went downhill pretty rapidly after they opened. The Fresh Markets I patronized in other cities had almost European-style pastries with a lot of attention paid to quality dough. But now it's just globs of colored frosting on top of artificially-flavored cake mix creations. The first ingredient on the labels is "white cake mix." Bleah.

I was also in a 7-11 out of town today and saw that THEY now have their own house brand of potato chips and bagged snacks.

posted by viola on Sep 24, 2015 at 08:45:43 pm     #  

Viola,

I can't compare the Fresh Markets store here to those elsewhere, but their bakery here is far and away the best in town overall, and is one of the key reasons I pop in there (along with the 2.99 chuck on Tuesdays).

Can you recommend someplace better for bakery goods?

posted by Bandito on Sep 24, 2015 at 10:56:16 pm     #  

The cakes in the case at Fresh Market are still pretty decent, but I agree with Viola, the packaged stuff in the bakery is horrible.

Has anybody tried So Sweet over on Talmadge ? I've heard it's pretty good !

posted by foodie88 on Sep 24, 2015 at 11:09:19 pm     #  

No, I guess I can't. The cakes (bar cakes and layer cakes) inside the glass case are definitely among the best in town. The Key Lime Pie is excellent, too, as are the various loaves of zucchini/pumpkin/etc. breads.

I grew accustomed to being pleased with the choices there, and so I was kind of shocked when the cupcakes and decorated cookies turned out to be so artificially enhanced.

I've tried a few bakery items from Costco and I've been pleased with everything. The advantage goes to Fresh Market, though, because you can buy a reasonable portion and not feel like a damn hog :-)

posted by viola on Sep 24, 2015 at 11:13:26 pm     #   1 person liked this

I was in the Canton/Plymouth/Northville, MI area yesterday and decided to check out the Fresh Thyme store in Northville.
Very impressive market. In store bakery, extensive meats and poultry including many choices of game meats such as venison, antelope, bison, goat, etc. The game is frozen in packages.
The fresh produce is extensive - much larger selection than Fresh Market including conventional and organic produce. So is the selection of bulk items including herbs and spices in bulk by the ounce/pound at very reasonable prices.
Very large dairy selection including many of the brands that Whole Foods carries.
Deli products are Boar's Head - a definite plus.
We were very impressed overall and walked out with our share of goodies including some super lean ground beef and a selection of some of the sausages they make fresh in store daily. The ground beef was outstanding haven't had the sausage yet.
What we all agreed was that when Whole Foods and Fresh Thyme come to town, Fresh Market s going to have very stiff competition.
Will they survive in this market? Time will tell.

posted by Foodie on Oct 18, 2015 at 09:45:59 am     #  

I have been to Fresh Thyme when I've been in Chicago and really looking forward to their entry in the Toledo Market. I think they could also hurt places like the Andersons and House of Meats more than Fresh Market.

For fresh produce I like the local farmer's market and try to go every Saturday when I'm in town. Their prices are very reasonable and the produce is better than any store in Toledo has. Wholey Toledo Donuts and Rachel's Ice Cream is usually there and I wish more stores would carry their products

posted by jamesteroh on Oct 18, 2015 at 08:00:32 pm     #  

Deli products are Boar's Head - a definite plus.

! posted by Foodie on Oct 18, 2015 at 09:45:59 am # +

Seriously?

1) Carrying Boar's Head can't be a plus for any establishment, no matter how large or small, because you can find Boar's Head almost everywhere, especially amongst the businesses that are too lazy to actually search out and select the unique products they want to carry.

2) Boar's Head products are always overpriced, and usually pretty lame.

posted by Bandito on Oct 18, 2015 at 08:25:17 pm     #  

Invoke the chant:

Don't feed the troll
Don't feed the troll........

posted by Foodie on Oct 18, 2015 at 08:29:38 pm     #   1 person liked this

jamesteroh posted at 08:00:32 PM on Oct 18, 2015:

I have been to Fresh Thyme when I've been in Chicago and really looking forward to their entry in the Toledo Market. I think they could also hurt places like the Andersons and House of Meats more than Fresh Market.

For fresh produce I like the local farmer's market and try to go every Saturday when I'm in town. Their prices are very reasonable and the produce is better than any store in Toledo has. Wholey Toledo Donuts and Rachel's Ice Cream is usually there and I wish more stores would carry their products

I don't disagree - HOWEVER - you really have to watch what you but down there. SO much is passed off as homegrown that isn't.

As but one example, there's a vendor towards the east end, north side who was selling Heirloom tomatoes. Looked great. He dumps them in a bag for you. You get home to discover two or three Heirlooms - that were on top - and the rest are hothouse groaners.
That's BS and I told him so the next time. But, he's still doing it.

There are many examples of this at the market so buyer be wise.

posted by Foodie on Oct 18, 2015 at 08:35:13 pm     #  

Invoke the chant:

Don't feed the troll
Don't feed the troll........

! posted by Foodie on Oct 18, 2015 at 08:29:38 pm #

In a twisted sort of way, it's sort of "logical" that somebody would invoke a chant involving the anti-concept "troll." Chants, by their very nature, are pretty mindless, no? Goes hand-in-hand with the usage of "troll."

But please do elaborate on why you think that carrying Boar's Head products is a "plus" for a proprietor, when they can be found in so many other places.

And then explain why consumers should welcome the widespread availability of Boar's Head (and other big brands), when it leads to a lack of of true variety of suppliers.

posted by Bandito on Oct 18, 2015 at 09:05:26 pm     #  

Anyone have an update on Fresh Thyme's opening date? Their website has never shown the Toledo store in the "Coming Soon " list though it did show a "now hiring" blurb for a while.

The exterior looks pretty much complete since it looks just like their store in Northville, MI.

posted by Foodie on Mar 16, 2016 at 01:29:26 pm     #  

http://www.toledoblade.com/Retail/2015/09/23/Fresh-Thyme-market-coming-to-Monroe-Street.html

Based on this article the original open date was March. With the easy winter I would guess they aren't too far behind - I would say 3-4 weeks.

As far as the exterior they did a great job imo. Really transformed that whole building and strip to be honest. And with Promedica re-doing the exterior of the old Davey K's that whole area looks much more appealing.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Mar 16, 2016 at 01:57:55 pm     #  

Yep, what Xbuckeyex said. There's always been a disconnect when I travel and see beautifully updated plazas, fast foods, storefronts, etc. everywhere else and then come home to the old 1980s grime that is Commercial Toledo. The east side and Oregon, in particular, look like the land that time forgot.

However, I'm grateful for our slower pace of life and easy traffic conditions.
So there is that :-)

posted by viola on Mar 16, 2016 at 04:46:10 pm     #  

Had lunch at Shorty's a couple of weeks ago and noticed how nice the building looks. That said, the parking lot is WAY too small for the amount of activity a grocery store might see. Not that traffic isn't already a mess over there but it's only going to get worse. Good luck Shorty's. Your customers are going to be pissed.

posted by upso on Mar 16, 2016 at 06:21:35 pm     #  

Wydowmaker posted at 01:20:09 PM on Sep 20, 2015:

Actually as far back as the 1940's there were markets in Toledo that delivered groceries. In the 60's when we lived in the Detroit-Central neighborhood the Red and White on the corner delivered.

The Market Basket on Collingwood near Delaware delivered and they saved my aunt's life back in the 60's. She lived in an apartment close by but kept to herself, she didn't tolerate us well. As she got older and we kids got older, we were lucky to see her once every couple months. She ordered her groceries from Market Basket and one day, my dad got a call from the store. She had ordered only cherry cheesecake and coffee for the last 3 weekly orders, a marked deviation from the previous 3 years of orders. Dad checked and she insisted nothing was wrong but he could see there was and got her to the doctor, then into a nursing home...early dementia, diabetes, and heart failure. if they had not called, we might not have known until it was too late. Simpler times when a business neighbor goes above and beyond.

posted by nana on Mar 16, 2016 at 06:45:46 pm     #  

oops, sorry, didn't notice the dates until now, oh well. Still a better love story than Twilight. :)

posted by nana on Mar 16, 2016 at 06:50:33 pm     #  

viola posted at 04:46:10 PM on Mar 16, 2016:

Yep, what Xbuckeyex said. There's always been a disconnect when I travel and see beautifully updated plazas, fast foods, storefronts, etc. everywhere else and then come home to the old 1980s grime that is Commercial Toledo. The east side and Oregon, in particular, look like the land that time forgot.

However, I'm grateful for our slower pace of life and easy traffic conditions.
So there is that :-)

Speaking of updating plazas: the new owner of Parkway Plaza is wasting no time putting a new, updated facade on that complex. So far, so good.

posted by Foodie on Mar 17, 2016 at 06:10:05 am     #  

Foodie posted at 06:10:05 AM on Mar 17, 2016:
viola posted at 04:46:10 PM on Mar 16, 2016:

Yep, what Xbuckeyex said. There's always been a disconnect when I travel and see beautifully updated plazas, fast foods, storefronts, etc. everywhere else and then come home to the old 1980s grime that is Commercial Toledo. The east side and Oregon, in particular, look like the land that time forgot.

However, I'm grateful for our slower pace of life and easy traffic conditions.
So there is that :-)

Speaking of updating plazas: the new owner of Parkway Plaza is wasting no time putting a new, updated facade on that complex. So far, so good.

That has been amazing to watch. Eidi must have been ready to go before the deal was closed. They started right away, and they are doing a nice job. He is working with Maumee and ODOT to address the awkward ingress and egress from the parking lot too.

I heard he had a $100,000 small business grant sort of thing going on right now, and read something about it, but I can't remember where I read it.

I wish he would buy that crappy strip mall on Byrne with the Subway and the world's most depressing row of shuttered dry cleaners and closed medical offices. Talk about blight.

posted by justread on Mar 17, 2016 at 06:24:30 am     #  

"Had lunch at Shorty's a couple of weeks ago and noticed how nice the building looks. That said, the parking lot is WAY too small for the amount of activity a grocery store might see. Not that traffic isn't already a mess over there but it's only going to get worse. Good luck Shorty's. Your customers are going to be pissed."

Upso, I thought the same thing. I hope Shorty's has a plan to deal with the upcoming congestion. They were OK as long as the yoga place and office supply place (and tiny Asian market) were sharing the lot. But a cheaper whole-foods market? They will be overwhelmed during evening rush hours.

There is a small chance that grocery employees would be required to park around behind the building ... but overall, I predict a lot of spillover into neighboring lots, and as you say, unhappy BBQ patrons.

posted by viola on Mar 17, 2016 at 10:26:23 am     #  

Parkway Plaza will be a huge home run for Maumee and South Toledo. I predict that place will boom. Hopefully there is more to come throughout the city, but location as always will be a huge factor. You cant just put lipstick on a pig. It is interesting to see....it appears that the small shopping plazas are coming back into vogue, as the mall concept has waned considerably.

posted by BulldogBuckeye on Mar 17, 2016 at 11:00:00 am     #  

Parkway Plaza will be a huge home run for Maumee and South Toledo. I predict that place will boom. Hopefully there is more to come throughout the city, but location as always will be a huge factor. You cant just put lipstick on a pig. It is interesting to see....it appears that the small shopping plazas are coming back into vogue, as the mall concept has waned considerably.

posted by BulldogBuckeye on Mar 17, 2016 at 11:00:06 am     #  

Parkway Plaza is a foul ball and always has been. You can put lipstick on all the pigs you want, but Parkway Plaza has yet to find any pork anywhere. Case in point, the place across the street, Holiday Plaza, was bulldozed years ago and has been a concrete and weed field ever since. There's a reason for that.

At the very best of times, Parkway Plaza was marginal. These days it's bulldozer bait.

posted by madjack on Mar 17, 2016 at 11:46:13 am     #  

madjack posted at 11:46:13 AM on Mar 17, 2016:

Parkway Plaza is a foul ball and always has been. You can put lipstick on all the pigs you want, but Parkway Plaza has yet to find any pork anywhere. Case in point, the place across the street, Holiday Plaza, was bulldozed years ago and has been a concrete and weed field ever since. There's a reason for that.

At the very best of times, Parkway Plaza was marginal. These days it's bulldozer bait.

Don't disagree with you at all-but the question is-Why? It seems to have a great location. Is it a function of what's been in the plaza? Let's say you opened, and Old Navy & maybe a Kohl's. They would do well there, no? That plaza has always been a weird mishmosh.

posted by ahmahler on Mar 17, 2016 at 12:01:35 pm     #  

Parkway Plaza will be a huge home run for Maumee and South Toledo. I predict that place will boom. Hopefully there is more to come throughout the city, but location as always will be a huge factor. You cant just put lipstick on a pig. It is interesting to see....it appears that the small shopping plazas are coming back into vogue, as the mall concept has waned considerably.

posted by BulldogBuckeye on Mar 17, 2016 at 12:02:14 pm     #  

jeez, sorry for the mulitple postings.

posted by BulldogBuckeye on Mar 17, 2016 at 12:07:06 pm     #  

ahmahler posted at 12:01:35 PM on Mar 17, 2016:
madjack posted at 11:46:13 AM on Mar 17, 2016:

Parkway Plaza is a foul ball and always has been. You can put lipstick on all the pigs you want, but Parkway Plaza has yet to find any pork anywhere. Case in point, the place across the street, Holiday Plaza, was bulldozed years ago and has been a concrete and weed field ever since. There's a reason for that.

At the very best of times, Parkway Plaza was marginal. These days it's bulldozer bait.

Don't disagree with you at all-but the question is-Why? It seems to have a great location. Is it a function of what's been in the plaza? Let's say you opened, and Old Navy & maybe a Kohl's. They would do well there, no? That plaza has always been a weird mishmosh.

For openers, you can't get into the place. If you're westbound on the Anthony Wayne Trail (AWT) you're on a divided highway, so you have to keep heading west until you can make a U-turn. If you're eastbound on the AWT, you have to know about and watch for these goofy little off ramps that give you access to the Parkway Plaza. Even I have trouble finding them at night, and I know the off ramps exist.

If you're on Detroit avenue, you have the same sort of problem but to a lesser extent. You can't simply turn off Detroit and get into the shopping center; you've got to find some little side street with minimal signage that takes you to the shopping center.

Then there's the intersection at AWT and SD, which looks like some kind of death trap. Again, if you don't use it regularly you tend to wonder just how you're going to get through without being T-boned.

Around the area you've got River Road to the South, which is high end residential, Southland Shopping Center to the North which is where most people are going to go for casual shopping, and Fallen Timbers to the West, which is where people were supposed to go but somehow didn't. No money, I guess.

You could open a red light district in the PWP and it would do okay. Liquor store, check cashing, hair and nails, that kind of thing on one side, adult bookstore, strip club, and massage parlor on the other side might work. Old Navy? No.

posted by madjack on Mar 17, 2016 at 02:01:02 pm     #  

BulldogBuckeye posted at 12:07:06 PM on Mar 17, 2016:

jeez, sorry for the mulitple postings.

What have you got, a nervous condition or something? Try drinking.

posted by madjack on Mar 17, 2016 at 02:01:46 pm     #  

@justread previously posted"

"He is working with Maumee and ODOT to address the awkward ingress and egress from the parking lot too."

So, there's that..........

Eidi may also have some signed leases in his back pocket that we are unaware of. As I've mentioned previously, in the handful of business interactions I've had with him, I have a very favorable impression of him. Appears to be a very capable businessman.

I'd bet Parkway turns out to be a positive for the area.

posted by Foodie on Mar 17, 2016 at 02:16:38 pm     #   1 person liked this

Back when I was in junior high, I lived on Detroit Avenue, three houses away from Town Street, which runs right along Parkway Plaza. There was a Centre Supermarket there, which later became The Pharm, and a Lane's Drug Store, a pizza place (that came later) and numerous other places that I didn't frequent because I was a kid, including the Parkway Lounge, which was a favorite watering hole (let's face it--they were all his favorites) of my dearly departed dad.

There was a gym at one end and there was an appliance store somewhere in the middle. I can't recall if it was the precursor to Appliance Center or if the people who owned it just went to work for Appliance Center later on. Or maybe I'm just remembering wrong. There was someplace in Holiday Plaza that sold records, too, but I cannot for the life of me recall what it was.

I do know that I used to deliver newspapers to several of the businesses there. At one point within the last thirty years, it seemed to be (at least to the kid that I was) a thriving place. I hope they can find a way to make it thrive, because as a kid growing up nearby, it sure was nice to have a place so close to home where one could blow their allowance on candy and music.

posted by valbee on Mar 17, 2016 at 03:31:03 pm     #  

It looks pretty great - the new facade is nice.

It'll be interesting to see what they pull. My wife and I were talking about it, and it'd be a great Trader Joe's location.... paired, of course, with another mexican place....

:)

posted by endcycle on Mar 17, 2016 at 03:59:36 pm     #  

It looks pretty great - the new facade is nice.

It'll be interesting to see what they pull. My wife and I were talking about it, and it'd be a great Trader Joe's location.... paired, of course, with another mexican place....

:)

posted by endcycle on Mar 17, 2016 at 03:59:37 pm     #   1 person liked this

Ah-Ha! A sock puppet!

It seems a bit coincidental that BullDogBuckeye and EndCycle have the same nervous twitch, and they both support PWP.

I always knew that EndCycle wasn't real.

posted by madjack on Mar 17, 2016 at 04:23:47 pm     #  

Ornery drunk today, he is.
Wish me luck, I'm going for doubles.

posted by justread on Mar 17, 2016 at 06:36:08 pm     #   1 person liked this

Dam. Just one.

posted by justread on Mar 17, 2016 at 06:36:33 pm     #   1 person liked this

"Speaking of updating plazas: the new owner of Parkway Plaza is wasting no time putting a new, updated facade on that complex."

Back in the winter, Redemption City Church purchased a structure at Parkway Plaza. I think that the building used to be a Food Town grocery store, and the building has been vacant for 10 years.

RCC began in 2014, and they have been holding Sunday morning services at The Pinnacle. Last month, RCC began renovating the inside of the Parkway Plaza building. RCC plans to hold services at their new location in the fall.

posted by jr on Mar 17, 2016 at 07:20:51 pm     #  

jr-are you talking about the banquet space?

posted by ahmahler on Mar 17, 2016 at 08:28:02 pm     #  

ahmahler posted at 08:28:02 PM on Mar 17, 2016:

jr-are you talking about the banquet space?

No. The banquet spot would be nearby Parkway Place, correct?

Parkway Place does not need renovated, and it's available to use for events.

RCC's Parkway Plaza building is empty.

I'm not intimately familiar with that part of town, therefore maybe I don't know what you all are referring to.

Parkway Plaza is near The Trail and Detroit with a Biggby coffee shop at that location, correct?

January 2016 RCC Facebook post

We are THRILLED to announce the future home of RCC located at Parkway Plaza coming fall 2016

posted by jr on Mar 17, 2016 at 08:45:56 pm     #  

There was a "Lane's" or some drug store on the opposite side of Parkwood Place at Parkwood Plaza. I bet that's where they are talking about moving into.

posted by Molsonator on Mar 17, 2016 at 09:14:14 pm     #  

The Parkway Place is the event center in Parkway Plaza.

posted by ahmahler on Mar 17, 2016 at 10:00:19 pm     #   1 person liked this

ahmahler posted at 10:00:19 PM on Mar 17, 2016:

The Parkway Place is the event center in Parkway Plaza.

Have you been drinking to excess, or are you doing it too?

That's it for me. No more green gin.

posted by madjack on Mar 17, 2016 at 11:35:03 pm     #  

Great, another strip mall church... just what maumee and metro toledo need. Well, at least it'll bring some bodies into the area a couple days a week. I like what the new owner is doing sprucing thing up. The plaza was definitely in need of a makeover.

If the owner and city can figure out a way to tap into nearby neighborhoods for pedestrian access, that would be good. There are a lot of homes right across the Trail (7th St neighborhood), but probably next to no one walks to Parkway because there is no easy (or safe) way to get there. Maumee is a pretty pedestrian friendly city (low speed limits, lots of sidewalks) so maybe they'll figure out something.

Rumor has it that the former Value City / Holiday Plaza site across Detroit Avenue is eyed for residential condos.

posted by mixman on Mar 17, 2016 at 11:39:04 pm     #  

madjack posted at 11:35:03 PM on Mar 17, 2016:
ahmahler posted at 10:00:19 PM on Mar 17, 2016:

The Parkway Place is the event center in Parkway Plaza.

Have you been drinking to excess, or are you doing it too?

That's it for me. No more green gin.

Ha! Not that time. I was just clarifying JR's statement. Place/plaza felt like it needed context. Perhaps not. Sorry to make you spill your antifreeze-as you were.

posted by ahmahler on Mar 18, 2016 at 06:21:53 am     #  

Back in the winter, Redemption City Church purchased a structure at Parkway Plaza. I think that the building used to be a Food Town grocery store, and the building has been vacant for 10 years.

The location was bugging me, so I had to do some research. I just found a video of where RCC is building and it's in the old Centre Supermarket part of Parkway, right where Town Street meets the AWT.

I don't think that was ever a Foodtown, but I could be wrong. I know that at some point it was The Pharm. Wasn't there a grocery store over in Holiday Plaza for a time?

There are a lot of homes right across the Trail (7th St neighborhood),

There's a whole neighborhood right next door to it as well.

posted by valbee on Mar 18, 2016 at 08:05:45 am     #  

I'll punt on this. Parkway or Parkwood. Place or plaza. Lane's or Food Town.

In that same January 2016 RCC Facebook post, this map shows the building that RCC purchased, indicated by the purple push-pin.

posted by jr on Mar 18, 2016 at 08:08:56 am     #  

UGH..... Was hoping it was going to be a fresh market not Pastor Pitts 2.0

posted by Walleye419 on Mar 18, 2016 at 09:08:41 am     #   2 people liked this

Speaking of The Fresh Market, last month, it was thought that Kroger would buy The Fresh Market, but ...

The Fresh Market, a grocery store chain, has agreed to be acquired by private equity firm Apollo for more than $1.3 billion.

Apollo’s other food holdings include Twinkie maker Hostess and the Chuck E. Cheese restaurants.

While [The Fresh Market] grew at a brisk double-digit pace as late as 2014, sales have slowed as competition has intensified for the retailer that took its inspiration from European-style open-air market emphasizing fresh foods as well as healthy and organic fare.

posted by jr on Mar 18, 2016 at 09:30:17 am     #  

madjack posted at 04:23:47 PM on Mar 17, 2016:

Ah-Ha! A sock puppet!

It seems a bit coincidental that BullDogBuckeye and EndCycle have the same nervous twitch, and they both support PWP.

I always knew that EndCycle wasn't real.

Well, I'd argue that BullDogBuckeye is the fake. See, I drink bourbon. Only real people drink bourbon.

posted by endcycle on Mar 18, 2016 at 09:54:16 am     #  

The Market Basket on Collingwood near Delaware delivered and they saved my aunt's life back in the 60's. She lived in an apartment close by but kept to herself, she didn't tolerate us well. As she got older and we kids got older, we were lucky to see her once every couple months. She ordered her groceries from Market Basket and one day, my dad got a call from the store. She had ordered only cherry cheesecake and coffee for the last 3 weekly orders, a marked deviation from the previous 3 years of orders. Dad checked and she insisted nothing was wrong but he could see there was and got her to the doctor, then into a nursing home...early dementia, diabetes, and heart failure. if they had not called, we might not have known until it was too late. Simpler times when a business neighbor goes above and beyond.

! posted by nana on Mar 16, 2016 at 06:45:46 pm #

Nana, your story hits close to home with a recent emergency my mother in Chicago had. Although I speak with her regularly (on average at least 3x per week), she was too gaddam proud and independent to reveal that she had an infection, didn't feel well enough to go drive to pick up the prescription (which the big chain wouldn't deliver or even offer suggestions on delivery services), and was too proud to ask anyone else for help. So she almost died. Jewel/Osco (similar to a Kroger here) had been of absolutely no help to her. So once I got her out of the hospital, I did find an old school pharmacy that will deliver and be more responsive.

Around here, I'd recommend that people try out the likes of Monroe Pharmacy (vs CVC across the street), and Erie Drugs on Lewis (vs Rite-Aid down the street).

posted by Bandito on Mar 19, 2016 at 08:06:28 pm     #   1 person liked this

Not sure if this is still the case, but a couple years ago some Toledo Kroger stores would deliver prescriptions. I'm not sure why they won't deliver groceries unless they have a courier service deliver the prescriptions. IIRC there was no delivery fee

posted by classylady on Mar 19, 2016 at 11:24:03 pm     #  

I guess this would be the topic to post this under - Jerry McCammon long time grocer who ran Wolfert's on Airport Hwy passed last week. Anyone that shopped there knew Jerry. Nice guy. RIP Jerry.

posted by Molsonator on Mar 21, 2016 at 07:14:45 am     #  

Toledo's Fresh Thyme Market finally appears on the company's website under the "Coming Soon" heading. Lists a "Summer 2016" opening.

posted by Foodie on Apr 14, 2016 at 12:06:57 pm     #  

Yes-they are setting up vendors now-it's going to be soon, for sure

posted by ahmahler on Apr 14, 2016 at 12:14:00 pm     #  

Very much looking forward to their opening. Will save me regular trips to their Northville, MI store.

posted by Foodie on Apr 14, 2016 at 01:39:07 pm     #  

Really? You like it that much? That's exciting, I'd heard some sort of ambiguous reactions from my colleagues in other cities where they have these-however not everyone shares my general enthusiasm for a great grocery store.

posted by ahmahler on Apr 14, 2016 at 01:42:18 pm     #  

Great grocery store? Don't know that I'd go that far but I do very much enjoy their quality, selection and variety at reasonable prices.

It reminds me of Sautter's or Walt Churchill's in this regard only: extensive variety and the more you look, the more unique things you'll find.

Great bulk items selection including large selection of bulk spices. In store bakery, decent seafood selection that won't break the bank.

Large selection of organic produce - again, reasonably priced.

I'm also looking forward to the Village Market coming to Lambertville as mentioned earlier in this thread - though I can't help but think they'll believe they can charge Grosse Pointe prices. That won't work in this area.

That pricing model also makes me question the success of Whole Foods coming to town. This is not an area willing (or able in many cases) to pay $5.99/lb. for grapes and $4.99/lb. for apples.

posted by Foodie on Apr 14, 2016 at 03:07:10 pm     #  

Regarding Whole Paycheck: they've picked the right area of town. Fresh Market and Claudia's nearby are currently filling the way-expensive-produce slot.

There are quite a few people who now perceive food as being almost like their medicine for maintaining health ... so they want organic and specialty items. There is a Canadian company building a huge greenhouse facility west of Delta because customers have finally reached the point where they will routinely pay $4 for a head of specialty lettuce instead of 69 cents for iceberg.

posted by viola on Apr 14, 2016 at 07:13:38 pm     #  

I'm pretty sure that Nature Farms is up and running in Delta. I currently have some tomatoes on the vine that have a Nature Fresh tag on them proclaiming "Grown in Ohio."
AFAIK, the Delta location is their only US location.

As for $4/head specialty lettuce, time will tell if there are enough people in T-Town willing to cough that up.

Didn't the $2.99/head specialty lettuce grower that was in the Erie St. market already call it quits?

posted by Foodie on Apr 14, 2016 at 07:52:13 pm     #  

"Didn't the $2.99/head specialty lettuce grower that was in the Erie St. market already call it quits?"

That would be Jim Bloom. He didn't quit farming. He left because the Erie Street Market was sold.

http://www.sustainablelocalfoods.com

https://www.facebook.com/SustainableLocalFoods

October 2015 Blade story

Sustainable Local Foods, which was growing produce inside the Erie Street Market, operated there rent free for the first 18 months of its lease. It left the building abruptly in about August without having ever made a lease payment.

The company moved to Indianapolis but still owes Toledo for a $100,000 enterprise development loan carrying a 4 percent rate. It was originally a 10-year loan but since the company left the city limits, the city demanded it to be repaid in one year. The company made the first payment of $8,515 this month, Mr. Burkett said.

After the company left Ohio, the Department of Metropolitan Development in Indianapolis awarded it $500,000 in community development block grant funds toward the cost of transforming a warehouse there into an indoor, hydroponic, urban farm.

Mr. Burkett asked if the company was using the block grant money allocated by Indianapolis to repay its Toledo debt.

In July, Mr. Bloom said the had company invested “hundreds of thousands of dollars” in the Erie Street Market with the intent of buying it.


Allegedly

This food development model is what social entrepreneur Jim Bloom was after in Toledo, Ohio. Working as an employment recruiter, in a previous position, he was able to see a huge niche market in the area that was sorely being missed.

With only 179 days of sunshine, Ohio ranks four spots above Anchorage, Alaska with only 150 days a year of sunshine — the least amount for the continental U.S.

Because half the year is spent in cloudy weather, 98% of Toledo’s produce is shipped in from as far as 1,800 miles away.


This evening, I planted peas in our backyard garden. A little late, but oh well.

posted by jr on Apr 14, 2016 at 08:49:45 pm     #  

Bloom left because he didn't know how to run the business he was in, relied entirely on loans from the city, most of which he was unable to pay back, routinely changed his business plan, and eventually got money from Indianapolis to run the same operation after selling them on his "success story."

posted by Johio83 on Apr 14, 2016 at 09:06:31 pm     #  

Had the opportunity to stop at the Northville, MI Fresh Thyme this past Saturday. While most everything else was the same as my previous visits, I must say the produce was 2nd to 3rd rate. They had a very large selection but the vast majority of it was mediocre at best.
I left without buying any of it. Hope that was just an off weekend for them and not the new norm.

posted by Foodie on May 09, 2016 at 09:29:25 am     #  

Toledo Fresh Thyme opens June 22nd according to their website.

posted by Foodie on May 24, 2016 at 11:51:34 am     #  

Thanks for that. The spouse and I drove by there last night (shopping at the Talmadge Andersons) and we noticed there is parking around the back of the building and along the side. It will be a tight lot when Shorty's is busy. But I know when I go to shopping centers in Chicago and Cleveland, tight parking and perhaps circling around for a space are just facts of life :-(

I've been following the Andersons story (an investor wants to purchase the company). I fear if there are any big changes ahead, the company will cut loose the retail division and try to focus on the rail & grain. I would really miss the stores -- I enjoy shopping there.

posted by viola on May 25, 2016 at 09:47:53 am     #  

Many Shorty's patrons probably don't notice their side lot - myself included the few times I've been there. Looking at a satellite picture, they have about 30 spaces just north of the restaurant (side next to the Mexican place). A busy common lot could be good for business. People see things are busy, and that creates a buzz / feeling they must be doing something right, in addition to the demand for spaces.

I hope Andersons stays, too. They are a local institution, and a one-of-a-kind retail outlet - kind of a modern, mass incarnation of an old timey general store. If they ever do close, I can see a pair of ugly, generic Wal-Marts rising on both the Maumee and Talmadge sites.

posted by mixman on May 25, 2016 at 11:44:02 am     #  

viola posted at 09:47:53 AM on May 25, 2016:

Thanks for that. The spouse and I drove by there last night (shopping at the Talmadge Andersons) and we noticed there is parking around the back of the building and along the side. It will be a tight lot when Shorty's is busy. But I know when I go to shopping centers in Chicago and Cleveland, tight parking and perhaps circling around for a space are just facts of life :-(

I've been following the Andersons story (an investor wants to purchase the company). I fear if there are any big changes ahead, the company will cut loose the retail division and try to focus on the rail & grain. I would really miss the stores -- I enjoy shopping there.

FWIW the new Andersons HQ does not have include a department/wing for Retail as part of the building specs.

posted by Xbuckeyex on May 25, 2016 at 11:58:03 am     #  

You're our man (or woman) on the inside! This is an interesting bit of info.

posted by viola on May 25, 2016 at 04:37:00 pm     #  

Well it is not with pleasure I pass along that info.

The writing is on the wall and has been for a while.

1. Brick and Mortar Retail stores are struggling nationwide.
2. The Andersons Retail department is by FAR their least profitable.
3. The buyout bid for 1 billion didn't want the retail department.
4. The new CEO has zero experience in retail.
5. The new CEO has zero connection to the area and the importance the retail store has played in our local economy. Or any of the cities a retail store is located for the matter.

When you throw all that together and then remember Andersons is a public company with the bottom line being the only driver its easy to see which business department gets the axe.

The only hope imo is that they can potentially spin-off retail to another company (it does produce a profit) or perhaps the Andersons would have interest in re-acquiring the retail side since they understand the city, the customers and the importance of the store, although that's unlikely.

posted by Xbuckeyex on May 25, 2016 at 04:54:10 pm     #  

"a public company with the bottom line being the only driver"

And if anyone is wondering, there is no cynicism in that statement. The opening line of Dana's mission statement in 1969 was, "The purpose of the Dana Corporation is to earn money for its shareholders and increase the value of their investment." Once a company goes public, as xbuckeyex said, $$$ matters above all else.

posted by Johio83 on May 25, 2016 at 05:11:07 pm     #  

This past Saturday, I finally ventured over to Takacs on Genesee St. I had always heard about a Hungarian market in the Birmingham area but never really thought about it or knew if it still existed.
Well, yes it does - and it will now be part of my grocery routine. I picked up some Kolbasz for a dish I had planned along with a few links of their different types of brats. All were outstanding.
I also grabbed a few items imported from Hungary - like a jar of ground, raw paprikas. Spicy hot and good. And a bag of Hungarian Goulash spices - can't wait to make that dish.
Takacs is a tiny little market on Genesee just past Packo's off Consaul. Don't let the exterior be off-putting to you. There's good stuff to be had inside.

posted by Foodie on May 31, 2016 at 10:49:41 am     #  

Whoa! Awesome! Thanks for the tip!

posted by upso on May 31, 2016 at 11:15:29 am     #  

Takacs landjagers blow anyone else's out of the water. Their Dutch loaf is also a tasty item. Can't recommend that place enough.

posted by hunkytownsausage on May 31, 2016 at 12:01:48 pm     #  

I was hoping you'd comment hts. I saw the landjagers - they looked great so will add those to my next trip. I can't wait to go back and spend a bit more time checking things out.

The Kolbasz and brats were truly outstanding. They also had an item called "rice sausage" that I intend to grab next trip over there.

They also make their own beef jerky that I'd like to check out.

posted by Foodie on May 31, 2016 at 12:45:50 pm     #  

They have a hurka blood sausage that is also very good. I second the landjagers. Best in town.

posted by daddyg on May 31, 2016 at 01:12:41 pm     #  

Another thumbs up on Takacs. The hurka (blood sausage) is a family tradition that I just started enjoying the last few years. I am not sure if Takacs' hurka actually uses blood btw - some places do not. They also do some type of take out lunch frequently through the week. They had chicken paprikash take out last time I was there.

posted by Danneskjold on May 31, 2016 at 01:53:31 pm     #  

I stopped at Vine & Olive in Sandusky today, on Route 250 near one of the waterpark hotels. The store is upscale, attractive, and focuses on just a few categories (wine, olive oil, pastries, dried pasta, gourmet snacks). The dessert displays were amazing -- I wish I could have tried them all. There's also a hot deli case serving Greek specialties. Interesting concept. This is something for the grownups!

http://www.vine-olive.com

posted by viola on May 31, 2016 at 09:50:12 pm     #  

The only hope imo is that they can potentially spin-off retail to another company (it does produce a profit) or perhaps the Andersons would have interest in re-acquiring the retail side since they understand the city, the customers and the importance of the store, although that's unlikely.

! posted by Xbuckeyex on May 25, 2016

Are you sure that the retail group produces a profit? According to the latest annual report, retail has had operating losses in the last two years (which is all they covered). I wouldn't be surprised if the retail group has been operating at a loss for a long time.

Either way--profit or loss--it would be interesting to see an internal breakdown of the performance of the different sections of the stores, as well as the how well the Columbus stores do compared to those in Toledo.

I'd guess that the grocery section (broadly defined to include beer/wine) does the best, in spite of its failings, and is offsetting bigger losses in the general store area and lawn/garden/nursery.

posted by Bandito on May 31, 2016 at 10:45:15 pm     #  

Bandito posted at 10:45:15 PM on May 31, 2016:
The only hope imo is that they can potentially spin-off retail to another company (it does produce a profit) or perhaps the Andersons would have interest in re-acquiring the retail side since they understand the city, the customers and the importance of the store, although that's unlikely.

! posted by Xbuckeyex on May 25, 2016

Are you sure that the retail group produces a profit? According to the latest annual report, retail has had operating losses in the last two years (which is all they covered). I wouldn't be surprised if the retail group has been operating at a loss for a long time.

Either way--profit or loss--it would be interesting to see an internal breakdown of the performance of the different sections of the stores, as well as the how well the Columbus stores do compared to those in Toledo.

I'd guess that the grocery section (broadly defined to include beer/wine) does the best, in spite of its failings, and is offsetting bigger losses in the general store area and lawn/garden/nursery.

It's a really good question. I can tell you this-The Beer/ wine section is the largest profit center for all stores. As an aside, in a business where large companies are pretty shady, Anderson's keeps everything above board, no shenanigans. Columbus has 2 stores, one on the East Side, and one near Dublin. The East Side (aka Brice Rd) was always a bottom dweller, and would post similar number to the now departed Lima and Woodville Stores. The other store, on Sawmill Rd, overall feels less busy than the Toledo stores (albeit, I've never been there on a Saturday), but, it sells about twice as much wine and beer as the Toledo store, making it, I believe, the #2 single unit in the state in terms of sales of wine and beer.

posted by ahmahler on Jun 01, 2016 at 06:23:05 am     #  

daddyg posted at 01:12:41 PM on May 31, 2016:

They have a hurka blood sausage that is also very good. I second the landjagers. Best in town.

Thanks for the tips. We picked up some of the landjagers and a ring of the Hurka - something I've never had before. Both are great. FYI, the person who waited on me said they do not make the Hurka with blood any longer. After tasting the Hurka, my first thought was - get some, remove it from the casing and make stuffed cabbage rolls with it.

posted by Foodie on Jun 17, 2016 at 08:57:52 am     #  

Since this thread was bumped I have some good news with regards to Andersons.

Was at an event that Dan Anderson was at and to my understanding Anderson's hired a firm to show them what departments should be cut/expanded/ etc.

The firm determined that while retail isn't a substantial financial driver it made no sense to get rid of it. It is self-sustaining and does provide some profit that can be used for day to day corporate expenses.

Management for retail will not be located at the corporate headquarters but will sign a lease and stay in the arrowhead park area.

I am very happy to hear this as Andersons is a staple in the community.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Jun 17, 2016 at 10:50:34 am     #   10 people liked this

That is absolutely fantastic news. Thanks for the update!

posted by upso on Jun 17, 2016 at 11:32:18 am     #  

That is good news indeed. I'd hate to see them disappear. I enjoy shopping there.

posted by Foodie on Jun 17, 2016 at 11:39:31 am     #  

Me too. Nice alternatives and extra variety.

posted by justread on Jun 17, 2016 at 11:41:46 am     #  

This is great news, and a great relief. Even with Fresh Market and Costco nearby, I still maintain a shopping list of several dozen items that I can only find at Andersons.

In a way, the Andersons Talmadge store was partially responsible for my decision to move to Toledo. I was looking for a new base of operations, preferably in Ohio, and I came here on a recon mission one December, about 15 years ago.

I checked out the museum on a Friday night (evening hours! live music in the galleries!) and shopped at Thackeray's (independent bookstore!). I picked up a brochure about the renovation of the downtown library (a downtown library! historic preservation! unique mural!). At one point I found myself in Andersons on Talmadge and I saw that it was a great source of specialty coffees, German holiday treats, Christmas decor, obscure cheeses, and wine.

It was easy for me to imagine living in Toledo, being able to do my mundane grocery shopping there, and enjoying life. I'm pretty grateful to the store -- it seems bizarre, but it really set the tone for my analysis of quality of life.

posted by viola on Jun 18, 2016 at 08:03:09 am     #   2 people liked this

http://freshthyme.com/go/toledo/

Looks like Fresh Thyme has a grand opening slate of giveaways this week.

posted by ahmahler on Jun 19, 2016 at 09:17:28 pm     #  

I hope they have Lake Superior or Lake Michigan Whitefish in their fish department, because it's doubtful that the Whole Foods 360 will, as they do in their normal stores.

posted by Bandito on Jun 19, 2016 at 11:13:18 pm     #  

Not sure if this belongs here or in the social media fail place but wtol is reporting downtown is getting it's grocery store:

http://m.wtol.com/toledonewsnow/db/347256/content/2rXqYRVV

posted by In_vin_veritas on Jun 22, 2016 at 03:42:58 am     #  

What on earth. Does wtol have editors / proofreaders / fact checkers? Who doesn't know how to look up an address? It's also the chain's 39th location not eighth.

posted by mixman on Jun 22, 2016 at 04:56:46 am     #  

Wondering if anyone else made it out to the Fresh Thyme opening yesterday? I went in the afternoon and the parking lot was full!

First impressions - to me it seems like a large Trader Joe's with lots of the same products in the "prepackaged" aisles BUT I would say MUCH more emphasis placed on fresh produce, deli meats, baked goods, and butcher shop with all these products being fresh made in store or fresh cut in the case of Deli meats.

Lot's of grand opening deals were available and samples all over the store. I got a great first impression but am worried about the impact to existing established retailers such as Andersons and Fresh Market. Overall I would say that it's a good addition to the grocery landscape in the area and certainly won't miss not have a Trader Joe's here now. Definitely turning the Sylvania / Sylvania Township area into a foodie haven with all the stores to choose from now! Sofo's, Andersons, Costco, Fresh Market, Fresh Thyme, Lai Lai, and even Krogers...not to mention the dozens of natural food markets, specialty stores, and butcher shops.

posted by breeman on Jun 23, 2016 at 10:57:20 am     #  

Great store - place was packed. We had lots of samples, seemed to have a very good deli/sausage section. Huge vitamin section, loved the bulk nuts.

Nice atmosphere, helpful staff, live music and we received a random $15.00 gift card from an employee which was nice.

As mentioned by breeman this will hurt Andersons. For ease and selection alone I will likely stop into Fresh Thyme before Andersons when I just need a few items.

Great addition to West Toledo.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Jun 23, 2016 at 11:03:32 am     #  

Great store - place was packed. We had lots of samples, seemed to have a very good deli/sausage section. Huge vitamin section, loved the bulk nuts.

Nice atmosphere, helpful staff, live music and we received a random $15.00 gift card from an employee which was nice.

As mentioned by breeman this will hurt Andersons. For ease and selection alone I will likely stop into Fresh Thyme before Andersons when I just need a few items.

Great addition to West Toledo.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Jun 23, 2016 at 11:03:33 am     #  

Great store - place was packed. We had lots of samples, seemed to have a very good deli/sausage section. Huge vitamin section, loved the bulk nuts.

Nice atmosphere, helpful staff, live music and we received a random $15.00 gift card from an employee which was nice.

As mentioned by breeman this will hurt Andersons. For ease and selection alone I will likely stop into Fresh Thyme before Andersons when I just need a few items.

Great addition to West Toledo.

posted by Xbuckeyex on Jun 23, 2016 at 11:03:34 am     #  

Of course I stopped in. Wouldn't have missed it. Place was still packed at 6pm.

Didn't buy any last night but I've had a variety of their in store made sausages and marinated chicken breasts - both were excellent.

I was hoping for some fresh bakery bread last night but that area had been wiped out.

Bandito had asked about Lake Superior or Michigan Whitefish. They did have Whitefish in the seafood department last evening but the counter attendant didn't know the origin other than wild caught in Canada. Whatever the source, it looked good and fresh.

posted by Foodie on Jun 23, 2016 at 11:28:07 am     #  

That parking lot is going to be a real issue. I realize it was opening day but drove by yesterday and wondered where Shorty's customers would be able to park. It was absolutely packed.

posted by upso on Jun 23, 2016 at 12:24:33 pm     #  

Agree. I took one look and decided to park in the rear.

posted by Foodie on Jun 23, 2016 at 12:54:21 pm     #  

Interesting story emerged this morning: Kroger Corporation just purchased Murray's Cheese shop.

https://therealdeal.com/2017/02/03/kroger-company-buys-murrays-cheese-flagship/

That may not mean much to you, but Murray's is a Nationally recognized Cheese mongering (yes that's the word) force. The new Kroger in Perrysburg and on Airport have very impressive cheese selections, with counter help for you to try or for them to cut anything in the case. Currently, Kroger (locations mentioned) has the best cheese selection anywhere in town, and will likely give the new Whole Foods, a run for it's money. It's interesting that Kroger is investing so heavily in this segment of the market.

Sadly, their wine selection is absolute shit.

posted by ahmahler on Feb 07, 2017 at 09:38:56 am     #  

Interesting they bought a cheese shop in a city where they have no stores. I've been to Murray's before in NYC but Bedford is still my favorite cheese shop in NYC. There's a raw milk stilton that I found at Neals Dairy yard the first time I was in London that I love and when I was telling them how much I liked it and they found out I was from Ohio they asked if Ann Arbor was nearby and he had actually been to Zingerman's and said them and Bedford are the only two places he knew of in the US that carry it (Bedford is considerably cheaper than Zingerman's so I always try to buy it there when I am in NYC).

I didn't know they had kiosks in the Perrysburg store. I've been to the new Maumee store and wasn't impressed at all with their cheese selection (the clerk didn't even know what Stilton was). I'm surprised they aren't putting a kiosk in the Monroe/Secor store to compete with Whole foods and to help get some of the business from the Anderson's when they close.

posted by jamesteroh on Feb 07, 2017 at 12:47:02 pm     #  

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cWDdd5KKhts

Cheese Shop Sketch Monty Python. You're welcome.

posted by Molsonator on Feb 07, 2017 at 01:12:24 pm     #  

The worst part of eating cheese is it when cellophane wrap sticks to it during unwrapping.

posted by BulldogBuckeye on Feb 07, 2017 at 01:17:35 pm     #  

I know this isn't a cheese thread, but speaking of cheese.......... my husband and I are huge fans of fancy imported cheeses, but if we open three or four types at once, they just don't stay fresh.

Until I recently discovered these cheese storage bags that I saw a chef on tv using. OMG, they are awesome. I cannot believe how long they keep your cheese fresh.

I was skeptical at first , but now I am a true believer. They are made in France by a company called Formaticum. You can get a package of 15 bags on Amazon Prime for $ 7.99

posted by foodie88 on Feb 07, 2017 at 05:45:17 pm     #  

I didn't know they had kiosks in the Perrysburg store. I've been to the new Maumee store and wasn't impressed at all with their cheese selection (the clerk didn't even know what Stilton was). I'm surprised they aren't putting a kiosk in the Monroe/Secor store to compete with Whole foods and to help get some of the business from the Anderson's when they close.

You are going to the new Airport/ Holloway store, right? There are a couple of staff members I really like, although, several are not well trained. I'm just happy they cut it in store, and they may not all know they have it, but they usually have Stilton. I also found some really nice Comte and Bucheron last week. It's a step in the right direction. As far as Perrysburg location goes, I was told they have the same set, but perhaps I was misinformed.

Foodie88-i'm totally buying some-Thanks

posted by ahmahler on Feb 07, 2017 at 06:30:39 pm     #  

The Maumee Kroger I've been at was the one on Conant by Dussell. Nice store but not impressed with the cheese department

posted by jamesteroh on Feb 08, 2017 at 12:07:06 am     #  

Oh, yeah. That store is surprisingly inferior by comparison, which is strange, because there's only a 2 yr age difference. There is no cheese counter either.

posted by ahmahler on Feb 08, 2017 at 12:18:56 am     #  

I must be one of those mouth breathing, knuckle dragging, taco and Bud Light swilling backwards Toledoans we all despise so much. When I shell out high dollars for cheese, the package says "Kraft" on it.

I really do despise Bud Light, though. Maybe there's hope for me after all.

posted by JoeyGee on Feb 08, 2017 at 09:37:55 am     #  

Uhhh... this pinky-extending-latte-drinking-liberal-elitist-snob guy fucking loves taco bell and cheap shredded cheeses.

Just saying.

With you on bud light. Vastly prefer PBR or Tecate on a hot summer day.

posted by endcycle on Feb 08, 2017 at 10:02:25 am     #   1 person liked this

endcycle posted at 09:02:25 AM on Feb 08, 2017:

Uhhh... this pinky-extending-latte-drinking-liberal-elitist-snob guy fucking loves taco bell and cheap shredded cheeses.

Just saying.

With you on bud light. Vastly prefer PBR or Tecate on a hot summer day.

Just poking fun at the cheese crowd. I'm not even a Toledoan. I live in Sylvania, so I'm a snob by nature, lol.

I do get a chuckle when I go into the Kroger in Sylvania and walk by the little wine bar they have setup for wine tasting, complete with patrons on bar stools and the bar tender/cashier pouring drinks and listening to the shoppers troubles. It just looks...odd.

posted by JoeyGee on Feb 08, 2017 at 11:03:37 am     #   1 person liked this

Totally agree with you. The drinking wine while grocery shopping trend is SO strange to me.

posted by upso on Feb 08, 2017 at 11:52:45 am     #  

upso posted at 10:52:45 AM on Feb 08, 2017:

Totally agree with you. The drinking wine while grocery shopping trend is SO strange to me.

It's even strange to me. Now drinking a beer while shopping (as long as it isn't Bud Light), I'm down with that.

posted by ahmahler on Feb 08, 2017 at 11:54:40 am     #