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Trader Joe's Opening in the Triangle???

Is there a Trader Joe's opening in the Raleigh/Durham area? NBC13 mentioned it briefly on a segment where they listed grocery store chains that had the best and worst customer satisfaction ratings. Trader Joe's was up there w/the best and they said there was one opening in the triangle soon. I went to TJ's website and did not see it listed in the Opening Soon section.

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  1. I heard it was opening in Cary. Durham has been petitioning for one, but they don't seem too interested yet.

    1 Reply
    1. re: magneticwheels

      Thanks for the info. Do you know where in Cary they might be opening? That's too much of a hike for me on a weekly basis. :( I would think that Durham would be a great place for them.

    2. The rumor is that it will be in the old Winn Dixie on the corner of Kildaire Farm and Cary Pkwy. They won't be taking up all that space, however.

      2 Replies
      1. re: ldixie

        I went over to take a look at the construction site this week. They gutted the old Winn Dixie down to bare walls and they are splitting it into two spaces. There is a banner up announcing that one half is going to be a Staples office supplies. The other half has no banner or announcement signs and there is no information on the Trader Joe's website announcing an upcoming Cary location.

        Still, the neighborhood buzz is convinced that this is indeed the spot for the new TJ. Making this transplanted Californian very, very happy indeed!

        Given the state of construction, I can't imagine it opening before the end of the year. But hope springs eternal.

        For Durham/Chapel Hill/Raleigh folks, that's south on Hwy 1/64 from Hwy 40. Take the Cary Parkway exit and follow it to the right. You'll hit the Kildaire Farm intersection in about a mile and a half (guesstimate). The store is on the right.

        With luck, we'll get the new store and the Hwy 1 construction done and all will be buttercreams and moonbeams.

        1. re: ldixie

          I know exactly where you are talking about. I had an apartment maybe 10 minutes away from there until I moved to Durham. Darn!

        2. And the Fresh Market that is just half a block away has decided to move to a different location. Some attribute that to the opening of Trader Joe's. We'll see.

          1. out in CA, my apartment complex adjoined with the Trader Joe's parking lot. It was literally a 45-second walk from my apartment's front door to the entrance of Trader Joe's. That was sweet beyond compare.

            It was nice to just walk in whenever I needed staple items, such as eggs (free range, vegetarian fed - $1.99/dozen), a gallon of hormone-free milk, olive oil from Italy ($4.99/liter - try finding it someone else for anything close to that price), the best genevieve pesto around (I have to use twice as much of the Southern Season variety at twice the price in my cooking and the taste is still majorly weak), bruschetta (luckily I crated some of that over here upon the move), fresh baked breads, hormone-free chicken for $1.99/pound, etc. etc. etc. Trader Joe's time and time again proved cheaper than Safeway (the "Krogers" of CA), which is amazing considering the quality of their goods.

            I plan weekly runs to TJ once they open in Cary. It'll give me an excuse to stop off at La Shish along the way for shawarma and baklava (it'll be like a mini CA vacation anytime I go).

            1. where's la shish? i have yet to find good shawarma in this area...

              4 Replies
              1. re: HeelsSoxHound

                La Shish is at 908 NE Maynard Road in Cary in the Reedy Creek Plaza (same plaza as Food Lion).

                Note: I would not characterize the shawarma as "good" on the absolute scale. I've had far better out in CA (larger portions, juicier meat, better marinade). Of course, I've had far worse too (including International Delights in Durham, which is just awful). Still, at times the craving for shawarma wins out and this is the best place (only acceptable shawarma?) I've found in the Triangle for it.

                What scores major points at La Shish is the baklava. I've never had better anywhere.


                1. re: mikeh

                  How's the shwarma at Neomonde (their spelling, not mine...). I generally go to pick up a pack-o-pitas, and get some baba ghanouj, tabouli, or falafel. The shwarma looks good, but I've never tried. I'm a BIG fan of their baba ghanouj, and definitely their pitas, though!

                  1. re: OrganicGal

                    Pretty tasty, as a matter of fact. I've never had the chicken, just the beef and lamb. I usually ask for a little extra sauce, though, as I find the shwarma to be a little dry sometimes.

                    I think this thread is giving me a jones for some falafel.

                  2. re: mikeh

                    The shawarma at Baba Ganouj is very good-- at least the one is Durham. And very reasonably priced.

                2. I heard there is a Turkish market in Cary, do you know the name? I'd love to buy some Turkish coffee.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: Rory

                    The Turkish market is in the shopping center with a TJ Maxx's across from the Galaxy Theater. All kinds of Turkish products --lots of packaged puddings. I think it's called Harmony Mediterreanean Market. 663 Cary Towne Blvd

                  2. Shwarma at Neomonde is good stuff. And far from dry, I'm usually dripping at the elbows by the time I'm done. Haven't noticed any difference between the Raleigh and Morrisville (Durham) locations.

                    I've heard about the Trader Joe's from a few different sources, so I've got to believe it will happen. Also hearing that they like to open in groups which may mean a second location or an Aldi's in the area. I'm hoping one will land ITB in Raleigh.

                    1. Fuzzy - I heard that an Aldi was going in the old Books-A-Million location on Wake Forest Road. So not too far OTB...

                      1 Reply
                      1. re: cackalackie

                        Trader Joe's eyes first Raleigh store
                        Aging shopping center could become home to grocer's third Triangle location
                        Triangle Business Journal - July 27, 2007
                        by Amanda Jones Hoyle

                        The first Triangle location of Trader Joe's opened late last year in Cary.

                        RALEIGH - Trader Joe's, a specialty grocer that's building a cult-like following coast to coast, is eyeing Raleigh for its third Triangle store.

                        Local real estate sources say the California grocery chain wants to open a store in Raleigh, and it has started lease discussions with representatives of the Holly Park shopping center on Wake Forest Road near the Beltline.

                      2. I've heard that the sign is now up, so yay! It's definitely true.

                        1. I found these links - Trader Joe's not only is coming to Cary, but is also coming to Charlotte.

                          Great news - can't wait for the Cary site to open.



                          4 Replies
                          1. re: Jeanne

                            I just read these opening dates in the paper today:

                            Trader Joe's (Walnut St, near Cary Pkwy) - Opens Nov. 27
                            Costco (Wake Forest Rd @ Six Forks, ITB) - Opens Oct. 25
                            Aldi (Wake Forest Rd., old Books-A-Million) - Next March

                            1. re: cackalackie

                              Well, it doesn't look like www.traderjoes.com is saying that Cary will be open tomorrow. Anyone hear anything?

                              1. re: DingoWallaby

                                The N&O reported that date in their big article on TJ's island spirit.

                                1. re: DingoWallaby

                                  It's still mentioned as opening tomorrow in this article published yesterday in the N&O:


                            2. Yesterday the sign on the building in Cary said it would open Monday, the 27th.

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: blewgo

                                anybody head out today? would love to hear what the scene's like--probably no shopping carts left at 9:07.... :)

                                1. re: cervisiam

                                  I got there at 10ish, got in line at 11 and was finished checking out at 11:40, if that tells you anything. It was well staffed and well stocked though. I was amazed at some of the prices, though. For instance, for me, paying only $1.99 for fresh juices (Odwalla "like"), which my kids love, but are HIGH at WF is going to be great.

                                  1. re: cervisiam

                                    I went over around 4pm. It was a full store, but you could still navigate the aisles without problem. Many of the breads had sold out (they were out of genuine SF-baked sourdough, dang it!). The tie-up was still at the checkout stands, with long lines at each. TJ's has a "proud tradition" of never updating their checkout counters to match modern assembly line efficiency. So the checker has to reach into the basket, pull out an item, scan it, slide it to the bagging area and repeat for every single package in the cart. And of course they were still training new checkers as to check acceptance procedures, food codes, etc. So it was a little slow.

                                    There was the usual TJ strange assortment of foods and pricing. Some are spectacular, others are not. Shop and compare to take the best and leave the rest.

                                    By the way, I learned an interesting thing from the woman ahead of me. You can hand the cashier a blank check with your signature on it and their check verification machine will fill in the pay-to and amount fields. If all check payers knew this, it would save some time. But I've never seen them promote the feature.

                                2. Visited the new Trader Joe's in Cary today. First of all, it was a MADHOUSE, and this was 2 pm on a Friday, so if you can stand to wait a couple of weeks and let the rest of Cary get in and out, I would. A lot of the shelves were bare, although for the crowds I was impressed at how much they had left.

                                  That said, it was a fun shopping experience. I have been to TJ's a couple of times, but never when I had a car and time to shop. A lot of what I bought, I would buy at Harris Teeter or Whole Foods anyway, but it was definitely cheaper at TJ's - fancy coffee and tea, organic cereal, vitamins, and fine chocolate were all a couple of dollars below local supermarket prices. There were baking ingredients that are hard to find elsewhere (like almond meal). I was underwhelmed by the cheeses and produce (the bagged salads were wilted and sad). But TJ's is known for its wide selection of prepared foods, mostly frozen, and cheap, cheap wine - and it definitely delivered on those fronts. I made off with some frozen wild-caught ahi steaks for $5 a pound, and would have come home with some nice-looking steaks as well if I had time to cook them. And the Cary-ites were filling their $40k SUV's with case upon case of Two Buck Chuck!

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: dubedo

                                    A good example of why we need more than one Trader Joe's in this area!

                                  2. I went for the grand opening on Monday (40 min. in line to check out and packed to the rafters), yet we were able to find most everything we sought out, except for the frozen siu mai and potstickers (they had run out).

                                    One of the crewmates hinted that they were looking at a couple more potential locations in the triangle to open in the next two years. I hope it'll place somewhere in the Durham/Chapel Hill nexus to appeal to the throngs of hippie foodies we have up here. If only that dismal Panda Inn Restaurant would shut down out of the TJ Maxx shopping center at the corner of 15-501 and Garrett...that would be a pretty good spot. Or perhaps that old Kroger up by South Point Mall where Sitar India Palace and Aaron's Furniture Rental are. Possibilities abound.

                                    1. I went last night (Friday evening) and it was not only packed, but the shelves were largely bare. Really. We're talking Southern supermarket before a forecast of snow, only worse. That said, I was impressed with the overall selection and prices (based on the signs on the shelf at least). As someone else noted, the produce section was smallish and left a bit to be desired, but Trader Joe's isn't really known for their produce.

                                      Does anyone know if they're restocking the shelves daily, or if they're awaiting new shipments? I'd honestly go back this morning if I knew the shelves would be at least partially replenished.

                                      I talked to an employee, and he mentioned Cameron Village in ITB-Raleigh as the site he'd heard mentioned as the most likely next store.

                                      1. Trader Joes' is coming to Chapel Hill. The Earthfaire market in the Eastgate Shopping Center is closing the end of January. They told me Trader Joe's bought out their lease. No known opening date.

                                        9 Replies
                                          1. re: durhamois

                                            Which? That Earth Fare is closing, or that TJ's is coming? :-)

                                          2. re: fbrown627

                                            That Earth Fare seems too big for a Trader Joes--I'd be surprised (but ecstatic) if they moved in there. I'm not surprised Earth Fare is closing in CH--there was never anyone in that place--they must have been bleeding money for some time...

                                            1. re: rcsimm

                                              Some of the TJs we had back home were nearly that large. Perhaps they are going to ask the shopping center to subdivide the space and have someone put a cafe on the left side like Weathervane used to be. I'm sure whomever runs that shopping center would do whatever TJs wants to get a tennent like that.

                                              1. re: rcsimm

                                                After trying Weaver Street and Whole Foods with no luck finding beef short ribs, I ended up trying to find some at Earth Fare. They didn't have any either but someone else asked the butcher for some meat and when he began to wrap it up he says to the customer,"I'm sorry ma'am but this has gone bad and I wouldn't want to sell this to you." You now your product is moving slow when it spoils in the display case!

                                              2. re: fbrown627

                                                According to the Herald-Sun, the shopping center is "currently in negotiations with another upscale grocery which will take that place in mid-February."


                                                1. re: fbrown627

                                                  Any reviews on the new Chapel HIll store? I went yesterday and I have to say I was a little disappointed. They really should have used the whole space that Earthfare had occupied. It's horribly crowded, and I don't think that is going to change over time. Also, the checkout lines are horribly designed. If you're at one of the far-ended checkout lines, it's a battle to leave the store after you've already payed. Still, it's Trader Joe's and I'll continue to shop there frequently. :)

                                                  1. re: SenorSuarez

                                                    I had the same gripes about the Cary store, but to date that had been my only experience with TJ's. I thought it was incredibly small and crowded, and not well designed from a traffic flow perspective.

                                                    1. re: Suzy Q

                                                      The crowd will die down in a few weeks. I can get in and out of the Cary store in 5 min. nowadays.

                                                2. I just read this post and am ECSTATIC that there is a TJ's out here - I had no clue! I moved from CA a few months ago and have sorely missed TJ's - it's not that convenient as I'm in North Raleigh, but it's worth the trip! Thanks!!!

                                                  1. Latest word is that another Trader Joe's is opening in the Earth Fare location in Chapel Hill spring 2007.

                                                    2 Replies
                                                      1. Just read an article in the Chapel Hill News (Herald-Sun) that it is rumored that Trader Joe's is set to take over the Earth Fare location (in Eastgate Shopping Center) after it closes the end of January. This is the greatest possible news, following closely on the heels on the birth last week of our first grandson. Yippee!!!

                                                          1. Folks at the Cary store this week said they heard the Chapel Hill store is scheduled to open sometime in the fourth quarter of this year. It looks like renovation will take awhile.

                                                            1. When I was at the Cary Trader Joe's on January 25, two employees confirmed that a store would open in the Earth Fare space in Chapel Hill before the end of 2007. I think I have died and gone to heaven!

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: novotna

                                                                It's now official - TJ's has signed a lease for the former EarthFaire property. See
                                                                http://www.chapelhillnews.com/106/sto.... I wonder how long it will take before they will open?

                                                              2. i desperately need a TJs in athens. not fair, i move from ch and they get a traders

                                                                1. I've seen some rumblings about the Chapel Hill location in the news lately, but no opening date seems to be listed anywhere. Anyone know the scoop on when this will open in CH??

                                                                  10 Replies
                                                                  1. re: ericalee

                                                                    sure, it was in the chapel hill paper this week : the end of 2007.
                                                                    they are probably remodeling the dark cavern that was Earthfare. What a weird idea that was!

                                                                    1. re: Rory

                                                                      Thanks - defnitely looking forward to having one closer than Cary!

                                                                      1. re: Rory

                                                                        Did they actually say they were opening at the end of 2007? People have been working on that building since February.

                                                                      2. re: ericalee

                                                                        Grocery shopping is going to be a weekly 3-store trip for me now. Trader Joes, Whole Foods, and the Teeter. Looking forward to it!

                                                                        1. re: SenorSuarez

                                                                          It was in the paper & I've seen it posted here. For whatever reason they keep saying the end of 2007, maybe having that late date makes it easier to change it....if they remodel quickly.
                                                                          I've never been, but looking forward to it, as my entire family cooks & are foodies

                                                                          1. re: Rory

                                                                            stock the shelves and open the doors... i'm ready to start shopping!

                                                                            1. re: SenorSuarez

                                                                              IIRC, the N&O stated the Chapel Hill Trader Joe's will be opening in October.

                                                                              1. re: jsb23nc

                                                                                Any news on the opening date? I bug the Cary store every time I'm there, but I don't think they really know either.

                                                                                1. re: SenorSuarez

                                                                                  I've heard after Thanksgiving, from someone who lives next door to the person who moved here from California to be the TJ manager.

                                                                                  Also, Whole Foods Chapel Hill is starting another renovation, taking over at least 3 mroe stores...and from several WF employees, they say that the Chapel Hill WF is apprehensive about the competition from Trader Joes, and thus, are going to aggressively more with this new renovation. Also, WF is considering location in southern Chapel Hill/northern Chatham County

                                                                          2. re: SenorSuarez

                                                                            You'll probably find fewer and fewer reasons to hit Whole Foods once you get used to shopping at TJs. Quality is just as good, if not better, and the prices are far cheaper.

                                                                        2. In related news, it looks like Raleigh's Aldi store (corp. sister to TJs) will open soon. They are in the old Books-A-Million space on Wake Forest Rd., in the same center as Thai House. We got a flyer in the mail that I think mentioned a mid-May opening.

                                                                          I've never been in an Aldi, but the TJ association and reputation for bargain pricing has me interested. Is anyone here familiar with them?

                                                                          Still hoping the TJ's finds a good spot inside the Raleigh beltline.

                                                                          6 Replies
                                                                          1. re: FuzzyT

                                                                            Is this the same Aldi chain that I used to occasionally shop at in the Midwest several years ago? If so, it was an odd place. Only took cash, had an odd selection of off-brand and scattered 'name' brand stuff, mostly food (not 'gourmet' in the slightest) and always a few random bargain items like patio furniture or electronics, all sort of stacked on the floor and on industrial-looking shelves. You did your own bagging (they had those bright orange and yellow bags, and I think you had to pay for them?) and the cashiers sat on chairs. That was 5 years ago or so, so it's probably very different now--has TJ's always owned them?

                                                                            1. re: statolith

                                                                              The relationship seems to be a bit more complicated than that. From what I gather, TJs and Aldi US are independent corporations, but each is headed by one of the two German brothers that founded Aldi in Europe. From your description and what I'm finding elsewhere it sounds like Aldi might be the Big Lots of the grocery world. I'm still intrigued. I've found some great bargains at Big Lots in the past: $3 liters of grapeseed oil, good $1 tinned oysters, etc. And it's always fun to see all of the failed efforts in marketing and product development that end up there.


                                                                              1. re: statolith

                                                                                When I was in Chicago, I shopped occassionally at an Aldi and the description above was spot on. It always felt like it was full of things other stores sent over after they didn't sell. Most of their product is non-perishables. For old time's sake, I stopped at the one in Fayetteville last year and it was the same deal.

                                                                                One reason to get excited, though, is the electronics. They used to be from the factory of a major German electronics producer but sold off label and at crazy prices.

                                                                                1. re: brokegradstudent

                                                                                  There is already an Aldi in Raleigh off of Capital & Louisburg rd (need David's Bridal).

                                                                                  It is definitely low-frills. You put a quarter deposit for your cars (but no random carts are rolling into cars), bring your own bag or you can grab a box or buy bags for 10 cents.

                                                                                  The cashiers don't f--k around--you can be behind someone with enough food for 10 kids and they'll be through the line in a sec.

                                                                                  They actually have primarily private label brands--not off stuff, or old lots. A German friend was the one who hipped me to the place to begin with-they have good German chocolates. I like their soy milk a lot & even some of the frozen dinners. They have a cheapo wine as well, but I still like the Charles Shaw better.

                                                                                  If you're a total snob, you'll hate it, but if you're open-minded you'll actually find a lot of cool stuff.

                                                                                  I'm happy to hear that SOMETHING is going into that space. That spot of Wake Forest Rd. has turned into a sewer.

                                                                                  1. re: RaleighRocker

                                                                                    Cool, when I was going to Aldi they didn't have stuff like soy milk! And I'm always on the lookout for frozen lunch-type things.

                                                                                    1. re: RaleighRocker

                                                                                      I wish they'd teach that cashier trick to the friendly money handlers at Trader Joe's. It's the reverse of what you described. You can be behind someone with 10 items and they'll be through the line in ten minutes.

                                                                              2. Has anyone heard confirmation about a TJ's in Raleigh - in Holly Park Shopping Center (@ Wake Forest Rd, just inside the beltine, where ShabaShabu is located)??? I heard this a few months ago....And I just read that the shopping center itself has been sold and will undergo renovations (as it should do.....it's a great location).

                                                                                5 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: cackalackie

                                                                                    I've heard mixed thoughts. A friend's husband works for Jerry's Art-a-rama and they had a few meetings about TJs going in where the gym was--but the net of the talks about that shopping center were that parking was too slim for TJs requirements and they dropped the site as a possibility. That was early summer. Maybe TJs is reconsidering? I just wish they would sort something out soon because Cary is a long drive from Wake Forest.

                                                                                    1. re: sabrosina

                                                                                      Interesting to get that perspective. But it's hard to imagine parking being any worse than the place in Cary.....Of course, it's been a while since that parking lot was full - so it's just hard to imagine. But considering that I'm sure that gym was originally a grocery store, and TJ's tends to be smaller that today's stores.......I hope you're mistaken, of course! That would be soooo convenient!

                                                                                      1. re: cackalackie

                                                                                        Anyone heard of a Trade Joe going into the Falls Village center where Fresh Market is currently? TFM is moving to the old Harris Teeter location 1/2 mile south (on Falls of Neuse) in early 2008.

                                                                                        1. re: degmat

                                                                                          I haven't actually heard about TJ's, but as soon as I heard that Fresh Market was moving I thought it would be a perfect spot for TJ's. It's the perfect size and it a business friendly neighborhood. Maybe we can't start a rumor and hope it comes true?

                                                                                  2. It's been open in Cary for months...

                                                                                    and a new location is set to be open in Chapel Hill at the old southern Season's location sometime soon...

                                                                                    6 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: TSQ75

                                                                                      If you read through the thread, we are discussing a possible third Triangle location, in additino to Cary and C.Hill. There has been rumor of a Raleigh location too.

                                                                                      1. re: VaNC

                                                                                        For those who were wondering about TJ's opening date in CH: today the N&O said it'll open November 30. I think they said that's still tentative, though.

                                                                                        1. re: hungry in carrboro

                                                                                          According to a friend who works in the same shopping center as the soon-to-open Trader Joe's, as of last week, the store was accepting job applications so it's my guess that the store will be opening 4-5 weeks from now.

                                                                                          1. re: Chow Penguin

                                                                                            According to the N&O, it's opening Nov. 30th.

                                                                                            1. re: btc1951

                                                                                              I was having lunch in Eastgate the other day and I asked one of the guys doing work on TJ's and he told me he thought TJ's would be opening next Friday, November 30. Plus, while looking in the windows, I saw that many of the shelves were already stocked (excluding frozen, produce, and the like, of course). All this points to confirmation of Nov 30 as a firm date for opening. Get your mind right, Chapel Hill.