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May 22, 2007 11:57 AM

Fairway coming to Westchester, could it be true?

Thought many of you might be interested...

In response to an email I sent to Fairway extolling their virtues and begging them, yes I literally begged as much as one can do on email, to open a location in Westchester, preferably Southern Westchester and preferably right around the corner from my house : ), I received this email today.

Dear Laylag (it actually had my real name),

We are currently looking at locations in Westchester as we continue to expand our business. We have received numerous requests from residents of Westchester like yourself and are grateful that you hold us in such high regard. Thank you again for your comments and we look forward to opening a Westchester store in the future.

Daniel Glickberg
Executive Vice President
Fairway Market

When will this be and where? Will it really happen? I don't know but as they have been expanding quite a bit with new stores in Brooklyn and New Jersey I am hoping it is true.

So, to all my fellow Westchester Fairway devotees - please send more messages their way.

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  1. My goodness! Exciting news for a Tuesday. I will write a letter, but I will beg for a northern Westchester location. :)

    1 Reply
    1. re: marmite

      I'll add my signature to that letter for a Fairway in Northern Westchester!

    2. Wow, cool. I have long heard how good they are.

      Hopefully their Westchester location will be where there is an outside, free parking lot. I'll have to send them an email to this effect.

      Thanks, laylag.

        1. re: byrd

          I know byrd! That's what spurred me to email them directly. After the Red Hook location opened I was so jealous and then Paramus! How could they go to Paramus before Westchester? ; )

          1. re: laylag

            my monday morning pilgrimage to plainview has become routine the last couple of years.

            1. re: byrd

              Oh, thank goodness I'm not the only one who travels to LI from Westchester for a grocery store albeit one that's like no other store in the world. I tried the trek to 125th street but while it was a bit shorter I like the Plainview store better - bigger, easier to navigate and more stuff. I don't go every week but about once a month, gotta get my coffee - and always when we're having guests - cheese, cheese, cheese! : )

              Can you imagine having one here? The produce, the smoked salmon, oh, I can just go on and on and...

              1. re: laylag

                Laylag, do you shop at Turco's or Stew Leonards?
                Both are comparable to any of the Fairway markets IMO, yes?

                1. re: Cheese Boy

                  Cheese boy, Turco's -, I finally went to the one in Hartsdale and it had already been turned over to Morton Williams. Cheese were pre-cut and prewrapped from what I saw. I've heard that the original Turco's in No. Westchester is very good and will try it sometime but I confess I'm a Fairway fanatic and loyalist.

                  As for Stew - been to Yonkers, been to Norwalks - not impressed. IMO Stew Leonards isn't even on the same planet as Fairway especially w/respect to cheese. Stew to me is very limited with little international or artisanal cheeses and, for me the selections are mundane - very middle of the road. How many cheddars does one need to select from? Now, no disrespect intended, if I were in need of a vast selection of prepared fried foods well then, Stew's would be the way to go.

                  1. re: laylag

                    It's absolutely disturbing that people who make up an 'elite' demographic in Westchester have no truly exceptional stores to shop in. Fairway is a store that satisfies in more ways than one and would be a welcomed addition to the county for sure. In the meantime, Turco's in the northern portion of the county is pretty good. Even TJ's can do the trick sometimes too. Doesn't anyone like Stew's for meats? Come on now.

                    1. re: Cheese Boy

                      When there, I've been amazed by the variety and quantity available every day but have never bought any there. Is it worth the trip just to buy meat?

                      1. re: Cheese Boy

                        Ain't that the truth, Cheese Boy.

                        Personally, I don't like the 'one way' herding mentality of Stew's, so I don't frequent it. Althought the free parking is grand.

                        Trader Joe's is good for specialty, exotic items and the parking is free. As is Chef Central for the same things, and the parking is free.

                        I am still giving Morton Williams a chance, and the parking is free.

                        Whole Foods is dead to me, as the parking is a rip off.

                        I would be very interested in a Fairway in Westchester, as a dear departed friend recommended them a long time ago. He shopped exclusively at the Harlem store, but I have never made it there.

                        I confess, I get my speciality items from places such as D'Agostino and MW and wherever else I can find free parking. I won't pay for parking to buy groceries, the idea is heinous to me. When I have LOTS of patience, I venture to Apple Farms. When I am grumpy, I stay FAR away from that insane store. but the parking is free. Mr. dolores gets produce from the fruit and vegetable place in New Rochelle on Division St., I wouldn't go there on a bet.

                        I cringe at the idea of Fairway where Stop and Shop is now in Mount Kisco, but hey, if they won't go somewhere on Central Avenue where there is more room, there is not much I can do about it.

                        And, of all things, I found a cereal cheaper at Target in Mount Vernon than it was in Stop and Shop. AND.....the parking is free. Otherwise, I get my meat from my personal butcher Vinnie in Stop and Shop in PortChester and get everything else there too. And the parking is free.

                        1. re: dolores

                          Just to note that the Harlem Fairway, right off the West Side Highway at the 125th Street southbound exit, has plenty of free parking. OTOH, unless you take the roundabout route via the Broadway bridge, you've got to pay the Henry Hudson tolls...

                          1. re: dolores

                            Whole Foods validates parking. I have never had to pay a cent for parking there.

                      2. re: Cheese Boy

                        Stew Leonard's looks like it might be, but in my experience (the one off the Deegan in Yonkers), it just isn't as good in almost every area. The butcher's not bad but didn't have things like D'Artagnan specialities, or a good prime selection - including dry aged steaks; the prepared food we tried was uniformly mediocre; the organic selection (produce and general groceries) is not comparable - and don't even think about cheese or deli selections or imported oils, pastas, butter, etc.. We went a few times after they opened, but just weren't impressed; our weekly run to Harlem Fairway continues to be a way of life for us.

                        Can't speak to Turco's, though - never been.

                        1. re: Striver

                          I'm with you on all counts Striver.

                        2. re: Cheese Boy

                          IMO, no. Turco's is now Morton Williams. Name change or not, it's hopelessly stuck in the past -- a promised renovation has yet to happen. It's produce is only average; its fish is no longer anything special (though to be fair, neither is Fairway's in Harlem), and its prepared food and deli simply aren't in Fairway's league. For me (I live in Hastings), there is no reason to ever go back.

                          Stew's is Stews. Great for milk, yogurt, pretty good for cheese, although not Fairway -- after all, it is a dairy at the core. Its prepared foods are underwhelming, its deli a non-contender. Its fish (again, not what drives me to Fairway) has gone downhill the last few years. Seems to me its demographic has shifted over the past few years, and not for the better.

                          1. re: Cheese Boy

                            Stew's or Turco's really isn't in the same league--or even, as Laylag says, on the same culinary planet. Stews has crappy, machine-made, pre cut cheese, choice (and not prime) meats, and no real depth of selection in either cheese or meats. They're cheap, but the quality is much lower. Plus, it's not really set up for avid cooks or discriminating eaters. Fairway has all sorts of exotic, imported foods, ranging from Maldon salt to fig cakes to salt-packed anchovies to truffles. You can get prime beef, organic chickens, buffalo, D'Artagnan duck and wild boar sausages, rabbit, squab, poussin, and a thousand types of ham hock, fat back, bacon. Basicaly--you name it, they have it. Cheese selection is excellent--plus you can get fresh boutique ricotta, Italian mascarpone, creme fraiche, French feta, Normandy butter, caviar, and smoked salmon in fifteen different varieties. Basically--as a loyal fan of the 125th street location--I have never been stumped there once, and I am an avid cook. Plus, Fairway stays on trend like you wouldn't believe--if you read about a new gourmet product in Food and Wine, The NYTimes or Gourmet, chances are that you'll find it at Fairway within the week if it wasn't there first. Finally, the prices on elite imported ingredients like cheese, olives, fancy charcuterie, etc. are so much better than at Wholefoods that if you wind up buying this stuff, it actually pays to shlepp down to Harlem. I live in New Rochelle, and I go often--the coffee prices alone make it worth the trip/toll.

                          2. re: laylag

                            I have only been to Morton William's once and they had just made in house fresh mozzerella. They offered me a sample and it was amazing. Slightly salted and still warm from cooking. Amazing!

                            1. re: momof3

                              I'm not 100% sold on Morton Williams yet, I think they have some bumps to iron out if they want to be as good as Turco's was. For me, Stew's is history, they are a gimmick.

                              However, I give Morton and Williams A+ for parking, which is something the Stop and Shop in Mt. Kisco can never hope to achieve if it turns into a Fairway. That corner is a nightmare now, I can't imagine what will happen if it turns into a Fairway.

                              Too bad Fairway isn't looking into something on Central Ave., where expansive free parking still reigns wonderfully and happily.

                              1. re: dolores

                                This is sort of beating a dead horse, but here's my 2 cents worth on Whole Foods. It happens to be, geographically, the closest market to me, tho S & S isn't much farther, of course. If all I need is a loaf of bread, tho I like WF's breads a lot, there's no way I'll deal with their parking lot. I have also noted that if I go before 10 am on weekdays, parking there is absolutely no problem at all, but I realize not everybody has that flexibility. Sometimes I have worried that I wouldn't be spending enough to qualify for free parking, but somehow that's never been a problem.

                                1. re: Westjanie

                                  I kind of think that if you can afford to shop at Whole Foods, you can afford the $3 to park there.

                                  More to the point, isn't it the only place to buy natural/organic meats around here? Granted some smaller stores have chickens and maybe some steaks, but I can't think of any other place that you can buy a fresh (not frozen) organic prime rib roast or whole fresh organic ham. Am I mistaken?

                                  1. re: OrganicLife

                                    Balducci's has fresh organic prime rib roast, full range of d'artangnan products. You can also find at some Food Emporium's, although you may have to order it. Our FE butcher was moved to Briarcliff Manor when they closed our branch - he is great!

                                  2. re: Westjanie

                                    They stamp the parking ticket, so you get 1 hour of parking free. Don't love the lot, but it's not the expense.

                                    1. re: debmom

                                      I discovered today that Fortunoffs will validate parking without a purchase. Just walk in and ask the guy at the entrance (level 2) about parking and he will do it for you. And you get 2 hours from them (vs 1 from Whole Foods, and if you go over 1 hours, you have to pay the full $3). I went in to get the free parking and sadly ended up spending $45 :-(.

                                    2. re: Westjanie

                                      Whole Foods dropped its minimum to qualify for free parking a long time ago. Just make sure you go at a time of day when you can get out within the hour.

                                      1. re: Elisa515

                                        Right, Whole Foods will validate without any minimum but it's only for an hour. And Fortunoffs used to require a $100 purchase from what I understood but now will valid without any purchase (and you get 2 hours). I can't imagine Fortunoffs is doing well. Who ever thought of building a major store whose only entrances are from the parking garage? It's worse than a normal mall!!

                                        Cheesecake Factory is still arrogant enough to get away without validting parking. Does anyone know if Morton's does? Actually, I think they have valet so I guess they must.

                                        1. re: MisterBill2

                                          The reason they charge is that, if they didn't, people would park there and then walk to The Westchester. That's why the parking lot near Borders charges.

                                          The other night I shopped at WF and then had dinner at the Cheesecake Factory. Got out around 11:30 and there was no attendant at the lot anymore, just open lanes to leave. Seems a bit extreme just to get free parking.

                                          It's not like there's free parking for either WF location in Manhattan!

                                          1. re: MisterBill2

                                            Morton's does not validate parking.

                                            1. re: jeanki

                                              So what do they do? Charge for valet?

                                                1. re: jeanki

                                                  So presumably I could get two hours validated from Fortunoff and then go eat at Morton's?

                                                  And 'that' is why I have nothing to do with White Plains.

                                                  1. re: dolores

                                                    I assume so. But of course the placement of Fortunoffs vs Mortons makes going from one to the other such a PITA.

                                                    BTW I think Morton's has a special $99 for 2 promotion. Apparently a pretty good deal. Check their website. I still don't see how they charge for parking. I can understand Cheesecake Factory, their whole operation assumes that they are doing you a favor letting you eat there. But Mortons?

                                                    1. re: dolores

                                                      Bad news. We went to Fortunoffs today and tried to get my parking ticket validated as I entered the store as I had done last time. The guard refused to, saying I needed to make a purchase, and said that management had been upset about validation without a purchase. So we went and bought a $1.50 glass that was on clearance. There were other places where I could have tried for validation (like in the furniture department) but I did not try there. Also, when we did get the validation, the guard didn't even look at the receipt, so in theory we could have brought an old receipt and bag with us.

                                                      So I guess my claim of no purchase required is YMMV. Oh, and Fortunoffs wasn't very busy, as usual.

                                        2. re: dolores

                                          No -- NOT Central Avenue. I hate that area, awful traffic (I live in Yorktown). There was some other gourmet market that was in there for a while (where The Wiz used to be) and failed miserably. Can't remember the name.

                                          The CompUSA location will be empty shortly (if it isn't already). Sadly I don't think it has enough parking for a supermarket type store. And it has the distinct disadvantage of being a stand-alone spot.

                                          1. re: MisterBill2

                                            Oh. And here I thought I saw the perfect tract of land yesterday, MisterBill2! Across from the Tanzanillo Greenhouses is a very large empty lot(s). Bigger than the Mount Kisco corner, for sure.

                                            Everytime I come back from shopping on Central Ave. and go through Mamaroneck Ave. (I'm surprised they haven't renamed that area White Plains Ave.), I smile at not having paid to park to shop.

                                            Different strokes, is all. At any rate, I look forward to Fairway in Westchester.

                              2. PS you will notice he did not say "near future". Nevertheless, I will email them as well and express my interest.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: MisterBill2

                                  I did notice the lack of "near" in the response thus I'm hoping Chowhound support will help. Thanks for helping MisterBill!

                                2. "currently looking at locations in Westchester" doesn't look to me like "we're planning to open a store in Westchester."

                                  20 Replies
                                  1. re: Elisa515

                                    Well you're sort of right Elisa. Looking at locations doesn't mean they've committed to opening here but you don't look at locations unless you're considering it. So while it may not be a definite, it's an item on the table and knowing that there is consumer support and interest here would certainly be a factor for them.

                                    I'm sure they were "looking at locations" in Brooklyn and New Jersey before they decided to open in Red Hook and Paramus. Same for Plainview. They're obviously in expansion mode.

                                    1. re: laylag

                                      I know everyone likes to bash WF prices, but I don't get it. If I compare apples to apples (so to speak), that is, the exact same brand of a particular product, they are cheaper than D'Ag in Rye Brook (ok, a pretty pricey supermarket) or A&P in Port Chester. I know. I've looked. Not only are things like Horizon organic milk and Newman organic cookies cheaper (which maybe you'd expect because WF is a good place to go for organics), but so are Cheerios and other mass market items. Where are you all shopping that you know (because you've checked, rather than just assuming) prices are lower than WF on the same items?

                                      Now, are the organic, no trans fat, no high fructose corn syrup versions of products cheaper than the mass market equivalents? Yes. But (a) I'm willing to pay for them and (b) they're more expensive at regular supermarkets, too.

                                      I find most WF store brand products to be good and extremely well priced, the service is generally good, I can get produce and groceries and perfectly decent cheese and deli and chicken, a broad selection of items without preservatives, artifical crap, high fructose blah blah, good bread, pretty good prepared foods all in one stop. Yes, the parking in Greenwich is frequently appalling and I hate that if I go over an hour in WP because it took a long time or I stopped for a cup of coffee I'm going to have to pay for parking (I'm about half way between the 2 stores and go to both), but on the whole, I'm very happy shopping there.

                                      No, I don't work for them, I just wanted to put in a good word for a store I really like.

                                      However, Fairway would be delightful

                                      1. re: marcia2

                                        Just stop into Fortunoffs for a minute and they'll validate your parking ticket for a full two hours if you go over the free hour from WF. The guard at the door can do it for you.

                                        1. re: MisterBill2

                                          MisterBill, don't you have to buy something at Fortunoffs?

                                          1. re: dolores

                                            No! You used to (and $100, I think), but I think the lack of business has changed that. The guard at the level 2 entrance has a machine that punches two little holes in the parking ticket and that is enough to get 2 hours of free parking. You could walk in, get validated, spend a couple of minutes browsing, and leave. Or get validated on the way out.

                                            1. re: MisterBill2

                                              Thank you MisterBill2, for this info.

                                      2. re: laylag

                                        back to the original quandry about when/where they might open in WC, the best way to get an advance scoop, rather than relying on the company, is to keep an eye on news from the area's planning/zoining boards. Any project as large as a food store, even if it went into an existing space, would require months of review by municipal officials as well as a lengthy building/renovation period. a lot of times companies are reluctant to talk about projects in development b/c they can fall thru, however, local building officials don't suffer from the same hesitation. as long as a plan has been filed, it's fair game for discussion.

                                        1. re: blaze

                                          If we had a decent newspaper in Westchester, they'd do they and report on it.

                                          Uh oh, Liz will be mad at me for that.

                                          1. re: blaze

                                            It's just this simple:
                                            Fairway will kill Stew's. And make WF look like Pathmark.
                                            Fairway should get its own exit off the Thruway.
                                            In fact, Fairway should be its own incorporated village!

                                            1. re: dw438

                                              Maybe if all of us stopped trekking to 125th Street and other Fairways - they would consider Westchester a destination - No, I'm not serious - I would go through withdrawal -

                                              1. re: dw438

                                                Sounds like a good idea, dw438. As long as their parking is free.

                                                I still see a large parcel of land on Central Ave. -- why isn't anyone considering competition for Stew's and WF there?

                                                1. re: dw438

                                                  I'm visualizing this dw. If we could find a way to kill Stew's first, we could have the biggest, grandest greatest most wonderful Fairway of them all right in Yonkers. Picture it dw:
                                                  1 Fairway Drive, exit 6A off the Thruway, just up the hill past Home Depot. I'm imagining what Fairway could do with that space - the olives, the cheeses, the smoked salmon, the coffees, produce...

                                                  Then add a few more really good ethnic restaurants and Westchester would truly be my nirvana.

                                                  1. re: laylag

                                                    I miss fairway as I used to live down the street from the west side store (small but still fabu) and from Zabar's - but don;t get me started.... if they arrive this way I would be thrilled and I'll go write a letter today! I can't imagine they'd open near Stew's. I also don't think there is any competition between Fariway and Whole Foods - totally different IMHO. They are for different markets/shoppers and Stew's is an instituion in it's own right. if they are smart - they'll open some place there where there is no competition - like the larchmont/new rochelle/mamroneck area or maybe port chester - that would be AWESOME! They'd also get the CT contigent there.....

                                                    1. re: KarenNYC

                                                      Actually Karen I don't want Fairway next to Stew's I want Fairway instead of Stew. I'm not a fan. That said, I'm with you - Port Chester, Mamaroneck, New Rochelle - all would be fabulous. I live down this way so sounds perfect to me.

                                                      1. re: KarenNYC

                                                        Put them in New Rochelle and they'd also lose most people north of White Plains. Why does everyone ignore those of us in the northern part of the county? No Trader Joes or anything other than Turcos.

                                                        1. re: MisterBill2

                                                          good point - I am sure Mt. Kisco would be a good location as well. personally, I grew up with Stew's and LOVE it but for specific things.

                                                          1. re: KarenNYC

                                                            True, but that Stop and Shop location originally talked about would be a horror.

                                                            MisterBill2, doesn't Route 6 have available land?

                                                            1. re: dolores

                                                              There's plenty of land on Route 6 in Mahopac but I don't see something like Fairway opening up here. I just don't want it all the way south in New Rochelle.

                                                              Mt Kisco still has a big piece of land where the old Grand Union warehouse was on 117 .Did anything ever go in there?

                                                          2. re: MisterBill2

                                                            Nothing personal mrbill. Just more densely populated down this way and accessible to western fairfield county too.
                                                            And, I hear Turco's is wonderful.

                                                            1. re: MisterBill2

                                                              It has to do with population density--Trader Joe's 3 stores are smack dab in the most populous part of the county. There are images on data book--that show where the highest concentration of people and higher income Westchester residents are--and it's right where Trader Joe's plopped there stores. I'd be surprised if Fairway deviated from that model.