Oceanview Asian Market on Alemany
Has anybody else visited the new, spacious Oceanview Market on Alemany where Cala used to be?
The place is huge and spotless and carries a diverse array of Asian dry goods, housewares, a bakery and a full liquor section and produce that seems much fresher than that at MOM, as well as decent butcher/live fish counters. I was there too early in the day to judge the prepared foods, but they do have a steam table, the usual roast ducks and chickens and a milk tea counter.
I don't know how their prices compare to the best Asian groceries in the Avenues, but this place isn't much further out than MOM and it's much easier to park and navigate. In my quick perusal, I think MOM may have a better selection of fresh soy products and such. However, this store carries some organics, including the soba/noodle line I've been getting at Nijiya, as well as a wide selection of the Wei-chuan products discussed in the linked thread below (many of which are on sale right now). The freezer section is positively vast and a bit difficult to figure out.
I can't find it via google or an archive search, but it's in the shopping center containing a Bally Fitness (3900 block), the cross streets are Kempton Ave & Palmetto Ave.
It is actually where Albertson's used to be. The place is huge. The prepared food looked a little questionable, but it was late in the day. There is no other place around there like that and from the crowds that I saw, I think the store will do very well. They do sell non Asian items as well but not too many.
I went during their grand opening weekend and was impressed by the large store and wide aisles! I don't know why but the former Albertson's there always seemed small and somewhat cramped.
The milk tea counter - bypass it: very weak tea and very watery with non-bouncy/toothsome tapioca.
The grocery prices seem reasonable with some items being priced similar to Sunset Super. I'm not a fan of the crazy prices for the hot deli items at Pacific Super down the street on Alemany (~$14/lb for fried smelt/little fish - crazy!).
My two tries from the steam table/prepared food area don't bode well. These were both early morning so my choices were slim, but went for it in the spirit of experimentation. On the first try, the thin-cut fried pork chops tasted mostly of rice wine and were exceptionally fatty -- I love pork and don't fear pork fat as much as I should but these were nuts. A mung bean noodle dish was one-dimensional, although not greasy.
On my second try I wanted soup and the choices were hot and sour or corn and egg. I went with the hot and sour, and found the sauce strangely thick, beyond corn starch and into agar agar territory. However, despite this thick consistency, the soup was light on the chewy bits.
I don't think there will be a third try at the prepared foods, but I'll continue to go here for ingredients. It's one of the few places I've found smaller bags of rice, including sticky, basmati, jasmine, broken, red and my favorite Thai brown rice. This is helpful since I have a hard time getting through those vast bags and like to have an assortment on hand. They also have a rice with dried yam and oats that I'm wanting to try -- will check on home cooking for guidance.
I've also yet to crack the code on the three different aisles of sauces and the organization of the freezer section, but all in all, this is a well stocked Asian supermarket.