Fresh and Easy North Phx Opening Soon
Drove by the Greenway and 32nd location today, and noticed their banner displaying Mar 5th as their opening day. I have been watching the construction closely (it is on my commute), and they have been progressing rapidly.
I personally wasn't that impressed with the store I checked out in Tempe. I just didn't find anything special about it. On the other hand, I do look forward to having another source for fresh groceries in the neighborhood, so maybe I will learn to love it.
Just wanted to let my fellow Chowhounds know about another new food source available soon.
I wasn't impressed the first time I went in one...but I've been shopping weekly for the last four weeks or so. I've definitely learned to appreciate the stores for what they are.
I find the stores easy and convenient to use which is a big plus to me. The quality of the produce has all been very good. I've picked up ground beef and chicken and been pleased with the quality of both. I haven't yet convinced myself to try the fish as I can't smell it but it does look fresh on the cooler shelves.
I've been buying yogurt, milk, butter and cheese regularly. The prices are very competitive. We've tried various fresh and easy brand products and been very pleased: flour, sugar,eggs, fig cookies(these rock!), coffee, nuts, mustard, pickles, etc. I've been picking up flowers too and have been pleased with the quality of those as well.
Being a two person household I appreciate I can buy small amounts of things. Last week I made coq au vin and loved I could buy a demi baguette instead of a full size one without spending a fortune.
The only things that haven't really impressed me were prepared items BUT I don't care for prepared food to begin with. We've only tried a couple things: soups, california rolls, frozen chicken teriyaki. The soups were the best of these and the only thing I'd probably buy again.
And there are those weekly $5 coupons. Appreciate that the Kyrene/Ray location opened just as I ran out of coupons for the Alma School/Elliot location!
We dropped by the one on Ray in Chandler. I think I would drop by to pick up things if it were a mile from my house, but nothing that would compel me to drive farther than the Safeway, Trader Joes, or AJ's that I need to pass by to get there. The meats and vegetables looked good, but didn't see much organic. We did get a nice loaf of organic bread. And they didn't have either buttermilk or smoked ham hocks (or shank) that I was looking for.
They've got great deals on items hitting the "sell by" date. After 10 am they mark it down a cetain percentage. After 3 it gets 70% knocked off the price. I was there in the afternoon and grabbed a bunch of center cut potk chops (3 per pack) and racks of lamb for just under $3 per item. Took them home and tossed them in the freezer - they'll be fine when ready to cook them.
I've been going to Fresh & Easy every week for the past month (mostly to utilize the $5 off coupons) and have found that we really love the following there:
1. Olive oil. F&E brand - really good quality
2. Bread & English muffins. Fresh and delicious.
3. Meats. understanding their concept (FRESH), I feel cofident buying their meat products more so that that from Fry's. Wonderful variety of products in stock.
4. Fruits/Veggie - one day went in and employee offered to let me sample the produce before I bought. Yum.
5. Frozen meals. Indian dishes and Shepard's Pie - WOW! Tastes like homemade and serves hubby & I with a satisfying meal.
6. Yogurts, cheeses. Great prices and more interesting variety than standard large groceries.
7. Size of the store - I'm in and out in 15 minutes with a full cart.
8. Coupons & general prices. Great value!
Keep in mind it's an English company, so it wouldn't occur to me to rely upon them for their Mexican items. Saw the pizza dough and we might try that next time!
I have one opening soon less then a mile from my house. I did go into the one off of Alma School in Mesa and thought it was ok in the right context. I am thinking I am going to utilize it instead of my local Cricle K. I am not expecting it to replace my regular weekly shopping at Fry's or my specialty shopping at Sprouts or AJs, but when I need just a few things and either want to walk there or make a quick trip I see it as a much better option then Circle K.
I tried the pizza dough from the Ray Road store earlier today with some of the prepared pesto sauce as the base and it was surprisingly good. I will definitely be purchasing that again.
All in all, not a huge selection, but it's a neat concept. The fish actually looked pretty decent (I am a fish snob) and pretty inexpensive, so I'll probably give that a day in court next time I go.
I'm a fish snob as well. I took a leap of faith last week and picked up some Fresh and Easy salmon to avoid another late in the afternoon stop.
It was fresh and tasty. Farmed "from sustainable resources" and not wild. I generally prefer to buy the wild but for what I was doing with it(piccata) the farmed is a fine choice anyhow. They don't have a great fish selection and I'd still prefer to buy it where I can smell and have a little more control over which pieces I buy but I was definitely pleasantly surprised by what they offered.
don't get the taco sauce or the flan!!!!!
WORSE THAN TEX MEX EVEN!!!!
I would never buy it, but my gf's mom did. The taco sauce tasted pretty much just like tomato sauce with a hint of garlic. The flan was NULL of any carmel flavor, and the texture was more like tapioca.
That being said, I would never buy either of those products in a store, but these were especially bad. Everything else I have had from there was ok though.