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Apr 7, 2009 03:11 PM

Sweetgrass Market (CGY) Saved?

Sweetgrass Market (in the west end at 85th Street and 9th Ave SW) has struggled through difficult times since it opened last June, and it was just about ready to close its doors. But along came Bob Whitworth of *Simple Simon Pies* who took over Sweetgrass a few days ago. If anyone can save this Market (all 10,000 sqft of it), Bob's the guy. His plans are to fill the place up with new food vendors in the next 2 months, including (naturally) Simple Simon Pies and Meals, soups, breads, produce, meats, cheeses, Indian food, Greek food, a food court and much more. He also plans to redecorate so it looks more like a Market than the sterile look and feel it has now. From what I know of Bob, I expect he'll do a fine job of it, and the West End will see a vibrant small market reappear within a couple of months.

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  1. Wow I wondered about Sweetgrass right from the start...I mean I love the concept but its an awful long way from the core (and had the warmth of your average 8x10cell) and I was worried they were sunk once Springbank Cheese left.

    I'll be excited to see the new and improved version. Thanks for the update Bagel Guy :)

    2 Replies
    1. re: maplesugar

      That is GREAT news. I was there last weekend and it was a sad and depressing vibe in there. Lots of empty space and next to no customers. Looking forward to the upcoming changes.

      1. re: DeeDub

        Agreed. You felt kind of awkward walking by the empty vendors.
        I heard that they charged too much to the vendors from the beginning. To me, you need to get the vendors, make the place a destination, and then you can look at higher rents. Too short sighted.
        But that is great news. I think there is potential for the area, given how busy every other spot is in that complex is.

    2. Sweetgrass/Westside Farmers Market is no more... stopped by this morning and all of the stalls were being torn down. Spoke with the lady who had the cookie stall and she confirmed that the market is officially closed. It had the doomed vibe from the start so I cannot say I am surprised.

      It is a pretty big space so I am not too sure what can take its place. I vote for Wild Rose Brewery... not sure if they have to vacate Currie Barracks like the CFM... but it would be great to have a microbrewery in the 'hood... wishful thinking... I know.

      6 Replies
      1. re: DeeDub

        I'm sorry to hear that, I really liked those cookies. Do you know if she'll be moving somewhere else?

        1. re: Jasz

          Yes, as a matter of fact, she did say she is opening a store in Inglewood across from the Cantina. Not entirely sure when but i will certainly keep my eye out for it. Her ginger snaps are awesome.

        2. re: DeeDub

          Well I must say I am not at all surprised, but still it is sad too see that it couldn't be resurrected, or ever launched successfully.

          IMHO both attempts were missing the essential market ingredient: FARMERS > therefore fresh produce. Just a thought, but seemingly overlooked by both operators!

          1. re: CookieGal

            I was concerned (but hopeful) about this place from the start since there wasn't a produce vendor (let alone a farm)... then when Springbank Cheese pulled out and Rouge never happened... I figured writing was on the wall. If it had opened during the peak of the boom then it may have been able to attract more vendors and therefore more customers... too bad really.

          2. re: DeeDub

            TOTALLY AGREE on the Wildrose front! that would be great! Not sure what Fergus & Bix would have on tap though if that happened.

          3. Since the old Sweetgrass Market is in my 'hood, I was walking the dogs by the old location and noticed there was a new sign in the window. Although I cannot remember what the sign said it had that unmistakable "Mercato" font/design. If the old Sweetgrass Market location has any affiliation with a new Mercato venture I would be absolutely stoked. Certainly a welcome addition to the west side.

            Does anyone have any intel on what is happening at this location?

            2 Replies
            1. re: DeeDub

              I was under the impression that Wurst was going to take that location and open their second restaraunt/pub there. Of course, that may have fallen by the wayside as they haven't managed to get their first location (4th street; the old WIldwood building) open.

              1. re: tex_in_yyc

                I drove by the old Sweetgrass location this morning and caught the name of the place. The sign says "Culinaria"... or something close to that.