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May 6, 2009 02:17 PM

Fairway coming to Queens?

I was excited to read in the NY Times this morning that Fairway is planning a new store in Queens. Does anyone know where in Queens this will be?

Here's the quote & the article link:

"Fairway just hired 350 people for its month-old store in Paramus, N.J., the first Fairway outside of New York State. The company plans to add 1,200 more workers over the next two years by opening stores in Queens; Pelham Manor, N.Y.; and Stamford, Conn. "

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  1. Heard that it will take over the site that Walbaums currently occupies on 61st Ave in Douglaston Plaza Shopping Center!

    1. I've known about this for a while now, but didn't feel free to post it here. It will be, as Glendale Gal says, in the Douglaston shopping center. After Waldbaum's vacates the site, they expect it will take about a year to renovate.

      We will finally have a decent supermarket in Queens. Thanks for hearing our pleas, Fairway! Take that, Waldbaum's!

      10 Replies
      1. re: Missyme

        oh, my, this is big news indeed!
        I live right near waldbaums and have been going there since I was a kid.
        I am a bit terrified to hear that the renovations will take a year as other supermarkets in the area aren't very conveniently located.
        Do you know when this will happen?
        I have never heard of fairway, is it like trader joes?

        1. re: NYLSer

          they're not like Trader Joes in that they don't do the rebranding thing. I've only been to the one in Red Hook and they are the most comprehensive and complete grocery store I've ever been to with the highest quality and variety of products and produce.

          1. re: Widmark

            I'm sorry, I'm a regular at Fairway in Red Hook and I have to disagree with your assessment of the produce. You have to look carefully at all of it I've seen some pretty ratting looking stuff before.Overly soft onions and potatoes, parsley and herbs can be on the edge. And look at the fish carefully to, the fish mongers there are more often than not, not knowledgeable, though they are happy to to scale and fillet for you if you ask.

            Don't get me wrong, I think Fairway is great by New York City standards but compared to the big supermarkets in California they are not.

            And in spite of what Steve Jenkins says they are not the lowest price absolutely everything

            [edit] Oh yea, and rebranding. There is lots of stuff with the Fairway brand on it. Spices, pasta sauces and olive oil come to mind

            1. re: Jack_

              Yes, but those are their own brands -- items they've made themselves (like the sauce) or sourced themselves (like the oils, vinegars). It's not what Trader Joe's does which is to take a national brand and slap their own label on the same thing.

              As for the contents of Fairway, I only shop at the original location (W74th St) so I don't know about Red Hook. The produce is very good. The cheese workers are very knowledgeable. They have very competitive prices on items that others might call "gourmet". I don't eat meat or fish so I can't comment on those sections, though DH does like a lot of their prepared foods.

              1. re: Jack_

                there's questionable stuff there but often also good stuff, which is more then I can say about most other supermarkets in NYC. I can't say I can compare it to California supermarkets, as the commute there for buying veggies is really killer.

                1. re: Jack_

                  While I think the produce at some Fairways can leave something to be desired, comparing it to California produce is just not fair. Lots of the produce sold in California markets is grown in California. Since lots of the produce you see on the shelves in NYC also comes from California, you have to factor in the effect of a cross-country journey on the quality of the produce. You simply don't get intrastate produce in NYC unless you shop at a Greenmarket.

                  1. re: Greg

                    Yes, you are right. Comparing Fairway produce to California is unfair. How about if I compare it to Meijer where I shop when I go to Columbus OH

                    Still I think that Fairway is about the best market we have around here.

              2. re: NYLSer

                Fairway is by far my favorite supermarket. They excel in cheese, meats, coffee, among other things.

                I see them as having the standards of whole foods but without the jacked up pricing that goes with restrictive processing of organics - though they do have many organic items.

                1. re: NYLSer

                  According to the local weekly paper, the Little Neck Ledger, Fairway is slated to open in Douglaston in January. They applied for a variance to add 10,000 square feet to the Waldbaums and also to add an elevator. I assume the elevator is so that you'll be able to park on the upper level, which is a very good thing, as that parking lot is awful.

                  Really looking forward to it!

                2. re: Missyme

                  should be funny, the customers in waldbaums wont pay more than a dollar for food, wait til they see the prices in fairway. the other day I went to the one in plainview, over 20 dollars for a half a pound on nova, should be funny to see this.

                3. Don't mean to be a spoilsport, but this thread is about Fairway coming to Queens, not about how fresh their produce is. For sparkling fresh produce, I turn to my CSA or local farmer's markets, or even to H-Mart and other Asian stores.

                  The point is that we in northeast Queens are finally getting a choice about where we can shop--we're no longer stuck with Waldbaum's. You want to talk about disgusting produce, dirty stores, poor selection, outrageous prices and abominable customer service and attitude, just visit the Waldbaum's in the Bay Terrace shopping center. With the opening of the new Fairway, I, and many of my friends and neighbors from this neighborhood, no longer have to drive 30 minutes to Plainview to do my regular shopping.

                  Like Jack says above, Fairway is great by NYC standards. He says it doesn't compare to the big California supermarkets. I'm not familiar with them, but I do know Wegmans, and I realize there will probably never be anything like that here in the city. Fairway is probably the best we can ever expect, and that's fine by me. You see, it's all about choice. Waldbaum's believes (and to a certain extent it's true) that they're the only game in town, and they act accordingly. The new Fairway will give us the choice of voting with our checkbooks, and spending our hard-earned money in a local store that provides us with bigger selections, a better variety of merchandise, good customer service, and just maybe, better prices. I know where I'll spend my money.

                  4 Replies
                  1. re: Missyme

                    maybe Ralph's will come out here LOL

                    1. re: Missyme

                      It is simply crazy to buy produce at the douglaston waldbaums, the prices are nothing short of insane. Thankfully, new york mart opened in the deepdale plaza and their produce is literally like 25% of the waldbaum's price...
                      I am really looking forward to the change, but if it takes a year to renovate, that will be a nightmare for me, I live on 65th ave right near waldbaums.

                      1. re: Missyme

                        I agree with missy about Fairway coming to Queens is great news indeed. I used to live in Seaford and the closest local supermarkets were an A&P (poorer) and Waldbaums (better) until A&P bought Waldbaums, closed the A&P and began to instill the big corp approach to the formerly family-run chain. Fortunately Fairway opened in Plainview and between it and Trader Joes, we literally had food heaven. After moving to Forest Hills, it was food desert except for the Chinese markets in Elmhurst and Flushing and the Forest Hills TJ's that opened a year or so ago and is great. Now the problem for Fairway is to maintain their workers' quality as they expand into more stores. the fish and meat guys at Plainview are very good, but when I went to Red Hook I could feel the difference. Perhaps in time, they will develop their quality as the workers gain experience. I will be looking forward to Fairway with great anticipation.

                        1. re: Missyme

                          "With the opening of the new Fairway, I, and many of my friends and neighbors from this neighborhood, no longer have to drive 30 minutes to Plainview to do my regular shopping."

                          My sentiments EXACTLY!

                        2. I totally agree. Its about having the choice not to shop in disgusting supermarkets.....
                          that and amazing nova lox and fresh roasted coffee!
                          I can't wait.

                          1. I went out to Plainview Fairway today and asked about the rumors of another store in Queens. They told me yes, but probably not for another 2 years. It has to do with renovations and dealing with local issues.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: cshell

                              I think Fairway coming to Douglaston is great news indeed. I live in California so I can compare it to California markets, and there's nothing out here that compares. I haven't been to Red Hook, but I've been to the Fairways in Plainview and on the UWS and I'm like a kid in a candy store. NY markets are, for the most part, sad - so my hope for Queens residents (I'm a former one) is that they put construction on a fast track.

                              1. re: lad1818

                                Yea, it's hard to beat the meet market at the Marina Safeway