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Produce Junction - locations

Having read of them here and elsewhere, I went to go find Web site for them, something that might at least have locations and hours. Argh, no such luck.

So, can any chowhounder help me out? I'm in Center City presently but looking towards South Philadelphia in the near future.

Thanks!

PS - Do the carry bulk grains, too?

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  1. (215) 572-8829

    265 S Easton Rd
    Glenside, PA 19038

    Contact Information
    900 SUSSEX BLVD
    BROOMALL, PA 19008

    Phone: (610) 604-4664

    there are others...try google or citysearch

    fruit, veg, flowers (cut/potted), misc garden chachki, cheap xmas etc seasonal decor. no grains.

    1. In NJ, where PJ started, there are several locations. Closest to the city would be Lawnside/Magnolia on Route 30, Maple Shade, just off of Route 73 (East Gate Shopping Center), Marlton, Route 70E just after the Marlton Circle.
      Do yourself a favor and go early in the morning if going on the weekend. I've been to at least 8 locations for PJ in NJ and PA, and everyone has a scary parking lot. It gets very crowded on the weekend, and getting in and out of the parking lot can be unnerving. Great prices of flowers and plants this time of year. No grains are sold, but they do have different types of nuts for sale.
      Usually they open around 8:30 and close at 5:30, open on Sunday as well. The OP is correct, just google and you will come up with exact addresses and contact info for all local PJ.

      1. The problem I have is that I own no car, so Center City (where I live) or South Philadelphia (where I expect to be moving to) really make the most sense, for now anyway. Of course, if I move close to the Italian Market, none of this will really matter:

        1 Reply
        1. re: NYChristopher

          There's one on Bryn Mawr ave that's near a train station and bus (dunno what line). AFAIK all the others are in the suburbs.

        2. There is on in Darby, Pa., in the area of Chester Pk. and Mac Dade Blvd. Public trans is in the area. Also, one in Glenolden, a block off of Chester Pk. Both are not too far from Philly. A Septa train does run nearby, several blocks away and buses run along Chester Pk. However, I do not know rte. numbers.

          1. If you live in Center City, the Italian Market would be your better bet, since you have no car. Honestly, I don't find the produce at PJ that good, much of it severely under-ripe and you can't touch or smell it. I go there (Glenside) for flowers and that is all. In this area, would much rather go to the Oriental grocer on Mt. Carmel than PJ.

            5 Replies
            1. re: gardens4me

              There's also one in Hatboro, with a big parking lot, off York Road north of Byebery.(Near the Hatboro train station) I like the red peppers, which are really good, not unripe or overripe. We also buy potatoes and sometimes asparagus. My husband buys bunches of basil which I then make into pesto. We live in Center City now (used to be in Huntingdon valley) so my husband only gets there about once a month.

              1. re: Beulah

                I always buy the red peppers there, and make up some fresh roasted peppers. You can't beat the price!
                I do avoid seasonal items from there in the summer. For example, tomatoes, cucumbers, and anything I can buy from a farm stand I won't buy there in the summer. You simply can't beat the taste of a locally grown and fresh picked tomato. But in the winter, I opt for the cherry tomatoes from PJ and have even found some of those expensive tomatoes on the vine at PJ. For less than half the price they they are at Wegmans.

              2. re: gardens4me

                i go to the one on bryn mawr ave frequently and i think that the produce is superior to that found at the italian market. i've never really had any issues with quality at that particular PJ. that said, i think if you are looking to pick up one red pepper with which to cook, then the italian market better suits your needs. but if you are trying to make roasted red bell pepper soup and you need like 2 lbs of peppers, then PJ is worth the train/bus/cab/etc ride (at least once to see if you think you can use the amount of bulk produce PJ offers)

                1. re: gardens4me

                  When I was shopping the Italian market years ago, you weren't allowed to select the pieces you wanted and you certainly couldn't smell them. You'd risk getting yelled at by the vendor. Most of the places adhered to this practice.

                  1. re: iamzorba

                    That practice has changed at most of the vendors - lots of times they hand you a bag to select your own.

                2. Wow, it really does sound like not only won't I find one in Center City or South Philadelphia, I guess it isn't worth the effort. Don't misunderstand me, I LOOOOOOVE the Italian Market, I think it's the bomb, but like all good Chowhounders, I like to seek things out for the sake of seeking them out and making my own judgment. That said, proximity is an issue for me, and I guess if I have to hop on SEPTA to get to a place that, at best, might be as good as some of the places in the market, maybe I should simply tuck it away in the back of my head for when I am farther up north (it happens a fair amount) or if I get lucky and happen upon one. Thanks for helping this (relative) newbie.

                  Christopher
                  - visiting Philadelphia for 20-odd years
                  - living in Philadelphia for less than six months

                  18 Replies
                  1. re: NYChristopher

                    you should hit up iovine's at the reading terminal then. good produce variety, much better quality than most of the stalls on 9th street. and you can get bulk grains in rtm too.

                    yeah, produce junctions aren't too close to downtown, and to be honest, while they are good, they are not worth the special trip. if i were you i would investigate all of the asian supermarkets i could too. a lot have an excellent mix of produce at very cheap prices....

                    1. re: mazza3

                      Really? Who has them? I went to Bella Vista Natural Market in the Italian Market (small, but fairly priced) and Essene (on S. 4th in Queen Village ... larger, but prices, whoo-hoo!). If I could find the grains at RTM I'd give it a spin.

                      PS - BIG Iovine fan, I agree. How long can they keep selling asparagus for a buck a bunch I wonder.

                      1. re: NYChristopher

                        Sadly, the bulk grains place is no more in the RTM. You can get limited options at 12th st Cantina (mostly beans) and lentils at the middle eastern place with the dessert dsiplay and smoothies, but no more rice, quinoa, barley, etc. The Spice Corner in the Italian Market also has some bulk grains (just to add to your list!)

                      2. re: NYChristopher

                        The city's farmer's markets are starting to open for the season, see if there's one near you:

                        http://www.farmtocity.org/FarmersMark...

                        Most of the produce at the Italian Market is the same crap you get at the grocery store. I agree with mazza3, Iovine's is very good. Reading Terminal is very accessible by SEPTA, just get off at City Hall and walk 3 blocks.

                        1. re: Buckethead

                          I agree the Ital Market produce is no different from the supermarket in most cases - but it usually IS cheaper esp for things like limes and lemons, red peppers, and mangos.
                          The gem of the markets produce (IMHO) is Anastasi's (sp?) on Christian Street just west of 9th, next to Superior Pasta. They are mainly restaurant supply, and only have produce out on display on Saturday, but they will get you anything they have any day they are open - so if you are looking for baby arugula or baby artichokes, blood oranges, etc. they are the place to go (or if you need a case of endive...)
                          That said, I get most of my produce at the RTM (Fair Foods, Livingoods, Iovines) or the farmers markets in season (headhouse, Passyunk and south)

                          1. re: Bigley9

                            There's also one place in the Italian Market on the east side of 9th, close to Christian, in between Anthony's Coffee House and Anthony's Chocolate House, who in my experience has better produce than most of the other vendors on the market.

                              1. re: Buckethead

                                Is that the Mexican one? I got some really good looking mushrooms there the other day

                                1. re: coolgeek

                                  no, the one I'm thinking of is operated by Asians and actually has a store front, so it has produce on the street side but also on the store front side of the sidewalk.

                          2. re: NYChristopher

                            I'm fairly close with the owner of PJ and I've asked him the question of why he hasn't opened any locations in Philly. His response was that their is too much red tape/bureaucracy to open up downtown. Plus, his locations are doing extremely well outside the city in including a new location in Allentown and future locations planned down the shore. He's going to stick w the suburbs and Delaware Valley.

                            1. re: juice

                              Thanks for the tip. BTW, next time you talk with the owner, you might suggest they throw up a basic Web site with locations and hours. From what I have read, I am not the only one who had a hard time getting this information.

                              1. re: NYChristopher

                                Great suggestion. I'll pass it on.

                            2. re: NYChristopher

                              If you want to take a ride, you could jump on the Patco line to Collingswood. They have a farmers market every Saturday and there are many local NJ farmers who sell there. Everything is fresh picked, and the farmers market is located right at the train stop. There's also a farmers market in Haddonfield, though I haven't been there. It would be about a 15 minute train ride.
                              http://www.collingswoodmarket.com/

                              1. re: mschow

                                Sweet, I could give it a try. I am right off PATCO now, thanks! (Especially as - and I'm ducking already - I was terribly underwhelmed and disappointed with the Headhouse Market.

                                1. re: NYChristopher

                                  It's still early in the season, there isn't as much variety available now as there will be in a month. It's a farmer's market, not a grocery store.

                                  1. re: Buckethead

                                    Totally understood. I'll return, I'm sure. I guess I was so used to my experience at Union Square in Manhattan and Grand Army Plaza in Brooklyn that I had bigger expectations for Headhouse (not the others, mind you, but I had heard Headhouse was the largest.

                                    1. re: Buckethead

                                      Yes, when Headhouse is in full swing it is pretty bangin'. I don't think Collingswood will be any better,

                              2. I know there is one in Exton, one in Phoenixville and one in Elkins Park

                                1. What about going to Reading Terminal Market? I find the prices and quality at Iovine's is really good. The prices at OK Lee are low, but the quality is spotty. Sometimes it's great, and sometimes it's awful.

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: bananafishes

                                    I love OK Lee's 99 cent bags, but you do have to give them a quick check

                                  2. there is a really nice produce junction in doylestown pa, you can take the 55 from Olney to the front door of the place....very good produce and prices..i go there every day on my way to work.....

                                    1. Oh, I just happen to have created a public map of all the Produce Junction locations... Good luck

                                      http://maps.google.com/maps/ms?ie=UTF...
                                      212871755491649205265.0004d26d3c22bcea9bbbf