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Where can I purchase Plugra butter in the SF area? Trader Joe's has discontinued it.

LauraB706 Jun 7, 2009 12:48 AM

TJ has dropped Plugra. Where else can I purchase it in South Bay?


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  1. j
    jart Jun 7, 2009 02:40 AM

    i am sure that draeger's carries it, although the price will no doubt be higher than trader joe's. i also see that there is a thread on the los angeles chowhound that says that some smart and final stores carry it.

    1. Melanie Wong Jun 7, 2009 12:40 PM

      Laura, this thread has several suggestions.

      1. c
        California Sunshine Jun 7, 2009 01:45 PM

        I found it at Whole Foods, on Stevens Creek in Cupertino. Cost was $3.99 a pound, I believe.

        1. p
          peppatty Jun 7, 2009 05:43 PM

          Bianchini's in San Carlos has it.

          1 Reply
          1. re: peppatty
            wineguy7 Jul 24, 2009 05:52 PM

            While not in the South Bay, I did see Plugra at the Lucky's on Sloat Blvd. in San Francisco today. Perhaps other Lucky's have it as well...

          2. Ruth Lafler Sep 2, 2009 10:51 AM

            I saw the familiar red-and-white wax blocks today at Dubai market in Oakland for $2.49.

            2 Replies
            1. re: Ruth Lafler
              Robert Lauriston Sep 3, 2009 10:52 AM

              Thanks for the tip. I think that's even cheaper than it used to be at TJ's. They changed the name to Oasis; it's at 3045 Telegraph Ave.

              They have it at Berkeley Bowl, but I think it's over $4.

              1. re: Robert Lauriston
                lmnopm Sep 5, 2009 07:28 PM

                Yes, it is $4-something, in the red 1 LB.

            2. a
              arlenemae Sep 2, 2009 11:54 AM

              Milk Pail market in Mountain View has it.

              Milk Pail Market
              2585 California St, Mountain View, CA

              1. anneliesz Sep 2, 2009 01:07 PM

                Another one to try with a large array of European butters is the market on Geary and 17th called Valley Market or Village Market. I was in shock at all of the styles of butter they have. The building is yellow and it's two doors down from Buffalo Burger.

                6 Replies
                1. re: anneliesz
                  thecook99 Jul 7, 2011 04:57 PM

                  Please don't confuse Plugrá with *real* European butters, It's made by a corporation called Dairy Farmers of American, packed in Kansas City, and trucked all around the country by diesel-belching semi-trucks. Stick with something more local, like McClelland's, an organic, Europeam-style butter that's from Sonoma County. There are a number of other locally-made butters that all are every bit as good as Plugrá... all you have to do is look around for them. Eat Local!

                  1. re: thecook99
                    Robert Lauriston Jul 7, 2011 05:05 PM

                    Plugra's lower moisture content has advantages for baking and makes it last longer.

                    1. re: Robert Lauriston
                      ...tm... Jul 8, 2011 12:11 AM

                      The local Strauss European Style butter and McClelland's European Style are 85% butterfat, whereas Plugra is 82%. From what I can tell 85% is the norm in Europe, making those two local butters more "European Style" (and low moisture) than Plugra.

                      1. re: ...tm...
                        Robert Lauriston Jul 8, 2011 09:48 AM

                        I dunno, Straus doesn't keep as long as Plugra, so something's different. I prefer Straus for most uses other than baking.

                        1. re: Robert Lauriston
                          thecook99 Jul 8, 2011 12:52 PM

                          The higher butterfat content of Straus (and McClelland) has something to do with it, but these brands are also organic and, in my experience, organic dairy products tend to have shorter shelf lives than their conventional counterparts. I wouldn't buy a product like Straus or McClelland's if I didn't live within hailing distance of their dairies but nor am I going to buy a dairy product that's shipped halfway across the country and is then left to the vagaries the retailer for cold storage and handling.

                          1. re: thecook99
                            Robert Lauriston Jul 8, 2011 12:58 PM

                            Whether the cows get organic feed can't have any impact on the butter's shelf life.

                2. d
                  DandySF Sep 2, 2009 06:18 PM

                  I most recently purchased it at Whole Foods, SOMA. I used it to lightly coat some freshly shelled and steamed English Peas. I love the salted version.


                  10 Replies
                  1. re: DandySF
                    Paul H Sep 2, 2009 06:23 PM

                    There are two Whole Foods stores in SOMA. Are you talking about Portreo Hill or 4th Street. 4th street used to carry it, but no longer does so.

                    1. re: Paul H
                      DandySF Sep 2, 2009 07:27 PM

                      I purchased my half pound block at the Whole Foods on Fourth Street

                      1. re: Paul H
                        Paul H Jul 6, 2011 03:24 PM

                        The 4th street Whole Foods is again carrying the red-wax-paper-wrapped 1-lb. blocks of Plugra.

                        1. re: Paul H
                          Robert Lauriston Jul 6, 2011 04:08 PM


                          1. re: Robert Lauriston
                            Paul H Jul 11, 2011 06:50 PM


                      2. re: DandySF
                        Ruth Lafler Sep 2, 2009 07:01 PM

                        Just to clarify, the Plugra people are looking -- the one that Trader Joe's carried -- comes in a one-pound brick with a red and white wax wrapper; unsalted only. The Plugra most stores carries comes in a half-pound block, in a gold or silver foil wrapper (one salted, one unsalted), It's significantly more expensive in the half-pound packages.

                        1. re: Ruth Lafler
                          Paul H Sep 2, 2009 08:49 PM

                          Correct. 4th Street Whole Foods used to carry the 1 lb. whole unsalted Plugra brick, but no longer does so.

                          1. re: Ruth Lafler
                            skwid Sep 3, 2009 10:28 AM

                            As to the 1/2# vs. 1# sizes. If I had to bet TJ's had Plugra make the 1 pound packaging specially for them (and noone else may have had access to this package). I know that Sierra Neveda started making the 12 pack boxes specifically for Safeway (but these are carried elsewhere now). So if you are a big enough account you can get special packaging.

                            1. re: skwid
                              JasmineG Sep 3, 2009 10:38 AM

                              Nope, they have the big package at other places, which people have listed in this thread. I've seen it at Berkeley Bowl, and in this thread there have been reports of it at Oasis and Whole Foods.

                              1. re: skwid
                                Ruth Lafler Sep 3, 2009 10:40 AM

                                Other stores sell the red-and-white one-pound blocks, as has been reported in this thread. However, it's a lot less commonly found than the foil-wrapped half pound packages -- I just want to be sure that people who are posting on this thread are aware of the distinction, since the original poster only mentioned that the Plugra was from Trader Joe's (which only carried the red-and-white one-pound blocks), and not the size and packaging.

                                I believe the red-and-white one-pound blocks were originally intended to be primarily for commerical use, but it is still made available for retail sale.

                          2. SFguy Sep 2, 2009 10:19 PM

                            Mollie Stones carries Plugra throughout its Bay Area stores.

                            1. Paul H Sep 5, 2009 05:19 PM

                              Whole Foods 4th Street in San Francisco is once again carrying the 1-lb. unsalted red-wax-paper-wrapped blocks of Plugra for $3.99.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: Paul H
                                cakebaker Sep 6, 2009 12:28 AM

                                Plugra $2.99 lb in one pound red wax wrap Oasis Market, Oakland.

                              2. k
                                kemi5 Jun 14, 2010 07:47 PM

                                The most unlikely place I've seen it the S. Bay area is Smart and Final believe it or not! Sunnyvale store on Mary and Fremont, and Mtn.View store at ECR and Grant.

                                2 Replies
                                1. re: kemi5
                                  foodgeektv Jun 15, 2010 06:23 PM

                                  Yup, in LA, Smart & Final has it for the cheapest I seen it. 2.99

                                  1. re: kemi5
                                    Cynsa Aug 16, 2010 05:57 PM

                                    - not available at the San Francisco Smart & Final between 6th and 7th Avenue ~ Geary Blvd. and Clement Street.

                                  2. m
                                    Mardell Aug 14, 2010 06:39 AM

                                    My friend recently purchased Plugra in a "new" pack size! Save Mart has the Plugra in one pound - quarter sticks that fits her butter dish. Same great butter, however, you don't need to cut it to fit the butter dish! Love it!

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: Mardell
                                      Ruth Lafler Aug 14, 2010 05:18 PM

                                      But how much is it?

                                    2. t
                                      thecook99 Aug 14, 2010 06:09 PM

                                      Just about anywhere that isn't Safeway or Lucky/Abertson's. It's pretty ubiquitous in most of the one-off (Big John's, Bi-Rite) and highend chain (Andronico's, Oliver's, etc.) markets. But why not stay local and try McClellan's or Strauss butter, instead?

                                      1. k
                                        kqig Aug 16, 2010 10:51 AM

                                        Lunardi's carries it. I am not sure where all of there locations are, they are a small Bay Area family owned chain.

                                        3 Replies
                                        1. re: kqig
                                          Ruth Lafler Aug 16, 2010 11:01 AM

                                          I don't know if you read the whole thread, but the Plugra that is the topic of this thread is the one-pound bricks wrapped in red and white waxed paper that were previously carried by Trader Joe's. These were considerably less expensive than the half-pound foil-wrapped packages commonly carried by local supermarkets.

                                          I should note that the Oasis Market in Oakland, which was reported to carry it in posts above, did not have it on my visit yesterday.

                                          Oasis Market
                                          3045 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94609

                                          1. re: kqig
                                            Cynsa Aug 16, 2010 11:02 AM


                                            1. re: Cynsa
                                              gigibriggs Jul 1, 2011 08:12 PM

                                              Berkeley Bowl, both East and West stores, carries the 1 lb red and white wrapped packages.

                                              Berkeley Bowl
                                              2020 Oregon St, Berkeley, CA 94703

                                          2. bbulkow Jul 5, 2011 09:29 PM

                                            Willows Market, Menlo Park on the Palo Alto border.

                                            8 Replies
                                            1. re: bbulkow
                                              Robert Lauriston Jul 6, 2011 08:56 AM

                                              What's the price? Plugra is all over the place, it's just hard to find it for $3-4 a pound.

                                              1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                gigibriggs Jul 6, 2011 12:39 PM

                                                Last time I bought (a couple of months ago) it was around $4.60 a pound. I find that in NOT all over the place. Even Berkeley Bowl doesn't carry it regularly, causing me to buy 5-6 pounds at a time and freezing it.

                                                Berkeley Bowl
                                                2020 Oregon St, Berkeley, CA 94703

                                                1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                  JasmineG Jul 6, 2011 05:14 PM

                                                  I think those $3-4 a pound days are over. I saw the pound block at Berkeley Bowl last week for something like $5.60.

                                                  Berkeley Bowl
                                                  2020 Oregon St, Berkeley, CA 94703

                                                  1. re: JasmineG
                                                    DReese Jul 7, 2011 09:31 AM

                                                    I know you can buy Plugra the 8 oz size at Whole Foods and Safeway. Also, checked out their website and you can purchase in bulk. Haven't tried it but it might be worth checking out. http://plugra.elsstore.com/

                                                    1. re: DReese
                                                      Robert Lauriston Jul 7, 2011 10:09 AM

                                                      With the cheapest shipping option, that works out to $7.01 a pound.

                                                      1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                        Ruth Lafler Jul 7, 2011 11:20 AM

                                                        Has anyone seen it at Smart and Final recently? That was the best option post-TJ's.

                                                        1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                          512window Jul 8, 2011 12:58 PM

                                                          They didn't have it yesterday.

                                                        2. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                          DReese Jul 7, 2011 01:57 PM

                                                          Just another option... but not to bad considering you don't have to drive to pick it up.

                                                2. ChowFun_derek Jul 12, 2011 12:23 PM

                                                  Faletti's Market in S.F. carries it...located behind the DMV between Oak and Fell on Broderick

                                                  308 Broderick St
                                                  San Francisco, California 94117
                                                  (415) 626-4400
                                                  Open Daily 7am-9pm
                                                  Public transit: Church St & Duboce Ave

                                                  6 Replies
                                                  1. re: ChowFun_derek
                                                    Robert Lauriston Jul 12, 2011 01:08 PM

                                                    Which size and how much?

                                                    1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                      ChowFun_derek Jul 12, 2011 01:13 PM

                                                      The next time I'm there I'll look more intently.

                                                      1. re: ChowFun_derek
                                                        Cynsa Jul 12, 2011 05:11 PM

                                                        8 oz. $4.45

                                                        1. re: Cynsa
                                                          Ruth Lafler Jul 13, 2011 09:48 AM

                                                          Thanks. I wish people would read the topic a little more carefully -- the subject of this thread is the one-pound block of Plugra in the red and white wrappers that TJs carried. It's confusing to reference the other packaging (which is reasonably widely available and much more expensive) without differentiating them.

                                                          1. re: Ruth Lafler
                                                            Robert Lauriston Jul 13, 2011 10:01 AM

                                                            The topic heading and opening post are vague. I opened another topic that's more specific:


                                                            1. re: Robert Lauriston
                                                              Ruth Lafler Jul 13, 2011 11:00 AM

                                                              True. It's been clarified extensively above, but a new topic might be a good idea.

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