Seneca Falls - where do you shop for groceries?
I'm potentially moving to Seneca Falls this fall for grad school. A quick google map search says my usual grocery stops are miles away. I'm heartbroken!! (I currently have a Trader Joes, Whole Foods, Coop, 2 farmers markets, and several high end grocery stores all within a 5mile radius of me, plus the largest Asian Market in the midwest only 15 minutes away). Grad student = hungry for quality food/products but broke. If you live in the area, do you have any recommendations? Where do you shop? And what is this Wegmans (in Geneva?) I hear of?
IMHO, the Wegman's in Geneva is a notch or two below the ones in Corning and Ithaca. Still good, but not the best in their chain. Also, check out Mac's Drive-in, on the west side of Waterloo, for a nostalgic and inexpensive trip (handcut fries, root beer floats and lots of fried stuff).
Thank you all for the advice, and for the congrats! :) I'm officially moving at the end of the month, and you can bet I'll make the rounds and explore everything you've mentioned - and what perfect timing, I'll have set up camp just before the fall harvest! Truly, I appreciate you taking the time to highlight the neighborhood gems. I'm always eager to seek them out and now I'm so excited to make the move!
Congrats! I have friends in Seneca Falls, but am not a resident.....However, I've traveled there frequently for fun and business.
Definitely check out Sauder's!
Bulk food store that also sells some perishable item (meats, cheeses, limited produce). Lots of inexpensive ways to try out new things and pick up staples.
You'll be in good shape with a Wegmans nearby. Nice grocery store, great customer service, excellent house-brand products and relatively good prices. Check out their website weekly for the savings fliers they post online- you can know what's on sale before setting foot in the store!
Aldi is also in Seneca Falls- minimalist, low-cost grocery store. Very little spent on overhead- you bag your own groceries, bring your own bags unless you want to purchase bags for about a nickel each, and cart use requires a quarter deposit- which you get back when you return your cart. All those quirks said, it's got pretty good house products, but depending on how you cook, you probably won't consider it a one-stop shop for everything you need, and their inventory changes pretty regularly.
Seneca Falls does have a weekly farmers' market....
And as a resident in upstate NY but a regular traveler to NYC, I can say firsthand that all the lovely vendors going to the lauded Union Square in NYC every week are often coming from Seneca Falls, Geneva, all these towns upstate....and the cost of the travel all the way to NYC sometimes seems reflected in the cost of what they are selling. I bet you'll find some pretty fabulous, affordable produce at this market!
A little further out....
About 10 miles away, in Auburn, you should check out New Hope Mills- they have a storefront where you can get locally-produced flours and high-quality mixes.
I regularly give people a bag of their pancake mix plus a jog of maple syrup as a hostess gift. You'll likely find their products also sold at Wegmans or Tops (another chain in town) as well.
Also about 10 miles away, in Geneva, you'll find the Red Jacket Orchard farm store, where you can get lots of fresh produce, tasty fresh-pressed juice blends, and other locally-produced goodies at their storefront. Very high-quality, wonderful products.
You'll likely find great u-pick places within a few miles as well- if you can spare the time or need a study break, a nice field trip to pick some apples, blueberries, strawberries, etc. is nicely accessible, and usually comparable or less expensive that produce in the store. I'd suggest calling the local Cooperative Extension Office: http://senecacountycce.org/
to ask about places that offer pre-picked or u-pick produce.
I wish you well! I move upstate about 4 years ago from the Chapel Hill area, and was also apprehensive about moving away from a place where I had such easy access to diverse ethnic markets, great farmers' markets and wonderful "standard" markets. It might take a while to adapt to the different food environment, but you'll find some gems that I'm sure you'll miss when you make the next life move. :)
Yeah it won't be the same as where you are. But on the positive side: you will be around farms which can offer you some pretty good stuff when in season. Probably better than anything you can get at Whole Foods, etc. And, while it might take some work to make connections, it is likely to be cheaper too.
I don't know that locale very well, but if you get a chance nip down to the Ithaca Farmer's market to get some ideas....
First of all, good luck in grad school. Re Wegmans, I first became familiar with it when visiting my daughter in grad school in Ithaca. It's a supermarket chain of large stores which include wonderful international selections and designed with many indidividual departments with great customer service, as if you were in a specialty cheese shop, bakery, etc. They also have a number of different and very good prepared food departments. Though I live in international L.A., a market like Wegmans would certainly cut down on the time and number of my regular shopping trips to specialty/ethnic shops. Have fun exploring!