HOME > Chowhound > San Francisco Bay Area >

Discussion

Cosentinos Market, San Jose- Closing!

Informed they are shutting the doors on February 8. Owners retiring. Development company has bought the lot. Very sad, as I am moving two blocks away from this great grocery.

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. I'm so sorry to hear that. Cosentino's is the best market I have ever shopped at.

    1. Best grocery store in the area. This is really unfortunate. Now we're left with Whole Foods....

      1. This is such a loss. I have become completely dependent on Cosentino's for my produce and meat.
        Is there any place else in the area (other than the Farmers Markets) where I can get comparable produce?

        4 Replies
        1. re: emi50

          I have never found any place to be comparable to Cosentino's for variety and quality of produce, except perhaps Berkeley Bowl or Signona's. But for overall selection of produce, bakery, deli, meat, etc. - it was the perfect little store. Last time I was there, my favoriter checker told me not to cry, but I couldn't help it, and she started crying, too.

          -----
          Berkeley Bowl
          2020 Oregon St, Berkeley, CA 94703

            1. re: Claudette

              I completely understand, Claudette. I am devastated. Thanks for the response, and thank you for the link, wolfe.

              1. re: emi50

                I completely agree. I just came from there and the shelves are getting more bare. They're basically not ordering anything else and will close sooner than Feb 8th depending on how much inventory they have left.

          1. This is the worst news I've heard today. What a shame! Where am I going to buy their Butternut Squash ravioli???!!!!

            1. Are they going to do any big discounts now until Feb 8?

              1. It's the bakery that I will miss the most. Their sfogiatelle!

                3 Replies
                1. re: pkee

                  You said the magic word: sfogliatelle. I stopped in today on my way south to buy some, one large and one small to try.

                  The 25% discount applies to goods in aisles 2 thru 11. This excludes produce, meats, alcohol, breads, etc. I didn't have much time to look around but I did grab Faillot mustard, Asado do Mar tuna, and kosher salt. I'll have to think about what other staples I might need to stock up on that are never discounted otherwise. This was my first time in the store. I noticed a nice selection of specialty oils, organic dried spices, high-priced real balsamic vinegar from Modena, imported Italan pastas, as likely targets.

                  I also bought Niman Ranch ground beef, $4.99/lb, which was one of the weekly specials.

                  -----
                  Cosentino's Market
                  2666 S Bascom Ave, San Jose, CA 95124

                  1. re: Melanie Wong

                    Melanie, how was the sfogliatelle? I've never had one, but sounds interesting.

                    In the SJ Mercury Newspaper there was a mention of their fried chicken being really popular.

                    1. re: hhc

                      I'm not Melanie, but I know that their sfogliatelle is good (but I've had better at the Italian bakeries in Boston's North End). Cosentino's coconut custard Danish is fantastic - better than any other version I've had, but it was always sold out by 10:30am on Saturdays. I have no idea what's available now.

                2. From FB: Starting today (1/10/11) items will be marked down 25% off.

                  1. No!! I totally count on them for meats.

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Cicely

                      It looks like the San Jose Lunardi's is pretty close by, have you tried them. I love Lunardi's on the Peninsula for their full service meat and seafood counter.

                      1. re: pamf

                        No. Lunardi's just isn't as good as Cosentino ... even today.

                        This makes me sad. Cosentino's was the first market I shopped at when I moved to the Bay Area and it opened my eyes to the fact that grocery shopping could be more than buying things to fill your stomach every week. I found food there that I never knew existed.

                        I was just out of college and paying student loans, so I couldn't do regular shopping there, but I went every chance I could, especially holidays.

                        I'm also a little surprised. I thought they had opened a few more markets and assumed there was someone in the family who was going to keep the business going.

                        I'm just going to have to come home before another place I love closes.

                      2. re: Cicely

                        Here's my post on the sfogliatelle.
                        http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/759302

                        FWIW, I noticed two fresh rabbits in the butcher case on Tuesday.

                      3. Cosentino's was my mom's favorite store when she was still living in Willow Glen. She loved the attentive and friendly service, the traditional meat counter, fresh veggies. etc. She was sad to leave it behind when she moved to Monterey.

                        My brother was living in Denver this summer, and he quickly gravitated to Sunflower Farmer's Market natural grocery stores. (fav. in Arvada) He loved the great prices on fresh local produce, especially summer veggies and fruits, but also on meats and bulk foods.

                        He sent me a link this Sept about Joey Franco's PW Super closing, and the article mentioned the pressure from incoming non-union stores like Target and Trader Joe's and mentioned that Sunflower was making a move into Northern California; the first store is opening in Roseville, near Sac, in April. Another article stated that Sunflower will be opening a store in San Jose next.

                        Now, Cosentino's it's not, but has anyone heard any more recent buzz about a Sunflower location in the South Bay?

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: toodie jane

                          This post made me leap to my feet in excitement. After a vacationin Boulder last year I love love love love Sunflower.

                          Some poking around on the net indicates that Sunflower has definite plans to open a store in San Jose, but no news where. It sounds like it will be one (or more?) of the old PW locations. Yay! Yay! YAY! YAY!

                          In one of the news reports about the Cosentino's closing they said they were talking to a Southern California organic food grocery chain, which in the articles I read strongly points to a chain called Sprouts. They compete with Sunflower in some southwestern markets.

                          In any case it sounds like the south bay is going to be a really great place for small natural foods stores in the coming year.

                          1. re: petrelline

                            There's already a Sprouts in the old Nob Hill location in SVL, on ECR near Trader Joe's. It's like Sunflower in many ways, and I like them both, but they're not at all like Cosentino's - more like a poor man's Whole Foods (and I mean that in a good way), whereas Cosentino's and Lunardi's are like a poor man's (or poor woman's) Draegar's (and I mean that in a good way).

                            1. re: petrelline

                              New rumor heard today is that this deal fell through and now they are talking with Lunardi's possibly.

                          2. This is one place I've never gotten the love for, sadly. I'll say they have a competitive meat section, but haven't found much else to be of interest. It just seems like a pretty typical overpriced upscale dated grocery store (although I guess this is among the last of those). The produce, while good quality, is by far the most expensive I've seen anywhere (it makes Whole Foods seem cheap) and so's everything else, even with the 25% off.

                            6 Replies
                            1. re: Radical347

                              It's just that back in the late 70s when I moved to Campbell, Cosentinos was pretty much the way they are now. There was nothing else comparable except, maybe, in Berkeley. There was no Whole Foods, there were no Asian markets, there was no Dragers or Andronicos, there was no Mi Pueblo, there weren't even many farmer's markets.

                              I could be sure that I could buy what I wanted at Cosentinos. They carried broccoli rabe and cardoon, 35 years ago. They had 15 kinds of mushrooms then too. I learned how to clean squid from Cosentinos when it was 29 cents a pound and I was truly flat broke. It was a family run business and my neighbors worked there.

                              It was a south bay institution. Sunnymount Produce is also closing. That makes three places that I've relied on, gone in 6 months. What we'll get in return are chains. You folks go on and on about locavoring and knowing where your food comes from. You won't get that from a chain, not the way you could from one of the Cosentino brothers.

                              -----
                              Sunnymount Produce
                              1101 W El Camino Real, Sunnyvale, CA

                              1. re: 512window

                                Really love your comment 512window.Though pricey(and what isn't for quality ala WholePay Check?)this is the only place in the whole bay area to get everything we need in one stop shopping for my Mom's antipasti,salumi,homemade manicotti etc for Christmas and seafood Christmas Eve dinner.Honestly i don't know where we will get the same quality cold cuts and not even Pasta shop in Rockridge,Oakland compares.The key is in the italian name...Cosentinos...A certain sensibility...Sniff!!

                                1. re: 512window

                                  No ... not Sunnymount too. Ok, I can't stand it ... what's the third place? I'm telling you, if it starts with an "O" and sells cherries, that would be too much

                                  1. re: rworange

                                    rworange - Olson's is still kicking as of this writing, but you know that Deborah has no children...when are you coming back?

                                  2. re: 512window

                                    The main reason these old-school family-run markets close is that the younger generation doesn't want to take over the business. The Cosentino brothers are in their 70s and 80s.

                                    "When asked whether any of the younger Cosentino generation wanted to keep the operation going, the second eldest brother, 77-year-old Marino Cosentino, answered after a long pause: 'No. Not enough.'"

                                    http://www.insidebayarea.com/news/ci_...

                                    http://www.bizjournals.com/sanjose/bl...

                                  3. re: Radical347

                                    When in season, one could not get oranges, apples, plums, peaches, etc. any cheaper than at Cosentino's, and no where near the same quality, even at farmer's markets. Yes, some things were more expensive, but after shopping there for 20 years on a weekly basis, I found no better value anywhere.

                                  4. Based on what employees told me today at Cosentino's:
                                    A deal was closed with Lunardi's. The store will stay open as Cosentino's through Feb 26 (they are re-stocking shelves), and will re-open as Lundardi's March 1. The deal included the provision that any employee who wants to stay, stays. This means that kitchen and bakery staff may stay the same, let alone meat and produce depts. Also, Lundardi's knows it is inheriting a fiercely loyal customer base, and will likely listen to customers' requests for items they are counting on.
                                    Staff seemed really happy about this outcome.

                                    2 Replies
                                    1. re: emi50

                                      I heard the same at the story today. As a local resident, I'm relieved, but bargain hunters should note that this means the liquidation sale is over.

                                      1. re: emi50

                                        Excellent news!
                                        I suppose if they can't continue as Cosentinos, then handing off to Lunardis will allow for a similar grocery experience. (My husband was worried about a new strip mall full of cell phone and purified water stores.)