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Nov 14, 2011 01:46 PM

Hispanic grocery store

Are there any hispanic grocery stores in Birmingham that sell Masa (prepared cornmeal) for tamales?

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  1. Try El Mercado up on the hill at the corner of West Valley and Green Springs. They make tortillas in-house and I'm sure they'd sell some masa.

    1 Reply
    1. I DARE YOU to go on a Saturday or Sunday morning and try to walk out without buying tamales, carnitas, or something else from the back. I've never been able to sustain the willpower to do so.

      12 Replies
      1. re: G200

        their salsa picante, some of which they will give you when you buy carnitas, is also awesome.

        You can always buy the dried/powdered versions and re-constitute. We keep some just in case!

        1. re: Dax

          Not to mention the pork in tomatillo sauce, house-made corn tortillas and chicharones at the El Mercado. Mmmmmmmm.

          1. re: Big Daddy

            Is El Mercado different than the Brito's Supermarket? If so where exactly is El Mercado?

            1. re: Ms. Finiky

              Brito's is way down 119 in Alabaster. El Mercado is on Lorna Road in Hoover in the Plaza Fiesta shopping center along with Iguana Grill.

              1. re: bovinekid

                I'm going by what Big Daddy wrote at the top of this thread: "Try El Mercado up on the hill at the corner of West Valley and Green Springs. They make tortillas in-house and I'm sure they'd sell some masa."

                There is a Brito's up on the hill at the corner of West Valley and Green Springs and I wondered if that was the same store Big Daddy was talking about.

                1. re: Ms. Finiky

                  There are two El Mercados. One on Lorna and the other on Greensprings. I don't know where Brito's is - never heard of it. The El Mercado on Greensprings is in that shopping center on the west side of Greensprings and south of Valley. I believe there is a Radio Shack, a Mexican restaurant, and maybe a Tuesday Morning in the same center. The two El Mercados are essentially the same, although the one in Hoover is a newer store.

                  1. re: G200

                    The Britos is near Harbor Freight.

                    1. re: G200

                      The Greensprings Mercado is like 1-2 doors down from Sabor Latino.

                      Sabor Latino Restaurant
                      112 Green Springs Hwy, Birmingham, AL 35209

                      1. re: Dax

                        So is the Britos, Dax. I think they are the same place.

                        1. re: Ms. Finiky

                          I need to go check this out. El Mercado is an institution and its owner is a major player among Hispanic business owners. I hope he hasn't had to sell it.

                  2. re: bovinekid

                    Oh, my bad. I just thought of the Lorna one first because that's where the Mexicans I work with used to get carnitas to bring to work all the time. I actually never heard of Brito's; I just googled it and it gave me the Alabaster one.

                    1. re: bovinekid

                      The El Mercado off Green Springs is where the tortillas are made. Last time I checked (and it's beenmore than a year), Lorna Road only sold tortillas (from the other store), and didn't make them.

          2. The Piggly Wiggly on Clairmont also has masa and a variety of other Mexican ingredients.

            1 Reply
            1. re: bryantuga

              That is the closest pig to me. Their Latin options are excellent and love the variety of spices for next to nothing in cost. They may not be penzey's fresh/powerful, but they work in a pinch.

            2. El Mercado is in a strip close to The Salvation Army. The grocery next to Harbor Freight/Office Depot is Britos.
              My recommendation is Los Pueblos, opposite McDonalds on Greensprings, directly next to the fishmongers. All the local workers eat there, and the food is cheap and delicious. I swing by for great deals on fruits, peppers and masa.