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Sep 7, 2012 04:29 AM

Trader Joe's

This probably belongs in the Chains tread but just FYI for folks in North Florida, Trader Joes' is coming to Tallahassee next year, over by Bruegger's Bagels, *$ and Kinkos/FedEx by I-10. Will certainly put a dent into Fresh Market for non-produce items and maybe the new Publix will have to lower their prices a bit. Add some near but not close-by competition for the new Whole Foods. Could be a good thing for Tallytown in general.

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  1. An article in today's Tampa Bay Times said Trader Joe's is interested in Tampa, in fact, has an intersection picked out in Tampa. Here is a quote from the article: "Brian Bern, a senior director with Franklin Street real estate services, said he heard through industry sources that Trader Joe's has a particular intersection in mind but hasn't been able to find a suitable site.
    "It's going to happen sooner than later,'' he said. "There's no other reason why they haven't come to Tampa Bay. They just haven't gotten the right deal.''

    1. crew, the TJ in Sarasota opened yesterday morning, lines began at 5, opened at 8, police managed traffic. When the crime scene dissipates, I'll check it out. I'm on Caribbean time, mon, as you know.

      16 Replies
      1. re: Veggo

        I was there in SRQ and will say that it was crowded.

        1. re: watsurf

          How was it other than crowded? I want to go when the newness wears off.

          1. re: suzigirl

            Wait a couple of weeks.....seriously, there were 1000 shoppers in there...I was thinking the Fire Department would make people leave. It was pretty, well signed, product looked very nice. In a few weeks, I will probably shop there in addition to Costco, WF, and Fresh Market. May I never have to shop at that evil Publix ever again.

            1. re: watsurf

              I was mildly disappointed by the Fresh Market that opened in Bradenton 2 weeks ago, in particular the cheese selections. I did find some good shrimp, marginal Chilean sea bass, and fresh crunchy macadamia nuts. But I want more ripened cheeses, and an opportunity to taste them.

                1. re: suzigirl

                  Veggo - is Mazzaro's here in Pinellas County your go-to place for cheese (and other irresistible goodies)? It rarely disappoints me.

                  1. re: triff

                    Mortons Gourmet in Sarasota has been my go-to for cheese from Bradenton. I was bummed when their Lakewood Ranch store closed; it had a young Vietnamese cheesemonger and she was incredibly knowledgable about all 200 cheeses there. All of them.

                    I am not familiar with Mazzaro's - tell us a little about it? Thanks, triff. I cross the Skyway on a moments' notice.
                    Edit: I looked over Mazzaro's site- it's on my list for a day trip to Mid Peninsula Seafood for cracked conch and Rosies in Pinellas Park for fried clams then cheese on the way home!

                    1. re: Veggo

                      Sounds like a solid plan. I have known the owners of Mid-Peninsula for over 20 years (our daughter was friends with their kids), and have had Rosie's clams and enjoyed them, too. Mazzaro's is a foodie emporium unlike anything else in this county. You walk into their produce and butcher shop, then the wine and cheese room (300 types of cheese and mozzarella made daily), walk past refrigerator and freezer cabinets, then you are in their main area with a coffee bar (roasted on site), their gorgeous bakery area and gelato, and there are numerous shelves filled with imported spices, sauces, chocolates, pastas, oils, etc. etc.! Beyond that is their deli counter with excellent sandwiches for there or to go, salads, side dishes, deli meats, prepared foods, and their fresh pasta counter area. In the back is a good-sized open-air sit-down place to eat or drink purchased goodies. Can you tell I LOVE this place?

                      1. re: triff

                        I love this place and I have never been. Sounds outstanding.

                2. re: Veggo

                  Our local FM does have some good cuts of meat and for a time were the only purveyors of Pete's coffees ( now at Publix). Earth Faire has more of a corner on the organic set that wander the aisles of WF. But all their prices are a bit above reach for most everyday shopping.

                  Veggo, a bit envious of your time mind. Jonesing for some good fresh Mexican gorditas or ceviche or a nice little vivneau with sauce chein.

                  1. re: crewsweeper

                    crew, I'm headed for Mexico and Cuba in 2 days.

                    1. re: Veggo

                      I'll watch for your reports. Gonna see our friend in Mahahual this time around?

                      1. re: crewsweeper

                        Maybe - Jaime's Cheshire cat grin is worth a side trip!

                      2. re: Veggo

                        Great. Where in Mexico (and Cuba) are you visiting?

                        1. re: Agent Orange

                          Playa del Carmen and south to Bacalar in Yucatan, and the pretty Miramar area of Havana and a little west of there near the marina.

                3. re: suzigirl

                  Went to the Sarasota Trader Joe's today and it still was a zoo, but I was glad to finally be part of the madness. Have never been inside a TJ's store, but have been eating their products for years thanks to family and friends shipping them from up North. My DD asked if it was what I expected when visiting in person, and I said yes. Although it is not a large store, it has quite a few products that jumped into my shopping cart. We parked behind the store and it was wall to wall people, but when we checked out there were only two in front of us. Well worth the time (1 hour away) and expenses - gas, tolls, etc. Sure would be nice if TJ's built one closer, but this one is great for now!

            2. I'll be the one to post the latest rumor of Trader Joe's opening in Tampa. The rumored location is Swann and Dale Mabry in South Tampa. This seems like an ideal part of town for them to open their first Tampa Bay store. Hopefully Hillsborough and Pinellas will see many TJs in the years to come.


              1. OK - Orlando area announced now - but when in Tampa Bay??