Ocean State Job Lots Yea/Nay 2014
This topic got only 5 responses when posted 3 yrs ago so I thought I'd see if there's more interest now that the number of stores has increased.
I tend to get overwhelmed by their food selection (all shelf-stable items). I found jars of Mancini fried (smothered, really) onions for $2, which is a good savings over supermarket prices. Also Solo brand fillings in flavors my supermarkets don't carry. I like the almond so got the apricot and raspberry to try. I do not need more bakeware but was impressed with the price and heft of a line (forget brand) of black metal (steel?) baking and roasting pans. They were as thick as All-Clad. Also
very good prices on wild bird seed, and a large, squirrel-resistant metal-caged tube style feeder for $10. Not to mention 50% off their already great prices on Xmas gift bags and decorations, so I'm set for next December.
Any recommendations for food items or kitchenware at OSJL?
Today's Ocean State Job Loot included a$3.99 big bottle of balsamic vinegar blend flavored with fig (have not tried yet; it also came in pear, pomegranate, chili, and raspberry) and 29oz glass jar of Poland's Finest mixed vegetable salad, a really good blend of sliced cucumber pickles with shredded cabbage, carrot, bell pepper, and onion in a vinegar brine, $2.50. This will be good as a side and also as a hot dog topping. 8oz bag of fried onions (Durkee type) $2.00, tomato paste in the tube $2.00.
Funny, I was just thinking that I have to make my quarterly trip to OSJL this weekend.
I've found really good buys on spices/salts/rubs...and not with expiration dates of 2007, fresh stuff.
Like your happiness at finding the Mancini fried onions (I always have those on hand, too), I will buy jarred marinated artichoke hearts, capers (as Annief said) pickes, olives...it's catch as catch can, but if I find it, I will grab a few jars.
And yes, nuts....Pistachios, walnuts, etc...tend to be great quality and very reasonable.
I've also stocked up on sturdy foils, plastic wrap, etc on the cheap....good stuff, not crazy-making like the stuff you get at the dollar store and find is flimsy.
A BIG yea! I check in weekly just to see if they have any new food finds. I'm always looking for the pricey gourmet items at a good price and I've been very lucky. My best find was a $20 bottle of Australian olive oil for $2.99 ( bought them all). Other items I stock up on for great prices are...
Capers (soooo reasonable)
Kalamata olives and green olives
Risotto and basmati rice
Couscous and Israeli couscous
Dried mushrooms (Porcini double the price at S&S)
Panko bread crumbs (super bargain)
Peanut Butter Co. ( yummy and double the price at S&S ).
Jellies (Trappist Cranberry Conserve, great condiment)
Major Greys Chutney
STASH herbal teas (1/2 price)
XOCHITL tortilla chips
Anyway that's all I can list off quickly. It's the hunt for the great "foodie find" that I find the most fun, being sure to check expiration dates.
OSJL is a favorite of ours, but the selection changes so often that it's hard to make suggestions. It's more in the line of "adventure" shopping. With a few exceptions it's best to stock up when it's available because it probably won't be there the next time you're there.
Perhaps because they can't read, but the squirrels around here love that $10 "squirrel-proof" feeder.
That's why although the box says "proof", I referred to it as "resistant". I bungee the cover in place. They can still hang on and scoop out the seed but at least they can't chew the plastic tube. Last year I hoped cayenne pepper in the seed would repel them, but if my resident squirrels have a last name, I suspect it is "Squarrez". ;-p