Thursday, May 3, 2012
Trip to Trader Joe’s doesn’t disappoint, fuels excitement for Lexington store opening
As many of our readers know, specialty grocery store Trader Joe’s will open a much-anticipated Lexington location sometime this summer.
For those who have somehow managed to avoid the hype surrounding the Lexington store, here’s a little update – the store will be about 12,000 square-feet, with a separate 3,000-square-foot wine shop. The store’s Nicholasville Road location is the former site of Joe’s Crab Shack, across from Regency Center.
In preparation for the store opening, I headed to the Trader Joe’s in Louisville for the first time last weekend to check out what all the hoopla was about.
I found the store, which was fairly small – with only about 10 aisles and a separate wine shop – to be very easy to navigate. Each aisle was well organized, making products easy to find. I also found the staff to be friendly and helpful.
Most of the products at the store are Trader Joe’s brand, which cuts the store’s costs, and in turn, saves customers money, according to the Trader Joe’s website.
I found that many items in the store were priced comparably or even cheaper than other grocery stores in the area. Produce items and fresh flowers were priced noticeably lower than I expected.
The flowers were the first product I saw when I entered the store. Normally, I would bypass the flower section because I consider fresh flowers to be something I would only buy on a special occasion. But, these flowers were seemed so reasonably priced – large bouquets of tulips and daisies were $4.99 and mums were just $3.99 – that I had to stop and browse.
I was also impressed by the store’s selection of frozen foods. Many items were organic, and most were reasonably priced. The frozen food aisle offered a wide variety of ethnic frozen foods – taquitos, enchiladas, chile relleno, palak paneer and another Trader Joe’s favorite, chicken tikki masala, which costs $3.49.
I bought a couple items, including some whole-wheat rotini and organic tomato-basil sauce, which were both delicious, and I picked up a large container of organic animal crackers – just $2.99 – for one of my co-workers.
Last but certainly not least on my shopping trip – the wine shop. One of Trader Joe’s well-known products is Two-Buck Chuck. While the wine isn’t exactly two bucks, it is still very reasonable at $2.99 a bottle.
Additionally, the wine shop offers other wines at a various prices, from as little as $2.99 to as much as $40 or $50. The shop also had an area where the wines were organized by country, offering a selection of wines from Italy, Germany, France and Spain.
I left Trader Joe’s Louisville store with a positive impression of the products, prices and staff, and even more excitement than before for the Lexington store to open its doors.