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Showing posts from August, 2020

TOUR: CTown Supermarkets - Eastchester, Bronx, NY

We're right at the northeastern edge of the Bronx when we come here to Shopwell Plaza, which I'm assuming was originally anchored by a Shopwell Supermarket. (Bronx-based Shopwell was the original owner of The Food Emporium, which sold to A&P in 1986.) Today, the supermarket anchor is a CTown (formerly an NSA) which opened in 2000.
Heading in, we find a supermarket that to be very honest has seen better days. The front corner is a rather awkward alcove with beer and individual sodas, with deli and hot food on the left-side wall (we're looking towards the front wall in the above picture). Produce continues in the rest of the first aisle.
The store was generally nicely stocked, but it also looks like it's a very low-volume store. It's worth noting that CTown shares the mall with the SY Grace Caribbean Supermarket, which we'll see tomorrow on The Independent Edition.
Unfortunately, as you can see from these pictures, the CTown is quite deserted.
The CTown is m…

TOUR: Food Universe Marketplace - Baychester Central, Bronx, NY

Food Universe is almost always a solid neighborhood supermarket -- I've never been very disappointed with one, and I've seen quite a few. The banner was created in 2014 by Staten Island, NY-based Key Food Stores Co-Operative to facilitate the integration of about 30 acquired stores during the bankruptcy of DiGiorgio Food and Associated Food Holdings, so all of the original Food Universe locations were previously Associated, Met Foods, Pioneer, or Compare Foods stores. The banner has been expanded since then.
This approximately 10,000 square foot location is in the far back corner of the Bartow Mall, which anchors the southern part of Co-Op City (also see here). The sprawling housing complex contains two Food Universe locations with a third in a southern extension, each in the 10,000 square foot range. On the periphery of the complex are multiple large malls, one with an Edwards-turned-Stop & Shop and one with a Pathmark-turned-Stop & Shop. The three Food Universes, al…

TOUR: Bonavita Market Key Food - Pelham Bay, Bronx, NY

Today's store tour is a very newly renovated store in the Pelham Bay neighborhood of the Bronx. At just under 24,000 square feet, it actually becomes one of the larger supermarkets in this part of the borough. Pelham Bay, by the way, is in the far eastern part of the Bronx, just to the north of Throggs Neck. Pelham Bay is a notably higher income neighborhood of the Bronx, with a large Italian population. And that brings us to Bonavita Market (now Key Food, formerly Pioneer), owned by Salvatore Bonavita. Clearly Bonavita is the family name, but it's also an excellent name for a supermarket as it translates to "good life."
The parking lot, by the way, is covered with solar panels, as is the store's roof. Heading to the storefront, we find an enclosed bulk and sale section which runs along the store's front wall (which faces the parking lot). We enter to produce in the first aisle running along Westchester Avenue, or the left side of the store, with deli and ba…

Coming Soon!

We've completed our travels up White Plains Road, so now we're going to go up the eastern side of the Bronx through Pelham Bay, Baychester, and Eastchester, before leaving the Bronx and passing through Pelham Manor (a small town between the Bronx and the next city, New Rochelle) before ending up in New Rochelle. Our coverage is a little thin in this part of the Bronx, but this is our first time in this section as well as our first trip to New Rochelle. Buckle up your seatbelts and let's head to Pelham Bay!

Look Inside: Foodtown - Wakefield, Bronx, NY

This store opened as a Met Foodmarket in 1985 under owner Bernabe Cabrena, who in 2011 transitioned to Foodtown.
It's a great looking store, and even looked pretty good as a Met way back when. It's clear this store's owner and management take pride in it. My pictures are not wonderful inside, but here we go.
At 10,500 square feet, the supermarket is not enormous but feels larger due to its spacious produce department and first aisle (look at those sightlines -- all the way to the back of the store!), plus it has a parking lot and feels more suburban, as you get into these northern neighborhoods of the Bronx.
Morning stocking in full swing at the time of my visit. I like the diagonal checkerboard tile because it's not overwhelming, but a nice touch to tie in with the decor.
The aisle markers don't quite match the decor, so they might be slightly newer. Perhaps the decor comes from the Met Foodmarkets era, and the aisle markers would have been placed in for the conv…