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TOUR: ACME Markets - Hoboken, NJ

ACME Markets
Opened: 2015
Previous Tenants: Vitale Foodtown > A&P
Location: 614 Clinton St, Hoboken, NJ
Photographed: December 2020
ACME tour #2 today! Make sure to check out the Newport store just about three-quarters of a mile south here. Like Newport, this store was an A&P acquired in 2015, although this was a Vitale Foodtown until 1998. At just 24,000 square feet, this store is slightly less than half the size of Newport. And unlike Newport, it shows no sign of an ACME remodel, but neither does it need one.
Natural foods and water take up A&P's former liquor department in the front corner. (In case anyone's interested, the restrooms are also in this corner. I was very glad to find them at the time of my visit, and only found them after circling around the entire store despite them being right next to the entrance.)
See Acme Style's 2015 coverage of this location here. I think the store has been reset since then, but it mostly looks the same -- which is to say, very good. Here's the compact but complete produce department in the first aisle, with service butcher and seafood at the back of the aisle.
As we move into the first grocery aisle, the store opens up and is less cramped, but most importantly, the ceiling gets much higher. It seems that this section was an expansion, and Acme Style also mentions the possibility of a second floor here.
Similar to Newport, wee see the lighting has been removed from the grocery shelving and tube fluorescent lights have been installed across the ceiling.
Looking along the back wall of the store. Despite the store's small size and location a quarter of a mile from a ShopRite, it seems to do a good business, probably due to the dense urban neighborhood and the fact that, as an urban Inserra store, the ShopRite is pretty awful despite being newly renovated a few years ago. I attempted to stop by for a tour but found every single parking space taken and the lot itself oddly lumpy -- you can see it for yourself in this Google Maps street view (that's gotta be due to repeated flooding, which that location suffers from). I will say that ACME has not painted the ceiling, which has not, uh, improved in the six years since Acme Style noted the same thing in their post.
The grocery aisles are not cramped, despite the fact that the store is so small. They're nice and clean, too.
The walls were painted at some point by A&P, since they don't match the typical colors for this remodel.
Looking back towards the first aisle on the back wall.
Frozen foods in the second-to-last aisle (aisle 9). It looks like ACME replaced the lighting within the fixtures A&P already had here, since this looks brighter than Acme Style's visit. Notice also that the lighting in the grocery aisles and dairy aisle (to the left) has been replaced.
Dairy with an unusual green color here. A tiny bakery department is in the front corner of the store, with the deli extending along the front wall.
ACME removed the deli picture sign when they moved in, I'm assuming because it had the Master Choice logo on it (a long-gone A&P storebrand). I was actually scratching my head over that question up in Shrub Oak, and it seems the removal of the sign was not done by A&P when the brand was discontinued but by ACME when they acquired the stores. Note that cheese has once again been moved from a single-tier display on the perimeter to a multi-tier display in an island, and the olive bar has been downsized from the whole island to just basically its endcap.
Front end looking towards customer service and produce. I like the brick on the front wall! Once again, if you haven't checked out the Newport ACME, you can find the post here. And tomorrow, we'll be heading about a block and a half north of this store to check out a former supermarket on Grocery Archaeology!

Comments

  1. Nice coverage and thanks for all the shout outs to Acme Style! I’m in this store pretty often so I can give a couple of updates...

    The refrigerated natural foods department has been done away with and the former beer coolers now hold a random selection of water, juice and ice tea. Sparkling water is also gone. The two short aisles are currently home to discounted/discontinued products left over from a recent store reset. Shelving along the walls hold random paper products. The whole area feels very temporary at this point. Acme has been tinkering endlessly with it since they took over the store and I’m not sure why they just don’t expand/relocate produce to this area. Seems to make the most sense. The current produce department is limited and… sorry to say… very poorly managed, particularly compared to how well run the other departments are in the store. (See scathing reviews on yelp)

    Seafood has all new top-of-the-line cases.

    The bakery is tiny for sure yet the selection is as good as nearly all of the larger Acmes in the area. I am always seeing baked items here that I’ve never seen at other Acmes. They also maintain an extensive and incredibly unique selection of cakes despite the small size of the service case.

    6 self-checkouts were recently installed, reducing the front end to just 3 full service registers. (Similar to the Montclair store). Surprisingly A&P never had self-checkouts here.

    Pretty sure the place does very decent business despite the ShopRite a few blocks away. It's always busy when I'm in here. Would love to see Acme do a full remodel (and get a new produce manager)!

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    1. Of course! Always happy to send folks over to what you've already put together.

      I would have to imagine that if the place ever is fully remodeled, the former liquor department would become an expansion of the produce department -- wouldn't that just make sense?

      Thanks for all the other updates, too. Glad to see this store doing well -- although I imagine, in Hoboken, the property will be turned into a mixed-use residential/retail development soon enough... hopefully ACME would be able to get a space in the ground floor of that.

      And it's funny you mention the produce here, since I was just earlier today looking at the produce at my ACME (Kenilworth) and I was really impressed with the quality. A&P always had really bad produce at that store, and ACME improved it but it was never so great. Definitely a step up lately from how it was before -- produce and seafood for sure are much better now than they were before.

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  2. "Oddly lumpy" is not the first term that comes to mind when describing parking lots, but seeing that street view... yep, lumpy it is.

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    1. Yeah, and it's gotta be the flooding. I know you're not from this area, so take a look at where Hoboken is on a map of New Jersey. Very low elevation and very close to multiple bodies of water... so that's going to cause some weird settling in the ground.

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  3. At least Vernon got the renovation this year...

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    1. It did indeed, and there are quite a few other ACMEs that have been remodeled recently. Off the top of my head, I know Vernon, Brigantine, New Providence, Fair Haven, Blairstown, Jersey City/Newport, Mohegan Lake, Mahopac, Hamilton Square, Little Silver, Maple Shade/Lenola, Warren, and probably a few others have been redone in one way or another lately.

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