The Food Emporium
Owner: Joe Doleh
Owner: Joe Doleh
Previous Tenants: A&P
Cooperative: Key Food Stores
Location: 460 CR-520, Marlboro, NJ
Photographed: January 2021
It's finally time for a store I've been wanting to get to for a long time! A former A&P in Marlboro was not purchased by Key Food in the 2015-16 A&P bankruptcy, but a Key Food operator moved into the vacant space following A&P's closure. It took a long time for the owners to prepare the store given their extensive renovations, but oh boy was it worth the wait. The store doesn't seem to be a runaway success like some of the SuperFresh stores in northern New Jersey, but three years in I wouldn't say it's a total failure either. But it's certainly one of the most beautiful supermarkets in this part of the state -- another great job by Off the Wall.
The 32,000 square foot store has almost nothing left over from A&P inside or out, which is a good thing. The A&P was fairly hideous, and it's actually an expansion from a centennial A&P. But there is one thing left, just barely...
But when I say that this sign in the parking lot is the only thing left from A&P, I really mean it, which we'll see when we step inside...
We enter to a gorgeous grand aisle with produce lining the right side and deli/prepared foods taking up the left side of the section. Seafood and meat line the back wall, with floral, customer service, and pharmacy to the right of the entrance on the front wall. Frozen is in the second-to-last aisle with dairy lining the outside of the last aisle and bakery in the front right corner.
The store overall is incredibly beautiful with a high-end selection. I'm not sure that it's a particularly high-volume store but it seems to do a solid business.
Cheese is in the front corner, with sushi up next and then a large deli. Juice bar is behind that, with hot food and salad bars in the back -- those bars were all closed and covered over with packaged groceries for coronavirus restrictions. All the other deli/prepared foods selections seem fully operational.
Looking back across the produce department towards the front wall. Seafood and butcher are in this back corner.
Absolutely amazing decor.
Butcher and meats on the back wall, with again absolutely stunning decor. It looks like the butcher counter is no longer in service, although it could've just been temporarily closed.
A look across the back wall. We can see that the store is not enormous but plenty spacious and a substantial size. Let's head up aisle 1 to the front of the store...
Gorgeous grocery aisles, and the product mix is quite good. An effective blend of basics and higher-end specialty and organic items.
Customer service and pharmacy on the front wall. The entrance is under the lower ceiling area to the right, behind that folding screen.
And looking towards the back of the store in the next grocery aisle.
At the far end of the store, we transition to frozen foods and cold cuts on the back wall.
Nonfoods at the far end of the store. There's a predictably small HABA selection, but it's certainly there.
A gorgeous frozen foods aisle.
Dairy lines the rest of the last aisle as well, with bread facing. More outstanding decor in this section.
Bakery is the final service department as we circle the perimeter of the store, with the service counter on the front wall of the store. This is in fact one of the relatively few Key Food stores with in-store bakeries.
The bakery department also includes a bulk coffee bar -- a nice high-end touch. Now to get an overview of the front end...
This Food Emporium is a beautiful store with some great selections. I wish them luck and I sure hope they sometimes get more crowds than were here at the time of my visit!
That's all for this amazing store. Up next we're heading out to the west for another really impressive store -- in fact, a chain we've never seen before! Check it out right here tomorrow on The Market Report.