What type of relationship do you have with your grocery store?

I have had several break ups over the past few years. Two and a half years ago I dumped my long term boyfriend of Stop & Shop and started dating Whole Foods Market. The demise of this relationship was partly due to a move across the country and partly because I read a self-help book (In Defense of Food) that made me realize that I needed to change my priorities. This new BF was fun, a good dresser, well educated, and friendly. Most importantly, his values aligned with mine, we both cared a lot about local producers and quality ingredients.

I was dating the market that lived on the corner of Broadway and Arapahoe. He was the adopted older brother of the WFM clan and was a distant relative of Wild Oats and Alfalfa’s. He had a big family here in Boulder and I even ventured out to Austin, TX to see his roots.

This relationship of convenience (I live 1 block from him) soon came to an end when there was a custody battle in the family and my Whole Foods was sold back to Alfalfa’s.

So I moved on to his younger brother over on Pearl Street. This guy is taller and more handsome than the old BF, has a bit more variety, and lives on my commute to work. There was one big problem. Every girl (and some guys for that matter) want to date him too!! Why is everyone in town in love with my boyfriend? His isles are always packed and if I want some alone time, I have to visit at 8:30pm on a Tuesday night or 2pm after the lunch crowd leaves.

My new market wised up, worked with a personal trainer and decided to bulk up a bit, get a hair cut, eat some protein and have a makeover. We had a date earlier this week and he gave me a sneak peak before the bandages come off on Saturday morning.
The new improvements include a huge prepared foods section, a gorgeous bakery, and a specialty foods area (cheese and charcuterie).

Here is Mark Bramhall, Bakery Team

The Daily Bread from Janet Ehlers on Vimeo.

Here is Dave Kauder, Specialty Coordinator

The Specialty Section from Janet Ehlers on Vimeo.

I might gain a little weight as this relationship goes to the next level because my BF’s kitchen is growing, plus it’s going to be a little too convenient. Check out all of the variety in the prepared food section:

  • Bear Mountain BBQ
  • 5430 Juice Bar
  • Greens, Beans and Grains: Healthy Eating station
  • East End Asian
  • Table Mesa Taqueria
  • Lefthand Sandwich Co.
  • 28th Street Pizza

My favorite part of my new and improved boyfriend is that we have all of the same friends, but now he has more room for them to come over and watch the game on Sunday.

  • Pappardelle’s Pasta
  • Haystack Goat Cheese
  • Primo spreads
  • Loredanas
  • 34 Degrees
  • Wild Women Chocolates
  • 3rd St. Chai
  • Celestial Seasonings
  • Glacier Ice Cream
  • Tea Spot
  • Conscious Coffee
  • Bahkti Chai
  • Udi’s
  • Boulder Soup Works
  • Tamales by La Casita (their first time sold in retail)
  • Harmony Valley

I could go on forever about how awesome my boyfriend is, but I really don’t want to share him with anyone else. So, you’re just going to have to truck your cookies down to Pearl on Saturday to get a look for yourself.

I did bring my real man with me…..he came for the yummy food.

Untitled from Janet Ehlers on Vimeo.

{ 1 comment }

It’s Back: The McRib

by Janet Ehlers on November 7, 2010 · 1 comment

The McRib. Wow. This lovely creation is a McDonalds sandwich made with ground pork meat shaped to look like a small rack of ribs, barbeque sauce and a sesame seed roll. I thought America had progressed past this boneless phenomenon. Now, I have to admit that I too once loved the McRib. I was hooked in 15 years ago when The Flintstones movie was used to cross promote the resurrection of the sandwich. The McRib was a fun and delicious break from my usual 10-piece Chicken McNugget order.

My favorite part of the McRib story is best described by Wikipedia: “On November 1, 2005, McDonald’s put out a press release stating that the McRib would be permanently removed from the menu following a “McRib Farewell Tour.” This appears to have been a deceptive kickoff to a viral/stealth marketing campaign;mcrib.com, a site registered to McDonald’s, featured a petition to “Save the McRib,” which was facetiously sponsored by the “Boneless Pig Farmers Association of America.”[1] So in a two-angled campaign, McDonald’s was simultaneously conducting a McRib farewell tour and sponsoring a petition to “Save the McRib” to create buzz. On October 16, 2006, the “McRib Farewell Tour II” site appeared, confirming the campaign was a marketing ploy. The petition to “Save the McRib” still existed as well as the “BPFAA” site.” We have always known that the McRib is a confused little sandwich, but I wonder - when will it come back again? Will consumers not want to buy McRibs in 15-20 years? I have a feeling that the McRib will never really die.

The rebirth of the McRib has taken me down a food memory lane of sorts. I was 13 when I had my first McRib and was at a point in my life in which I didn’t think or care about what I ate. In a way, I miss not having to put so much thought into my food consumption. However, the McRib now sounds disgusting to me and I know that I will not feel well after eating it. Having a better understanding of the source of my food has been a blessing. Knowing my farmer makes me feel safe and the McRib with its’ fake rib rack shape scares the bejesus out of me!

One last McRib morsel - a clip from the Colbert Report on the McDonalds classic: Colbert Report - The McRib is Back

{ 1 comment }

A New Era

by Janet Ehlers on October 21, 2010 · 3 comments

I have officially stolen The Reluctant Eater away from Mr. Ryan Wanger. After a year of neglect, it’s time to give the TRE a little love and revive the conversation.

Here’s the Deal: I’m Ryan’s potentially lovely wife who also loves food. Nope, that’s a lie - I’m obsessed with food. I plan to continue asking questions about personal and national food choices. In addition to Ryan’s amazing foundation, I will also talk about the relationship between health and food allergies. Food is a DRUG. The overall goal is to challenge the many relationships people have with food and share awesome (and sometimes awful) news, recipes, and food facts.

Have a healthy day!

{ 3 comments }

@KezzaMcDezza shows us why in under 140 characters:

It pisses me off that our HEALTH insurance company brings pizza and coke for a lunch and learn. #thisiswhyyourefat

(link)

Interesting to think about though. Why aren’t they interested in keeping us healthy? Shouldn’t we be granted lots of free preventative care? Won’t they save money since we’ll be paying into insurance that we won’t use?

The medical world has been messed up for a long, long time. Will our band-aid solutions be enough?

(PS - that last part of the quote is a reference to the incredible website This Is Why You Are Fat)

{ 3 comments }

Watch this three minute video of a food artist.

{ 1 comment }

Copyright 2009, The Reluctant Eater
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