A Whole Foods recently opened in my city. It is all the news. I admit that I was slightly anxious for its arrival. I was looking forward to more choices for my new gluten-free diet. I am not a stranger to the idea of Whole Foods. After all, I do call the Seattle area my home, but I had never been to one. I had a couple of hours to kill on Saturday, so I sent my husband a text and made my way to Whole Foods.
As I drove into the parking lot I noticed quite the commotion. I also noticed there were no parking spaces. Well, there was one. It was the electric car charging station spot. I am not sure South Carolina is quite there yet. I drove around a bit. I almost felt like I was at the Naval Hospital again driving around and around until I got lucky enough to be in a row where someone was leaving. I did find a spot after not to long of searching. Oh, I was excited now! I was looking forward to the beauty of gluten-free goodness.
I walked around the store taking it all in. I am on this new kick, you see. A kick to eat better and feed my family less processed foods. It is dadgum a lot of work, but I thought if anyone was going to have these foods it would be Whole Foods. And so, I walked around.
The produce section was OK. It is all free trade and organic and so forth. It is also very expensive. I moved to the seafood section because, as I said I am from the Pacific Northwest, and I am now living in the desert as far as sea food is concerned. It was all right. There was some local shrimp. Great! Farm raised Atlantic Salmon. Blech. There was some Wild Cod that I may go back for later. We will see. It depends if I feel like braving the parking lot again.
I continued my stroll into the dairy department. Oh, the cheese! I may as well have been in France. It was a heavenly sight. Every cheese you can possibly imagine. I didn’t know what any of them might taste like, but who cares? They were beautifully wrapped and placed in these baskets to make them look so enticing. I picked one up. $18! Oh, my. Yeah. It stayed there.
I recently read that grass-fed beef is the way to go. I believe it. I would prefer my beef not feed with genetically modified corn and all that. If anyone in my area was going to have some grass-fed beef it would be here. I picked up a flank steak. $30!! Yes, that deserves two exclamation points regardless of what any English professor might say. I have 5 people to feed here. On one income. It doesn’t matter how good grass-fed beef is for me, it isn’t going to happen. Moving on.
So with every bit of my fantasy crushed I shopped the inner aisles. You know what I found? Processed food. Not even kidding. It was organic. It might have even been gluten-free, but it was processed. I don’t care what you say, but organic mac and cheese, is still processed. If you have to smack a packet of cheese a couple of times against your leg so you can dump it in the noodles, it is still a convenience food, and you are paying for that. Organic or not.
I did find that they carried some of my flours that I need. That is nice. They also had a special on my Mighty Tasty Gluten Free Hot Cereal which really isn’t all that tasty. I picked up a couple of those. I also picked up some gluten-free lasagna noodles because I have a hankering for some lasagna, and I am not making my own noodles even though I have four different recipes for them.
My sister mentioned to me that Whole Foods has their own gluten-free bakery that makes all kinds of goodies. I won’t lie, this intrigued me. I found it and was amazed by all the choices. I picked up a loaf of bread, and that would end my shopping at Whole Foods. Just to note, I made a grilled cheese sandwich out of it today, and I prefer Udi’s. So those of you without a Whole Foods near you never fear! You aren’t missing anything.
Overall, I have to say that I was disappointed. I will continue to go to Earthfare. Another store that caters to the health conscious and those of us that can’t eat wheat. It is more intimate and has everything I need. I just don’t need to have a lot of gluten-free convenience foods. I have found that making my own is just as easy once I get going. Plus, as an added bonus, it is probably half the cost.
I think it is great that Whole Foods has come to the area. New businesses bring jobs. Jobs are great right now. I am not complaining, but I am not going to shop there. It was fun. I know what is there. My food budget is already bursting at the seams. I am going to do my best with what I can afford and not feel any guilt about it.
All this to say that if you live in an area without a Whole Foods, and you are like me, it is fine. You are OK. I promise. But if you have a lot of money to spend on groceries, by all means shop there! It is a beautiful store.
And… Oh my gosh, remind me never to blog again after I have had a glass of wine. Ok, it was two. If you read this before I fixed everything and realized that I was talking about Whole Foods and not World Market, I am sorry. I have now fixed it.
And..And…Thanks, Kristy for letting me know that I DIDN’T fix it! Yikes. That was bad. Never again. I promise.