Where to stock up [Greater Boston area, MA]

Digga, I feel as if we are often one step behind the other. We chose to do our distancing at Crane Beach yesterday. Great call by the Trustees drop entrance fees and keep the estate grounds open. I heard the Codman estate in Lincoln is doing the same. At least someone is making sensible decisions for others currently. We are choosing to get out early with the kids when it is much more quiet. We had a nice hike in the Fells on Saturday.

We noticed Great Marsh Brewing Company. My immediate thought was that it’s an unfortunate time to open a new operation like that. I look forward to trying it in the future however. We almost stopped at Woodman’s, but we’ve got plenty of food at home and are just shutting that down for now.

As much as all of us here love and support restaurants. I do feel the governor has made the correct and responsible decision in closing bars and taking restaurants to take out only. It breaks my heart as I know many will reopen. We had not eaten out since last Friday (seems like months ago), and went out with a last hurrah omakase at Cafe Sushi. We purchased a gift card when we left there, and at many local places. We will be back.

I’m a bit paranoid on my best days, so needless to say this entire situation has been difficult. I am still sorting my feelings on doing take out dining in the short term. I think we may do a bit from local places we trust and wish to support, but I’m honestly not sure. I’d be interested to hear all of your thoughts.

For all of you concerned about keeping your cupboards stocked, I hope we can share tips here as well. I personally can’t cram into stores with other people who still can’t seem to treat each other kindly despite this situation. I have found that while the Costcos and Whole Foods of the world are crammed, smaller markets and bodegas have most of what we need with much smaller crowds, even if we need to be a flexible. It’s a bit harder to get a delivery window via Amazon Prime Now, but we have managed to get enough to feel good about our supplies for now.

Perhaps we can break this discussion out into a separate thread. separate from the Great Marsh Brewing Company thread?

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@uni, separate thread as requested re: stocking the cupboards.

I’ll likely do some takeout over the next few weeks. Living in Medford it’ll likely be prob. mostly Chilli Garden–I have always had good experiences ordering directly from them via phone.

As for stocking up, as an old New Englander I generally always have a week or two’s worth of food in the house. But I still went out on Saturday morning to Burlington, and it was actually fine. HMart, Market Basket and Trader Joe’s were mostly stocked (The chicken case in HMart was cleared out and the meat in Market Basket was scarce, but otherwise the foodstuffs were plentiful). All three places were less busy than usual. (Also I tried that new Viet Citron place and it was pretty good! Need to write that up). I think maybe my one pro tip would be to get up early to go–personally as an early riser in general this always confers an advantage and since they seem to be doing a lot of overnight restocking it’s a good bet things will be better if you don’t wait until later in the day.

I do also think hitting up smaller and/or specialty vendors is a good angle. The Indian market on Winter Hill (which is pretty nice) I think is pretty well set up, and I walked by that Neighborhood Produce market in Magoun Square yesterday and they seemed to have the usual stuff that they always have.

The supply chains seem fine, just not totally prepared for a nationwide surge where everyone stocks up all at once. Sticking to what I can find at smaller markets and getting to bigger places at off hours in the AM is going to be my strategy for this, fwiw.

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A friend in Watertown was panicking because her online grocery order got cancelled. I told her just to hit the local markets In Watertown Square and she did quite well.

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FYI to anyone interested:
Clover is selling boxes for soups, vegetables and many other goodies for pickup tomorrow and Wednesday. I am very tempted…did their winter moon roots share this winter and it was great.

https://cloverfoodlab.wufoo.com/forms/m610ak81nllnme/

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I was completely out of my usual haunts (Somerville) yesterday and stopped at Roche Brothers in Wellesley and it was moderately crowded and very poorly stocked. I’ve never been there before, so it’s hard to judge, but entire aisles that were labelled things like “pasta” and “paper goods” were empty. I was unable to purchase any Teddy peanut butter, and the only eggs were these multi-colored half dozen packs for $3.99. My thinking had been to avoid my usual Camberville Market Basket/Trader Joe’s rotation and try something completely different as my path had taken me way out to the burbs, but that was a a backfire. Today, I’ll walk over to the Arlington Whole Foods on my lunch break to try and make up some of the gaps on my list.

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A friend just reported that her hubby hit the Burlington MB very early this morning and it seemed well-stocked. I need to stop at HMart later this week (if my Friday work deadline and spring onion allows it). I’ll report back.

TJ’s Arlington had plentiful (plastic-wrapped) produce but freezers were empty. Milk was plentiful. No TP there or at Walgreens (not looking to hoard, but we are getting close to running out). :expressionless:

ETA: Please don’t judge me, but we stopped into PJ Ryan’s on Sunday to say goodbyes to our favorite pub. We wouldn’t have stayed if it was very crowded - it wasn’t but there were enough folks there to keep our spirits buoyed. We chatted for a while with Conor, the owner, who thanked us for coming out. We talked a lot to our favorite bartender, Mike, who is very well-informed about the situation. He doesn’t know what’s he’s going to do during the closure as he has no other gig. Over protests, he bought us a round of drinks to thank us for our patronage and for being friends. We left a big tip for waitstaff and kitchen. We gave our thanks to the kitchen and said goodbye. Mike had tears in his eyes when we left.

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I was by the Star Market on Western Ave early this am so I stopped in to fill a few gaps in the pantry. They did have some TP and Clorox wipes. We don’t need any currently but the person in line behind me made sure I knew they had that stuff in case I wanted to get any. As with most other places, the paper goods and cleaning products were pretty picked over, however there was plenty of fresh produce and everything else. It also seemed like they were restocking quickly.

There were only about 5 other customers which was nice. The staff and store didn’t seem to be practicing any hygiene or cleaning though.

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went to somerville market basket early (for me: 8:30am) yesterday.

no lines at the checkout. and there was plenty of fresh produce. the shelves were well stocked, with the exception of pasta (not an issue; i live alone and have a couple of pound. on hand) and toilet paper (since i have enough for the next few weeks and was taking the bus, i skipped the 24-packs that were all that was available).

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The image of Wonderwoman on the bus with a 24-pack of tp under each arm is irresistible.

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Just tried to go to TJs ARL for some emergency milk for next door neighbors who have 2 spring onions. Dang…TJs closed at 7 PM and won’t open until 9 AM. Check your local hours, but I bet this is chain-wide.

I got the last gallon of fat-free milk at Walgreens for my neighbors.

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Yeah, yeah, playing that neighbor card again, young digga.*

Next you’ll be saying it wasn’t you I saw staggering around this evening, chugging a jug (does one chug a jug – I’m never sure of the correct chugging lingo) of fat-free milk.

.* But, you’re a good egg … speaking of which, I need a dozen

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Uni, we’ve subscribed to Hello Fresh for years, mainly during weeks that my SO and I are pressed for time. We’ve upped or order to 4 meals/week, and I must say it lowers our stress level considerably, far beyond the convenience factor. No need to shop, the ingredients appear on our doorstep. I imagine Hello Fresh and the other meal kit vendors will become more popular.

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So obviously you are happy with the quality of ingredients and the overall deliciousness? Or is it just better than takeout?

Very happy. We’ve tried several of the others and each has strengths. The thing I most like about Hello Fresh is that each meal is in its own “kit”. With some of the meal kits you have to sort the ingredients. The quality of produce etc. tends to be very good. The Hello Fresh menus are not as adventurous as say, Blue Apron, but pretty tasty. Not a week goes by without lemon zest ;-).

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and much healthier than takeout because you control the amount of salt, oil, butter…

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fwiw, after three days stuck inside, I decided to go scope out Bob’s in Medford on the specialty market side. since the place is very narrow, I was willing to bail out if it was crowded but at 5 pm it was pretty deserted. they are serving their full complement of takeout foods, the shelves are stocked, and the fridges are full with their usual ravioli &c. Maybe I’ll start a different thread with what I got for takeout, it’s not that exciting but maybe we won’t have much else to talk about for some time.

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Thanks! I have signed up, will see what we think. If anyone else is considering it search for the $90 off promo which appears to get applied over your first 2 or 3 weeks.

Max, how’s the portion size? We’re pretty hearty eaters, and do intermittent fasting during the week and therefore are looking for something satisfying for dinner. I’m not planning on signing up now, but you never know when something like this might come in handy.

Portion sizes are decent. We order the “2” size but we are 3. For pasta dishes or soups there’s usually more than enough. Others we supplement - fish or meat dishes, for example - to turn it in to a proper meal for 3. If you order the “4” size you should be fine, and maybe have a leftover portion for lunch.

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