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Fenway Star Market safe for awhile

The Boston Business Journal reports Wegmans, once slated for the revamped Landmark Center, now has no plans to move into the Fenway anytime soon.

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Their urban concept stores leave a lot to be desired, something I'm reminded of on my bi-monthly trips up to Burlington, or anytime I go "home."

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for a Trader Joes.

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Agree. I'd take the old, grimey Shaw's back again.

Star Market's business development twerps arbitrarily moved everything around, and nixed all the things that make a neighborhood store "work." Like stocking gingerbread mix in November/December.

Example 2: Chinese noodles used to be sold at the Shaw's in 8 oz cans or 1 lb bags. Those of us in 1 or 2 person households can realistically only use so many Chinese noodles a month before they go stale.

And yet, the "star" leadership at Star stopped stocking 8 oz cans in all their Metro-Boston stores. They only sell the 1lb bags. That's ducking fumb.

I've seen this all across the new "Star" concept. Shaw's are stocking all of their low-graded, re-treated, urban "Stars" with bulk-size shite, based on suburban purchase trends.

Given the incoherent rearrangement of their stores (esp at the Pru and on Fenway), plus their garbage offerings, I now buy non-perishables online and hold my nose as I resort to TJ or WF for fresh meat and veg.

Shaw's/Star Market really just doesn't have a dang clue.

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The Fenway Star is organized in a very bizarre manner. It's as if somebody's house was haphazardly converted into a supermarket. Too many nooks and crannies. I haven't been there in a while but the last time I was there the Italian food section wasn't even in an aisle, it was in a sort of alcove off of the entrance. Nooks and crannies are fine for an antique shop and other establishments of that nature, but a supermarket should be more utilitarian.

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They eliminated that weird alcove during the latest renovation.

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I would not rely on fresh food from Trader Joe's. Their packaged and frozen stuff is all good but any produce I buy goes bad right away

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I want Cheerios not goddamned Trader-Os.

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Obviously you've never tried them. They're actually called Joe's O's and they are much better than the outrageously overpriced Cheerios.

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Cheetos are better then either one!

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Yeah give the Trader Joe's thing a rest. Trader Joe's has repeated said they have no interest in opening any more stores in this area. Plus there's 3 TJ's very close to this Star. (Cambridge, Brookline, BackBay)

So stop asking, and just keep dreaming.

I've said this before and I'll say it again, I fail to see everyone's fascination with Trader Joe's. It's not a full supermarket, but rather a specialty store. It's not a replacement for a full sized grocery store, as they lack many fresh items. You can't do a full week's grocery shopping there because they lack so many regular items.

Yeah they have some fresh items, but not alot of them. Sorry I don't consider meat packed in a cyropack, "fresh". They don't even have a great selection of produce, and it's all prepackaged too.

Yeah some of the products are OK. But its all boxed or frozen. Its really no different than hitting the freezer section at Stop & Shop. Nutritionally they aren't that much better than the frozen stuff at S&S either. All loaded up with salt and preservatives.

And not for nothing, in locations where they could expand their grocery offering, like the Cambridge location, almost 1/2 of the store is booze. I understand that selling hard to find brands of beer and wine is part of their business, but offer more grocery items so you're positioned more as a grocery store than a specialty shop.

I hate to say it, but I'd shop at Whole Foods over Trader Joe's any day. And that says alot.. I really despise WF with a passion (it's way over priced). At least there I can do all my grocery shopping in one swoop.

I see Trader Joe's like this... Aldi/Save-A-Lot/Price Rite are stores of store brand prepacked garbage for poor people. While Trader Joe's are stores of store brand prepackaged garbage for the upper class. Same thing, but different labels and different market. But essentially the same thing. All prepackage garbage.

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(face in palms)

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I agree. Friends go to Trader Joe's at least once a week without fail. It's a necessary trip for them. They rave about the quality and organic products. I wander in every now and then, and can't find anything I want to buy. I do use frozen food available at the regular market, but don't buy pre-made sauces, and pre-cut produce, frozen fish, etc., so I inevitably buy some fresh flowers, which are a good price. (I go to WF's for a few items, and to buy one or two needed items if I'm in the area.)

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I know I'm in the minority here. And trust me folks, I've TRIED to like this place since everyone raves about it.

I will wander in there if I have time to kill after leaving MicroCenter while waiting for the bus to go back to Central, but like you, I walk around and really don't see anything I want to buy, except I've was on a Charles Shaw Merlot kick for a while (only because it was cheap and decent, so I bought a case of it). But other than that, I can do without the frozen or boxed food.

Its like the fish there.. why would I buy it there? It's frozen fish that was shipped from elsewhere. Not when I can hit up a fresh fish market at Haymarket and get better quality fish that wasn't flash frozen. I'd rather eat Mrs Pauls over flash frozen fish from TJ's any day.

I don't think the quality is all that. It's on par with most other store brands, and I will admit it's better than Save-A-Lot or Price Rite's store brand, but about the same as Market Basket or Stop & Shop brand. It's really nothing special or a reason to go out of my way for.

I've often said I can take a bag of Cheetos, dump the contents into a different bag, slap a Trader Joe's label and an Organic sticker and people would buy it buy the truckload.

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TJ's in metro Boston are too crowded

I pop into the one on Boyston for lunch items but gave up on Cambridge one when I frequented that area. Parking and shopping was a zoo.

However now I go to the one in Hingham and it's great. Small enough to browse a few aisles and pick up some snacks or frozen goods or green household items

Some different flavor from the big markets. And it's not a big production like trip to supermarket can be. Good staff ratio and cheerful helpful workers.
And reasonable prices.

I'm a fan.

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Yeah it isn't a supermarket.. but why do people always want one then? This is the first paragraph of my post above. "Let's replace the Star with a Trader Joe's"

WHY?!? If it's not a supermarket. It's not a replacement. In that area, your options for grocery shopping.. if the Fenway Star is gone.. are Fenway Target (limited), Shaw's Pru, and Stop & Shop Brigham Circle. None of those are very walkable from the Fenway. Well they are walkable.. its a hike tho.

There's a reason why that Star/Shaw's has been there for decades, when it's a sucky store. It serves the needs of a supermarket in that neighborhood.

So stop asking for supermarkets to be replaced with Trader Joe's. They aren't a full scale supermarket. Saying "let's add a Trader Joe's in ADDITION to the local supermarket" is fine, but don't ask to replace it.

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You've convinced me. Where do i sign the petition against them!

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things I've grown to like about Trader Joe's is that they are excellent about product recalls.

They will post signs at the register and on the shelf/case where the item had been stocked, as well as send an email to everyone on their mailing list to notify them of their product recall.

During the last few bouts of big recalls, I purchased affected food from several stores. Trader Joe's was the only store that informed me of the recall: for other stores, I had to have read about it in the news and go to the FDA's product recall website to confirm my food had been recalled.

Since I can buy frozen broccoli anywhere, I would prefer to purchase it from the store that's going to shoot me an email when it turns out to be tained with listeria so I don't eat it.

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another retail analogy would be Primark, which sells it's own discount brand of fashions, but using more hip, urban marketing. But essentially, the quality is really no better than less hip, sophisticated retail outlets that sell their own discount fashions.

DISCLAIMER:

I shop at TJ and Primark....primary because they're prices are affordable.

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Same with Gap owned properties (i.e. Old Navy. Gap. Banana Republic) each one is geared toward a certain market, but it's about the same products in the end. (their own brand).

Old Navy is for families who are on a budget.
Gap is mid-range
And Banana is "higher end" (and I use that term loosely).

And while the styles may different from store to store, often you'll find similar items between the stores.

And the same could be said about Target vs Walmart. Products are almost identical, but Target is hip. WalMart is not. It's all about marketing your base.

And yeah you're right. TJ is affordable. And an affordable organic alternative to WF.

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Banana Republic

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Corrected.

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Seems like a perfect chance for Shaw's/Star Market to build a flagship store at Landmark Center and sell or redevelop their land for big money. Together with the subterranean Star Market coming to North Station, the brand wold have an opportunity to refresh its approach and perhaps even be a Shaw's Test Kitchen of sorts.

But they seem too mired in corporate inertia to be able to do so.

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Just thinking in terms of the Comm Ave store near Packard's Corner.
Yeah the prices are fairly high. And their kitchen/factory that supplies all their stores provides the same, bland stuff as the others. But their produce and meat section isn't too bad.

And the made in-store Sushi [via a third party vendor] is as good as most any restaurant I've eaten such at - It's likely the particular person working at said location.

And it has all the normal [non-crunchy] food stuffs and household goods one could desire. But if you're inclined that way they have whole aisles just for that group as well.

And its right by the train.

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