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My Upscale Weakness

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I’m not much of a shopper and I really have no use for “upscale” stores where everything costs three times what it would at JcPenney’s, which is my go-to store for finding clothing and handbags and such. I don’t care about designer names and I don’t think having some guy’s name on the side of a handbag makes it any cuter. I don’t even enjoy looking at over-priced stuff. I walk past all those fancy-looking stores at the mall without even the slightest curiosity about what over-priced treasures they contain.

However, I have to admit to one weakness. I love upscale grocery stores, like Central Market in Mill Creek. Sure, Central Market carries the rather generic Western Family brand but they’re really overpriced on pretty much everything. A carton of eggs costs a $1 more than it does at Haggen, which is another over-priced grocery store in the area. But I love to go there, even just to look.

The produce department is a fruit and veggie paradise.

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There are piles and piles of fruits and veggies, all unblemished and without fruit flies swarming around them. They have star fruit, weird kinds of mangoes I’ve never heard of and things like red currants, which I would have no idea what to do with but are beautiful.

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Then there’s the bakery! They have a huge selection of cakes, cookies, donuts and scones, some made with organic ingredients and many are gluten-free. And their cakes….

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There’s no nasty, overly sweet fake buttercream here. These cakes have truffle frosting and a light whipped cream coating. The yellow cake on the left is a lemon raspberry truffle cake and is the one I insist on having for my birthday. Sure, I feel a little guilty for spending $17.99 on a cake but the raspberry filling and truffle frosting sweep that guilt right away. Birthdays only come around once a year and if I’m going to have a sugar and gluten hangover what I’m eating has to be worth it!

Even the pre-packaged boxes of cookies aren’t your standard chocolate chip made-without-real- butter like other grocery stores.

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They’re cute and colorful and made with whole wheat flour. Practically health food!

And speaking of health food, Central Market is the place to go for that. They have a wide variety of healthy items, like beet slaw, nutritious gluten-free flours like teff and pretty much everything else you can think of.

And since it’s Mill Creek (an upscale little city that started with a golf course and country club), they have a huge, expensive wine section.

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After the produce section, the department I most drool over is the bulk spice, tea and herb aisle. All those lovely jars lined up like that….

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I loathe grocery shopping. I’m usually in a bad mood all day on the day that I have to go to the grocery store. But Central Market? It’s a delight to walk their aisles! However, it’s also dangerous to the budget. Yesterday, I went there for teff flour and ended up spending way too much for far too little. However, I now have a high-quality fish oil that tastes like peaches and mangoes and doesn’t cause fish-oil burps! šŸ™‚

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6 thoughts on “My Upscale Weakness

  1. I can relate. When I lived in South Australia one of my favourite places to visit was also called Central Market. It is a market though and buying stuff there was usually no more expensive, and sometimes cheaper than the supermarket or local grocery store. I loved the smell of the place, coffee, spices, cooking smells and looking at the fruit and vegetables. I sometimes saw things there that I had no idea what to do with or even what they were. It was where you went for Asian ingredients, European delicacies, fresh fish, delicatessen items. You name it and you could probably buy it there. It’s one of the few things about living there that I miss.

    1. Your Central Market sounds like a fun place! I can understand you missing it. Central Market is the place I would miss most if we moved away from this area. Most of our grocery stores just don’t have much in the way of healthy food.

  2. Gosh, we share so many things, Trisha.

    I hate window shopping, but absolutely love gourmet food shops and markets too. I can’t afford them, but when I’ve got some spare money, it always goes on my favourite food produce. I compared prices with one of my American fellow CFS/MCS friends and she was shocked at how expensive our food was though. Our organic food was about 3 times the price of hers. Good fresh (preferably organic) food is about the only thing (apart from calcium/vitamins etc) that I spend money on. I love the smell of spices and coffee beans too.

    1. How terrible that organic produce is so much more expensive there! It’s bad enough here. At most places around here, the organic isn’t that much more than non-organic but produce in general is expensive enough that eating only organic meat and produce would cost a fortune. It’s a shame that trying to be healthy is so expensive that most people can’t do it.

  3. LOL… my idea of grocery shopping is spending about 10 minutes after I get off work wandering through the areas I’ve just spent all night in buying the same things week after week depending on whether I need more or not. I get giddy if there’s chicken marked down because it’s almost to its sell by date… that gets scooped up and put in the deep freeze! I haven’t bought full priced chicken in almost six months!

  4. I wish 10 minutes were all it took for me to grocery shop! In regular, crappy grocery stores I want to get out of there as fast as possible. It doesn’t help that the grocery store I usually shop at is next to a retirement home. Some customers can take five minutes just to pick out a yogurt. And that store never has meat marked down. I really need to find somewhere else to shop! But not Central Market. I’m still reeling from the total of what I bought the other day.

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