Monday, September 3, 2012

A fresh look at Corrado's Family Affair

The sign on Main Avenue in Clifton has lured frugal shoppers for decades.


Are there any other food stores with a more intriguing name than Corrado's Family Affair?

The big, ethnic supermarket on Main Avenue in Clifton -- just a couple of blocks over the Paterson line -- has been packing them in for more than 50 years.

The lure is a lot of food for just a little money, though there are fewer bargains here than in the past.



Part of the produce section at Corrado's Family Affair.

Jersey Fresh peaches were $1.39 a pound, the same price I paid for peaches at the Paramus ShopRite, but I ate only two of the latter and threw two away.

Two packages of Campari tomatoes were only $1, but they were less than a full pound.


After I wrote about buying South Carolina and New Jersey peaches for $1.39 a pound at the Paramus ShopRite -- they turned out to be lousy -- a reader said the new Corrado's supermarket in Wayne had Jersey Fresh fruit for only 99 cents a pound, and they were good.

Today, I went to the original Corrado's in Clifton, where New Jersey peaches were $1.39 a pound, so I bought four and will let them ripen on the counter.

I went for peaches and bought so much more.

Fresh bi-color corn, cold to the touch, were six for $1.99, and after I steamed them, they turned out to be sweet and needed nothing.

One-pound packages of strawberries were $2 each, sweet red peppers were 99 cents a pound and sweet orange peppers were $1.39 a pound.

But green-red peppers appeared wrinkled and old, and I passed, despite the low price.

Two 25-ounce bottles of Don Bruno Vodka Sauce, made with Italian tomatoes but no sugar, were $2.50 each.


An 8.8-ounce of squid-ink pasta, top, was $5.99 -- or $10.89 a pound.



My biggest purchase was six 1-pound packages of Atlantic Pearl Salted Codfish Fillets from Canada at $6.99 each -- far lower than at ShopRite or Fairway Market in Paramus.

The high price of salted cod has prompted us to buy salted Alaskan pollock from Costco Wholesale, but my wife says the taste and texture aren't quite the same.

Corrado's is one of the few stores that carries squid-ink pasta, but an 8.8-ounce package was $5.99, and I decided against buying one.

The original Corrado's opened in 1960, and has expanded across Getty Avenue to a Corrado's shopping center -- with a store for amateur wine makers, garden center, pet store and so much more.

There is even a Corrado's gas station on Getty, where regular was $3.56.9 cents a gallon today.

I'd shop at Corrado's Family Affair almost every time I visited Fattal's Syrian Bakery and the Middle Eastern restaurants in nearby South Paterson.

But I stopped going there a few years ago after produce quality slipped, and I saw price stickers placed over expiration dates on organic salad mixes.

Today, Corrado's has liquor, flower and houseware stores inside the main building, as well as one corner devoted to brick oven pizza.

As good as Corrado's prices are on many items, I still had to go to Fattal's today for Al Shark spicy Moroccan sardines, still only 99 cents a can, and a gallon of Merve Aryan Yogurt Drink for $7.79.

I also noticed Corrado's is charging $12.99 a pound for Manchego sheep's milk cheese from Spain -- more than at Whole Foods Market in Paramus or the Hackensack Costco. 

I also couldn't find any antibiotic-free chicken for family members who eat poultry.


Corrado's Family Affair, 1578 Main Ave., Clifton; 973-340-0628.


Fattal's Bakery, 975-77 Main St., Paterson; 973-742-7125.




1 comment:

  1. Thank you for your review of Corrado's. I generally go to the Wayne location, unless I need to go to Paterson on an errand (like the wonderful Fattel's). Wayne Corrado's does indeed have some different items from the Main Avenue location. Wayne has antibiotic-free chicken and their fresh produce is better quality, too. This Stanford University study on organic meats and produce is creating quite a stir, no? http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/04/science/earth/study-questions-advantages-of-organic-meat-and-produce.html

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