Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Fresh-fish deal, rude worker at Whole Foods Market

At Whole Foods Market in Paramus, an employee at the Allegro coffee counter hides, leaving only her store cap visible, left. Earlier, she wouldn't allow me to pay for store-made chili at the counter, even though I have paid for soup and coffee there on numerous visits. When I complained to a supervisor, I got the chili for free.


By VICTOR E. SASSON
Editor

I stopped at Whole Foods Market on Monday to buy more of the store's terrific organic whole-wheat shells and spaghetti from Italy, but found only shells.

I put two 1-pound boxes in my reusable shopping bag ($1.39 each), and wandered over to the fresh fish counter, where a display included bluefish and porgies landed in New Jersey for only $4.99 a pound.

With prices like that -- about what I would pay at a Korean supermarket -- I picked up a whole, wild-caught porgy for dinner.

At home, I squeezed lime juice over the fish and seasoned it while heating up leftover bottled marinara sauce, a can of organic diced tomatoes from Costco Wholesale and a few ounces of extra-virgin olive oil.

Meanwhile, I boiled water to cook 2 cups of the 365 Everyday Value whole wheat pasta shells, which were al dente in less time than listed on the box.

I placed the whole fish over the sauce, covered the pan and cooked it for about 15 minutes. I removed the fish, added the drained shells and mixed them well with the sauce.

The sweet porgy was terrific with the pasta and a glass of red wine. A salad of simply dressed Earthbound Farm Organic Spring Mix and Sunset-brand Gourmet Cucumbers finished the meal. 



Wild-caught porgy with organic pasta shells, both from Whole Foods Market. I ate the rest of the fish on Tuesday night and finished the shells this morning with an omelet of egg whites, smoked wild salmon, reduced-fat Swiss cheese and pesto, the last four from Costco Wholesale.

The porgy cooked in a covered pan on top of the sauce. I sprinkled Organic No-Salt Seasoning from Costco over the fish, and black pepper and a few red-pepper flakes over the sauce.

At Whole Foods Market, "local" porgies, fluke and other wild-caught fish were landed in New Jersey.


Customer disservice

I returned to Whole Foods Market in Paramus around lunchtime on Tuesday, looking for 365 Everyday Value Organic Whole Wheat Spaghetti, which was out of stock the day before.

I couldn't resist a 16-0unce cup of vegan Heirloom Bean Chili from the store's hot soup bar ($5.99 plus tax).

But when I saw long checkout lines and no customers at the Allegro coffee counter, I went there to pay for my chili.

The employee refused, saying it was "store policy." 

I mentioned that I had paid for coffee and soup there before, but didn't want to have coffee until later. She still refused.

"That's some customer service," I told her.

I went to a checkout line, paid $6.41 for the chili and stopped at a small desk beyond the registers, telling a supervisor what happened at the coffee counter.

He apologized, said "store policy" is to allow customers to pay for one non-coffee item at the Allegro counter and told me to go to customer service for a refund of the $6.41.

That was a delicious cup of mildly spicy chili.

Before I left the store, I bought three 1-pound boxes of 365 Everyday Value Organic Whole Wheat Spaghetti ($1.39 each).



Two cups of Whole Foods Market 365 Everyday Value Organic Whole Wheat Shells were enough for three meals, including this morning's omelet breakfast.


No comments:

Post a Comment

Please try to stay on topic.