Thursday, August 2, 2012

The Fresh Market, Bedford, New Hampshire, So long Shaw's

Recently, The Fresh Market, a new specialty food store opened at the Bedford mall and we decided to check it out. Fresh Market is a chain with locations spread throughout the Eastern United States. As far as I can tell there are only a few in New England including Avon and Westport, Connecticut and Hingham, Massachusetts.

You are probably like us and are tired of chain grocery stores like Shaw's, and Hannaford. For those that live in the Bedford area you may have already said good bye to these stores after finding The Fresh Market. Our visit left us with a very good impression and wishing that we lived closer so we could go all the time

As you enter the store, you will see that The Fresh Market is smaller than your typical grocery store. The space is split into different sections including flowers, produce, meats and fish, deli, prepared foods, desserts and dry goods.

The first area you will notice is the flower section. They have a variety of fresh cut flowers for giving. My wife commented that the potted orchids were very pretty. To be honest I know very little about plants. I once had a cactus but even that didn't make it. Anyway, if you like flowers you will probably appreciate what they have done.

Next, we hit the produce area and they have a fresh selection of fruits and vegetables. Since I love fresh blueberries, I picked a pint up for $3.33 and thought that was a reasonable price. In addition, we purchased a couple of pounds of cherries and they taste as if they just came off the tree.

On to the deli which was our favorite section. Here, everything seems to be kicked up a notch from your standard grocery store. Yes, they have meats for slicing and you will see plenty of options for anything you might want. Some samples of specialties include blue cheese broccoli salad with bacon, honey lemon bowtie pasta, baked potato salad and spicy Thai noodles. We also picked up some Waldorf chicked salad and regular chicken salad, you can judge these for yourself but all are much improved over the typical grocery store and delicious. You will also find rotisserie chickens, sandwiches, pre made pizzas ready for cooking along with chicken cordon blue and chicken ricotta, my mouth waters just thinking about it.

Not to be outdone, there is a large meat section including fresh fish and after looking this over we decided to buy some ground chuck for hamburgers with just the right amount of fat and a fabulous flavor. They also have premade burgers, filets, steaks, chops, lamb and sausages. I have been to a lot of butcher shops over the years and it looks like they have everything.

Last and certainly not least there is a full service bakery and the desserts did look amazing. Unfortunately we did not have a chance to sample but based on what I could see you would not be disappointed. Their bakery makes a variety of breads and rolls. We bought the sundried tomato with Asiago cheese, unbelievable.

The service at The Fresh Market is top notch. Everyone is willing to help and they are good about suggesting that you sample an item before purchase. Remember the time you bought something thinking it would be great and got home to find out it wasn't what you thought. That won't happen at The Fresh Market.

For anyone living anywhere close to Bedford I am recommending The Fresh Market. You may still have to go to your local grocery store for some necessities but for the items where they specialize, it is so long Shaw's and I'll see you at The Fresh Market.