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  • Post #121 - February 15th, 2011, 2:23 pm
    Post #121 - February 15th, 2011, 2:23 pm Post #121 - February 15th, 2011, 2:23 pm
    I bought two of these (one for me and one for a gift). I just got an email from Groupon saying that they made a mistake and the limit was 1, so they are crediting me back the money for the 2nd one and taking it out of my account.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #122 - February 15th, 2011, 2:25 pm
    Post #122 - February 15th, 2011, 2:25 pm Post #122 - February 15th, 2011, 2:25 pm
    boudreaulicious wrote:
    Dave148 wrote:
    CM2772 wrote:I just purchased mine....in fact I purchased 2 as I planned on going there this weekend to pick up seafood for dinner.

    It's not valid until 2/21.


    And I don't think you can use more than 1--pretty sure it said one per person and one extra as a gift (although I suppose there's nothing to stop you from bringing someone along with you to use the 2nd one.)



    Took advantage of the Groupon and just got a notice that they are invalidating the one that is a gift:

    "Thanks so much for purchasing the Fresh Farms International Market Groupon! Unfortunately, there was an error in the original Fine Print that we've had to correct.

    There was supposed to be a limit of 1 Groupon per account. However, we mistakenly allowed some of you to make 2 purchases. This is our error, and we apologize for the inconvenience.

    We've reduced your quantity to 1 Groupon, and any refunds are already on their way to the card you used to make the purchase. They should be back on your account within 10 business days."

    Double nuts!!
    Coming to you from Leiper's Fork, TN where we prefer forking to spooning.
  • Post #123 - June 28th, 2011, 11:20 pm
    Post #123 - June 28th, 2011, 11:20 pm Post #123 - June 28th, 2011, 11:20 pm
    Since moving my office to Niles about 6 weeks ago, I've really become enamored with Fresh Farms, where I've been shopping regularly. I think the variety and quality of their goods is noteworthy. On almost every trip, I've shown up there with a diverse list and been able to find everything on it. I stopped in on Tuesday morning to pick up a few things for the office. One of the items was a baguette, which happened to be from Biondillo's bakery. It was one of the best baguettes I can remember having in Chicago. It was as light as a feather, had a great aroma, a beautiful crust and a soft, nicely uneven crumb. When I got it back to the office, I broke off a piece and chewed into it. Phenomenal. Who knew?

    I knew I was going to be there, so I brought a cooler along and intended to buy some wild salmon for home, which I did (more on that in a moment). While I was in the fish department I overheard a conversation between one of the fishmongers and a customer. He was going down the display case, pointing at each fish and giving his candid, unfiltered opinion about each of the offerings. "This one is good, this one is very good, this one is not good." Wait, what?* Did I just hear the guy actually tell his customer that some of the fish was not good? Indeed, I did. As he continued, it was clear that he was less than confident in some of the offerings in the case and had no problem being very up front with the customer about it. I found the exchange really refreshing. I personally, was less than 100% successful in my quest for wild salmon. I wanted King and the best looking stuff in the case was Sockeye. I ended up with a piece of King but from its pale color, it didn't really look wild. I plan on curing it and cold-smoking it, so only time will tell. In any case, it certainly did smell incredibly fresh.

    I'm glad Fresh Farms is so close to my office and plan to do more of my home grocery shopping there, now that it is incredibly convenient to do so.

    =R=

    *Thank you, Norm Macdonald :D
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #124 - June 29th, 2011, 8:19 am
    Post #124 - June 29th, 2011, 8:19 am Post #124 - June 29th, 2011, 8:19 am
    ronnie_suburban wrote:One of the items was a baguette, which happened to be from Biondillo's bakery. It was one of the best baguettes I can remember having in Chicago. It was as light as a feather, had a great aroma, a beautiful crust and a soft, nicely uneven crumb. When I got it back to the office, I broke off a piece and chewed into it. Phenomenal. Who knew?


    Biondillo sells to a lot of independent grocers in Chicago, and supplies Stanley's. I've never been terribly impressed by Biondillo's bread, though their Italian offerings are by far their best options. Biondillo's baguette has a rough-hewn, brown crust, and tastes too much like peasant-style Italian bread shaped in the form of a baguette to me. Fox & Obel is still the gold standard for baguettes in this town.
  • Post #125 - June 29th, 2011, 3:51 pm
    Post #125 - June 29th, 2011, 3:51 pm Post #125 - June 29th, 2011, 3:51 pm
    aschie30 wrote:
    ronnie_suburban wrote:One of the items was a baguette, which happened to be from Biondillo's bakery. It was one of the best baguettes I can remember having in Chicago. It was as light as a feather, had a great aroma, a beautiful crust and a soft, nicely uneven crumb. When I got it back to the office, I broke off a piece and chewed into it. Phenomenal. Who knew?


    Biondillo sells to a lot of independent grocers in Chicago, and supplies Stanley's. I've never been terribly impressed by Biondillo's bread, though their Italian offerings are by far their best options. Biondillo's baguette has a rough-hewn, brown crust, and tastes too much like peasant-style Italian bread shaped in the form of a baguette to me. Fox & Obel is still the gold standard for baguettes in this town.

    Have to agree about F&O. Their bread program is the best I know of in Chicagoland. Pamela Fitzpatrick is no longer a mere Silverton protege. She's a star in her own right.

    Regarding Biondillo's, I was very pleased to find any bread of this quality in a grocery store. Not sure I agree about the re-shaped peasant bread, though. I bought one of those, too and it tasted and felt quite different from the baguette.

    Bottom line for me is that Fresh Farms seems to be an exceptional store with a huge variety of products that are superior to what can be found in most local groceries -- even our smaller, mid-level chains.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #126 - July 5th, 2011, 1:00 pm
    Post #126 - July 5th, 2011, 1:00 pm Post #126 - July 5th, 2011, 1:00 pm
    ronnie_suburban wrote:...He was going down the display case, pointing at each fish and giving his candid, unfiltered opinion about each of the offerings. "This one is good, this one is very good, this one is not good." Wait, what?* Did I just hear the guy actually tell his customer that some of the fish was not good? Indeed, I did. As he continued, it was clear that he was less than confident in some of the offerings in the case and had no problem being very up front with the customer about it. I found the exchange really refreshing.


    I just had this same experience at the bakery case. There was a tempting looking confection called a L'Amour Cake. Chocolate, chocolate, and more chocolate. I asked what this was, and the lady behind the counter said "it's not good." "How come?" "If you like chocolate, it is good, but this one is not so fresh." Then she proceeded to tell me what was good: the red velvet and carrot cakes, both of which I also wanted. They were all in the same price range so I knew she wasn't screwing me. She not only saved me from buying inferior cake but helped me in narrowing my choices from 3 to 2. I felt like I just came from visiting Santa Claus at Macy's.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #127 - July 5th, 2011, 4:56 pm
    Post #127 - July 5th, 2011, 4:56 pm Post #127 - July 5th, 2011, 4:56 pm
    Living closer to Wheeling, I have been going to the Fresh Farms there and have finally realized that the Wheeling store is nothing like the Niles store. It appears that they are under completely different management or ownership. I went there in search of Excel corned beefs with no luck. I signed up for their weekly ad and have been there twice trying to buy some of the advertised specials, such as 2.99 lb veal chops and soft shell crab at 2.99 which were nowhere to be found. Finding and reading this thread which sounds only vaguely like the Wheeling store, I looked at the newsletter and sure enough, it only mentions the Niles store. How odd that two stores with the same name are so different.
  • Post #128 - July 5th, 2011, 6:25 pm
    Post #128 - July 5th, 2011, 6:25 pm Post #128 - July 5th, 2011, 6:25 pm
    imsscott wrote:Living closer to Wheeling, I have been going to the Fresh Farms there and have finally realized that the Wheeling store is nothing like the Niles store. It appears that they are under completely different management or ownership. I went there in search of Excel corned beefs with no luck. I signed up for their weekly ad and have been there twice trying to buy some of the advertised specials, such as 2.99 lb veal chops and soft shell crab at 2.99 which were nowhere to be found. Finding and reading this thread which sounds only vaguely like the Wheeling store, I looked at the newsletter and sure enough, it only mentions the Niles store. How odd that two stores with the same name are so different.


    The Niles store is really something special. I've not been to the one in Wheeling, but the "flagship" store on Devon doesn't have nearly the breadth of products (or the size) of the Niles location.
    Steve Z.

    “Only the pure in heart can make a good soup.”
    ― Ludwig van Beethoven
  • Post #129 - July 6th, 2011, 7:55 am
    Post #129 - July 6th, 2011, 7:55 am Post #129 - July 6th, 2011, 7:55 am
    stevez wrote:
    imsscott wrote:Living closer to Wheeling, I have been going to the Fresh Farms there and have finally realized that the Wheeling store is nothing like the Niles store. It appears that they are under completely different management or ownership. I went there in search of Excel corned beefs with no luck. I signed up for their weekly ad and have been there twice trying to buy some of the advertised specials, such as 2.99 lb veal chops and soft shell crab at 2.99 which were nowhere to be found. Finding and reading this thread which sounds only vaguely like the Wheeling store, I looked at the newsletter and sure enough, it only mentions the Niles store. How odd that two stores with the same name are so different.


    The Niles store is really something special. I've not been to the one in Wheeling, but the "flagship" store on Devon doesn't have nearly the breadth of products (or the size) of the Niles location.

    The Devon store, which I've shopped at for years, is essentially a produce market with some Indian items and a dairy section. No meat, fish, or real deli at the Devon FF.
  • Post #130 - July 6th, 2011, 8:11 am
    Post #130 - July 6th, 2011, 8:11 am Post #130 - July 6th, 2011, 8:11 am
    I thought this one was more Indian. The Niles store seems mostly focused on Indian, Middle Eastern and Greek, but there's a little of everything.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #131 - July 6th, 2011, 12:34 pm
    Post #131 - July 6th, 2011, 12:34 pm Post #131 - July 6th, 2011, 12:34 pm
    If anyone's looking for lamb offal, they've got it in spades. Spleen, heart, even fries.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #132 - July 25th, 2011, 2:40 pm
    Post #132 - July 25th, 2011, 2:40 pm Post #132 - July 25th, 2011, 2:40 pm
    They now have Amande, a yogurt made from cultured almond milk, so it's safe for the lactose intolerant. It's sweetened with fruit juice and it's pretty good (I had the strawberry) but a little too close in texture to Jello for my tastes.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #133 - November 5th, 2011, 10:51 am
    Post #133 - November 5th, 2011, 10:51 am Post #133 - November 5th, 2011, 10:51 am
    Fresh Farms is now selling Organic Grass-Fed Beef. Ribeyes and Strip steaks for $12.99 available in the butchers case. Didn't pick any up to try, but probably will in the near future.
  • Post #134 - November 5th, 2011, 5:57 pm
    Post #134 - November 5th, 2011, 5:57 pm Post #134 - November 5th, 2011, 5:57 pm
    I got my HoKa turkey from the Niles Fresh Farm last year, and will do so again this year (they even spatchcocked it for me, which provided some linguistic fun between me and the limited-English-speaking butcher). I love this place! It's the best source of fresh fish I've found in Chicago yet. I can't recommend the newly reopened cafe in front, though... maybe they're still getting up to speed?
    “Assuredly it is a great accomplishment to be a novelist, but it is no mediocre glory to be a cook.” -- Alexandre Dumas

    "I give you Chicago. It is no London and Harvard. It is not Paris and buttermilk. It is American in every chitling and sparerib. It is alive from tail to snout." -- H.L. Mencken
  • Post #135 - November 5th, 2011, 9:02 pm
    Post #135 - November 5th, 2011, 9:02 pm Post #135 - November 5th, 2011, 9:02 pm
    mamagotcha wrote:I can't recommend the newly reopened cafe in front, though... maybe they're still getting up to speed?

    Falafel =good
    hummus = decent
    chicken shawarma = distinctive and tasty

    Other cafe fare? See above.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #136 - November 7th, 2011, 9:03 am
    Post #136 - November 7th, 2011, 9:03 am Post #136 - November 7th, 2011, 9:03 am
    I'd recommend getting some of their food now...I worry about their status once Naf Naf opens.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #137 - November 7th, 2011, 9:11 am
    Post #137 - November 7th, 2011, 9:11 am Post #137 - November 7th, 2011, 9:11 am
    I just had this same experience at the bakery case. There was a tempting looking confection called a L'Amour Cake. Chocolate, chocolate, and more chocolate. I asked what this was, and the lady behind the counter said "it's not good." "How come?" "If you like chocolate, it is good, but this one is not so fresh." Then she proceeded to tell me what was good: the red velvet and carrot cakes, both of which I also wanted. They were all in the same price range so I knew she wasn't screwing me. She not only saved me from buying inferior cake but helped me in narrowing my choices from 3 to 2. I felt like I just came from visiting Santa Claus at Macy's.


    I love Fresh Farms, but I wish this woman was behind the bakery case when I was there a couple of weeks ago buying a cake for a small birthday celebration. I bought a red velvet cake that was horrible. The frosting was bordering on rancid tasting and the sponge almost literally crumbled into dust. The store was very gracious in giving us a complete refund the next day.

    But you should not have to rely on guidance in the bakery or fish section to get fresh product.
  • Post #138 - December 1st, 2011, 4:34 pm
    Post #138 - December 1st, 2011, 4:34 pm Post #138 - December 1st, 2011, 4:34 pm
    Dude, no way:
    You can buy balut here now. They're right over by the tofu, between produce and bread, in clear clamshell boxes.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #139 - December 2nd, 2011, 6:37 am
    Post #139 - December 2nd, 2011, 6:37 am Post #139 - December 2nd, 2011, 6:37 am
    Pie Lady wrote:Dude, no way:
    You can buy balut here now. They're right over by the tofu, between produce and bread, in clear clamshell boxes.



    I had no idea what balut was(were?) before this post. After a bit of research, I think I'm disgusted. These can't be good, can they?
  • Post #140 - December 9th, 2011, 7:44 pm
    Post #140 - December 9th, 2011, 7:44 pm Post #140 - December 9th, 2011, 7:44 pm
    Been going to Fresh Farms since it open though not regularly more like once and a while. The husband and I stopped in today because we were across the street at Half Priced Books. Besides buying the usual kalamata olives and feta cheese from behind the deli counter and sampling all the goodies, we picked up some spicy flavored kajmak. I love kajmak and I usually just get a particular brand I find over at Devon Market and/or Andy's Fruit Ranch but this stuff was pretty delectable with just a hint of hot pepper spice and I have not seen this brand or type of Kajmak in the other eastern european places I shop at. This spread on one of their bagguetes was simply heaven-like.

    Next time we might be interested in getting the live lobsters ($7.99 lb!) and the stone crabs ($2.99 lb!). Never tried cooking either before but there is always a good time to start.

    Had to buy pass all the Euro chocolate and cookies. :( However, I did notice some veal dumplings that were Russian. Anyone ever try these? I lvoe veal so I am interested in seeing how these taste.

    I didn't see if it was mentioned or not but do they have a beer/wine section? Didn't see anything today but I could have sworn I saw beer here before. One of the things I adore about Devon Market is their booze section and their reasonable prices.
  • Post #141 - December 9th, 2011, 8:42 pm
    Post #141 - December 9th, 2011, 8:42 pm Post #141 - December 9th, 2011, 8:42 pm
    KajmacJohnson wrote:I didn't see if it was mentioned or not but do they have a beer/wine section? Didn't see anything today but I could have sworn I saw beer here before. One of the things I adore about Devon Market is their booze section and their reasonable prices.


    They have added beer and wine within the last few months. Haven't really made my way through it at all, but the offer a number of selections that I'm not very familiar with.
  • Post #142 - December 9th, 2011, 8:56 pm
    Post #142 - December 9th, 2011, 8:56 pm Post #142 - December 9th, 2011, 8:56 pm
    Dlongs wrote:
    KajmacJohnson wrote:I didn't see if it was mentioned or not but do they have a beer/wine section? Didn't see anything today but I could have sworn I saw beer here before. One of the things I adore about Devon Market is their booze section and their reasonable prices.


    They have added beer and wine within the last few months. Haven't really made my way through it at all, but the offer a number of selections that I'm not very familiar with.


    I thought I had seen beer selections there before. We didn't comb through the ailes as much and I was getting antsy to go home and eat what I had purchased so next time I definately have to look for it. Thanks.
  • Post #143 - December 11th, 2011, 7:38 am
    Post #143 - December 11th, 2011, 7:38 am Post #143 - December 11th, 2011, 7:38 am
    Dlongs wrote:
    KajmacJohnson wrote:I didn't see if it was mentioned or not but do they have a beer/wine section? Didn't see anything today but I could have sworn I saw beer here before. One of the things I adore about Devon Market is their booze section and their reasonable prices.


    They have added beer and wine within the last few months. Haven't really made my way through it at all, but the offer a number of selections that I'm not very familiar with.


    It's in the space (formerly a pharmacy) opposite the Devon Bank counter.
    Never order barbecue in a place that also serves quiche - Lewis Grizzard
  • Post #144 - March 7th, 2012, 1:57 pm
    Post #144 - March 7th, 2012, 1:57 pm Post #144 - March 7th, 2012, 1:57 pm
    Just a bitch: I noticed today that FF's whole wheat pasta selection has dwindled down to nearly nothing, leaving me with only a few Barilla varieties and one bagged brand when they used to carry Brad's Organic and so many others. And they were reorganizing their cereal aisle, adding more granola and hot cereal and taking away some of the off-brand, healthy cold cereal.
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #145 - March 8th, 2012, 10:36 am
    Post #145 - March 8th, 2012, 10:36 am Post #145 - March 8th, 2012, 10:36 am
    Pie Lady wrote:Just a bitch: I noticed today that FF's whole wheat pasta selection has dwindled down to nearly nothing, leaving me with only a few Barilla varieties and one bagged brand when they used to carry Brad's Organic and so many others. And they were reorganizing their cereal aisle, adding more granola and hot cereal and taking away some of the off-brand, healthy cold cereal.


    Why would they decrease their selection of whole wheat pasta? That is one of the siimplest things that many grocery stores carry varieties of.
  • Post #146 - March 8th, 2012, 10:57 am
    Post #146 - March 8th, 2012, 10:57 am Post #146 - March 8th, 2012, 10:57 am
    Why would they decrease their selection of whole wheat pasta?


    Because they're not selling enough of it to justify the shelf space. Because the average Fresh Farms shopper is more interested having 10 varieties of ajvar available than 10 varieties of whole wheat pasta.
  • Post #147 - March 8th, 2012, 11:00 am
    Post #147 - March 8th, 2012, 11:00 am Post #147 - March 8th, 2012, 11:00 am
    rickster wrote:
    Why would they decrease their selection of whole wheat pasta?


    Because they're not selling enough of it to justify the shelf space. Because the average Fresh Farms shopper is more interested having 10 varieties of ajvar available than 10 varieties of whole wheat pasta.

    Plus, it's perishable -- oils in whole grains go rancid fairly quickly -- so it's especially tough to carry if it's not moving.

    =R=
    There are many things that are legal that are not a great idea --Nick Shabazz

    Every human interaction is an opportunity for disappointment --RS

    There's a horse loose in a hospital --JM

    That don't impress me much --Shania Twain
  • Post #148 - March 8th, 2012, 11:28 am
    Post #148 - March 8th, 2012, 11:28 am Post #148 - March 8th, 2012, 11:28 am
    That's a shame. Lincolnwood Produce carries more types than I can count, plus pasta made from quinoa, rice, etc etc at affordable prices, none of that $8/bag shit. I guess I'll have to make a stop there for stock-up pasta shopping.

    How long can you keep unopened boxes of pasta before it gets critters?
    I want to have a good body, but not as much as I want dessert. ~ Jason Love

    There is no pie in Nighthawks, which is why it's such a desolate image. ~ Happy Stomach

    I write fiction. You can find me—and some stories—on Facebook, Twitter and my website.
  • Post #149 - March 8th, 2012, 5:36 pm
    Post #149 - March 8th, 2012, 5:36 pm Post #149 - March 8th, 2012, 5:36 pm
    How long can you keep unopened boxes of pasta before it gets critters?


    Not critters - rancidity issues. Whole-grain products don't keep indefinitely.
  • Post #150 - March 8th, 2012, 6:26 pm
    Post #150 - March 8th, 2012, 6:26 pm Post #150 - March 8th, 2012, 6:26 pm
    How long you can keep pasta without getting critters depends on how many critters you have in the house. They burrow in to the box, not out. I've got pasta now I've probably had for a year or two without problems, but I have had problems for example in a condo I lived in before.

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