Tuesday, September 3, 2013

The New Gem of Rochester

There are oh-so-many reasons I love the Peoples Food Co-op, where we are members and purchase organic ingredients for our market baking, sell some of our farm produce, where I have taught a cheese-making class and exhibited paintings, and where we will sell our wood-fired bread once we get our commercial kitchen built! So, of course I could not resist attending the ribbon cutting ceremony for their (our) new store. It is right in downtown Rochester, part of the "urban village." The beautiful building has much-coveted apartments above.
Mayor Brede welcomed everyone and praised the accomplishment of so many hardworking visionaries. From idea to opening took just two years, despite overcoming quite a few hurdles.
Assorted board members and contractors and Chamber of Commerce members  spoke, and finally Lizzie, the Store Manager, as the television cameras rolled.
The ribbon was cut
and then we all got to go inside and explore the store.
Delicious  celebratory carrot cake and vegan chocolate cake were served.
About 30 new people have been hired to work in the new co-op, including my friend and neighbor Brigitte Heublein.  Here she is in her department, the Wellness Center.
One wall of the bulk foods area - wow!
Wall o' tea.  I don't know if they have enough selections of  herbal teas...oh wait, there are also bulk teas galore!
I caught Bob Nowicki purchasing some Love Buzz  coffee
and Jeff Allman and Ray Schmitz in the meat department.
The new co-op also has fresh seafood (sustainably harvested, I am sure!)
and a beautiful cheese department with amazing farmstead cheeses. I tasted Flory's Truckle Cheddar, made by Amish farmers in Missouri and  swooned. Had to purchase a small wedge!
In one corner is a community meeting room with a kitchen where classes and demos will be held. Not shown in my photos are the salad bar, bakery, cafe, and regular grocery aisles. There is even outdoor dining on the patio. I know where I will be frequently scheduling my lunch meetings.
Saving the best for last --the produce department,  showcasing locally-grown fruits and vegetables as spectacularly as they deserve to be exhibited!
I am sure Lizzie, the PFC board members and the staff are all totally exhausted after the big move this past weekend, but they were all beaming and smiling ear-to-ear as everyone heaped well-earned  congratulations  upon them.


Debbie said...

Wow! Thank for posting, Susan. Can't wait to visit!

jgrayMN said...

Thanks for this great story - I missed the grand opening, but then again - not quite, because you covered it! Good work, Susan.