Greetings from Atlanta, ya’ll! I’m down in here in the peach tree headquarters covering ECRM’s Spring and Summer Confectionery Event - lots of chocolate bunnies, chocolate hearts and chocolate crosses.
This is my second visit to the home of Coca-Cola, and CNN, and last time I was here (also for an ECRM event) I walked myself around the city so I could see the CNN building and the capitol dome. This time though, the wonderful ECRM folks took some of us on a tour of various retail stores around the area.
First stop was Buford Highway Farmers Market in Doraville, Ga. This place was intense, and by far the most interesting stop. Our group walked into a produce section that rivaled the Garden of Eden, spanning all the way from the entrance to the back of a very long warehouse-like store.
As we wandered, we found various ethnic food sections, such as ones carrying Hispanic and Asian specialities. Note, the word “section.” These were not just an aisle or two of ethnic foods, but rather sections large enough to be stand-alone stores. Of course, each section not only had the various cultural staples, but also a full-range of candies from their respective part of the globe.
We only had 15 minutes at this store though, and after I quickly ran through and glanced at each candy aisle, I wondered over to the Hispanic foods section and realized they were giving out samples of authentic quesadillas with chorizo meat. I had three minutes to grab one, but the guy took about five minutes to make it - decisions, decisions.
I said a prayer and decided to wait it out. Worst case scenario they’d leave me at the Garden of Eden. After I finally grabbed my sample, I sprinted back to the bus and apologized to everyone for keeping them waiting and silently thanked the Lord that I hadn’t been left behind.
Up next were Publix and Kroger, both in Altanta proper. These mainstream grocers serve the purpose of offering a reliable, easy-to-navigate place to shop in their respective neighborhoods.
Then, we made our way to Aldi, which was also located in the city. As a native of the Chicago area - where the chain has saturated the grocery market - I’m familiar with their amazingly low prices as well as shopping carts that require a quarter to use.