Westside Market NYC

Richard Turcsik, Grocery Headquarters executive editor, visited Westside Market NYC, right in GHQ’s backyard. The chain’s newest store on Broadway in Upper Manhattan offers a feast for the senses along with some of the most mouth-watering prepared foods in all of New York, he says; it is sure to be a long-running hit.

Here is a peak inside… (warning: photos may cause hunger)

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Westside Market NYC

Founded in 1965, Westside Market NYC operates four stores on the Westside of Manhattan, plus Maywood’s Marketplace in Maywood, N.J.

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The company’s newest store is located in Upper Manhattan on Broadway between 96th and 97th Streets.

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Westside Market’s offerings are so hot that fire trucks are known to pull up outside.

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And firemen in full gear rush in to stock up on groceries.

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The Westside Market shopping experience begins before one even enters the store – produce is piled high in displays along the sidewalk.

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The displays entice passersby and those getting off the subway.

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Many of the produce items are offered at hot prices.

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Displays are taken down and rebuilt each day so that the produce can be rotated and checked for quality, says George Zoitas, CEO.

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Produce is treated as art, a philosophy established by founder John Zoitas, George’s dad, and now an advisor to the chain.

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Inside, items are arranged by color.

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And piled high along the store’s two narrow produce aisles.

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Baskets are also used to display produce.

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It is an assortment that makes the competition lime green with envy.

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Lemons are stacked high, but narrow, making the display look larger than it is.

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I yam what I yam.

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To find a store with more Brussels sprouts you’d probably have to fly to Belgium!

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And there is likely no store on earth that has a larger selection of prepared foods!

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The salad bar features individual bowls of pre-measured greens...

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...and a whopping 30-plus types of salad dressings, listed on an overhead blackboard.

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Plus there are dozens of toppings.

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Including sliced black and green olives.

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But the real star of the store is the Prepared Foods counter.

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Dozens of entrees and sides are prepared daily in the store’s basement kitchen.

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Just about all of the items are based upon George Zoitas’ mother Maria’s recipes, he says.

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And those that do bear a Maria’s Homemade sign.

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There is Spinach Lasagna...

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...Eggplant Chicken Lasagna, and five other kinds.

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The stuffed peppers are colorful AND delicious!

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The Spinach Pie is based on an old Greek family recipe.

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Seafood dishes, like Stuffed Flounder with Grilled Vegetables, are popular because people don’t like to stink up their apartments cooking fish, Zoitas says.

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There are innovative items, like Zucchini Wrapped Salmon.

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Ethnic foods like Caribbean Jerk Chicken.

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And comfort food like good, old-fashioned chicken pot pie.

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All of those items – and hundreds more – are available in a grab-and-go prepared foods aisle that is popular with time-pressed New Yorkers.

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It features Japanese foods...

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... Literally dozens of varieties of soups, spreads, salsas and hummus...

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... And 16 kinds of chicken salad, including Cranberry Apricot and Marvelous Mango.

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There is Waldorf Grilled Chicken Salad too!

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An eggs-cellent dairy display.

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A popular new item with the prep-school set are the pre-made Lunch Boxes, featuring sandwiches made with Applegate Farms cold cuts, a piece of fruit, juice box and homemade cookies.

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Westside Market also has a large pre-packaged bulk foods section.

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Meat is self-service, but the butcher can be easily summoned from downstairs for personalized assistance.

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Seafood is service, along with a self-service grab-and-go option.

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Westside Market prides itself on its massive cheese selection.

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Westside Market prides itself on its massive cheese selection

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The Deli features Boars Head along with homemade items.

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Grocery contains a broad assortment of conventional and organic items.

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Including a smattering of private label.

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The grocery aisles are narrow, but spic-and-span spotless.

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The grocery aisles are narrow, but spic-and-span spotless.

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And items are literally piled high into the sky!

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There is even a small assortment of Nonfoods.

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Ovens for the in-store bakery department are also located in the basement.

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Breads are baked in-house and brought in from a Baker’s Dozen 13 local mom & pop specialty bakeries.

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The Waffle Bites are a signature item.

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Despite its small space, Westside Market NYC offers a small selection of decorated cakes.

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After stocking up on groceries shoppers head to the 11 checkouts.

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In a new system, one line feeds into two parallel rows of registers, drastically cutting down on floor space needed for the front end.

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