Hey, remember when Yelp was a thing? The website and app that your roommate still uses to inform people about the great 7-11 still exist, and it’s still collecting reviews on, best grocery stores, everything from restaurants and convenience stores to florists and … oceans. (“Love it,” one seemingly sincere appraisal of the Pacific reads. “It’s filled with cute dolphins, otters, etc. The water smells nice and is extremely relaxing.”)
But if you’re a knowledge nerd, Yelp also can provide some interesting info about what the “best” representatives of any given category appear as if. We decided to ascertain what the simplest — and hottest — grocery stores in America were, and therefore the top five are surprising, mostly because they’re all small, independent stores. (That’s an honest quite surprise. I mean, we like Trader Joe’s and Publix too, but it’s hard to beat a real local grocery.)
All of the companies on this list are in Yelp’s “grocery store” category, and therefore the site ranked the “best” ones using an algorithm that checked out the number of reviews and the overall star rating (from one to five) for every listing. Despite your roomie’s best efforts, the great 7-11 didn’t make the cut — but a beloved corner store and a bakery-grocery combo did. Here are the stores that Yelp says are tops.
Crystal Springs Produce, San Mateo, California
This family-owned indie store focuses on locally sourced and organic (and both, when possible) produce and also offers a good range of cheeses, fresh dairy and eggs, and daily deliveries of fresh-baked bread, therefore, people need the best grocery stores.
What do Yelpers say? “So great to possess this tiny place around! But don’t be fooled by the size! It’s numerous great treasures from everywhere on the planet — and locally! Love the small-town feel and shop and service! I attempt to get all my fruits and veggies here — prices are BETTER and produce FRESHER than the market across the road by far!”
To the planet Farm, Brooklyn, New York
This Williamsburg, Brooklyn, joint is adored for its large selection of affordable products, its in-store juice bar, and its homemade tofu and kimchi. (Frequent shoppers also love the shop’s cat, which, together reviewer put it, “basically runs the place.”)
What do Yelpers say? “I have experienced the simplest from this local grocery. The kindness and knowledge from the owner truly made me feel welcome and felt sort of a human as against many places in NYC […] the food is treated with respect which makes my heart so happy! I highly recommend it if you’re keen on your healthy produce, vegan, or major produce lover, therefore, we need the best grocery stores. Are going to be back again and again.”
Nick’s Super Market, San Francisco, California
Nick’s is more of a corner store or a bodega than a real “grocery store,” but San Francisco locals still like it, and brag about the store’s lower-than-the-big-guys prices, wine selection, and, of course, the produce. (The majority of the reviews also mention what super people the owners are too.)
What do Yelpers say? “I can’t even begin to mention how great this local market is. They need such a spread of things that just about makes wanting to attend a bigger grocery unnecessarily. To not mention the costs are fair and therefore the service is amazing. My partner and that I love them! We moved far away from [the neighborhood] but considerably still shop here whenever possible. Such a gem!”
Middle East Bakery & Grocery, West Palm Beach, Florida
True to its name, this is often a restaurant, bakery, and little grocery — one that focuses on Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine. Meaning you’ll get fresh brick-oven baked pita bread, homemade tabbouleh, falafel, and hummus, and must-have ingredients like olives, cheeses, and dried fruits, therefore, people need the best grocery stores.
What do Yelpers say? “One of my favorite spots! I’ve tried tons of various items here from the falafel to the lamb shawarma and that they are all extremely delicious. I also like to shop their various selection of imported olives and salads. Their pita bread is delicious and that I love having food in my fridge all week from them. It’s nice to possess such an authentic spot nearby.”
Jungle Jim’s International Market, Fairfield, Ohio
This is the sole entry on the list that has its own Wikipedia page, or that qualifies as a legit tourist attraction. the shop — which has been described because the “theme park of food” has quite 300,000 square feet of floor space, so you’re just about bound to stray. This isn’t the place that you’d choose your everyday grocery needs, but once you got to refill on ostrich eggs or imported specialty sodas, it’s the sole place to travel.
What do Yelpers say? “Jungle Jim’s has everything. And it’s all at a surprisingly decent price. That was the most important shock of all. Largest cheese selection I’ve ever seen. The most important olive selection I’ve ever seen. Largest wine selection I’ve ever seen. Largest international food section I’ve ever seen. They need whatever type meat you would like […] camel meat, python meat, I mean…my god.”