Are you a fan of Wegmans yet? If you’ve never heard of Wegmans, let me enlighten you a bit. It’s a family-owned regional supermarket chain that was started in 1914 in Rochester, N.Y. Since then it has expanded throughout Western New York and into Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Maryland and Virginia, currently with over 90 stores and more opening in multiple locations in coming months.
I’ve had many friends over the years wax poetic about what a great supermarket it is, which I never really understand until I visited. It’s true: It’s pretty awesome. Its bakery is top-notch, it offers a beautiful, un-cramped shopping experience (thank you, suburbs), and it is completely up on trends: An entire section in its produce department is devoted to spiralized veggies and finely chopped veggies for easy dinners. The only other supermarket where I have seen this is Whole Foods, yet Wegmans prices are far more akin to a normal (affordable) supermarket.
And of course, most importantly, Wegmans carries an impressive variety of Jewish foods and kosher products. Here were some of the most exciting finds from my recent excursion. Please note: I visited the Wegmans located in Woodbridge, NJ . Products will vary from location to location.
Poppy Seed Rugelach
Wegmans’ bakery section has everything from classic chocolate chip to decorated sugar cookies. But it is also carrying several varieties of rugelach (uniquely spelled rugala here) including poppy seed — a somewhat rare flavor I didn’t expect to find so far away from Brooklyn or other traditional enclaves.
Gorgeous, glossy loaves of challah are ready for your Friday night dinner or Sunday French toast needs made fresh at its own bakery.
Cream Cheese and Lox
Wegmans really outdoes itself with the variety of cream cheese and lox options. Flavors like honey pecan, vegetable, scallion, lox, blueberry and strawberry cream cheese conveniently located adjacent to the fresh bagels, as well as a wide selection of lox and lox spreads.
No reason to have dozens of cream cheese flavors without house-made bagels. All the flavors you would expect, plus my personal favorite: salt bagels.
I’ve never been so overwhelmed by a selection of hummus. Not only does Wegmans carry national brands like Sabra, but it sells its own line of hummus in flavors such as roasted eggplant, sweet potato and cilantro jalapeno.
Chopped Liver and Herring
Chopped liver and herring aren’t exactly suburban supermarket staples, but there they were, right next to the lox and honey pecan cream cheese. Wegmans apparently really wants you to put out an appetizing spread to make even your bubbe proud.