I moved from Florida to New York just a few months ago. After friends, family, and my old church, what am I missing most of all? It's not the warm weather, it's not the beaches... It's Publix supermarkets.
Oh, I knew I'd miss the place to some degree. You go to a store long enough, you develop a certain loyalty to them. And the grocery chains I've seen up here in NY have been underwhelming in comparison. But I certainly wasn't expecting to miss my beloved Publix this much.
What is it about this grocery chain that inspires such loyalty in me? In part, it's their bakery. Whether you want creme puffs or carrot cake, the Publix bakery makes a variety of delicious treats to satisfy the most demanding sweet tooth. Their chocolate chip cookies, all soft and chewy and studded with chocolate morsels, were a favorite of my friends and me. Parties just didn't feel right without a container of those cookies. We didn't always need an excuse to eat the cookies; sometimes, we ate them just because.
Their deli is also pretty awesome. They make a range of 6" and 12" subs. You pay about the same as you do at Subway, but the quality is much better, and the subs are thicker.
Publix has better prices than the nearby Albertsons. (Super Wal-Mart and Super Target are cheaper, but both were too far away for me to bother driving to). Their weekly flier always has a number of "Buy one get one free" specials on popular products. I saved a ton of money by combining those specials with clipped coupons.
I've also had pretty good luck with their store brands, everything from cereal to frozen veggies. A lot of the time, there isn't much difference between the generic product and the name brand.
The store produces two free magazines: one on family life and one on organic eating. These magazines have a lot of recipes, tips, and informative articles.
No, the place isn't perfect--some of the Publix stores I've been in are nicer than others. But for a grocery chain, I think it's very good at what it does. I can't wait until my next visit home, when I can grab some of those cookies and share them with my friends.