Mike Berman’s Washington Watch

December 3, 2010 8:56 PM

Food: Safeway (known as the Georgetown Social Safeway)

Ordinarily the last section of the Watch is about restaurants. But this edition will be different. It is about grocery shopping. So if you have no interest in where I shop and what I like about each place at which I shop....stop reading now.

These are the stores at which I regularly shop. At least three of them are available at many locations around Washington and the country other than the location at which I shop.

Safeway (known as the Georgetown Social Safeway)

1855 Wisconsin Avenue N.W.
Washington, DC
Open – 24 Hours per day
The store is somewhat unique in that the entire store is on the second floor of the building that opened within the last year. It replaced a more traditional Safeway that had been at the same location for years.

Short of showering and sleeping, there is little that one cannot do at the new 24- hour Safeway. There is a Starbucks, pharmacy, dry cleaner, bank, coin sorter, video rental, wine store, dental and shaving products, flower shop, pizza stand, sandwich shop, delicatessen, ice cream stand, bakery, fresh sushi bar, substantial cheese station, and, oh yes, a very large grocery store.

They have just about every brand of most any canned, boxed or bottled goods, food, frozen and room temperature, along with the usual assortment of dairy products. There is a large selection of fresh and frozen meats and fishes. If you buy a whole fresh bread and want it sliced, you can select one of a dozen different thickness for the slices.

If you are a peanut butter devotee, there are about 6 different kinds of peanuts that you can grind on your own to make fresh peanut butter from any one or some combination of nuts.

There are a fair number of prepared entrees, vegetables and starches. They are okay.

The salad bar is quite limited and not special. The fruit is okay, but not quite the best overall. And the pieces of pre-cut fruit are on the large size, and therefore there is not quite as much in each container as there could be. This has no impact on the price because it is sold by the pound.

The flower selection is by far and away the best of the choices and assortments available in any of the other stores.

Checkout can be done in the conventional way, waiting in line for a clerk who handles on customer at a time. However, there are a number of self checkout stations.

Parking is a breeze. There is substantial parking in an outside lot on the second floor and a large amount of parking on the main floor under the store. It is easy to push your cart with your purchases to your car in the outdoor parking lot. And there are several locations at which to leave your cart in the parking lot. There is an elevator on which you can take your goods down to the 1st floor, if that is where you parked or if you walked to the store from the surrounding neighborhood, or to catch a bus that stops right outside.

It is a great convenience to be able to shop at midnight or 6 a.m. It has become the equivalent of the corner grocery store of old.

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