The concept is not lost on me. There’s something to be said about doing your grocery shopping with a pint in hand. Even being able to grab a growler and a steak in one stop, that’s pretty nice. The Market in Maryville, now long gone, was the first to bring this concept to life. Now, not far away, a Kroger Marketplace has adopted that same concept.
As Robert Gomez, the Craft Beer Coordinator, led me to the bar I noticed that the store was ablaze with activity. It was the day before opening and the parking lot was packed, individuals were setting up displays, rearranging items, cooking, preparing and, given the noise, it seems as though the fire alarm was being dialed in. There, on just the other side of the produce, nicely placed near the sushi bar, bakery and deli was a well apportioned bar that you might expect to find in a nice restaurant. The colors are bright, vibrant and the white subway tile on the back wall highlighted the chalkboard listing the beer on draft.
Robert excitedly showed me the layout of the area noting that they were planning appropriately for wine in the grocery stores allowances coming in the near future. The twelve taps were ready to go with several kegs on standby. He also noted the beer displayed in the cooler and also on the shelf. Kroger’s mix-a-six display in this location may be one of the best I’ve seen yet as, when sent to the store by the Mrs, I always stop and look to see what might be new. Regardless, the highlight here is that we have a very well appointed grocery store situated nicely in Maryville that is ready to send you home with a steak and a growler. The cost of a growler is also surprisingly low ranging from $8.99 to $14.99, the high end currently being Blackberry Farm Classic Saison – a good value even at that price. Growlers aren’t the only thing that can be
had at the bar. Flights are offered for $5 or $6 if you’d like to include Blackberry Farm Saison in the mix. What better way to spend a little time as the Mrs or Mr does the grocery shopping? TVs were also being added as Robert showed me around – CNN, ESPN, no worries, you’ll be well informed as you enjoy your time at the bar. As far as pints go, they’re ready but that may be a bit further down the road. Expect pairing suggestions though with the entrees available just around the corner.
This store is the first of it’s kind in Tennessee or what’s considered the “Nashville Region” per Kroger. It’s a great concept that I am confident will do well in the area. Those of you who know Robert also know that he’ll ensure that good beer is always kept on tap with a few surprises thrown in from time to time.
The Kroger Marketplace opens tomorrow, November 11th. Be sure to check it out.
BTW – They have Blackberry Farm Fall Saison for what I consider a great price. Grab a bottle while you’re there.