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What My Dream Grocery Store Looks Like

What My Dream Grocery Store Looks Like

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Call me Hal Apenyo

In a riveting article this week about Amazon’s grocery delivery dreams, I couldn’t stop going back to a detail about an internal memo written as a fake press release describing the grocery store of the future. It has dry goods in the basement, fresh produce up top, and it’s designed for optimal online delivery. An expert named “Hal Apenyo” is quoted. But it sounded kinda boring, robotic. I love grocery shopping, I’m here for a good time and maybe some sausage! What would MY dream grocery store look like?

~Insert wobbly daydream graphics here~

First, there would be two permanent stands outside the entry (automatic doors, but they squish anyone who walks IN the OUT side): Girl Scouts selling cookies to the left, and a lost Trader Joe’s employee handing out pimiento cheese samples to the right. Inside, all of the produce is organic and cheap as hell. There are ALWAYS Fresno chiles in stock so I can make 80 percent of Bon Appétit’s recipes. In the bakery, somebody’s mama is making warm, all-butter flour tortillas (recruited from H-E-B). At the fish counter, each of the whole fish have candy googly eyes stuck on, because the fishmonger is kooky. The meat doesn’t have a confusing, color-coded sliding scale of sustainability—it’s all coded GREEN because it’s all guaranteed ethically sourced, no games. The soy sauce is in the same aisle as olive oil, vinegar, and mustards, and the rice noodles are next to the spaghetti, because the “ethnic” aisle has been banished. For some reason, only Ariana Grande plays on the speakers. The checkout aisles are lined with British tabloids and almond M&M’s and kombucha. And there’s no online delivery option. See you there.

Choo choo

Get on the pork chop train! God, I love this recipe.

Photo by Alex Lau, food styling by Rebecca Jurkevich, prop styling by Kalen Kaminski

Please explain

Andy Baraghani, why is this “the only salsa you need”? “I didn’t think of YOU when I developed it,” said Andy, “but YOU will make it. It’s spicy, and you like spicy. And it’s really just putting things on a baking sheet and broiling the f*ck out if them, then pulsing it in a food processor, then seasoning with salt.” It’s charred and has good acidity, he added, and it might convince you to never buy salsa again. From this recipe, you can adjust to your liking, adding more chiles or garlic. “Tomatoes are your base,” said Andy. “From there, you can replace the actors, swapping Judi Dench for Meryl Streep.”

Get the recipe: The Only Salsa You Need

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