READERS' PICK: There are six Albertson's locations citywide, but it's the Campbell Avenue/Glenn Street location that our readers call Their Store. Better produce, screaming deals on fresh seafood, delicious custom cakes (available with a mere 24 hours' notice), a floor that shines and people who care are just a few of the things that distinguish this relative newcomer from the competition. We applaud them for eschewing a Southwestern décor; we thank them for a Muzak selection that includes Tom Waits; and we truly appreciate that they live up to their promise to provide fresh food at low prices, every day.
READERS' POLL RUNNER-UP: Trader Joe's, 1101 N. Wilmot Road, 7912 N. Oracle Road, 4766 E. Grant Road.
The Merchant Marine makes Tucson a port of call, docking at the city's three Trader Joe's locations. The décor may be nautical, but there's otherwise nothing fishy about these places; they're basically gourmet shops for bargain-hunters. Where else can you get such good deals on salmon stuffed with couscous and dill, bottled mango sauce, escargots en brioche, frozen key lime pie, or cashew-macadamia butter? Pastas are plentiful, as are intriguing trail mixes, and an odd assortment of nutritional supplements. And with the new Grant Road location, the chain has finally figured out how to lay out a store properly; it's no bigger than the others, but much more navigable. The new store, by the way, is in the Petsmart shopping center, which does make you wonder about the origin of some of those odd frozen meat pies ...
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