Still with Waitrose the market leader amongst supermarkets (certainly in terms of quality), and both have certainly raised general standards of the middle ground in recent years.
However, they still rarely sell the very best of anything, although larger branches have a 'Specialist' section consisting of a few good quality oil and luxury items.
Their 'Taste the Difference' range offers the standards expected from any good grocer, certainly nothing more.
Larger branches with fish counters, rely too heavily on fish that has previously been frozen. This has the disadvantage in that it can't (or shouldn't be) frozen again at home, if need be.
Like some other supermarkets, they stress about the length of time their meat is hung. However, the public need to realise that any flavour and tenderness gained from hanging, depends on the way this is undertaken, (matured for 21 days counts for little, unless the meat has been traditionally-hung on the bone).
Likewise the breed of chicken retailers offer, is as important as their claimed diet (i.e. Corn). Fast-growing chicken varieties will never have the best flavour whatever they're fed. If you've ever tried a 'Sasso' breed of chicken (possibly only available at Farmers Markets and top-quality butchers) you'll know what we mean - they are worth seeking out!
Their traiteur section is impressively comprehensive, and almost as good as Marks & Spencer's and Waitrose for some dishes; and certainly helpful to those short of time.
It's excellent that biodegradable carrier bags are now the norm and great efforts have also been made to use 'greener' packaging.
- Open: Mon-Fri 8.00-21.00; Sat 8.00-20.00; Sun 10.00-16.00
- Closed: some Bank Holidays
ProductsShow All ProductsShow Less ProductsAlmonds Anchovies silver / Boquerones- preserved in oil Anchovies brown fillets - preserved in oil Apples Asparagus fresh in season Bacon Bacon top class Bagels Baked Beans - organic Bass Sea Farmed Beef - mince from grass reared animals Beef - grass fed Beef - oxtail Biscotti Biscuits - for cheese Biscuits - gluten free Biscuits - kosher Biscuits - organic Biscuits - sweet Black Pudding Blini - ready made Blueberries - in season Bombay Mix Brandy Butter (often only near Christmas) Bread Mixes Bread - French Bread Bread - Italian Bread - organic Breakfast cereal Breakfast cereal organic Brioche Bulgar wheat Butter - organic Buttermilk Cake Mixes Christmas Cake Cakes - home-made style Capers in brine Charcuterie Cheese Straws Cheese - British Isles Cheese - French Cheese - general Cheese - goats Cheese - organic Cheese - sheeps' (ewes') Cheese - soft Cheesecake Chestnuts - peeled & vacuum-packed Chicken Kiev - top class Chicken - organic Chicken - reputable Free Range Chili Powder Chilis / Chillis - fresh (seasonal) Chinese & Far-Eastern basics Chocolate Brownies Chocolate - Drinking Chutney pickles & relishes Clingfilm/Clingwrap Coffee Condiment Sauces & Jellies Crab - Dressed Cream - Clotted Cream - Soya Crème fraiche Crisps; top quality Croissant fresh Cucumbers; pickled Curry Paste: Curry Powder Mixes Danish Pastries fresh Delicatessen; general Desserts; of high quality Dips Duck - free-range Aylesbury or Pekin-type Easter Eggs; good Eccles cakes Eels - jellied Essences Fish stock Fish fresh general Fish frozen Fish - Shellfish Flour - bread mixes Flour - stone ground Flour - organic Flour - barley Flour for breadmakers Flour - good selection Flour - rye Flour - spelt Food as Gifts French groceries Fruit juices Fruit Pies Fruit - dried Fruit - fresh Fruit - fresh organic Fruit - frozen Fruit - tinned Gammon Joints Ginger - crystallised Gingerbread Goose fat for confit Goose/Geese - between Thanksgiving & Christmas Gravadlax Greengages - in season Groceries Haggis Ham & Gammon Ham - air dried Ham - Parma Ham - Serrano Harisa/Harrissa Hazelnut Oil Hazelnuts / Cobnuts Health food Herbs - fresh these will be seasonal Herring Melts/Roes Herrings - fresh Honey Honey - organic Hot Cross Buns - sometimes only before Easter Houmus Italian groceries Jam & preserves Kippers Kippers - undyed Lamb (seasonal) Lemon grass - fresh Macaroons Maple syrup Marinades Marmalade Meat pies Meat Stock Meat - organic & additive-free Meringues Milk - Goats Milk - organic Cows Mince pies high quality Miso Soup Muesli Muffins Muffins American - style Mushrooms - dried Mussels - fresh in season Mussels vacuum - packed Mustard Nuts - pre packed Oatcakes Ocean Sticks Oils Olive Oil Olive Oil - flavoured Olive Oil - organic Olives Olives - organic Oysters - Rock Pancetta Party Nibbles Pasta - dried Pasta - fresh Pasties Pastry - puff with butter Patisserie - fresh Peanut Oil (groundnut) Peel - candied Pies - Vegetable Pine Kernels Pizza Polenta Pork pies Pork - free range Porridge Oats - coarse natural Potatoes - top class/unusual Prawns - frozen Prawns - King Christmas Pudding Pulses Pumpkins - in the Autumn Quiche Rice cakes Rice paper Rice; organic Rice; specialist Risotto; flavoured mixes Saffron strands Salad leaves - of high quality Salami Salmon - farmed of top quality Sauces - prepared Chinese Sauces - prepared curry Sauces - prepared pasta Sausages - Pork Sausages - Beef Sausages - gluten free Scallops - fresh Bay Sesame Oil Shortbread Smoked Duck breast Smoked Haddock - golden Smoked Haddock - undyed Smoked Mackerel Smoked salmon Smoked trout Smoked venison Sorbet/Water Ice Soup - top quality Speck Squashs - Vegetable Squid - fresh (in season) Stare anise Stilton Stock - top-quality made Sugar - unrefined Swordfish - fresh Tapenade Tapioca Taramasalata Tea - organic Tea - specialist Tin Foil Tisanes / Herbal Infusions Tofu Tomatoes - tinned organic Tomatoes - in season Tomatoes - sun dried Tortillas Traiteur/ Take Away/ Ready Meals - vegetarian Traiteur/ Take Away/Ready Meals Trout - Rainbow Tuna - fresh Turkeys - free-range (often just before Christmas) Vanilla pods Vegetables - organic Vegetables - Far Eastern Vegetables - frozen Vegetables - good selection of fresh Venison - farmed Vinegar - wine Vinegar - balsamic Vol-au-vent cases Walnut Oil Watercress Yeast - dried Yoghurt - cows' milk Yoghurt - dairy free Yoghurt - goats' milk Yoghurt - organic