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-Weds 7.30-21.00; Thurs & Fri 7.30-20.00; Sat 7.30-20.00; 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 Beef - mince from grass reared animals Beef - grass fed Biscuits - for cheese Biscuits - gluten free Biscuits - organic Biscuits - sweet Black Pudding Blini - ready made Brandy Butter (often only near Christmas) Bread Mixes Bread - French Bread Bread - Italian Bread - organic Bread - sour dough / sourdough Breakfast cereal Burgers - beef (of top quality) Butter - organic Buttermilk Cake Mixes Capers in brine Charcuterie Cheese Straws Cheese - British Isles Cheese - French Cheese - general Cheese - goats Cheese - Italian Cheese - organic Cheese - sheeps' (ewes') Cheese - soft Cheesecake Chicken - reputable Free Range Chili Powder Chilis / Chillis - fresh (seasonal) Chinese & Far-Eastern basics Chocolate Brownies Chocolate - Drinking Chutney pickles & relishes Coffee Condiment Sauces & Jellies Crab - Dressed Crème fraiche Crisps; top quality Croissant fresh Curry Paste: Curry Powder Mixes Danish Pastries fresh Delicatessen; general Dips Duck - free-range Aylesbury or Pekin-type Eggs - Hens free range Eggs - Hens organic Essences Fish stock Fish fresh general Fish frozen Fish - Shellfish Flour - bread mixes Flour - barley Flour - good selection Flour - rye Flour - spelt Food as Gifts Fruit juices Fruit - dried Fruit - fresh Fruit - fresh organic Fruit - tinned Gammon Joints Ginger - crystallised Gingerbread Gravadlax Groceries Guinea fowl - (might need a days notice) Haggis Haggis - vegetarian Ham & Gammon Ham - air dried Ham - Parma Hazelnut Oil Hazelnuts / Cobnuts Health food Herb Plants Herbs - dried of the best quality Herrings - fresh Herrings - marinated Honey Honey - organic Hot Cross Buns - sometimes only before Easter Houmus Ice cream - top quality Italian groceries Jam & preserves Jam & preserves - organic Kippers Kippers - undyed Lamb (seasonal) Lemon grass - fresh Lobsters - cooked Macaroons Maple syrup Marinades Marmalade Marmalade organic Meat pies Meringues Milk - Goats Milk - organic Cows Mince pies high quality Miso Soup Muesli Muffins Muffins American - style Mushrooms - organic Mushrooms - dried Mussels - fresh in season Mussels vacuum - packed Mustard Oatcakes Oils Olive Oil Olive Oil - flavoured Olives Oysters - Rock Pancetta Panettone - sometimes just at Christmas Party Nibbles Pasta - dried Pasta - fresh Pasties Pastrami Peanut Oil (groundnut) Pies - Vegetable Pine Kernels Pizza Polenta Pork pies Pork - free range Porridge Oats - coarse natural Potatoes - top class/unusual Prawns - fresh in season Prawns - frozen Prawns - King Christmas Pudding Pulses Pumpkins - in the Autumn Pumpkin Seed Oil Rice paper Rice; specialist Risotto; flavoured mixes Saffron strands Salad Dressing - top quality Salad leaves - of high quality Salami Sardines - fresh in season Sauces - prepared Chinese Sauces - prepared curry Sauces - prepared pasta Sauerkraut Sausages - Pork Sesame Oil Skate / Ray Smoked Mackerel Smoked salmon Smoked venison Soup - top quality Speck Spices - a good general selection Squashs - Vegetable Squid - fresh (in season) Stare anise Stilton Stock - top-quality made Sugar - perruche Sugar - unrefined Swordfish - fresh Tapioca Taramasalata Tea - organic Tea - specialist Tisanes / Herbal Infusions Tofu Tomatoes - in season Tomatoes - sun dried Tortillas Traiteur/ Take Away/Ready Meals Traiteur/ Take Away/ Ready Meals - vegetarian Trout - Rainbow Truffle Oil Turkeys - free-range (often just before Christmas) Vanilla pods Veal free range Vegetables - frozen Vegetables - good selection of fresh Vegetables - preserved char-grilled Venison - farmed Vinegar - wine Vinegar - balsamic Vol-au-vent cases Walnut Oil Watercress Yeast - dried Yeast - fresh bakers Yoghurt - cows' milk Yoghurt - dairy free Yoghurt - goats' milk Yoghurt - organic Yoghurt - sheeps' (ewes') milk