Friday, August 31, 2012


  It wasn't until I moved into my first apartment that I learned about ALDI. I had always done my grocery shopping at Jewel or Dominick's. My girlfriend (now my wife) informed me that I might do well to consider shopping at ALDI instead.

     If you just asked yourself "what in the world is ALDI?" then you are probably somewhere above the middle class.  For the uninitiated, ALDI is a very bare bones grocery store. Not bare bones in selection, bare bones in frippery. Cartons are more or less opened up and placed on shelves and racks. There are no baggers. There are no bags provided. You must either bring your own, buy them there, or scavenge empty cartons from around the store. You can't get a cart without a 25 cent deposit.
A bolt cutter will work, too.

     The stripped down nature of ALDI allows prices to be kept fairly low compared to other stores. On an average trip, about $60 will get us 40-60 items. Canned food is super cheap, as is frozen. Produce is generally hit or miss if you don't get it right as it's put out.  Almost everything is ALDI's house brand.  Occasionally, they carry actual name brands. We've found BocaBurgers and Pizzeria Uno frozen pizzas before, and at extremely good prices. ALDI also has a very nice meat and fancy cheese selection.

     If you're truly lucky, your ALDI will have a liquor section. This is wonderful because ALDI is based out of Germany. That means their house label beers are actually imported Germany and Holland. They also have a nice selection of wines and other lighter drinks. No hard liquor is available at ALDI, which is a complete shame because I would never have to shop anywhere else.

     The only downfall of ALDI is the propensity of their stores to be placed in sketchy locations. Sometimes you'll luck out and the store will be somewhere nice. Our current store at any time boasts a clientele similar to what you would find in a Wal-Mart at about 2:30 in the morning. You learn to make sacrifices for value.


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