When shopping around for your dinner after a long day at the office, it’s often frowned upon if you get distracted by ice cream. But when it’s a gelato bar filled with delicious Ciao Bella – who can blame you?
In the past few weeks I’ve done my part in convincing the masses that it’s O.K. to have dessert first. Hardly my civic duty; but it’s certainly fun. The gelato bars I’ve mentioned are featured in many of the Whole Foods Markets around the tri-state area and offer a variety of treats for all types of customers. From those who make the choice to be vegan from those with various dairy or gluten allergies, Whole Foods truly caters to their customers’ dietary needs.
My visit to the WFM on the Upper West Side during lunch-time was like a shot of espresso (or maybe a scoop or two of Triple Espresso gelato). Masses of people were coming and going – grabbing a quick cup of coffee, a sandwich to go, and (if I had anything to do with it) a scoop of gelato. The gelato bar here was nestled in a quiet corner by the coffee bar, offering a sweet treat for those in need.
After grabbing a prosciutto caprese Panini from the deli and hitting absolutely no traffic over the GWB, I was off to the Edgewater WFM for the Surf vs. Turf Showdown. This Food Network inspired competition drew quite the crowd and the “judges” were more than happy to squeeze in an ice cream sample at the end.
Keeping with the outdoors theme, I traveled down the road from our Florham Park office to the Madison WFM where they were grilling up savory salmon steaks in an organic ginger marinade. The customers here impressed me with their knowledge of the product and curiosity about the sources of our hormone free milk and organic evaporated cane juice.
Before the holiday weekend began, I fit in one last gelato bar visit to the WFM in White Plains. The diverse selection of foods in the café area was reflected by the equally eclectic customer base that came through the store. A lot of first time samples this day and hopefully some new fans.
Yesterday’s visit to the West Orange WFM was perfect timing. The temperature outside was melting everything in sight and everyone was glad to come inside for some sorbet. The demo ended with me being surrounded by a group of kids (future Ciao Bella fans) who asked me hundreds of questions, prying me for more stickers and tattoos until I explained to them that my demo had ended a half hour ago and it was time for me to go home for dinner.