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Showing posts from July, 2021

TOUR: Subzi Mandi Cash & Carry - Iselin, NJ

Subzi Mandi Cash & Carry Owner: Jagir Singh Opened:  2002 Cooperative:  none Location:  1518 Oak Tree Rd, Iselin, Woodbridge, NJ Photographed:  June 2020 Finishing up our coverage of Oak Tree Road between Edison ( Apna Bazar , Patel Bros , India Grocers ) and Iselin ( Patel Bros again , Asian Grocery , and this store). This store was built in the 1960s as a ShopRite, and I think it's a fair assumption that it was owned by the Sitar family, who today own the ShopRite over in Carteret  -- though I could be wrong. I have a gap between the 1980s, when the store moved down the street to the building that's now India Grocers, and 2003 when this store opened, and I don't know what the store was in that period. But I can tell you that the building used to look a heck of a lot more like a 1960s-era ShopRite than it does now. Inside, I'm assuming absolutely nothing remains from ShopRite, but outside, we have remnants from a different chain... Like many Supremos, this store

TOUR: Asian Grocery - Iselin, NJ

Asian Grocery Owner: Abdul Paracha Opened:  2012 Cooperative:  none Location:  1547 Oak Tree Rd, Iselin, Woodbridge, NJ Photographed:  June 2020 The smallest of the grocery stores along Oak Tree Road, Asian Grocery did not appear on my list of stores as I was planning out my trip. I then attempted to get into it from Patel Brothers by crossing the side street, but you can't enter the parking lot. Anyway, I figured when I finally could get in, it would be worth visiting, if only for completion of this stretch of the road. Until 2019, it appears this store was operating under the name Bestway Cash & Carry -- which opened before 2012, so it's possible the store changed ownership in 2012. Produce and dairy/refrigerated foods take up approximately the left 1/3 of the store, with the right 2/3 being grocery aisles and frozen foods at the far right side of the store. Tempting as it is to say, I do not believe that "THANK YOU FOR SHOPPING WITH US" sign is secondhand from

TOUR: India Grocers - Edison, NJ

India Grocers Owner: Heepal Patel Opened:  2013 Cooperative:  none Location:  1665 Oak Tree Rd, Edison, NJ Photographed:  June 2020 It's time for our third Oak Tree store (see the first and second here). This is probably the strangest store of them all, as we'll see. Built as a 75,000 square foot ShopRite in the 1980s as a replacement store for a 60s location just down the street at 1518 Oak Tree -- now a Subzi Mandi, which we'll see in three days -- this location may have been owned by the Sakers, who own stores to the south, or by the Sitars, who own Carteret and a development just across the Parkway on Oak Tree. Around 2000 it became a Pathmark , which later relocated to the west along Oak Tree to South Plainfield in 2009. That store, at 3600 Park Ave, is now a Saker ShopRite and we'll be touring it when we get out to South Plainfield. But for now, let's focus on this store, which has been subdivided and is now anchored by a 25,000 square foot grocery store -

TOUR: Apna Bazar Cash & Carry - Edison, NJ

Apna Bazar Cash & Carry Owner: Khadag Singh Opened:  2005 Cooperative:  none Location:  1700 Sugartree Plz, Edison, NJ Photographed:  June 2020 There is an approximately three quarter of a mile stretch of Oak Tree Road between Edison and Iselin (an unincorporated community within Woodbridge) that has no fewer than six Indian and South Asian grocery stores along it. We're starting here at the farthest west one, although we will be returning to Oak Tree even farther to the west out in South Plainfield later. I must say going into this post that I have quite a few unknowns about this store. The 13,000 square foot store appears to have opened in 2005 as an Apna Bazar Cash & Carry before having a grand reopening in June 2019 following a renovation and a rebrand as Apna Bazar Farmer Market, but that name change is not reflected anywhere outside or inside (or at least was not at the time of my visit almost a year later; we see the storefront with only one lonely faded sign where