Saturday, May 20, 2006

Life as we knew it is over

This opened in Red Hook last Wednesday; I went there for the first time on Friday evening. Yes, that is my idea of a hot Friday night. I tell you, I nearly wept! We've had next to nothing here in the way of a market, and now this. It's almost too much to bear it's so wonderful. Since this is (ostensibly) a knitting blog, I'll try to put it in terms fellow followers of the fleece can understand:

Picture 52,000 square feet completely devoted to yarn. Every kind of yarn imaginable, from the most exquisite, exotic, hand-dyed silks, to the tried and true rough-hewn lanolin laden wool, to simple acrylics (should you want that for any reason). Every color, every quality, every texture and content imaginable, filling 52,000 square feet of a beautiful, high-ceilinged, pre-civil war wool warehouse (coffee warehouse in Fairway's case!) in spacious aisles that, in spite of the rich overflowing-ness of the yarns, are easy to navigate. Imagine then that all this yarn is priced beyond reasonably well. Bargains that boggle the mind! Prices that make you check twice, even three times, to see if something isn't marked wrong. Finally, put all this in a picturesque, even dramatic setting on the water of the New York Harbor with fair Ms. Liberty in the background, add a seating area with both indoor and outdoor tables overlooking the water next to the bakery which turns out everything from simple baguettes to tarts and cookies, and place all this a few short blocks away from your very own front door.

I grew up in Southern California with Trader Joe's (the real thing; not the poor substitute that exists out here), I've been to the food halls of Harrod's, the farm stalls of rural Pennsylvania, the ancient market in Athens. I've shopped at Zabar's and Eli's and even the other Fairway on the Upper West Side. Nothing, nothing compares to this Fairway. I will forever quibble over produce having grown up with the incomparable fruit and veg sections of Southern California supermarkets, but this Fairway does extremely well with its produce and more than makes up for anything I might miss in that department with the elaborate, extensive, exhaustive selection they have in everything else.

If you'll excuse me, I have to go now. I have a little shopping to do.


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