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Discussion Starter #1
We have a mid-July MF permit and plan to stage/shop in Boise. Any ideas on the best, most helpful grocery store?
 

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Definetly winco downtown. There is a whole foods next door if you can't find everything you need at winco.

Have a safe and happy trip
 

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Fred Meyer

Fred Meyer. There are several in the Boise area. They have a huge selection of food (good organic selection) and anything else you may need. I think they are way better than Winco. The Coop in downtown Boise for a more local, natural store. It is a great store. There is also a Whole Foods in Boise.
 

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If you are on a budget at all, go with WinCo, they are far cheaper than any of the other stores, and should be very helpful.
 

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Not sure what you will find in Boise but the Twin Falls Winco is indispensable for my river trip planning. All dry goods, staples, coffee, condiments, dairy, eggs - will be cheaper for the same product.

Fred Meyer seems to have good quality stuff but you pay a premium. there is also a Costco or two in Boise. One over by Overland. I think their meat is better quality but I don't use Costco produce for river trips ever. It has been packaged for too long before you get it and it doesn't seem to hold up very well at all.

Winco produce can be hit or miss. Sometimes it's fine, sometimes not so much. Their fruit seems to be pretty good. Go early in the day for best selection. And whatever you do don't go on a Saturday or Sunday afternoon.

If you are small trip it may not work, but I always contact the manager of my local grocery store and say something like " we are doing a trip for 15 people and our food budget is $2,500. For convenience we would like to not run around all over will you give us a 10% discount if we do our major food shop with you?" Never been turned down yet.

I would also call ahead to ask if you can have someone help you learn the store real quick. As in mini tour. Grocery stores love to help you spend money at their store.
 

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Winco if price and selection are important. Although Costco might be an option, depending on how much stuff you want. Besides not going on the weekend, don't go between 4:30-6:00 on the weekday, or around the 1st of the month (WIC). Super early in the mornings or early at night is best. It is a 24 hours store.

On the other end of the spectrum, you could go to Whole Foods or the Coop if you want to get your granola, organic foodie on.

Fred Meyer is okay because they a bunch of non-grocery items in the same store, but I wouldn't shop for groceries there. Too expensive.
 

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Winco is definitely the least expensive.
Winco stores are just crammed full.
Costco is usually the best quality but it can be expensive and its mostly in bulk only.

Fred Meyer in-between.
Freddies is definitely better quality than Winco. Shows up in baked goods and fruit.

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Appropriate that Wally and Safeway and Albertsons have not been mentioned.

Full disclosure. Don't have a Winco locally so when we visit friends near Salem this weekend we'll be stopping at a Winco on the return.

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Pull up the Fred Meyer ad before you go if you're tight.
Fred Meyer - Weekly Ad Results

Or the Winco ad if you're really tight.
Coupons and Specials | WinCo Foods

- - - - - - -

Winco is employee-owned. BTW
 

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Are you guys really debating the best place to buy food? How about the grocery you drive by on the way. Done and done.
 

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Are you guys really debating the best place to buy food? How about the grocery you drive by on the way. Done and done.
He clearly has never been to Winco. I will agree that some Wincos are better than others and there are times NOT to go, but it is the best place to shop for good food at reasonable prices. It makes a difference when shopping for a river trip or for people on a budget like me.
 

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Are you guys really debating the best place to buy food? How about the grocery you drive by on the way. Done and done.
Are you really bumming out the OPs thread about the best place to buy food after driving or flying from BC.

WTF? This isn't a weird question. There are many options. Buying food as fresh as possible and getting the best deal to go on a river trip might be important to some people.

If you have ever tried to shop for folks who have dietary challenges or restrictions and you end up in BumFork, Idaho trying to do it - it ain't so fun.

So lighten up Francis.
 

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I'll throw in my two pennies for WinCo, the downtown location will be the easiest and is really close to Whole Foods or the Coop if you need something fancy. We shopped at Fred's for the first full year we lived here and felt like idiots when we switched to WinCo...our grocery bill got cut by 25%.

However, as mentioned, some items can be hit and miss...produce isn't always the greatest.

Plus they're employee owned...it makes an obvious difference. It should be mentioned that a credit card won't work...they don't take them....cash or debit card.
 

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Here's some internet wince advice:
Going to Winco for food is like going into war, you have to be mentally, physically, and psychologically prepared. You have to tell yourself, "Self, to save a few bucks, we're going to go into this war zone. It won't be pretty, and there are lots of landmines, but if we get out alive with the loot we need (read: want), then we can call ourselves veterans (of Winco)."
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But this is all you need:

46 AMBIANCE 2/5 SERVICE 3/10 SELECTION 6/15 FOOD N/A VALUE 7/10 OVERALL 12/20
stevoj (104) Boise, Idaho | July 29, 2013

Mainly a grocery store catering to macro brews, with a small sampling of some local and regional craft brews. Prices are decent.
 

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Since all the Boise people are weighing in ... i'll put my 2 cents in:

You guys are all off base ... the WinCo in Eagle (The Civilized WinCo) is the way to go all the way.

On the way out of town, no lines, less crowds, no restocking during the day, no strange folks carrying guns, etc ...

After 7 pm and the place is a ghost town.

Seems like between WinCo and Costco you'd have it all covered.
 

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The downtown Winco really isn't bad at all. I prefer to every other Winco I've been to, and that's not just because it's my local store.

The worst are the Winco stores on Fairview, and in Nampa. Avoid at all costs.
 

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The only things I miss about living in Idaho. The white water and WINCO in Eagle. And convienently enough it is on the way from boise to the MF.
Oh and it is employee owned. Yes cheaper than Walmart and they have benifits for employees.
 

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I'll throw in my two pennies for WinCo, the downtown location will be the easiest and is really close to Whole Foods or the Coop if you need something fancy. We shopped at Fred's for the first full year we lived here and felt like idiots when we switched to WinCo...our grocery bill got cut by 25%.

However, as mentioned, some items can be hit and miss...produce isn't always the greatest.

Plus they're employee owned...it makes an obvious difference. It should be mentioned that a credit card won't work...they don't take them....cash or debit card.
I agree, I moved 2 months ago and used to live close to a Winco. Now I live close to a Fred Meyer. I went to Freddy's last night to grab something to grill. Chicken breast was $5.49/lb and that's the cheapest I could find. Winco is $2.00 or $2.50.

Winco deli sucks.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Thanks for all the advice. Sounds like Winco is the place. We have had some luck with grocery stores on other trips freezing our meat the night before. We pack the cooler the night before and drag it into their walk-in freezer. Are there butchers at Winco or is all the meat pre-packaged?
 
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