Healthy and Sane

Sibling Rivalry and Stop & Shop – blogger luncheon

August 21st, 2010 · 17 Comments · blogger meetups, Boston

Last week, I was invited to a lovely lunch at Sibling Rivalry, hosted by Stop & Shop – one of our local supermarkets. Side note: isn’t it weird that only Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods are nation-wide grocery stores? I wonder why that is…

I’ve heard a lot about Sibling Rivalry – mostly good things although I’ve also heard it’s hit or miss there sometimes. Of course, I was excited to see for myself especially since lunch was on Stop & Shop’s tab 😉

Stop & Shop had a few gorgeous plates of cheese, fruit and crackers for us to snack on while all the bloggers arrived. I was starving so I was all about the cheese (ok, let’s be honest, when am I not all about the cheese. 😆 )

The brie rounds were the coolest – so convenient for entertaining! (this product is coming to Stop & Shop soon)

Why hello, blog friends 😀 Lauren, Jen and Fiona

Meghan, Tina and I

We mingled for a bit and then were directed to the dining room for the special presentation by Chef David Kinkead who described the preparation of the meals we were about to enjoy and then showed us how we may use the leftover meat (if we were to make this at home) for lunch the next day. What a fun concept for an event!

The entrees:

Random chopped veggies you may have in your house to be used in lunch:

The chef was quite nervous giving the presentation but that made him even more approachable/relatable in my mind. He showed us how to cut up a whole roasted chicken and then used some of the meat in a delicious looking chicken salad (he used a touch of mayo to bring it together and utilized some of the veggies shown above; other variations he mentioned included grapes and nuts – a combo I know I love. I also love using greek yogurt to bulk up the mayo – definitely a figure friendlier option 😉 ). The steak “leftovers” were made into a steak and cheese panini – he added a nice piece of brie (melts nicely) and a slice of a beautiful heirloom tomato but of course the possibilities are endless with paninis. Paninis are definitely an easy “meal” to make. :)

While listening to the presentation, I couldn’t help but snap a few photos of the stunning flowers on my table. I just love the bright colors!!

… and I also enjoyed a salad of gala lettuce, celery, cucumber, cherry tomatoes and roquefort.

It was lightly dressed and more delicious than the simple ingredient list makes it out to be. I could eat at least 5 times that amount though. 😉

For my entree, since I didn’t know the origin of the meat offered, I chose the vegetarian option which the chefs whipped up for the few of us who asked for it. What we got was an artichoke, steamed spinach, mini carrots, grape tomato and avocado over sweet potato puree

The presentation was so lovely – delicate and elegant.

The sweet potato purree was to-die-for. Lots of butter was involved in the making of this gem. I didn’t complain about that. The only thing I was a little disappointed about was that there was no “protein” in this dish. As delicious as the vegetables were, I was still very hungry after finishing this (as you can see, we got about 2 mini carrots, 2 mini avocado slices, 1/2 grape tomato… you get the point). Vegetarians need more than a few pieces of veggies to call it lunch. Just saying.

Luckily, there was one more course – dessert. Fresh fruit, lemon curd and chocolate mini tartlets. How adorable are these little babies?

I had these 2 guys and then went back for another chocolate one (and they tried really hard not to continue eating). Fantastic!!

As we were nibbling on our mini tarts, Andrea told us a little bit about the new products they recently started carrying at Stop & Shop.

It was really interesting to hear how large of an impact customer feedback has on products offered. For example, they recently started carrying smaller fruit and veggies because moms complained their kids could never finish giant fruit that Stop & Shop’s produce guys were so proudly displaying (see the 2 apples and cucumbers they have for comparison there?). Very interesting. Stop & Shop also took note of moms requests for healthier snacks for their kids so Stop & Shop continued to expand their Nature’s Promise line of products (all organic). I’m going to admit that I usually shop at TJ’s and WF for my organic produce and other convenience foods because I found that “regular” supermarkets charge more for such products. Andrea did a few price comparisons between traditional brands like Annie’s and similar products by Nature’s Promise and it looks like choosing the store brand may be more economical (I don’t know how that still compares against TJ’s and WF). Hopefully more demand will help create more supply and bring the prices down even further. I’m all for it!

We received a little goodie bag at the end of lunch (which included a $25 gift card to Stop & Shop) so I’m looking forward to stopping by there and doing a little more pricing research and of course finding new delicious products (I usually don’t shop at Stop & Shop so I’m sure they have cool products I’ve never had before). I’m excited! The food at Sibling Rivalry was pretty amazing as well and I can now say with certainty that would not hesitate to go back there. The chefs focus on cooking with seasonal ingredients and those are the kind of restaurants that are dear to my heart. Thank you again, Stop & Shop and Sibling Rivalry for hosting such an interesting (and delicious!) event!! 😀

Question for you guys: where do you do most of your shopping? I buy most produce at farmers markets during the summer/fall months, our meat is from our meat CSA and then we usually go to TJ’s (cheaper) and then Whole Foods for the rest. :)

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17 Comments so far ↓

  • #1 - Sues

    I wish I could have gone to this! But work is taking over my life… I NEVER realized TJ’s and Whole Foods are the only national grocery stores. That IS odd!! I do most of my shopping at TJ’s, Whole Foods, and Stop and Shop! Trying to hit up the farmers’ markets when I can and the new Meat House in Coolidge Corner for meat. If i have the time, I LOVE grocery shopping :)

  • #2 - amy

    I do mostly of my grocery shopping at 1. farmers markets, 2. whole foods and 3. trader joes. Rarely do I go to shaws or stop and shop bc I think their organic stuff is overpriced. But I’m going to give stop and shop another try and look at their brand

  • #3 - Clarice

    We don’t have TJ’s or WF’s in New Hampshire. With the exception of farmer’s markets, I shop at Market Basket and Stop and Shop. Sometimes, I make runs across the border to go to Trader Joe’s.

  • #4 - MelissaNibbles

    I actually do most of my shopping at Stop & Shop because it’s affordable. Whole Foods does not and probably will not ever fit into my budget and I don’t need to shop there just to say I do. I think they overcharge and use their name to appeal to a certain demographic of people (young, white, professional, Prius driving yuppies) and those people buy into it.

  • #5 - Corey - The Runner's Cookie

    I get most of my produce from Shaw’s but get other items (like milk, nut butter, snacks) from Trader Joe’s. Once in a while I go to Whole Foods for things like bulk cereal and special items.

  • #6 - Michelle

    I wish I could have gone to this but I was at work! Your photos look gorgeous and those brie rounds are awesome! I do most of my shopping via Peapod and supplement my fresh fruits and veggies from local farmers’ markets and Go Greenologist. Whenever I’m in a pinch, I usually grab last minute items from Whole Foods or Savenor’s.

  • #7 - Heather

    I love Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods, so I’ll go there and then to a couple of local Farmers
    Market shops in the area as well.

  • #8 - Samantha Angela @ Bikini Birthday

    Oooh that looks like a really fun event ! I’m a bit jealous 😉

  • #9 - Meghan@traveleatlove

    I buy as much as I can at the farmer’s market and the rest at TJ’s and sometimes our neighborhood shop. Great photos!

  • #10 - Shannon

    bummed i missed out! i was just talking about sibling rivalry the other day… guess i’ll have to visit another time :)

  • #11 - Rachael

    I try to avoid chains, so the food co-op in my town (Asheville), farmer’s markets or small grocers tend to be my markets of choice. Our garden helps keep costs low, as does extensive dumpstering :)

  • #12 - Joslyn @ missfitbliss

    Man that looks good! All of it!

  • #13 - Jessica@tastyandtrim

    I like doing most of my shopping at trader joes. I would love to do ALL of my shopping at whole foods, but I also like to be able to pay the bills so TJ’s really helps to stay within the budget :)

  • #14 - Kerstin

    I go to like 6 stores – it’s a bit crazy (not every week though!). I like S&S because they gave me a huge gift basket when I went to the Pillsbury BakeOff and they have pretty good prices :)

  • #15 - Liz @ Blog is the New Black

    I am from Boston, too! I shop at S&S and I’m happy to see that they are expanding their organic and healthy store brand items. I go to WF or TJ sometimes, but for the most part I stick to S&S.

  • #16 - Hangry Pants

    I am extremely loyal to Stop & Shop! I would say I do 75% of my shopping their and 25% at Whole Foods, TJs and Farmers Markers. I would probably go to TJs more for cheap things, but it’s a little further than the others.

  • #17 - Jen

    Great recap to the luncheon. I shop at Stop and Shop, TJ’s and the farmers market.