Thursday, April 17, 2014

Grocery Outlet coming soon

Bob Thompson, an aspiring operating trainee, rearranges the shelves Monday at the soon-to-open Grocery Outlet store in Davis. Sue Cockrell/Enterprise photo

March 14, 2011 | 17 Comments

A new Grocery Outlet store — located in half of what was once an Albertsons store in the Davis Manor Shopping Center — will open next week. A ribbon-cutting ceremony is planned for Wednesday, March 23, followed by a “soft opening” on Thursday, March 24, and an official grand opening on Saturday, April 2.

Many of the shelves are already stocked with canned goods and dry goods, and new coolers are standing ready to receive milk, eggs, meat and produce as the store’s opening day approaches.

An artist was in the store on Monday, putting the finishing touches on wall murals. New flooring, fresh paint and new checkout stands — five of them, plus one temporary checkout stand to handle crowds during the store’s opening weeks — have spruced up the building, which dates from the 1950s.

Co-owners Eric and Shannon Flick are new to Davis, but they’ve been living in Yolo County for a decade, and operating a Grocery Outlet store in West Sacramento for nearly 10 years. Their new store in Davis will carry a little bit of everything, Eric Flick said.

Customers can expect a selection of baked goods, including bread, some loaf cakes, doughnut holes, bear claws and other treats. The meat department, while not large, will offer ground beef and ground turkey, as well as cuts of pork, chicken and beef.

The beer and wine section will carry “several outstanding bottles of wine in the $4 to $6 range, which would ordinarily sell for much more at other stores,” Flick said.

Fresh fruits and vegetables, as well as salad makings, also will be sold.

In addition to several aisles of edible items, there’s a health and beauty aisle with shampoo, bars of soap and vitamins, as well as an aisle stocked with a basic selection of pots and pans, coffee makers and other kitchen items.

And there’s a seasonal aisle, which on opening day will feature squirt guns and other summer items, in anticipation of warmer weather.

Shannon Flick mentioned that the store will carry a number of organic and/or natural foods, both in the fresh produce section and in the canned or dry goods sections. And Davis being Davis, a new bicycle rack is being installed outside.

The business model for Grocery Outlet targets value-oriented shoppers, otherwise known as bargain hunters. The headquarters for the chain, which has more than 150 stores, is in Berkeley, but the stores are independently owned and operated.

A Grocery Outlet store sometimes looks and feels a little like a big warehouse-style store — but on a much smaller scale, with the opportunity to buy single items, like one can of tomato sauce rather than a packaged pack of cans, or one huge can.

“We purchase directly from name-brand manufacturers — we often purchase package changes, or manufacturer overruns, and we get them at a discount, and then pass the savings on to consumers,” Eric Flick said. “We also purchase seasonal items that are nearing the end of their season, and sell them at a reduced price.”

Flick said his half of the grocery store on East Eighth Street — the Dollar Tree moved into the other half some years back — has one particular characteristic that drew his interest.

“The thing that appeals to us about this location is that we will be surrounded by residential rooftops,” he said. “We have families with kids in single-family homes, seniors in mobile homes, university students living in apartments, and other kinds of households …  all around us. These are people who need to shop, and can walk or bike to our store. And these days, stretching your dollar is important to people in all walks of life.”

Flick said several regular customers at his West Sacramento Grocery Outlet have been Davis residents, which made Flick think a new Grocery Outlet store in Davis could do well.

At 12,000 square feet, the new store is much smaller than most of its competitors — the two 40,000-square-foot Safeway stores, Nugget Market on East Covell and SaveMart; and the 25,000-square-foot Nugget Market in South Davis and the Davis Food Co-op.

It is roughly comparable in size to Trader Joe’s in University Mall or Westlake Market in West Davis, as well as the 13,000 square feet devoted to groceries inside the 130,000-square-foot Target store in Davis.

But unlike Trader Joe’s, which carries a carefully selected, relatively constant assortment of foods, the offerings at Grocery Outlet will be ever-changing, as new lots of goods arrive in the store, replacing other items that have sold out.

Eric Flick said he expects that fresh and perishable items — produce, meat, deli, dairy and baked goods — will account for 30 to 40 percent of the new store’s sales.

The new store will be staffed by about 35 locally hired employees, some full time, others part time, including a few students from nearby Da Vinci High School.

The store’s grand opening on April 2, starting at 8 a.m., will include hot dog and drink sales benefiting the Yolo County Children’s Alliance.

“Giving back to the community and partnering with community groups is important to us,” Eric Flick said.

The grand opening also will feature face-painting and balloon-twisting booths, as well as games and other activities with prizes, including reusable “Frugal Friendly” shopping bags and Grocery Outlet gift cards.

— Reach Jeff Hudson at or (530) 747-8055. Comment on this story at

Join the fun

What: Grocery Outlet official grand opening, featuring hot dog and drink sales to benefit the Yolo County Children’s Alliance, face-painting and balloon-twisting booths and games with prizes

When: Saturday, April 2, starting at 8 a.m.

Where: Grocery Outlet in the Davis Manor Shopping Center on East Eighth Street


Discussion | 17 comments

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  • Craig AllenMarch 15, 2011 - 10:59 am

    DANG good concept! Welcome aboard Grocery Outlet!!

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  • chrisMarch 15, 2011 - 1:00 pm

    I'll keep shopping at the co-cop thanks.

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  • kathyMarch 15, 2011 - 5:38 pm

    You do that! Thanks for bringing grocery outlet to Davis-this is exactly what we needed in these hard times!

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  • JeremyMarch 16, 2011 - 8:05 am

    The Co-op is fine if you are looking for organic and expensive items but, for many Davisites especially students, this is going to make a world of difference in their already tight budget.

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  • koMarch 15, 2011 - 1:06 pm

    "I’ll keep shopping at the co-cop thanks." Well I'm happy for

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  • ColorfulClayMarch 15, 2011 - 3:32 pm

    Will Grocery Oulet bargain market be allowed to bag or box groceries for costumers? I heard that practice was about to be outlawed in Davis.

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  • JonMarch 15, 2011 - 4:14 pm

    We will bag your groceries and the service will be excellent!

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  • anamariaMarch 15, 2011 - 9:57 pm

    So happy we need a grocery on this area welcome to Davis Manor Shopping Center, EXPRESSION'S HAIR DESIGN WELCOME YOU!!!!!!

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  • california chickMarch 16, 2011 - 2:15 pm

    are these the stores with the rainbow logo? sell a bunch of odds and ends and are reminiscent of 99-cents stores??? if so, they're good for buying certain items, but i'm not so sure i'd feel comfortable buying actual groceries there. maybe i'm confusing the stores...

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  • JonMarch 16, 2011 - 4:38 pm

    "are these the stores with the rainbow logo?" Yes, but like the logo, we have changed a lot. We now sell fresh produce, meat, milk, eggs, and many other items. In most cases we will have everything you need, or at least 90%. If you shop us first you will save a lot and may even have enough left over to fill your gas tank! If we can't save you money, we won't sell it to you. Currently we have a 2006 Kunde Syrah for $4.99, normally goes for near $20 a bottle and a nice 85.8 pts. to back it up You will need to go to our W. Sacramento or Woodland store to pick it up now, but we should have it when we open up in Davis next Thursday.

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  • WineProfMarch 17, 2011 - 10:59 am

    As with all great deals there are usually a catch. With the great wine prices at Grocery Outlet (and the prices are really low) you can also get some pretty bad wine. There is a huge difference between a propery stored wine and one that's been abused. This is the experience I have had with several Grocery Outlet wines in the past. You can find some great deals but I have found and equal number of cooked wines there. I imagine they are able to get lots that have questionable handling issues at a great discounts. Can't comment on their other products but there is often a reason for deep discounts.

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  • windex66March 17, 2011 - 4:07 pm

    There are other reasons why wine is discounted. Let the Buyer Beware. I've enjoyed a few bottles from GO myself...the employee who stocks that department will often times give you good tips!

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  • EllieMarch 17, 2011 - 11:42 pm

    What happened to the Dollar Store, I love that store for its great bargain on Cards, wrapping paper etc. Grocery Outlet is a sketchy store but for the area that store fits right in there. Wow, you mean the Liberal Davisites allowed this store to go in their NIMBY mentality.

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  • Jon DeckerMarch 18, 2011 - 6:16 am

    We back all of our products 100%. The Dollar Store is still there, the shopping center is really looking great. Sketchy? Come check us out and I think you will have different opinion.

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  • UCDladyMarch 18, 2011 - 9:37 am

    I always get my Almond Breeze for cheap at the woodland location. Get my organic shampoos and health stuff for cheap there too! Don't be too quick to judget, gotta see for your self for sure!! Im sippin on some Acai (and its not expired), soo good. Love Grocery Outlets! Always try to save 50% when i go in. :)

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  • Jeremy JohnsonApril 29, 2011 - 2:37 pm

    Bob Thompson is Bi-polar. I feel sorry for the employees there. Grocery Outlets have terrible customer service. The cashiers will not interupt their gossiping and flirting to talk or even look at the customers they are ringing up. The food they sell there is usually a day or two away from expiring. Sometimes it is already expired. I have no idea how the company gets away with that. I will never shop there again. One word for Grocery Outlet.... Ghetto!!!!

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  • Market Basket CircularAugust 14, 2011 - 12:44 pm

    Great post. Just bookmarked it for a friend.

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