This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2011, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
It's only four days until the new flagship Whole Foods Market store opens in Salt Lake City's Trolley Square – and it's going to be a busy weekend for the people getting ready.
Touring the new 42,000-square-foot store at 700 East and 500 South this morning, I saw plenty of cool stuff – and still a great many empty shelves and bins, particularly where the fresh food is: The produce section, the meat and seafood counters, the bakery and the flower stand.
I also saw a contractor standing on top of the salad bar.
"You won't see that come Monday," joked Marc Pittenger, who led the public pre-opening tours (and is manager of the Whole Foods in Park City).
The Trolley Square store is massive compared to the quaint and cozy Whole Foods on Fourth South that it will replace. And though it will be sad to see the old store go, I won't miss the narrow aisles, limited brand selection and a rat's-maze that they call a parking lot.
The new store promises organic produce, sustainably caught seafood, humanely raised meat, a dry-aged beef locker, massive cheese and sushi bars, and an entire wall of gluten-free options.
Local touches abound. The cafeteria-style food counters have such names as "East Bench Asian," "Timpanogos Taqueria," "Central City Sandwich Company" and "Twin Peaks Pizzeria." And local food purveyors – such as Cox Honeyland honey and Laurie's Buffalo Gourmet chips – were giving out samples. (The bakery also promises exclusive items from Salt Lake City bakers City Cakes and RubySnap.)
Walking through the store is an education, as there are labels and signage all over explaining where food comes from, how it's raised, and how nutritional it is.
And meat department manager Troy Torgrimson was proudly telling customers that he's got the corned beef in the brine, to be ready for St. Patrick's Day on Thursday.
The new store has its grand opening Monday.