HEB. Not exactly a catchy name for a grocery store, but my friend Jenn assured me I would be in for a treat.
As an aside, you know you are with a fellow foodie when you are on vacation and a suggested activity is to "go grocery shopping."
Jenn, R, G and I headed to HEB for some groceries for our visit. In a nutshell, although they say that HEB stands for "Here Everything's Better," it could also stand for "Have Enough (in your) Belly?"
The apparent motto of HEB is "we'll give you enough samples to ruin your appetite." Around every corner there was another stand, offering tastes of produce, cheese, breads, prepared foods, crackers and more. It makes our hometown grocery store, which usually has a bakery sample, and perhaps 1-2 others, look quite paltry.
I brought my camera here too, making a mild scene with all my picture taking. Here's a small taste:
(this picture does not do these pineapples justice...they were HUGE!)
And my favorite little gimmick of the store:
How cool to let kids pick out a piece of fruit to munch on while they shop? Although as Jenn pointed out, there were so many fruit samples, it was never necessary for her to get a whole piece.
Besides the samples, there were really cool features like a tea bar with loose teas you could buy in bulk and an olive oil bar with about a dozen types to choose and bottle yourself.
With our grocery cart full, Jenn and I headed back with the boys...and some fun food to share.
The rest of the weekend was full of your typical Southwestern eating adventures...lots of tacos, Texas Barbecue and good things on the grill. I'll have a recipe or two to share soon, as I requested one special recipe that was brought to the boil as a side dish and another recipe idea that was inspired by my trip...I'll post that one tomorrow.