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#1
(This post was last modified: 10-19-2017, 03:01 PM by OldGuy.)
I’ve always liked mustard. As a kid I pretty much got French’s at home unless I was at my once a year trip to Fenway Park, and then it was Guldens (a real treat for me). Growing older, and on my own I started buying more expensive brands and types. Slowly over the years I got tired of it as the over the counter brands seemed to lose something for me. For the past 4 or 5 years I’ve just been buying brand X. Then I saw a brand at the store I hadn’t seen before. It comes in a clear glass jar shaped as a mug. It’s called “Alstertor Dusseldorf Style Mustard”. It’s made in Germany. I really liked it and it was reasonably priced. Now, is it as good as maybe some hand crafted mustard made by cloistered Nuns in the Black Forest? Probably not, but it is a nice change for me.

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OG


"Do not regret growing older, its a privilege denied to many."
#2

Member
Ferndale, MI
I am also a fellow mustard lover. I like all different kinds, but my favorite I used to get at the grocery store was a Dutch stone ground variety called Boetje's. I can't find it locally anymore, but I did find it on Amazon. For straight yellow mustard, it's gotta be Plochman's. It's much better than French's, IMO. I'll have to look for the Alstertor and give it a try.

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- Jeff
#3

Super Moderator
I'll have to commence a search for some of these brands although it will be difficult up here in Canada, aka, land of limited choices. The grocery store aisles are pretty boring up here with pretty much every store/chain having the same basic limited choices as the others. I used to head to the US for basketball tournaments when my son was younger, Spokane mostly or Salt Lake City and the summer trip to Vegas was always fun. I always made a point of checking out the grocery sty ores because the selection and diversity of products, brands and choices was unbelievable. Vegas was harder because it was a flying trip but the other venues were driving trips so I could load up. Good times. The issue on selection in Canada is that a number of years ago one of our evil leaders decided it would be good if Canada were officially a bilingual country. French and English. There are laws requiring labels in grocery stores to be in both languages. Well many US producers say screw it, a market of max 30M people doesn't justify the cost of special labelling so no {insert product name} for you!! Hence we are stuck with limited selections. I didn't even know there was other yellow mustards from French's, i'm so sheltered.

If I look in some European specialty shops I might find some interesting choices - they sometimes flout the labelling lawsBig Grin
#4
(This post was last modified: 10-19-2017, 08:36 PM by OldGuy.)
(10-19-2017, 06:58 PM)Marko Wrote: I'll have to commence a search for some of these brands although it will be difficult up here in Canada, aka, land of limited choices. The grocery store aisles are pretty boring up here with pretty much every store/chain having the same basic limited choices as the others. I used to head to the US for basketball tournaments when my son was younger, Spokane mostly or Salt Lake City and the summer trip to Vegas was always fun. I always made a point of checking out the grocery sty ores because the selection and diversity of products, brands and choices was unbelievable. Vegas was harder because it was a flying trip but the other venues were driving trips so I could load up. Good times. The issue on selection in Canada is that a number of years ago one of our evil leaders decided it would be good if Canada were officially a bilingual country. French and English. There are laws requiring labels in grocery stores to be in both languages. Well many US producers say screw it, a market of max 30M people doesn't justify the cost of special labelling so no {insert product name} for you!! Hence we are stuck with limited selections. I didn't even know there was other yellow mustards from French's, i'm so sheltered.

If I look in some European specialty shops I might find some interesting choices - they sometimes flout the labelling lawsBig Grin

Well don't feel too bad. I do all the shopping at my house and over the last year I've noticed that grocery stores down here are starting to limit their inventory also. If it isn't a best seller, away it goes and they replace it with a house brand. There are many items I used to buy when I was grocery shopping that the stores no longer carry (Florida Water, VO5, CoCo Castile, etc.). I have to go elsewhere or online for a lot of things.

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OG


"Do not regret growing older, its a privilege denied to many."
#5
(10-19-2017, 04:14 PM)wyze0ne Wrote: I am also a fellow mustard lover. I like all different kinds, but my favorite I used to get at the grocery store was a Dutch stone ground variety called Boetje's. I can't find it locally anymore, but I did find it on Amazon. For straight yellow mustard, it's gotta be Plochman's. It's much better than French's, IMO. I'll have to look for the Alstertor and give it a try.

I've tried Plochmans and agree, it is way better than Frenchs, but I seem to like this one better.

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OG


"Do not regret growing older, its a privilege denied to many."
#6

Super Moderator
(10-19-2017, 08:35 PM)OldGuy Wrote:
(10-19-2017, 06:58 PM)Marko Wrote: I'll have to commence a search for some of these brands although it will be difficult up here in Canada, aka, land of limited choices.  The grocery store aisles are pretty boring up here with pretty much every store/chain having the same basic limited choices as the others.  I used to head to the US for basketball tournaments when my son was younger, Spokane mostly or Salt Lake City and the summer trip to Vegas was always fun.  I always made a point of checking out the grocery sty ores because the selection and diversity of products, brands and choices was unbelievable.  Vegas was harder because it was a flying trip but the other venues were driving trips so I could load up.  Good times.  The issue on selection in Canada is that a number of years ago one of our evil leaders decided it would be good if Canada were officially a bilingual country.  French and English.  There are laws requiring labels in grocery stores to be in both languages. Well many US producers say screw it, a market of max 30M people doesn't justify the cost of special labelling so no {insert product name} for you!!  Hence we are stuck with limited selections.  I didn't even know there was other yellow mustards from French's, i'm so sheltered.

If I look in some European specialty shops I might find some interesting choices - they sometimes flout the labelling lawsBig Grin

Well don't feel too bad. I do all the shopping at my house and over the last year I've noticed that grocery stores down here are starting to limit their inventory also. If it isn't a best seller, away it goes and they replace it with a house brand. There are many items I used to buy when I was grocery shopping that the stores no longer carry (Florida Water, VO5, CoCo Castile, etc.). I have to go elsewhere or online for a lot of things.

Yup, we're getting shoehorned into some software geek's algorithmic idea of utopia and not just in grocery shopping either.

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#7

Merchant
Central Maine
(This post was last modified: 10-20-2017, 01:50 PM by ShadowsDad.)
I like variety in my mustard as well. The only one I haven't liked was Irish (was it Irish?) "Strong" mustard. I don't remember the brand. It was at best run of the mill. I like a hot mustard at times also, so I'll buy dry hot mustard and mix it up being sure to get lots of air worked into it (that activates it making the mustard hot) and I'll add it to another mustard as the base. I can get it just as hot as I want that way.

I really dislike it when the store we shop at "simplifies" the rack of products. One time they did that I contacted corporate looking for a reason. They told me, in essence, that they didn't care that I was unhappy, so just move along. What happened was this... They had a delicious spaghetti with herbs added. Cook it and add some olive oil and it was just outstanding! Nothing more needed to be done with it. But it wasn't inexpensive. I'd never had anything like it before or since. Then it mysteriously disappeared to be replaced with white pasta just like the rest of the 30 feet of pasta rack space, from floor to 5' high. That made absolutely no sense to me. Lots of what they do makes no sense to me. Now when that happens we buy what we want elsewhere when we enter those stores. The problem is that "our" store is close and convenient, the others, not so convenient.

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Brian. Lover of SE razors. Maker of Krampert's Finest Products.
#8

Super Moderator
(This post was last modified: 10-20-2017, 02:51 PM by Marko.)
Brian, you hit on the issue - the grocery stores don't really care about customer satisfaction they care only about profit. They have business school grads that have replaced the grocers and businessmen of the past and they only look at the products as widgets that generate margin so if a given widget, in your case the delicious spaghetti, clearly didn't generate as much margin as the other products so away it went. It wouldn't have mattered if it sold a million units a year if the others sole a million and one so a million customers get pissed off but as you found out, so what? Its amazing the sales of a particular item when that item is the only choice in every supermarket in town.

Its a regular occurrence where I find a great product that I really like and then, poof, its gone never to be seen again. Johnson and Johnson liquid band-aid which was the best thing for knuckle splits which happen in the dry winter up here. Gone. None of the other similar stuff works anywhere as good. Butler Ultra-floss dental floss, gone. Miss Vickies Original Crinkle cut potato chips gone. Ok Iprobalby don't rte ally need the chips but you get my drift.

One other thing, regarding that length of pasta aisle, who buys all that stuff? I've never bought 99% of the stuff they have on display and I don't think I'm all that much different from other people.
#9

Merchant
Central Maine
Good question about the pasta. That's why it boggled my mind that they would replace something great with yet another pasta identical to the rest.

Good point about liking something and having it disappear. My wife and I comment on that frequently, "We like this so it'll disappear soon.".

I suggested to corporate of store A that they fire the a'holes doing it. I've told them that store X has the product and rather than buy what store A has I'll drive to store X and buy from them. They just don't seem to care. Maybe for everyone of me who won't settle for 2nd best, they have so many other folks who just grab anything to fill their cart. I've gone so far as to make my own or order off the 'net. I warn the stores about my plans. again, they just don't care. Maybe they don't think I can make stuff, but we make (from scratch) a large portion of what we consume, so making food (or even making the raw ingredient) is no mystery to me. Case in point, Store A only has Farmers Cheese during the holidays, I asked them to order some for me, but they refused. So I found out how to make my own. It's 1/2 the cost of store bought and much drier, so I'm not paying for water weight as I did from the store. It takes very little time to make. Since they drove me to make my own I've bought none of theirs when they do have it. I don't even look for it.

I bought pomegranite syrup for 'tinis, that store changed hands and I asked the new owners what happened to it and could they keep it in stock? Again, they wouldn't. Now I buy it online less expensively, no sales tax, and free shipping. But they claim to want our business. If so then supply what is desired and someone wants to buy. Pretty simple to me. It's getting so that lot's of times I won't even look for things locally, I just go online. They've poisoned the well, so to speak. I know some Canadians who do the same.

Those are just 2 of the many that immediately came to mind.

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Brian. Lover of SE razors. Maker of Krampert's Finest Products.
#10

Super Moderator
San Diego, Cal., USA
(This post was last modified: 10-20-2017, 09:48 PM by Freddy.)
(10-20-2017, 02:49 PM)Marko Wrote: Brian, you hit on the issue - the grocery stores don't really care about customer satisfaction they care only about profit.  They have business school grads that have replaced the grocers and businessmen of the past and they only look at the products as widgets that generate margin so if a given widget, in your case the delicious spaghetti, clearly didn't generate as much margin as the other products so away it went.  It wouldn't have mattered if it sold a million units a year if the others sole a million and one so a million customers get pissed off but as you found out, so what?  Its amazing the sales of a particular item when that item is the only choice in every supermarket in town.

Its a regular occurrence where I find a great product that I really like and then, poof, its gone never to be seen again.  Johnson and Johnson liquid band-aid which was the best thing for knuckle splits which happen in the dry winter up here.  Gone.  None of the other similar stuff works anywhere as good.  Butler Ultra-floss dental floss, gone.  Miss Vickies Original Crinkle cut potato chips gone. Ok Iprobalby don't rte ally need the chips but you get my drift.

One other thing, regarding that length of pasta aisle, who buys all that stuff?  I've never bought 99% of the stuff they have on display and I don't think I'm all that much different from other people.

(10-20-2017, 04:16 PM)ShadowsDad Wrote: Good question about the pasta. That's why it boggled my mind that they would replace something great with yet another pasta identical to the rest.

Good point about liking something and having it disappear. My wife and I comment on that frequently, "We like this so it'll disappear soon.".

I suggested to corporate of store A that they fire the a'holes doing it. I've told them that store X has the product and rather than buy what store A has I'll drive to store X and buy from them. They just don't seem to care. Maybe for everyone of me who won't settle for 2nd best, they have so many other folks who just grab anything to fill their cart. I've gone so far as to make my own or order off the 'net. I warn the stores about my plans. again, they just don't care. Maybe they don't think I can make stuff, but we make (from scratch) a large portion of what we consume, so making food (or even making the raw ingredient) is no mystery to me. Case in point, Store A only has Farmers Cheese during the holidays, I asked them to order some for me, but they refused. So I found out how to make my own. It's 1/2 the cost of store bought and much drier, so I'm not paying for water weight as I did from the store. It takes very little time to make. Since they drove me to make my own I've bought none of theirs when they do have it. I don't even look for it.

I bought pomegranite syrup for 'tinis, that store changed hands and I asked the new owners what happened to it and could they keep it in stock? Again, they wouldn't. Now I buy it online less expensively, no sales tax, and free shipping. But they claim to want our business. If so then supply what is desired and someone wants to buy. Pretty simple to me. It's getting so that lot's of times I won't even look for things locally, I just go online. They've poisoned the well, so to speak. I know some Canadians who do the same.

Those are just 2 of the many that immediately came to mind.

Guys, I agree with everything you state here and have also had things I love disappear from grocery shelves.  However, let me play devils advocate here, if I may.  Many of the things you want your stores to carry are niche items. (Though I really don’t understand about Farmers Cheese, Brian.  As a kid in Brooklyn, I remember it being sold year ‘round.). A business, any business is there to make a profit.  Some of that profit goes to pay a salary to its workers and to the owners.  If the owners tried to please all of its customers with niche products that produced little profit or actually lost money then there is every chance that workers would be laid off or the store might close.  At that point, not only would the customer not be able to conveniently be able to get that niche product but he would have to look farther afield for his staples, as well.

How I shop for groceries has changed over the years.  Back in the ‘70s I did almost all of my grocery shopping at the local supermarket.  That slowly changed and I now find myself going to the supermarket, Trader Joes, Costco, Whole Foods (though rarely), and even dollar stores.  Like Brian, I will also hit up the internet for a hard to find item.

Corporations, rather than individuals, own most of our markets today and we, as customers, are not seen as individuals with individual needs.  That would be unsustainable, I’m afraid.  As Brian has shown, all we can do is adapt either by making our own, finding another store, or finding another product, be it mustard, Farmers Cheese, or whatever.

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