Five reasons Colorado will benefit from getting Trader Joe's...finally

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Colorado foodie dreams were realized when Trader Joe's finally decided to open two stores in this state in 2013: one in Denver at the southeast corner of East Eighth Avenue and Colorado Boulevard (with an adjacent beer and wine shop) and one in Boulder at the Twenty-Ninth Street mall. Construction is under way at both locations, and it will be race to see which opens first. But either would be fine with eager fans of TJs, who have been lusting for local access and in the meantime, products from the specialty grocery chain on Amazon or taking road trips out of state with empty coolers.

Here are the top five reasons Colorado will benefit from having Trader Joe's. Finally.

See also:
- Trader Joe's begins building its first Denver store
- Trader Joe's finally breaks ground on its Boulder store
- Twenty-three products that are trending at Trader Joe's -- and might show up here

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5. J-j-j-jobs
It's no lie that the economy got rockier than our mountains five years ago, and there are still folks who need work. Any thriving business that comes to Colorado offer employment. Judging from online employer evaluation/blogging sites, the majority of current and past Trader Joe's employees seem to love the company and feel they were treated well.

Although there's been some chatter about TJ's becoming more corporate than it used to be, the overall vibe is positive.

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4. The jolt to the existing retailers
One of the greatest benefits when a new store comes to town is that competitive outfits -- in this case places like Whole Foods, Sprouts, Vitamin Cottage and King Soopers -- will hustle to keep their current customers from defecting. And since Trader Joe's already has a reputation for having a good selection of inexpensive specialty foods and drinks, these other stores will likely have some sales and offer new items.

Today TJ's fans love to show off their rare and beautiful Trader Joe's reusable grocery bags at other stores -- but when TJ's opens in Colorado, those other stores don't want to see people using their own bags at Trader Joe's.

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3. The customer service
Trader Joe's was rated number one as North America's favorite grocery-store chain based on customer satisfaction, according to a survey by Market Force (a customer intelligence firm); the study asked 6,600 consumers to rate their satisfaction with their most recent grocery-store experience and their likelihood to recommend that store to friends or family. I wasn't polled, but every time I've shopped at a Trader Joe's, the experience has been pretty f*cking awesome. The employees always seem to be upbeat, cheerful and knowledgeable about the products, the handwritten signage is fun and frisky, there are usually samples of eatables and drinkables at stations manned (and wo-manned) by smiley workers, the stores are clean and everything is easy to find. The common thread here is the high level of customer service, and you don't find this often enough at grocery stores.

Trader Joe's employees are just like everyone else with their good and bad days, but it's a refreshing change to shop at a place where the workers don't always look like they want to beat customers in their faces with shopping baskets.

Location Info

Venue

Map

Trader Joe's

790 Colorado Blvd., Denver, CO

Category: General

Trader Joe's

1710 29th St., Boulder, CO

Category: General

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94 comments
cbruns
cbruns

As a former resident of Colorado Springs, I'm thinking darn!  When is TJ's coming to Colorado Springs? I love TJs! It's 2.99 buck Chuck wine now but we tried a very smooth red wine from Chile that was a big surprise!  Sure, it's not Super Foods Warehouse.  It does have a lot of fresh foods, and bulk items, similar to Whole Foods.  There are differences, though, and you'll always find something interesting to sample.  I find lots of fresh meats, fish, cheeses, yogurts, kefir, deli items, etc. I highly recommend the cheeses with fruit pieces in each slice; also the chicken piccata.  Even their frozen appetizers are awesome!  There are lots of Burts Bees products there, for the Rocky Mountain High hippie folk.  If I really have to buy something like Cheer, ya know, Target and Walmart are less expensive than anyplace.  Still, TJs is very big on supporting local growers and farmers, though, so, I look forward to seeing the new stores!

AceRanchero
AceRanchero

Let's be clear about a couple of things: First, if you think Two-Buck Chuck is worth drinking then you probably will like cardboard-flavored bakery products, pre-packaged dinners from a processing center is East Bufu, Arkansas and truly awful coffee beans that come in a half-dozen "flavors". Second, you will be shocked at the meager offering of actual food items such as produce displayed on vertical shelving maybe 12 feet wide. Compared to the ample shelves and bins at Whole Foods or Sprouts? No contest. 

Way back when, I, too, was dismayed to discover upon moving to Denver that there were no TJs. The fact that Santa Fe got theirs over a decade ago was inexplicable. (I asked a checker there how that happened. Her answer was that the community engaged in a massive petition effort. I don't know if I believe that could be what ultimately won their cause, but I'll never again underestimate the power of the Santa Flake Turquoise Mafia.)

And, like many others have posted here, any trip I made through or to Santa Fe or Las Vegas included a last minute trip to load up on favorites before the drive home. But a funny thing happened the last two occasions I had a chance to do this: both times I walked up and down every aisle and came out of the store empty-handed. Nothing. It was just… boring. Which is what I suspect my happen over time in Denver once the novelty wears off. The drive won't be worthwhile or you'll tire of the parking hassles and checkout lines. 

In a city—yes, a real city like Denver—there are plenty of existing options to purchase quality food whether processed or fresh. However, there are neighborhoods that remain underserved. Trader Joe's will not solve this problem by themselves. In the Central Platte Valley we'll be curious to see what the King Sooper's Fresh Fare version of their market will provide. And with the rumored inclusion of a Whole Foods in Union Station, the neighborhood could go from famine-to-feast in less than a year. 

Martin McGuire
Martin McGuire

Trader Joes offers a great variety of tasty yet affordable frozen dinners and much more that you cannot find at Wal Mart.

rain
rain

We don't need Trader Joe's or In-and-Out to be a "real city" or area. I'm ok with them opening, but I don't see any reason to turn Colorado into East California just to settle a craving for cocoa almonds or whatever. I'd rather have Sunflower back -- Sprouts has screwed that up, and I'm sure Sprouts will get screwed up further once their IPO hits and they have to answer to greedy stockholders.

Right now, I'm more excited that Lucky Market is opening in Longmont. Another place to buy *local* produce at reasonable prices? Sign me up.

Does Trader Joe's even sell produce, meat, and dairy? All I seem to hear people talking about are pre-made foods and cheap wine.

Jen Ant
Jen Ant

Ikea, now Trader Joes.... next it will be In n Out Burger and it might be finally possible to live in Denver year round.

Elayne Glasser
Elayne Glasser

Well it does bring some richness to that area, which is a little baron since Univ Hosp is gone and sketchy 8th Ave east of Colo. Better than Walmart there. Though I wish there would be a Walmart closer to town, like Glendale would be a perfect location.

Sandy Cooper
Sandy Cooper

I don't understand it any time people get this excited about any store opening, be it an Ikea or anything else, but especially a grocery store. We already have Vitamin Cottage and Whole Foods and Sprouts. Are they really going to sell stuff at this new store that you can't get anywhere else? I don't get the point of it at all. It's just another grocery store.

Cindy Hill
Cindy Hill

Glad I'm not the only person who is underwhelmed by this revelation. Everyone else seems to worship at the altar of TJs. Overpriced weirdness, really.

Randall Erkelens
Randall Erkelens

The Walmart that was trying to go up there would have created jobs too and boosted the area traffic (most likely in the wrong direction). Just another fancy Whole Foods joint.. the same but different. weren't we all excited when WF and Ikea went in? We need to stop making excuses for Colorado and Denver. Our culture isn't all of a sudden hip or modern because of one brand moving-in. As if we were in the dark ages before TJ. As if we weren't worthy before today. Face the music Denver, we are a modern city.

Kalia Kehoe
Kalia Kehoe

Sooo excited, oh how I've missed it so...yay for 2 buck chuck and I don't even drink haha!!

Marissa Bentley
Marissa Bentley

Wow, with a trader's we are finally a first world city! Meanwhile small business's vanish...

Epic Ryde
Epic Ryde

Epic Ryde loves trader Joes!!!

Donaven
Donaven

The real reason we need  Joe's is so I get me some of them caned iced coffee drinks. I have thought about having my friends in Ca mail me a case.

Brandton Manshel
Brandton Manshel

Oi. Trader Joe's sucks. Not that co-ops are really a thing here, but, where they came from, they got big by killing them, by tricking dumb consumers into thinking they were (are) buying good products. Any bit of investigation or thought about that would easily reveal that what they sell is mostly junk. Everybody just likes it because it's cheap. Like Ikea. And all that other crap. Not that anyone cares anymore, but if you shop there, you're a total sellout. Whether you know it or not.

Chris Nichols
Chris Nichols

Can't wait for food with no taste that smells like nut sack!

Kelly Lemieux
Kelly Lemieux

I remember them from San Francisco in the Nineties. Super cool.

Delri L Hanson
Delri L Hanson

So happy they will be in Colorado, bummer tho that none will be further north (Loveland, Ft Collins, etc) Maybe someday?

Patty Leidy
Patty Leidy

maybe i can get a job then... lol :)

Nina Else
Nina Else

Don't normally drive in that area (so haven't seen the construciton progress), but certainly will after they open. It will be a much shorter trip than to Albuquerque (well, yeah, that WAS an unecessary statement). Does anyone have an opening date, or even month?

jenna-furrr
jenna-furrr

And it's true--I'm tired of paying extra on Amazon for my Trader Joe's items, and I'm running low on my edible flower sea salt. I would also love to stock up on those dried mandarin oranges I keep hearing so much about. And if you haven't tried the cookie butter, let me tell you that there is no better way to WANT to eat that whole grain toast that I'm supposed to be eating....lol

jenna-furrr
jenna-furrr

I totally get that the parking sitch at the Denver store will be.....not the greatest bordering on catastrophic during peak shopping hours, but imma feel it out with a vehicle, but taking the bus with a portable shopping cart IS an option I will explore as well.

David Buxbaum
David Buxbaum

Cost my cash away just to feed? $30:00 @whole foods? Poorassnigger..

tropicalchrome1
tropicalchrome1

Last time I was in a Trader Joe's in VA (May), Three Buck Chuck was $3.29 Chuck.....

And yes, it's going to be nice not to have to schlep bags of TJs stuff home from Albuquerque or Kansas City. Can't wait. I'm running low on their peanut butter and salsa.

Mantonat
Mantonat topcommenter

@Jen Ant Yes, because over-hyped fast food and cheap processed crap really define a city. I love it when people move here and then expect every city in the country to become homogenized. Why not celebrate what Denver has to offer that's unique and tasty? 

cocomontalto
cocomontalto

@Sandy Cooper  You'd be surprised; there are many items Trader Joe's sells that are unique to their brand only and are very reasonably priced. :)


cocomontalto
cocomontalto

@Randall Erkelens  Trader Joe's is not like Whole Foods at all. Yes, Denver is a worthy city without Trader Joe's, but is another choice for a place to pick up groceries really a big problem? The hype is, of course, ridiculous but it will surely wear off just like the hype for IKEA did.     

cocomontalto
cocomontalto

@Marissa Bentley I didn't think there were too many options for locally owned grocery businesses in Denver in the first place. What am I missing? Please, do tell because I would love to patronize them. 

jenna-furrr
jenna-furrr

@Brandton Manshel Is it okay if you know it and just don't care?

jenna-furrr
jenna-furrr

@Chris Nichols Okay, I'll bite--which Trader Joe's products smell like nutsack? And totally include a description of how nutsack smells. : )

AceRanchero
AceRanchero

@Nina Else And unnecessary driving. The closer one is in Santa Fe. 

wewatta
wewatta

@jenna-furrr That is the TJ business model.  Set up shop in crappy locations with virtually no parking.  Oh, and don't forget right on really busy streets with insane traffic.  

jenna-furrr
jenna-furrr

And that's not a nice word to use. Can't you just use motherf*cker or something?

jenna-furrr
jenna-furrr

@David Buxbaum Trader Joe's takes SNAP, yo.

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