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Welcome to The Glasgow Food Blog. I love Glasgow, and I love food. It's a match made in heaven. 

Whole Foods Market, Giffnock

Whole Foods Market, Giffnock

For months and month you have probably been hearing about Whole Foods Market opening in Giffnock, particularly if you're on the Southside of Glasgow. They've been promoting the launch heavily, so it was no surprise there was incredibly high demand for the preview tours and that the launch was packed, even at 9am on a freezing Wednesday morning.

Beautifully displayed fresh produce

If you haven't been to America or visited a Whole Foods Market in London, you might not know what it's all about. It's not really like a normal supermarket, it is much more like a farmers' market but indoors. Whole Foods Market prides itself on selling natural and organic produce of the highest standard possible. What has really impressed me about Whole Foods Market is their approach to healthy eating - it's not dictated by counting calories, grams of fat or anything like that, it is purely promoting food which is a whole food (unrefined and unprocessed), plant strong (lots of veg!), healthy fats (like avocado) and nutrient dense. If you're interested in the heath and nutrition side of Whole Foods Market, you can read more about the four pillars of healthy eating on their website.

The best way to store bananas apparently (I'll have to retrieve our banana hook from the back of the cupboard in that case!)

On Monday I was lucky enough to go along for a store tour - this was a great way of seeing most of the exciting things that were in the store. I don't have any pictures from the tour as the store wasn't finished, but Alex from Whole Foods PR kindly sent me her photos to use, the other photos are from the opening day on Wednesday when the store was stocked.

So, the tour. Firstly we were shown (and got to sample) the guacamole which is made fresh in store every day in two type, normal and chilli. Both versions are delicious. The theme of making things fresh in store daily was really consistent through the tour and a really refreshing thing to see in a supermarket-type store.

Beauty department

I didn't expect their to be a beauty department to be honest! They also stock nutritional supplements if you are looking for natural and organic versions of what you may be currently taking.

We then stopped off to see the in-instore healthy food specialist (what a job!) where we sampled creamed kale. I am a newfound lover of kale so really enjoyed this and will try making it home for sure. I'm pretty sure the recipe we sampled was actually

coconut milk-braised greens

 was the recipe we sampled, not the creamed kale on the Whole Foods Market website but I could be wrong.

Famous peanut butter machine!

I picked up a tub of peanut butter (I didn't grind it myself, I am saving that for next time) which is delicious - I had it for lunch today on a loaf of sour dough (not the whole loaf).

Fresh fish and meat - sampled smoked salmon

In the fish department we sampled some really, really lovely smoked salmon, the nicest I can remember eating, Scottish Reserve smoked salmon. I'll definitely be getting more of this in the future.

 Heaps of fresh seafood

Even more fresh seafood

Then we came across a part of the store I did not expect - I was literally agape - a beer and wine area. Yes, that's standard, but here you can buy a bottle (£3.69 for a pint & half sized Grolsh style bottle) and get it filled with a beer of your choice (prices ranging from £3.26 - £3.69, there are 3 to choose from. In total you'd be paying about £7 for the bottle and contents. I love this idea - it's environmentally friendly as you can return to get your bottle filled whenever you want. And you can get wine too which is £6.99 for Spanish red or white for one litre.

Don't fancy the take home bottle? They have plenty of regular sized beers by the bottle as well.

Opposite the beer/wine area is cheese heaven. You might have noticed that I am a total cheese addict. Due to this, I steered well clear of this section apart from taking a quick picture.

This cheese selection should come with a warning sign

Another part of the store that I knew about was the sushi area. I have eaten a lot of sushi in my life and wow, this stuff is amazing. Really, really fresh and cut generously and made in store every day. They have a really delicious brown rice sushi to try as well for something different. I picked up a packet on Wednesday morning, which I didn't eat until around 5pm (it was refrigerated) and it was absolutely heavenly. I didn't even expect to have such good sushi from a store. It is expensive though - I think around £7.50 for a packet.

The bakery is stocked with lots of beautifully decorated cakes/cupcakes and tarts.

If you dream of wonderfully fresh, soft baked bread that you don't seem to be able to buy anywhere in Glasgow, then Whole Foods Market have it.

They also have a fresh juice section (juice made to order), coffees and hot drinks, as well as freshly made sandwiches and pizzas. If you want something delicious and simple for dinner, they don't do packaged ready meals - they are all made fresh and served up straight to you from the display so you can pick and choose your combinations.

Yes, they have normal grocery aisles too

I think I've gushed enough about how great I think Whole Foods Market is. The only downside I can see is that some prices seem quite high, and I'm sure part of that is because the produce is organic. I don't see that we could afford to do all our shopping there, but we will definitely be popping by on a fortnightly basis to fill up the beers and wine, as well as pick up as many healthy treats as possible. At the moment they have some really great value specials on, and they do this on a weekly basis so make sure you pop by to see what the deal of the week is!

Have you been to see Whole Foods yet? If so, what did you think?

Whole Foods Market on Urbanspoon
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