Ferraro Foods - A Shoppers' Dream

I am thrilled to be blogging about my favorite super market in the West Kootenays:

Ferraro Foods.

There are 2 locations, one in Rossland, and one in downtown Trail, on 850 Farwell Street.

I have been living in the Slocan Valley for over 25 years and have made the pilgrimage to Ferraro Foods in Trail at least once a month. 130 kilometers round trip. That's about an hour drive from Passmore, and one hour back. Why do I go the extra distance? The answer is simple. The prices, deals and choices are amazing. They offer a huge selection of imported cheeses from around the world, which are hard to find anywhere else.

Born and raised in Germany, I have lived in the Netherlands and traveled extensively around Europe (Italy, Spain and Greece). I really got spoiled with the variety of specialty products. Here in the West Kootenays, I really missed the food from the old continent, but then I found it again, to my delight, at Ferraro Foods in Trail.

This is an excerpt from their Cheese Shoppe: American (Monterey Jack, Monterey Jalapeno), Canadian (Alpindon, Borgonzola, Chevalier, Farmers, Nostrala, Poplar Grove, Providence Oka), Cheddar (Applewood Smoked, Maple, Marble, Medium, Mild, Aged, Extra Old, White), Dutch (Butter, Buttermilk Blue, Classic, Chiantino, Hirten, Danish Blue, Edam, Rembrandt), European (Limberger, Muenster), English (Amber Ale, Blue, Cranberry, Dubliner, Irish Cheddar, Sage Derby, Wensleydale & Cranberry), Feta (Goat, Regular, Sheep), French (Port Salut, Provencal, Raclette), Dutch Gouda (Dutch Master, Extra Old, Goat, Jalapeno, Medium, Mild, Smoked, Spiced), Goat (Baby, Cheddar, Drunken Goat, Manchego, Plain, Queso de Cabra), Grated (House Mix, Parmigiano Reggiano, Romano, Shredded), Greek (Cheese Curds, Kefalaquavera, Myzithra, Saganaki), Havarti (Dill, Garlic, Herb & Spice, Jalapeno, Plain, Smoked, Sun-Dried Tomato), Italian (Asiago, Bocconcini, Hot Pepper Brick, Burrini, Cacciocavello, Crotonese, Fontina, Fontinella, Fruilano, Gorgonzola, Grana Padano, Mascarpone, Montasio, Mozzarella, Parmigiano Reggiano, Pecorino Crotonese, Pepato, Piave, Provolone, Ricotta, Romano, Sardo, Taleggio, Trecce Rope, Truffle), Jarlsberg (Light, Plain, Smoked), Swiss (Plain or Smoked Gruyere, Swiss)

Holy Cow! I know! It's overwhelming, but there is so much more in store!

Every time I shop here, I religiously haul home, at least, a huge piece of aged Provolone (my fave), a kilo or so of medium Gouda, a wheel of Camenbert cheese, some Dutch Butter cheese, various goat cheeses and whatever else looks good. Everybody in my house is always excited and knows, what's for dinner that night.

A Mediterranean cheese and charcuterie feast!

From the Meat Deli:

I choose very thinly sliced Prosciutto (air cured, salted Italian ham), Bauernschinken (air dried, juniper smoked German ham), Capicollo (spicy Italian ham), a whole small Salami, called Sopressatta, translucently sliced Coppa Stagnionata (dry-cured deboned pork collar) and last not least, 3 whole Chorizos, Spanish style sausages, fully cooked and dry cured. Unless you are a vegetarian, you simply have to surrender your taste buds to these heavenly delights.

Ferraro has its own kitchen on site, to prepare everything from ready to eat entrees, to take and bake pizzas, sandwiches, house made soups, sauces and (new to me) smoothies. (Excuse me, please, if I forgot to mention anything.) They even offer free cooking classes!

At the Deli, the olive section:

Makes it hard for me to restrain myself and choose just one kind! Green olives, black olives, Kalamata olives, Spanish olives, marinated olives, olives, stuffed with garlic, stuffed with cheese, to mention just a few. Luckily, they offer mixed olives. So that's what I get.

Ferraro's In-Store Bakery makes, besides sweet and savory treats, crispy French and Italian artisan breads, truly inexpensive, to compliment my supper. That bread usually never lasts till the next day. It gets gobbled up really quickly by my guys. It's too good!

The fresh Produce Department has a lot of items. It is beautifully arranged and looks very inviting. I am always pleasantly surprised, to find lots of Organic veggies on special. See for yourself in their weekly grocery flyer. I surely love to take advantage of that, and then I feel good knowing, that I am providing healthy foods for my family.

Next I always hit up their butcher shop where chicken, turkey, beef (grass fed) and pork are expertly prepared into beautiful cuts and ground meats on a daily basis. There are a lot of different type sausages as well. Ferraro's Cucina makes meal planning easy with their Take and Bake Specials. Looking for something unusual? Well, look no further! In the freezers I noticed buffalo, veal, lamb, rabbit, goat, elk, venison, goose, duck, quail, Cornish game hens and exotic cuts of beef and pork like for example pork hogs, oxtail, beef tongue, heart, kidney and tripe.

The Seafood Department is also mind-blowing. Partial inventory: oysters, clams, mussels, salmon, smoked salmon, cod, halibut, sole, shrimp, prawns, smelts, crab, lobster, tilapia.

You are probably thinking: Wow! But I haven't even gotten to the oil and vinegar section yet, my treasure trove!

I estimated 50 plus brands of olive oil from Italy, Spain, Greece and probably some other places. I am always ecstatic to discover something new, and to hunt for a bargain price in that aisle. Avocado oil, grape seed oil, roasted pumpkin seed oil, sesame oil, walnut oil, sunflower oil, apple cider vinegar, rice vinegar, wine vinegar, differently aged balsamic vinegar, just to mention a few other items, decorate the shelves, along side the olive oils. Hey, I even saw a glass cabinet, under lock and key, with some very expensive and exquisite looking bottles. I have to inspect those closer next time I am there. On the other side, lots of Italian brands of pasta in different shapes catch my eye, especially the ones made of durum wheat. Those are my favorite. But Ferraro Foods also carries alternative, oriental and gluten free noodles. On the opposite side of the aisle, lo and behold- the GNOCCHI! Don't forget it! It's a Must Have in my pantry. And there are shelves, brimming with multi ethnic condiments and cooking ingredients. On this trip I have to send my hubby back for a second cart! He just smiles.

I am thinking: What about dessert for my son, grand kid and for us? Time to hit the cookie section. Cantuccini, almond biscotti, the classic Italian dunking cookie, to go with any cuppa in the morning (guaranteed nobody's grumpy then) , crunchy Pizzelli, hazelnut wafers, speculatius, chocolate pretzels and so much more .... The list goes on! Stop me now! I want to buy the whole store!

Upon entering the store, you can truly feel, that "generations of Ferraro family members have poured labor and love into Ferraro Foods since its founding in 1943."

The many awards over the years from the Chamber of Commerce and Kootenay Business Magazine reflect the extra ordinary service and innovative efforts of Ferraro Foods to supply healthy, high quality ingredients to the community, at affordable prices. This popular grocery business employs 150 people. Some people have worked there for many years because they feel like they belong to an extended family.

Heading for the cash-out now, where I am met with smiles by employees and the store manager. Well, I am all done for today. The shopping carts are full of goodies! Another day of good hunting! Proud of myself! It's time to go home and eat! Or like Lydia Bastianich says: "Tutti a tavola, a mangiare!"

Ferraro Foods exceeded my expectations as always. I'd recommend that you come and discover for yourself what kind of treasures abound at Ferraro Foods!

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