Canyon Market: San Francisco

Location: San Francisco, California
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There’s a new independent grocer in town. Canyon Market opened just before Thanksgiving so the shelves are still a bit sparse (no liquor license yet), but things look promising. It’s cut from the same mold as Good Life Grocery, but with a more gourmet slant. Which makes sense, considering owners, Richard and Janet Tarlov, have worked at Oakville Grocery, Dean & DeLuca and Zingermans.

It’s hard not to compare Canyon Market to the beloved Bi-Rite, because a second branch of Bi-Rite was in the original plans for the location. A walk through the produce aisle reveals almost all organic produce, but they don’t call out specific local farms on the signage like Bi-Rite does. Meat is Niman Ranch beef and free-range chicken (doesn’t say from where) Cheese selection is decent, though not super extensive. Still, you can find a quality blue, local goat cheese, Basque cheeses, fontina, real Parmesan and the like. The deli food looks fresh and tasty. Not quite as good as Bi-rite’s stellar spread, but better than a typical grocery store. There’s a bread oven in which they bake their own breads and some of the coffee bar sweets.

The metro racks in the center of the store hold a variety of natural brands of cereals and canned goods along with gourmet items like infused oils and flavored vinegars, good jams and olives and things.

The staff seems friendly and helpful and one can tell that they mean to be responsive to the neighborhood’s needs. We’ll follow up in a few months and see how things evolve (And check out the wine selection!). There hasn’t been a decent grocery store for miles since the market in this location burned down in 1998. This store is so close to the Glen Park Bart Station, it could even be a destination market for the carless who care about what they eat. I imagine the residents of Glen Park are happy to have a store after numerous delays and problems with the entire development.

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