I was there when ALDI opened its doors in Stephenville. Here’s what I discovered.

Updated: Dec 13, 2020


I wasn't the only one to brave the cold and check out ALDI Thursday morning.

By SARA VANDEN BERGE


I might be turning into my mother.


I used to make fun of the fact that she liked grocery shopping, but when ALDI opened its doors for the first time in Stephenville on Thursday, you better believe I was there.


I marched in with a quarter in hand ready to rent my shopping cart, but because it was opening day, the carts were free.


(See? It pays to be an early bird.)


The first thing I noticed was the store’s layout. Like the fabled tale of Goldilocks – it’s not too big, not too small, but just right.


The wide, easily-accessible aisles are clearly marked, making finding your way around a cinch, but you will want to take your time.


ALDI is known for its specialty items and zooming through means you might miss something good.

Tonight's dinner!

I perused every aisle and left with goodies like Beaumont Coffee, whole shell mussels in garlic butter sauce, L’Oven bread, cheese wraps, ginger salad dressing, a hummus variety pack, Emporium cheese, a bottle of red wine infused with chocolate and a bottle of Winking Owl Chardonnay for $2.95.


(It reminded me of Trader Joe’s “Two-Buck Chuck,” so I grabbed a bottle.)


PROS AND CONS


Shopping at ALDI is fun.


It has a cool vibe and I was pleasantly surprised by the fresh produce, bread, meat and coffee selections.


They have a variety of great cheese, olives, crackers, spreads and other dips I can hardly wait to try, and there’s even a cool Christmas aisle (I bought a festive outdoor mat).


But I couldn’t find all of the household essentials I needed like The Husband’s favorite Gatorade or freshly-sliced deli meat (it’s all pre-packaged.)


But I’m not complaining. ALDI is a fantastic store and I will go back again and again.


I bet you will love it too.

And one more thing: When you go, don’t forget that quarter!