02/09/08 — Grocery shopping strategies

I made a Trader Joe’s run last night. I thought I was doing the right thing by shopping after dinner so I wouldn’t be hungry, but I didn’t take my margarita intake into account (no I wasn’t driving). Don’t drink and shop, you’ll never know what ends up in your cart! @least I had some sense and put a couple of things away before I checked out. This morning, no hangover except trying to figure out what to do w/goat cheese, kung pao noodles, and dried cherries (which were 3$ cheaper than @ Whole Foods).

I was going to write this morning about coupons since the Washington Post gives them to you on Saturdays if you’re a subscriber. When I 1st left the city for the suburbs I was all over the coupons, which I hadn’t been paying attention to since a bout of unemployment a few years ago. Many of the food shops in my old DC neighborhood were mom-and-pop shops, therefore they didn’t take coupons.

But since then I’ve fallen out of love with coupons. I’ll still clip them once in a while, but only if it’s a good deal, something I buy anyway, and in an amount that Giant (<50¢), Harris Teeter (<99¢), etc. will double. It seems that lately w/coupons you have to buy a lot (2 or 3 or more) to save a measly dollar. I’m not spending 10$ to save 1$. Food has become really expensive as it is, especially if you want to get something imported from Europe such as cheese, pasta, or Nutella. What’s a cheapskate epicurean to do?