The first thing on my list was chocolate chips. Check, no issues there!
The second item on my list was cocoa powder. Aaaaand we have a problem. All they seemed to carry are big containers of carob powder. When I asked an employee where I could find the cocoa powder, he pointed out the carob. That would work just fine if I wanted my cookies to taste like the ground. When I asked another employee, he reacted as if I was offending him for asking about something as esoteric as cocoa powder. So, no cocoa powder for me. I got fed up and left.
This seems to happen every time I go to Fresh Fanatic. Sure, they've got 93 different kinds of cheese, but they're always missing one or two of the basic things that I stopped in for, which means, no matter what, I end up having to go to another grocery store for at least some of what I want. At that point, why bother even going to Fresh Fanatic at all? I imagine a conversation with the staff there will eventually go something like this:
Me: "Hi, where are your apples? I'm here to buy an apple."
Fresh Fanatic: "An apple? What are you, an asshole? We don't carry apples. Here, try one of our locally-grown tofuples from Amish country! They're only $8 a piece and taste mostly like apples!"
Me: "But all I want is an apple."
Fresh Fanatic: "Sorry, we don't carry them. Try the Associated on Myrtle."
Seriously, "Try the Associated on Myrtle" should really be Fresh Fanatic's tag line. Every time I go I get more and more fed up with the place, which hurts even more because it's such an inviting space and I really want it to succeed and be my go-to grocery store. Now it just causes heartache and despair.
Now that we're a few months in, how is everyone else experiencing Fresh Fanatic? Has it gotten better or worse for people? Am I being unreasonable?
Ok, I'm through with Fresh Fanatic. Since making this post, I've been back twice. The first time, there was nobody at the register when I wanted to pay and leave. After stadning there for 1-2 minutes, I went up to the meat counter to ask if someone could help me. That employee went and got someone else who was aparently supposed to be working the cashiers - instead of coming directly over to help me, she decided to finish her conversation with yet another employee, making me wait another minute. I was the only customer in the store, and yet apparently nobody could be bothered to help me pay.
The second time was today, when I went in looking for some basic ingredients for an alfredo sauce. I coudln't find any fresh basil, so I asked a nearby employee. He pointed at a produce section (which I'd already checked), and told me it was there. I walked over to check again, when I turned around, he was walking away. I asked again and he simply looked at me and walked away. It made me feel as if I was being unreasonable asking for help.
I'm not going to bother with Fresh Fanatic anymore. It's become clear that they don't have much interest in running a grocery store that people actually want to use. It's a shame, because I really wanted it to succeed, but every time I go in, I end up getting fed up with something. I don't plan on going back.