Columbia is one of three areas in the country that was selected to have a US Foods Chefs’tore open, an opportunity that the community seems pretty excited about. It opened a few weeks ago and I finally made it over in one of the rare breaks of rain lately to see what it was about.

Upon first walking in you can see that it feels a lot like a Sam’s Club or Costco, but is a lot smaller in scope because it has only food and serving and cooking supplies. You won’t find tires, electronics, or gallons of shampoo here.

As is the natural tendency I browsed the store in a counterclockwise direction, which led me first to the appliances, cooking tools, and serve ware. This assortment of pizza peels is more than I ever imagined there could be.

They also have some nice, inexpensive cutlery that I am looking at replacing our old, mismatched stuff with soon. It’ll be nice to have an entire set, something I probably should have registered for oh, four years ago for our wedding.

This next find is excitement that I messaged to my bff Emily. Jarritos is a Mexican drink that is absolutely loaded with sugar. I’m talking 28-35 grams of sugar in one bottle. It’s like carbonated Kool-Aid and we used to drink it and get insanely hyper when we were in high school. We talked about mixing it with vodka one day, but I can’t remember if we ever did or not. If not, we need to get on that task real soon since we can now buy a case of 24 for the low, low price of $13 and some change!

Of course, US Foods is a huge corporate company, so it’s nice to see a touch of local love here with the Adluh bags stacked up high. They also had other Adluh grains in stock too, only in 25 lb. bags though, of course.

If I had saw this before the other day I never would have made groatsotto, since this is an insanely good price for Arborio rice! But with it weighing in at 11 lbs per bag, I’ve already made plans to do a grain share with a few friends so we won’t feel compelled to make risotto once a day.

As you approach the freezer area of the store you can feel the goosebumps form on your skin from the air being pumped into this huge walk in cooler area. They provide those fashionable neon yellow jackets, but apparently they aren’t required as I kept seeing employees stroll in without them on. Since I was wearing a short dress I stayed out of this area today.

As you can see, there are wide aisles loaded with bulk items, much like any other warehouse type store. Families, restaurants, party planners, and caterers will probably get the most use out of this store, but its worth a trip, especially if you’re already in the St. Andrews area anyways. It’s on the corner of St. Andrews and Jamil Road, and with the bright green and white facade, it’s nearly impossible to miss. A few questions I got from Twitter when I checked in are: Can anyone go? Yes. Are there fees? Nope! Is it worth going? I think so, but probably moreso for some people than others. If you like browsing grocery stores, you’ll like this.

And what did I bring home? Two giant cans of Campbell’s soup! I got a chicken noodle for Patrick and the garden vegetable is for me! The small can is for comparison purposes. Once those big cans get opened it’ll be a few days worth of eating for sure.