Category: Grocery

Posts Relating to Grocery Stores

A postmortem in-Spec’s-tion of Rice Epicurean

Howdy, folks, and welcome back to HHR! Today we’re checking in on the former final Rice Epicurean. After closing late last July, Rice left nearly everything in the store without their name on it, for new tenant Spec’s. While I attempted to reach out to Spec’s about plans for their future store, I did not hear back. At the moment, nothing has been changed structure-wise, and as of this article, I couldn’t find any permits to suggest that any construction will occur. The biggest modifications so far seem to be the movement of fixtures and updating of shelving. The shelves …

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Weingarten’s lives on through Kroger in the Heights!

This signage is all new, but permits have likely not changed since Safeway who used this separated non-lighted style

Weingarten’s was a grocer I never knew, and if I had to take a guess, it’s a store most of my readers never knew either. Even though Weingarten’s was long gone by the time I was around, the name was still eponymous for a grocery store in Houston. As well, despite a less than stellar exit, the opinion most Houstonians held of Weingarten’s was still overwhelmingly positive, with most chalking up those final years to poor out-of-state leadership. This was in large part thanks to Weingarten ‘keeping up’ with their stores during their tenure. With property development at heart, the …

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El Rancho-Randall’s, a match made in Boise

The grand entrance to Randall's doesn't look bad in tan and red!

Howdy Neighborinos, and welcome back to Houston Historic Retail! Today we’re entering new territory and checking out an El Rancho in a former Randall’s. For those not in the know, El Rancho is a Hispanic grocery chain originating out of Garland. An investment was made in the grocer by Albertsons in 2017 while looking to diversify their extensive mainline store operations with something more niche. This began a special partnership, where El Rancho stores would have first dibs on taking over old Randall’s leases and also began carrying Safeway and Albertson’s store brand items. With the first Randall’s conversion opening …

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Scarsdale Safeway The final location to open in Houston

Howdy, folks, and welcome back to Houston Historic Retail. Today we’re taking a look at the last Safeway to open in Houston. Now, it should be noted that while it was the last store to open, it was not the final location built. Rather, this store has an interesting history tied into larger troubles at Safeway that, other than the creation of AppleTree, had very little direct effect on the Houston Division. Today’s store at 10902 Scarsdale Blvd Houston, TX 77089, first opened in 1983. The location in the heart of the Southbelt/Ellington neighborhood was meant as a replacement for …

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Checking on a former Minimax nearly 70 years after it opened

The outside of this store is very plain, and could have likely been built as an independent right before joining Minimax

Howdy, folks, and welcome back to Houston Historic Retail! Today we’re checking on a blast from my past, this is a store that I have visited many times since I was a small child. Today’s store started off around 1953 as Love’s Minimax. At the time of its opening, Love’s was the largest supermarket in Richmond. Located at 512 Morton St, Richmond, TX 77469, they would quickly drop their Minimax name, running the store simply as Love’s Fine Foods for many years. The store would be sold by the Love switch to the Richmond Foods banner around about 1980. It …

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North Houston’s Remarkable Handy Randalls in Champions

When this store opened, it had a gable front facade. Safeway gave the front of this store a more traditional look in the early 2000s.

Editor’s Note: Today’s post is a guest submission from HHR’s good friend Anonymous in Houston with the photos being taken by Mike For close to 50 years, the supermarket featured in this blog post has been one of, if not the, most upscale supermarkets in all of the northern half of Houston. With that in mind, it’s fair to say that this supermarket is truly remarkable! This remarkable store, the Randall’s Flagship store at 5219 FM 1960 W and Champion Forest Dr., started life out as a Handy Andy Supermarket when it opened on April 8, 1974 in the Champions …

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So long Rice, and thanks for all the Epicuriousness

The windows were covered with stucco years back

After nearly 85 years of operation, the final Rice Grocery store will close its doors for good today. While this isn’t coming out of the blue, it’s still a sad event to have to witness. While many of us remember Rice as the exotic Epicurean chain, the company served many people of many different backgrounds under many different names during its tenure. The building that housed this final Epicurean location will once again find another use, this time as a Spec’s location. Rice staff had mentioned there might be something special about this new Spec’s, but what exactly it is, …

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Why did Safeway close the Fuqua and Sabo Randall’s?

One more look at the outside before we set off

Howdy folks, and welcome back to Houston Historic Retail! Today we’re checking out a 1980s Randall’s that has had quite an interesting second life. This former Randall’s at 11021 Fuqua St, Houston, TX 77089, opened store opened in 1984. Taking part in a triple grand opening stunt, which is just as it sounds. Two newly built Randall’s stores and one old Weingarten that had been acquired about a month before all held a grand opening special on the same day! The new store was a first for Randall’s, it wasn’t a revolutionary new design or anything along those lines. Rather, …

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This former Safeway #1 in Houston, is having a Fiesta of a second life

The exterior of this store uses the arced pylons like the Pasadena location

Howdy, folks, and welcome to Houston HIstoric Retail! Today we’re taking a look at a store that has stayed a chain grocer from inception to present, somewhat of a rarity in Houston! Today’s store, located at 7510 Bellfort Ave, Houston, TX 77061, was the first Safeway location to open in Houston. The first-ever plans for Safeway’s expansion to Houston occurred on the heels of the Dallas division expanding into Austin in the 1950s. While locations were never divulged, Safeway did acquire some properties in Houston and likely planned to build some smaller Marina-style stores upon their arrival, just as they …

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Arlan’s a modern take on the Traditional Independent

Thank you for having me!

Howdy folks, and welcome back to Houston Historic Retail! It’s been a while since we have done a grocery (2 weeks in fact!) store post, so make sure you’re buckled up for this one! We’re taking a deviation to the South of Houston to find out about one of Houston’s most respected independent grocers, Arlan’s Market. Now, if you’ve been around HHR for any length of time, you’ll know that overall I like independents. In the realm of the blog, I tend to focus on Food Town and Foodarama as they’re arguably the most present independent operators supermarkets in Houston, …

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