Balducci’s Replies

Last Tuesday, “06880” reported the various rumors around town that Balducci’s may close.

Balducci’s says they’re not closing. Several days later, chief operating officer Rich Durante replied:

Balducci’s Food Lover’s Market is committed to being the ultimate destination for specialty foods and offer our customers great food, whether it’s quality ingredients, chef prepared meals, or catering options. We look forward to continuing to serve the Westport community.

“06880” readers: Please parse that paragraph.


21 responses to “Balducci’s Replies

  1. Joseph Thanhauser

    Sounds clintonian. Very mealy-mouthed.

  2. We’re outta here !

  3. I’m reminded of the Nixon-era “non-denial denial”

  4. Robert Mitchell

    Just as I ‘look forward to’ winning the Lottery.

  5. ….”selling other people’s food items under our private label brand name…Balducci’s.” Soon to be available at Stop and Shop’s everywhere!

  6. The new tag line will be Baducci’s….food lover’s food

  7. …until we close.

  8. Gil Ghitelman

    We’re in trouble. When my rich uncle visits and wants to go food shopping this is the joint I take him to.

  9. Sharon Paulsen

    Here’s my parsing, in a Mad Lib game sort of format:

    “Balducci’s Food Lover’s Market is committed (HOPING) to being the ultimate (POSSIBLE) destination for specialty (EXPENSIVE) foods and offer our customers great (EXPENSIVE) food, whether it’s quality ingredients (GROCERIES), chef (MINIMUM WAGE LINE COOK) prepared meals, or catering (MINIMUM CHARGED DELIVERY) options. We look forward to continuing to serve (BENEFIT FROM) the Westport community.”

    Sorry if this is too snarky – just having some fun here!
    I’ve never shopped their store locally.
    I’ve only enjoyed their food via delivered catering for corporate meetings or events, and I have to say that it was always above par – very good and well seasoned, fresh and tasty. Salads, top notch. Sandwiches, yummy with artesian flair.

    Has the in-store experience gone down the tubes in anyone’s opinion?

    Do they focus on “truly” organic and non-GMO, or is that not even a factor in their marketing?

    Good post Dan!

    • Sharon – your parse: above par…very clever. I go there once in a blue moon (I missed the most recent blue moon visit, however) when I really, really want something ‘special’ whether it actually is or not…their perception rate is still quite high even admits the Whole Food, Fresh Market, Trader Joes, Saugatuck Butcher and local (really) fresh market stands that Westport can rightly hail…but whatever…we shall wait and see…the space seems a bit large for a bank or nail salon.

    • I shop there constantly… because I can walk there without breaking a sweat and because I loathe Stop & Shop. If you don’t burn gas getting there, it somewhat offsets the price premium.

      To answer one question, yes, the shopping experience has declined. With the last two remodels they have substantially cut the number of SKUs, so they suffer the (I know it has it’s fans) Trader Joe’s problem that you never go expecting to get that one thing.

      They’ve also changed their monthly discount program – since it is all automatically assigned to the shoppers card, there is no more coupon that tells you what you have. Bad marketing – if you aren’t sure if you are getting a discount or not, you probably aren’t going to buy the most expensive grocs in town.

      • Sharon Paulsen

        Ah, well then, there it is – signs that point to their possible demise. Thanks for the feedback Chris!

  10. Susan Reilly

    I like Balduccis! Not all the time but they have great stuff. Other than Stop and Shop, no one place has everything in Westport. It is necessary to go to several shops to get the things I need. And Balduccis has some great items. Prepared food and sushi are really good- as are the crab cakes!

    • Stop & Shop has always given them competition, and they’ve been able to sustain a good business. But I think that both Fresh Market and the huge Fairfield Whole Foods must hurt them a lot. Similar, if larger, selection, and better prices (how often do you hear that about Whole Foods?).

      I live in Greens Farms and I suspect that I can get to that Whole Foods faster than I can get to the Westport one.

  11. Bobbie Herman

    Isn’t that what The Red Barn said?

  12. William Adler

    Good ones, Sharon and Bobbie. My interpretation: (1) Thank you for the opportunity for us to make a “house ad” statement instead of addressing the question of our status, and (2) please continue to shop with us after we announce our new, less convenient location.

  13. Nancy W Hunter

    A preamble to the Thursday debates, no doubt.

  14. Joyce Barnhart

    When they post the “Closed for Renovation” sign, we’ll know they’ve left.

  15. Oh, it reminds me …. when will Blu Parrot reopen??