The Mom’s Organic Market located in Merrifield’s LEED-certified Mosaic District opened last month, and its earth-friendly practices extend all the way to the parking lot, where there are electric car chargers. (Tim Carman/The Washington Post)
Much has been made of the environmentally friendly nature of the new Mom’s Organic Market in Merrifield’s Mosaic District, which is good. Because sooner or later, all of us will have to shed our collective denial over energy consumption before we drown several small island nations in glacier melt.
But as admirable as Mom’s practices are inside the LEED-certified development — the Rockville-based company’s ninth store is 100 percent wind-powered and features renewable building materials and energy-efficient refrigerators/freezers — that’s not the main reason we shop at a supermarket. We want good produce, helpful staff, unique products, local products, an easily navigable store, and, of course, lots of free samples.
How does the new Mom’s stack up? I took a tour of the place last week and found many delights, plus an oddity or two. Take a look after the jump.
The produce at Mom’s is, as always, 100 percent certified organic, including the apples. The produce manager at the Mosaic store wasn’t sure where the apples are from, but they’re likely not from the East Coast, where the organic fruits are notoriously hard to grow. (Tim Carman/The Washington Post)
There's a nice selection of local products in cheese section, including options from Maryland producers Firefly Farms and Cherry Glen Farm. (Tim Carman/The Washington Post)
The refrigerated beer selection features some local and regional brews such as bottles from Port City and Flying Dog. It's worth noting that because of Maryland law, most Mom’s stores in the Free State do not sell beer, save for the Rockville outlet. (Tim Carman/The Washington Post)
Maybe I've lived a sheltered life, but I've never before seen organic lime and lemon juice in those fruit-shaped squeeze containers. (The Italian-based Sicilia makes these particular juices.) I've always equated these products with bitter citrus juices made from concentrate. (Tim Carman/The Washington Post)
A celiac’s paradise: The Mom’s at Mosaic has perhaps the largest gluten-free section I've ever seen. (Tim Carman/The Washington Post)
And apparently to balance out all that gluten-free product, you have. . . a wall of granolas. You could eat granola every day for weeks and seemingly never eat the same one twice. (Tim Carman/The Washington Post)
I love dogs as much as the next suburbanite who buys sweaters for their pooches in winter. But even I was surprised at this dedicated section of refrigerated Fido products, including raw bones and raw goat's milk. (Tim Carman/The Washington Post)
The free samples were relegated to the Customer Service counter in the back of the store, but there was a generous spread of items, including Andean Dream coconut-quinoa gluten-free cookies (meh) and Vermont Creamery Creme Fraiche on Ines Rosales olive oil tortas (yes!). (Tim Carman/The Washington Post)
No bumper carts here. Mom’s boasts aisles wide enough to drive a tractor-trailer through. (Tim Carman/The Washington Post)
The Naked Lunch counter serves organic fare such as customized “steam bowls” (brown rice/black beans/three-grain pilaf, plus toppings), raw juices and sandwiches like the “Fakin’ Bacon” (sauteed apples and tempeh bacon, among other ingredients). There’s also a line of kombucha on tap. (Tim Carman/The Washington Post)