HMart opens on the Upper West Side today

I saw in my Upper West Side Neighbors group that it was official: HMart at 70th Street and Amsterdam was finally opening today. So I knew I wanted to stop by to see if there were any grand opening specials or giveaways. I haven’t lived this close to any Asian market since I lived in Elmhurst from 2008-2012, and even then, I was about a 20-minute walk away from the markets along Broadway in the main drag in Elmhurst. With HMart at 70th Street, I am now less than a 10-minute walk from Asian groceries! Granted, I have some mixed feelings about HMart: The prices for a lot of day-to-day items can be very high, and in some cases simply price gouging. The freshness of the produce is not always optimal (I remember recently going to one location where the cilantro looked sad and wilted). I also dislike how a lot of the fruit and vegetables are wrapped and packaged in excessive plastic wrap and styrofoam. But it’s nice and comforting to have an Asian market so close and walking distance from where we live.

So I went to the grand opening today. They had lots of flowers on display to celebrate the grand opening. There were clearly a lot of managers (and even owners) who were walking the floor and watching how people received the new HMart. They also had a lot of security at the entrance, exit, and walking up and down the aisles. Much to my dismay, they did not have that many specials or sales. I was pleasantly surprised to see that all the Pulmuone brand organic tofu was reasonably priced — I really like that packaged tofu brand and wondered if they decided to lower prices indefinitely.

I ended up purchasing three items: a bag of dried japchae/sweet potato noodles, a frozen bag of Bibigo chicken and vegetable dumplings that were $2 off, and the biggest find of the day: a yuzu-honey jar of about 450 grams to make an instant yuzu-honey tea (just add water!) for only $4.99! It’s supposed to yield about 42 total cups of tea, and it’s definitely Japanese as all the writing on it is in Japanese, and it’s imported from Japan! I panicked a little when the cashier rang the yuzu-honey jar up and the screen read $16.99. I gave him a sad look and told him that the shelf said it was only $4.99, and if it was really $16.99, I no longer wanted it. He asked another worker to do a price check for me, so I waited at the register patiently. Lucky for me, the shelf was correct and the scanner was wrong: it really WAS $4.99! So I told him I’d take it. I paid for my groceries, and he gave me the grand opening gift: a set of five pairs of bamboo chopsticks with a fun design on the top. Not dishwasher safe, but hey, I’ll take some nice bamboo chopsticks! They’re supposed to be eco-friendly. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.