SAN ANTONIO — H.E. Butt Grocery Co. has opened a new store here that combines elements of its Central Market format with its traditional supermarkets, along with an expanded selection of kosher product.
The 128,000-square-foot store, dubbed Alon Market — “alon” means “oak” in Hebrew — includes an eatery called Central Market Café on the Run offering heat-and-eat entrees, vegetables and full meals prepared daily. Central Market is H-E-B's upscale format that focuses on fresh and prepared foods.
H-E-B could not be reached for comment on the new store, but it posted some information on its website. According to the website, other offerings at Alon Market include:
More than 600 produce items, including 90 organic offerings.
A 7,000-square-foot meat department, featuring high-end Prime 1 beef as well as USDA Select, H-E-B Natural Angus, kosher and organic offerings.
A seafood section featuring sushi, live lobster and Gulf shrimp from H-E-B's partner fleet.
An in-store bakery specializing in Old World-style artisan breads.
More than 1,500 varieties of wine, with tastings on Fridays and Saturdays.
An outdoor cooking department featuring a variety of grills, as well as plateware and other items needed for home entertaining.
According to a report in the San Antonio Express-News, the Alon Market carries “the biggest selection of kosher foods in town,” and is expected to attract Jewish shoppers from far beyond the local neighborhood. It was built in a high-income area across from a Jewish community center, which has been working with H-E-B for the past two years to develop the store's offerings, the newspaper said.
H-E-B reportedly closed two other nearby stores to open the new, larger location.
Just a few days after the opening of Alon Market, H-E-B opened the largest store in its chain, a 178,500-square-foot H-E-B Plus store, also in San Antonio. The chain's Plus stores feature expanded selections of general merchandise.
The newest Plus store, which replaces a smaller store nearby, contains the chain's largest selection of baby items, according to the Express-News. It also has a department called Texas Backyard, an outdoor area offering patio furniture and plants. It is the second such location for H-E-B.