Wednesday, December 22, 2010

We've made it for 7 months!

and it's almost Christmas!  And the holidays in Medusa are looking lovely!  So much to tell you about!

First, it can't wait till the end, so here goes: we're going to have a winter carnival!  We aren't quite sure what one does during these things, so I'm taking suggestions - so far, we are totally interested in snowman building and ice sculptures, as well as crafts and amazing food.  If the weather cooperates, we'd like to have some sledding, and we're trying to get permission (thanks, Mark O.!) to use the Medusa pavilion for skating.  We'd love some help, too, so if any of you are interested in volunteering, or have suggestions for activities, send them on!  We're thinking a weekend in February - one that doesn't run against the Groundhog Day Festival that the Preserve holds.

If you know me, you know a bit about my politics.  And if you follow the news, you've probably noticed that climate change has vanished from headlines, despite the fact that 2010 is shaping up to be another warmest year since we've started keeping records.  So we are going to investigate what this means for the Hilltowns with a Climate Change Conference in 2012, providing a place and time for some discourse among local leaders, scientists and the general public.  Plans are only just shaping up now, but please drop in and chat it you are interested - I'll keep you updated here as plans transpire.

I've sent out some email blasts about bulk ordering specials and there are some more coming for January - but just to clear up a few tangles: my email address is  Send all of your requests there, or see me in person.  Once I get your email, I will send out a confirmation email to verify I received your order.  Also, note the pack size - lots of these items coming in packs of 4 or 6 or more, and the price reflects that. You are paying for four 11lb bags of rice, for example, if I list the pack size as 4/11lb.

Along those lines, you should know that we are considering direct shipmemt of some of our biggest selling items.  Although I love UNFI, the reality is that the large supermarkets are getting better prices than us by direct shipping - by acting as their own distributors.  I'm not sure how much, if any, of our products we can do this with, but I am interested in getting better prices for everything, so we're going to give it a try,  As always, if there's something you want me to look into, give me a yell - I'll see what I can do.

We're preparing for a bit of a transition, as our liquor license is finally proceeding, hopefully without any more hitches.  We are expanding our retail space a bit, to make room for beer and wine, and plan to shift around some shelving as well, to make room for more tables.  We are also planning to offer more personal care products and supplements, which is why you might notice more of that temporarily stacked precariously up on shelves, in our typically orderly way.  We've been trying out some 3-in-1 shampoo and body washes, as well as several more lotions and oils.  We have a few lines of vitamins we are considering carrying - Rainbow Light is on my short list because I have sme experience with them - as well as some medicinal and herbal remedies.

We have a lot in stock for the holidays, so let me save you the trip into Greenville or Albany!  We've got everything from ravioli and frozen dinners to a full freezer filled with Morning Fog Farm pork and beef cuts, wild caught salmon and Free Bird chicken.  Lots of ice cream, including the 1/2 gallons of Perry's, by popular request.  We've got Pamela's cheescakes in the freezer, as well as lots of Dancing Deer cookies and brownies.  Lots of fresh stuff coming in on Friday, but currently we have green leaf lettuce, mushrooms avocados, onions and garlic, apples and bananas.  Tons of tomatoes, and green peppers and oranges in on Friday.  Lots of yams in the cooler, as well as a nice selection of nuts and cheeses, including herbed goat cheese and brie.

***  New Update  ***  The amazing Josh, from Albert's Organics, has totally hooked us up - in addition to our usual Hunan Dumplings from MacroVegetarian, we've got Peking Duck scheduled for delivery on Friday!!  Even more incredibly, he got us an amazing price on pineapples and mangoes and oranges - so prepare yourself for Medusa Fruit Cups!  Can you tell it's Christmas in New York??

In other news, we are fully stocked up on all grocery items, from stuffing mixes to potato chips.  And we're ordering more Angie's kettle corn, as well as Miguel's, for all of my gluten-free friends.  Don't forget, too, that we have Immaculate Bakery's gluten-free cookie batter in, too - so someone needs to try it and review it for us!

For the holidays, we still have a few spiral hams left, as well as 1 conventionally raised turkey and 1 organic turkey.  Call me quick if you want one of those!  Jason's become the local diva of gift baskets, which are looking amazingly lovely - chocolate, as well as our own local basket, which Kate Henderson's candles and knits, Lulu's fudge and maple syrup and honey, and an assortment of Wild Thymes products.  We're also catering!  Lots of cookie platters available, or ask for our full catering menu, and we'll supply platters for holidays parties!

We've all been a bit under the weather, and so have a lot of you, so let's hope now that we've passed the winter solstice and the days start to get longer, we'll all be looking forward to a happy and healthy New Year, absent any more colds!  And, yeah, you bet I'm hoping for a Christmas weekend Nor'easter!

Monday, December 13, 2010

Someone do a snow dance...

Seriously, aren't you just a little jealous that the Midwest got all the snow and all we get is frigid temps and then more rain??  Maybe it's just me, but if it's gonna be cold, I'd like a White Christmas. Please.

There's some interesting things afoot for the upcoming holiday, not the least of which is our fabulous gift offerings.  We have a ton of baskets, from a chocolate variety basket to an organic coffee basket to a only-local basket.  (So if you are local vendor, get your stuff in here; people need gifts!)  I also have a small warehouse full of spare baskets, if you'd prefer to make your own.  (And I won't be offended - lots of your ideas are way better than mine!)  Sweet Angela brought us some amazing knit hats to sell - they are lovingly crafted from fair-trade materials, for our littlest ones.  Kate Henderson, of Sheepy Valley, promises she's going to bring us some of her wool and beeswax candles, which promise to be perfect for gifting.  And Lucinda brought us her homemade fudge - Lulu's, and it's mind-blowingly delicious, and perfect for that Medusa gift basket!

We are also anxiously awaiting the final okay to sell beer and wine, as the last drafts of our liquor license app sits before me, hopefully including every single insignificant piece of information the great State of New York needs.  The spirit of the season dictates spirits, after all.

In other news, I need your orders for bulk goods by this Wednesday.  Much to my chagrin, UNFI is refusing to deliver at all during the holiday, despite my pleading, since our run falls on a Friday.  This is really annoying, but there doesn't seem like there's much I can do about it.  For fresh, I think I can get us some good prices at the Menands market, should we run low after Christmas.  (Thanks Fred S.!)  It probably won't be organic, though, but it'll probably work as a stand-in.

I do have turkeys and hams coming in from the amazing Albert's Organics, both of which are either all-natural or organic - my preorder customers get first pick, but there will be a few extras, so let me know if you need one.

Also fresh, we have a fully stocked cooler - lettuces, romaine hearts and leaf, celery, avocado, oranges and bananas, Indian Ladder apples (and cider!), plus lots of packed nuts, including tamari almonds.  We have some Vermont fresh tofu left, as well as lots of farm fresh brown eggs from Baitholts Farm, and from Morning Fog.  Please come and buy some fresh cranberries - it's a good price and I need to get them out of the cooler!  More carrots, broccoli and mushrooms in on Friday. Probably more coconut water and Bolthouse smoothies, too.  We've got a nice selection of cheese, and we added Chevre, herb crusted and not, as well as small, adorable rounds of Brie.  Looking around for something else special, cheese-wise...

The freezer is bursting, folks.  I have Udi's gluten free breads and bagels, and Gillian's gluten-free pie crusts and pizza crusts.  Coming on Friday, Pamela's gluten-free cheesecakes, which sound amazing, even for those of us who live for gluten.  Tons of Dancing Deer cookies and brownies in there as well, with more arriving on Friday.  There have been a few requests for the molasses clove and the oatmeal raisin, so I'm going to give it a try.  Ice cream from Julie's and frozen fruit pops, plus a bunch of chocolate bar pops.  And an overwhelming amount of beef cuts, chicken and salmon.  Just in, too, is a wide selection of pork, including Kielbasa, pork hotdogs and bacon from Morning Fog Farm.  If I could figure out the logistics of a frozen meat basket, OMG, I would be so on it. 

We would also love to do some party platters for holiday get-togethers, so save yourself a little work and order them through us - from veggie trays to cheese and cracker to dessert trays, we can provide fresh, tasty and beautiful platters. 

Lastly, a few non-food related notes.

We are moving forward with a Medusa Council on the Arts, with a planning meeting scheduled for late January.  If you are interested in getting involved, drop me a line and I'll send you an invitation to the google group.

I am interested in a Hilltowns Climate Change Conference.  The local organizations I've approached about this don't really have the time or funding right *now*, but are interested.  Despite the disdainful expressions of the Tea Partiers that frequent the store, I think some discourse around how climate change may effect our region, ecologically and economically, is critically important.  Again, drop me a line if you're interested in getting involved:

Love to you all - very merry holidays - and remember not to forget us!

Thursday, December 2, 2010


Been weeks, I know - it is exceedingly difficult to find time to write this, but I promise to get more updates done in the next few weeks.  Lots going on, and lots of things in planning, and lots to talk about.

First, I have always resisted the impulse to tell you all to buy local.  I trust you will buy where ever you feel comfortable, and where you can get the best value for your dollars.  But now, after a frighteningly slow month, I want to gently suggest that your dollars are best spent in our community, and we could really use the business, especially in the winter.  Although it is absolutely true that we cannot always offer the most competitive prices on every product, we *can* offer great deals on a lot of really superior products.  We also carry, to the greatest degree possible, products made by your neighbors.  Dollars spent here stay here, and support our community.  End of lecture!

That said, we are actively trying to meet the needs of more of you.  Beer and wine are coming soon!  (I swear!)  Painfully slowly, and we're really sorry - most of the delays are on our shoulders, as the Liquor Authority has been really helpful.  We plan to have it by the first of the year, though - so feel free to start making suggestions - other than Bud Light, Miller Light and Coors Lights, which have already been added to the list by an entire contingent of local beer drinkers.  Would be nice to have some local beer and microbrews, too.

We are also constantly improving our selection of tobacco products, from name brands to cheaper alternatives.  We have one of the best selections of loose tobacco in the region, and we'll try to get anything you request.

We also continue to expand our selection of top quality all-natural and organic products.  This weeks brings a number of new products, with the majority of them coming in at sale prices that we happily pass on to you.  Albert's is sending broccoli and restocking our avocados, as well as our tomatoes and lettuces.  We've got navel oranges in, and fresh Indian Ladder Farms apples.  Macrovegetarian products are in tomorrow as well - Hunan Dumplings and Buckwheat Soba noodles. We've got fresh Vermont tofu in the cooler, and a wide selection of nuts, from seasonal pistachios and pecans to our favorite tamari roasted almonds, mixed nuts and walnuts. 

We're trying the Immaculate Baking Company through UNFI this week, which offers a wide selection of all-natural cookie doughs, and they are an amazing company with a pay-it-forward sort of mission.  Plus, Late July cookies are on sale again, so we've stocked up on a number of them.  Florida Natural's fruit snacks will be back in, too, by popular demand.  Lots of fresh gluten-free breads and bagels in from Udi's, and next week, Pamela's cheesecakes, which are delicious as well as gluten-free.  We've got a ton of seasonal products in for the Holidays, and will take preorders for all natural and organic turkeys and hams, as well as continually offering beef and pork selections from Morning Fog Farm in Berne.

More of you have been taking advantage of our bulk ordering program - we offer 15% over cost for anything in UNFI's sale catalogs.  I've been sending out email blasts - if you want to be added to our list, drop in or send me an email at 

Gift baskets are coming this week as well - tentatively, we're offering a seasonal spice basket, several assorted tea baskets, and baking baskets, including a gluten-free one.  And, because I can't help myself, a chocolate basket. 

There are several weekly meet-ups in the works as well.  We'd like to host a crafting for charity group inspired by Craft Hope.  And I'm gauging interest in hosting a weekly meetup for artistic moms, which is utterly self-serving, I know, but I'm thinking the only way I'm getting to a PhD defense is with a little encouragement!.  There's also been some interest in a weekly playgroup - I don't think our Rensselaerville playgroup is in business these days, but if there's anyone interested in helping to reorganize, I don't think it would be difficult to drum up a crowd.

And events!  We (Janice, our amazing and lovely postmaster at the grand olde Medusa PO, and I) are needing some caroling.  Seriously.  So, on the heels of a beautiful tree lighting at our Medusa church, we are inviting everyone to meet up at the Store at around 6pm on the 11th, for an evening of old time village caroling.  Since we are pretty sure we're not the only ones who don't remember the third verse to Silent Night, we'll be providing the lyrics and the encouragement, and some refreshments afterward.  And not being musical is no excuse - this is purely about fun!  We're having a Living Market that day, too, from 11am - 3pm, so if you still have gifts to buy, keep this in mind: you can spend your Christmas budget by investing in a community in the developing world.  More details to follow...

Phew!  That's it for now - remember to remember us, and lots of love!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sweet November...

Another Halloween behind us, and I'm writing this a bit thankfully, as we finished off the last of our trick-or-treating in snow showers tonight...

We have placed a staggering amount of product on shelves - and we are just dying for a bit more room.  From cooler and freezer space to dry goods, things are feeling like a tight fit lately!  And, though I say this with a teeny bit of trepeidation, we have a number of events planned for the coming months, and we'd love a bit of space set aside from stacks of juices and the traffic of a busy store.  So stay tuned - there are many plans afoot!

We have a new Albert's Organics sales rep, Josh, who's learning the ropes, and learning about places like Medusa.  With that preparation, keep us in mind if you need lettuce, as he sent us lovely bags of romaine, as well as iceberg this week.  We also have beautiful, and seasonal kale left in stock, as well as portabella mushrooms, and broccoli.  Lots of Indian Ladder apples, as well as more cider coming in this week, as soon as I can get us down to Indian Ladder.  There are also delicious Buckwheat Soba noodles in, as well as Hunan dumplings, from Macrovegetarian.  Tofu coming in this Friday, and, hopefully, Rob Sweeney, a lcoally famous vegetarian chef, will be getting us some of his handmade falafel.

On the deli, we have been doing SOUP like crazy!  We have officially designated Fridays as gluten-free soup day at the Store, and for all of you that do eat gluten, I thrown in a chunk of artisan bread to dunk.  We've got more chowders and chil coming up this week.  Oh, and there are a few more specialty sandwiches coming up, too - we're adding a Medusa PB&J, on granola bread - and officially giving the Italian mix it's rightful place in the menu. And, in case you haven't noticed, we've been giving our ancient deli cooler a bit of tenderloving care: late last week we installed tiles in the front, to better display amazing Boar's Head, and our line of organic cheddars AND the lights are fixed!  So now you can actually *see* what's in the deli cooler!  Isn't life great?!

Next, I love UNFI.  Love them, love them.  I've been trying to get as many good, new products as we can afford, including a wild variety of soups, from Wolfgang Puck and from Pacific Natural.  I just got 2 cases of Angie's Kettle Corn in as well - and WOW, this stuff is delicious - and cheap, thanks to great sale prices!  We've also got a bunch of fresh juices in, from Harney and Sons teas, as well as a new smoothie beverage from Bothouse Farms.  Morning Fog is keeping us stocked with fresh eggs, and Mike Duncan, up across from Sayre Road, has promised us weekly eggs, too.  We also now have a few different cough medicines and herbal cold remedies, as well as some vitamins.  We'd like to do more of that, as soon as the space issue gets worked out a bit more.

In the freezer, we're trying out some Blue Horizon breaded clams and fish sticks.  I finally found some salmon fillets we can freeze, too; they should be in next week.  (Thanks to that lovely lady who was in looking for them!)  We've got cases of gluten-free bread from Udi's as well as gluten free chocolate muffins and cinnamon rolls.  I also reordered several cases of the Food For Life breads, which are a delightfully hearty, full grain bread.  There's a lot of local meat cuts from Morning Fog, and Freebird chicken as well.  If anyone talks to Cheryl Baitholts, I'd really like to take turkey orders for her.  And if she can't, Helderberg Market might be able to - I just left a message on the Helderberg Market facebook board.

Speaking of the holidays...  The lovely Town Clerk in Berne is an amazing pie baker!  She's agreed to take holiday pre-orders for pie - apple, pumpkin, blueberry and pecan.  We're also making apple pies - we sold 4 this weekend alone. And our underground, on-the-sly bread business is taking off - I'd be willing to take some weekly preorders, if you have a hankering for a particular variety.  Catering, too, is picking up: we were able to provide lunches to the Huyck Preserve several times this month, and are incredibly grateful for the opportunity!

Next to last note - we hit two papers this past week!  Saturdays at the Store was included in the most recent editions of the Altamont Enterprise, and the Greenville Pioneer.  Thanks so much to Melissa and Andrea - we appreciate it!  And thanks, too, to sweet Dan, who's joined our staff of well, none.  He has an incredible eye for design, and has done wonders for the state of our coolers and freezers.  It isn't always easy working here, with small children underfoot and barely competent storekeepers, but he's proven to be a delightful addition to our family!  So, officially, welcome aboard!

Last note (I swear!): we are interested in buying a water buffalo.  Seriously - Heifer International is an amazing program dedicated to providing livestock to struggling subsistence communities in developing nations.  They have a great reputation, and we've chosen them as a way of paying forward some of the blessings bestowed on us here in Medusa over the past year.  Still working on the details, but we'll keep you in the loop.

So - wow - doesn't this mean the holidays have begun?  Next stop, Thanksgiving!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

No snow, but beautiful morning anyway!

Yes, I did say that.  We had a *winter storm watch* posted on Thursday evening, for of us over 2000ft.   By the time we were up Friday morning (to the sound of pelting rain), it had been rescinded.  So very cruel, for those of us who excitedly anticipate the first lovely snow of the season!

I have a few updates on products and some new stuff in from Albert's and UNFI, and some info on our computer services and upcoming events, but first: THANKS FOR A GREAT COLUMBUS DAY WEEKEND!  We were busy!  I've changed out strategy a bit, after a terrifyingly slow September: when you all ask me how we're doing, you will get only blunt honesty!  Yes, we are (usually) paying the bills, but *please* don't forget us!  Drop in often, and let me know when there are products you need that we aren't carrying and I'll do my best to find them. 

Speaking of which, Albert's sent us some new vanilla soy milk, among other things.  We trying out the Vermont Soy milk, which is made by an amazing company in Vermont devoted to their farms, sustainable practice and healthy communities.  We usually carry their artisan tofu, and their sales rep called last week and we chatted a bit about land use reform and the importance of local agriculture.  Great people - so come and try out their soy milk - I'd love to keep using them.

Produce-wise, we've got fresh broccoli in this week, in adidtion to lovely romaine hearts and fresh Vermont tomatoes.  Got portabellos from Albert's, onions from White Knuckle, as well as three kinds of Steve's potatoes.  Fresh garlic from Dr. Eldridge, who is sure you're all going to flip over the bulblets we've got on sample on the front counter.  (Several of you already have!)  I've also still got a lot of fresh apples, as well as Indian Ladder's cider in half and full gallons.  And, of course, organic avocados.  Got a bunch of tempeh in the produce cooler that has to move, too, so if you're interested, I'll give you a great price.

Also in the produce cooler, but not produce, is a ton of nuts - walnuts, tamari roasted almonds and mixed nuts, as well as chocolate covered pretzels and raisons.  We do need mroe farm-fresh eggs, though - so if you are a local farm who wants to sell eggs, come and see me.  Or someone go poke Mike Duncan a little and make sure he gets down here with eggs for me!

UNFI brought in a ton of restocks this week, especially the Bob's products.  We have some new Davinci angel hair spaghetti in - Davinci has amazing prices and a great product.  Juice boxes by Honest Kids came in last week - the pouches not the box, for just $4.49 - so for anyone who's been asking, they're here!  We also finally have the Pacific Natural soups in, highly recommended by Hans, my official retail soup taster.  More Wolfgang Puck soups also arrived, and I restocked those surprisingly good Florida Natural's fruit sticks, which flew off the shelf last week.

More Familia muesli cereal, which seems pricey until you calculate the cost per ounce, and for these 2 pound boxes, you are getting a good savings off of conventional cereals - and they are way more nutritious.  

In the freezer, we have more of that amazing Giovanni Rana ravioli from Albert's, and I restocked us on a lot of the Julie's ice cream, including those chocolate chocolate ice cream bars.  So, if you're like me, and can eat ice cream all year round, I'm looking out for you!  There's a bit of a tangle with Gillette Creamery, who wants to sell us Perry's, for all of you who want the half gallons, and the Ben and Jerry's varieties, but they can't let us put them in the Nestle's freezer.  So, sigh, as soon as we get a new freezer from them, we'll be able to rearrange our ice cream order.

October events: BEADS today!  (Which is why I need to quickly finish this and get over there!)  And the sun just came out in Berne, so if my tablecloths don't blow away in this wind, we'll be making necklaces and bracelets all morning.  Maybe we'll get some bubbles going, too.  Next week is paper mache bowl making, and a dress up funshop the week after.

And we *might* have a local celebrity poet joining us Halloween weekend as well for some dark poetry.  And don't forget - Camp Medusa is having a Haunted Camp that weekend, too!

Novemeber promises a lot of events!  I'm trying to line up a series for the first three weeks of November around Sustainability and Local Agriculture.  And another poetry reading, too - so if you are a poet and would like to join us for an open mic (frankly, I don't have a mic, but we're a small store!), please let me know!

More to come - love you all!

Friday, October 8, 2010

Finally sunshine!

We survived to see the sun again - and just in time for the weekend - it's looking just marvelous, right through Labor Day.

There are a few events to remind you about - as well as some news about the case order program.  There are some fresh things in from Albert's, and some new stuff in from UNFI, and a few words about our sandwiches and soups.

First, because this so excites me - we have Saturdays at the Store starting tomorrow!!  We'll be tossing out huge lumps of handmade squishy playdough and...well, playing with it!  Should be a blast - all ages and play-doughing abilities are embraced!  We're having a beading funship, a paper mache bowl making funshop, and then dress-up and candy eating on the final Saturday in October.  Then we are planning to move inside and start Monday evening panel presentations.  We are tentatively planning for discussions around health and healing, and sustainable living, and covering topics such as the differences in quality and cost of conventionally processed and organic foods, how to take responsiblity for your own health, and supporting local economies by buying whole and buying local.   And - don't forget! - Sunday is 10-10-10 - Global Work Party Day.  Folks all over the planet will be working on projects aimed at bringing out carbon dioxcide levels back down to 350.  See for more information.  We are planning to leave out a document describing Transition Towns - communities working to change lives and lifestyles for better, more planet-friendly living.  Might be a good time to chat about creating a local currency, which I've thought was a fabulous idea for many years now.

Takes a village to save a planet, you know.  (Yeah, it also takes bringing down some huge multi-nationals, but I thought I'd start with Medusa.)

That said, just a few words on Store items for the week.  We just heard from Vermont Tofu (find them on Facebook, too!) who have been shipping us artisan tofu, through Albert's Organics.  They are a very mission-based firm, committed to local and organic soy production and value added processing to support their local community and to achieve a really top quality product.  I spoke with Alex today - they are also interested in having us try their soy milk, which they say is better than Silk.  I need some feedback from my customers before I'm willing to try it, though - so stop in and chat with me.

We have a ton of Kettle chips back in - including a New York Cheddar in the lunch size.  We've also dipping our feet back into bulk for the winter - I am packing organic lentils (green and red varieties) as well as split peas into retail containers.  The price is fantastic, and the retail packs are compostable.  And if you soup-fiends want more than I am offering in the retail sizes, I'd be happy to weigh you out more.

Albert's sent us fresh chicken, though you'll need to grab it while it's available - $6.99 per lb for breast meat, and there are only 6 packs.  We also have more Giovanni Rana ravioli - delicious and it won't stick around long, so stop in soon.  Lots of gluten free ravioli available in the freezer, too, though for at least one more week you'll have to either dig around for it, or ask one of us to find it. 

We've got fresh portabellos in, too, as well as a new supply of falafel and Hunan Dumplings.  The one disappointment this week is that our soups are all back-ordered, so we won't be offering fresh soup on the deli till next Friday.  Ugh.  But still have minestrone for Saturday, and a lot of fresh Boar's Head salads, our specialty and deli sandwiches, as well as the new addition, the Medusa Mushroom.  David G. and company claim it needs something green and crunchy, though, so I'm still working on that.

And - yay! - we've got fresh apples and cider from Indian Ladder Farms in Voorheesville, maple syrup from Mountain Winds Farm in Berne, and fresh potatoes coming from White Knuckle in Rensselaerville.  I am so thrilled that we are blessed with so many amazing local farms as vendors!

I am preparing an email bulletin of the Otcober offerings through UNFI - if you don't want to wait for me, drop in and scan through the catalogs - we just got November in as well.

Love to all of you - looking forward to a wild Columbus Day weekend!

Friday, October 1, 2010

Fall, falling, fell...

...into autumn.  If you haven't been here this week, the lovely (and for sale!) Victorian across the street is literally glowing with maples.  So lovely!  And with the post-pouring rain blueness of tomorrow, it'll undoubtedly start looking a little Halloween-ish. We also have tons of pics of the rushing, roaring something-mile creek - can't believe we were swimming in there a few weeks back!

Anyway - the blog is late - my apologies!  But there's much to tell you about!

It has been quiet during the week around here, so we are busily planning some things to do - there's info going out about our computer services, we'll be attending Greenville Day on Saturday (and handing out toy snakes, so look for us!), and Saturdays at the Store will start on October 9th!  Lots of catering mailers going out - please spread the wrod that we are doing deli platters, breakfast platters, sandwich platters and dessert and snack platters.  If you are partying, please think of us!

And there's some product news to share.

First, before I forget, the results are in: Meadowbrook chocolate will stay.  Honestly, there's just no comparison.  And I'll order for anyone who guarantees they'll buy it.  The rest we're getting from the lovely Byrne dairy.

UNFI sent us some amazing new stuff!  Got in some Bora Bora bars - which are like superfood granola bars - they are GMO-free, without refined sugar.  And, somewhat shockingly, they are both gluten-free and delicious!  We also had a few requests for more lunchbox-y sort of snack foods, so we're trying some Florida Natural's Pocket Fruit.  Early results - thank you, Drew! - suggest that it's a keeper. We also have more Wolfgang Puck soup in, though the taste-tester approved pacific Natural brand was out-of-stock, so we'll have to try it for next week.  We have a lot of new Raw Revolution bars in - Raspberry chocolate, among others - which are apparently good for you.  Better for you (unless you are seriously not into chocolate or calories) are the Dancing Deer Brownies, which are still on sale (so we're *still* ordering them) and this week we're trying the Caramel Pecan ones.

I noticed we don't have any natural alternatives to Jello pudding mixes, so I have some of the Dr. Oeker chocolate and vanilla mix in.  And we are loving the Davinci pasta, which is tasty and half the price of the regular organic pastas. Lots of tazo teas back in, as well as Waa-Tah! brain and power water.

Also by popular request, we have the Udi's bagels and cinnamon rolls in, as well as several varieties of Conte's raviolis and stuffed shells - all gluten-free.  Also brought in some of the Glutino gluten-free chocolate covered pretzels.  Can you believe it??  Here, in Medusa.    The amazing ravioli from Giovanni Rana were out-of-stock, sadly, but I've asked sweet Chris at Albert's to hold a few cases for us. 

For bulk, which has taken off since someone sweetly suggested that we package all the bulk so folks can actually *see* it, we have roasted tamari almonds, raw pumpkin seeds, chocolate covered pretzels and walnuts.  And for that someone, we now have mixed nuts in, in  the cooler.  Oh, and pretty mixed colored popcorn, too.

Albert's Organics also sent us a lovely box of portabellas, tomatoes and romaine hearts, as well as more Hunan's and some of their Spinach Noodles.  We have a *lot* of farm fresh eggs in - and I think Laurie is bringing us more tomorrow morning - the Farm fresh are in the produce cooler - and Byrne's eggs are in the dairy cooler.

Lots of new personal care products in - shampoos and some new Tom's of Maine soaps, all on sale.

We're planning a light order for next week, but have a number of preorders for the first October order, the following week.  So, if you're interested, drop in and check out the sales catalogs and see what deals you can snag.  As always - open source pricing - I'm charging 15% over sale cost.  There's a sign-up sheet at the store for anyone who wants to receive emails about UNFI product sales and discounts.

We are trying a new sandwich - created by Hans and heartily endorsed by Courtney - temporarily going by the BLET.  A BLT with our special Wild Thymes Moroccan Mayo, we've added a hard boiled egg.  A similar version also adds sliced avocado, making it a BLEAT.  Anyway, you'll have to drop in and check it out.  And soups are here!  Haven't decided what we'll try for tomorrow, but everything is Kettle Cuisine.  We don't have fresh artisan bread yet, but it's coming really soon!  (Oh, if only there were more hours in the day!!)

Saturdays at the Store are funshops for all ages, drop-in from 10am to 1pm, in our back building.  We're starting with a play dough workshop, then a beading funshop, a paper mache bowl funshop, and a pre-Halloween dress-up funshop planned in the coming weeks.  We are going to have such a BLAST! 

There's more, but my fingers are getting tired.  Love to you all - and see you soon!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Weekend, here we come!!

So I think I'm finally acclimating to less warm temps, and the yellow glow emanating from everything is looking too pretty to be melancholy over our descent into Fall.  Go up and hike the Falls at the Huyck, then drop in for a warm sandwich - it's looking like it's going to be a lovely weekend!

A light order this week - everyone is buckling down for the transition to school, I guess.  I did find a few new things for us to try - I have a counter display of Alacer's Emergen-C shots coming in this week.  (Incidentally, this was prompted by someone asking for Emergen-C Ester C, which I can't seem to find.)  Both those awesome Raw Revolution Bars, as well as the always popular seaweed snacks were out of stock this week.  I did snag some cypress, fir and cedarwood essential oils by Aura Cacia, though.  And, we have some new 6 oz Brown Cow yogurts to try - cherry vanilla, strawberry and vanilla.  The maple is a favorite around here, and the prices at the moment are fantastic.

I restocked the Cafe Altura Italian Roast, but, sadly, it seems we are unable to reorder any of the low acid Puroroast coffees.  I'm looking into an alternative, but if there isn't, I'd thrilled to bring in some new Jim's or Cafe Altura, or another customer recommended brand.  Newman's has sauces on sale, so I got us two more varieties - 5 cheese and Alfredo, as well as more Sockarooni.

I swallowed hard and reordered that black brick of Vermont cheddar again - the price floors me, but you all assure me that it is amazing cheese.  Look for it in the produce cooler, though - there's a bit more room for it there.  I also restocked us with all of the Yummy Earth hard candies - my apologies for whoever has been asking me for the Root Beer ones!  They'll be in tomorrow!

Albert's is sending several new Macrovegatarian dishes - we needed a break from the Hunans!  We're going to try the sun-dried tomato dumplings and the Tokyo Buckwheat Soba.  Plus, Chris's sending some Mel's Gourmet to try, too - a chicken one that sounds amazing.  Plus, we finally have the avocados back in!  We've got full salad fixings ready in the produce cooler, including Romaine hearts, mushrooms, green peppers and carrots.  Lot so tofu and tempeh and a selection of salad cheeses, including an organic feta and a fresh mozz.

Gillette Creamery stocked us all up, and claims they can get Ben & Jerry's cheaper than UNFI, so we're all over that - plus maybe they'll have better luck with the butter pecan that someone wanted.  There's been requests for Perry's or Hershey's, too, because they have the 1/2 gallon size and they're reasonably priced, so we're working on that.

The catering menu is done!!  A bit behind schedule, but going out today!  We've got 3 different breakfast platters - a danish platter, with Geldner's rolls (of course!), a breakfast roll platter and a fruit platter.  We're offering a wide selection of deli meat platters, as well as small sandwich platters.  Plus, I've included  a few munchies platters - cheese and crackers, and antipasto platter, a veggie platter and a cookie platter.  Tried to keep all of the prices really reasonable, but I'm sorta winging this, so I'll definitely work with you on the price.  I've been talking with the local institutes, and have a package going out (finally!) to schools and businesses, but really word of mouth is the best, so spread the word for me.

Lastly, we are tentatively planning for fall events - I'm calling it Saturdays at the Store.  Again, I'm not an event planner, so this is new territory for me, but having fun things with kids is old hat, so I'm hoping for the best.  If you want to run a funshop, for kids or adults, drop me a line - I was hoping to not charge anything, but if you want to charge a small fee and the donate the proceeds to the Hilltown Resource Center or another local group, I think they could really use the funding this year.  Paul Rosenberg, who's that amazing guy who does the contra dances all over the Capital District, would do a program down our way too, if there's any interest.

Anyway, enough for now!  Have a lovely weekend!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Sweet summer, blissful autumn...

So we have crashed into fall.  From 90's and sunny to days of clouds and chilly drizzle!  But who doesn't love soups and hot chocolate?  And we're the place!

We had a lovely UNFI order in yesterday - Susan, from Morning Fog Farm has been gently pointing out that we don't have a very good selection of canned soups - so I got a selection of Wolfgang Puck soups in (no, I've never heard of them either!) - from New England clam chowder to some hearty lentils.  All on sale!  We also got a ton on freezer stuff in, despite the fact that we had no room before, so you're really gonna have to dig now.  But so worth it!  We've got three varieties of Ben and Jerry's, some So Delicious dairy free desert tubs in vanilla, and more Julies's ice cream.  Oh, and some of you have tasted those amazing brownies we had in from Boston's Dancing Deer - well, I got more and picked up some of their chocolate chip cookies, too!  I love getting people hooked on good stuff!  Plus some more of the gluten free Udi's breads, and, because it breaks my heart that so many of you can't even try the Dancing Deer, I got the Udi's chocolate muffins, too.  They look amazing!

Janet was looking for some bread worth eating, but tasty enough for her son's PB&J, so I found a lovely round artisan loaf from French Meadow Bakery.  Hoping it tastes as good as it looks!

For fresh, we have bananas back!  Plus lovely tomoatoes - lots of local ones from Kropp's Crops, as well as Deeproot from Vermont.  We have tons of romaine hearts, as well as baby carrots, green peppers and portabella mushrooms.  I did forget to reorder our avocado this week though - sorry - so no guacamole till next week.  Lots of fresh tofu, too - and, for Katherine in Westerlo and all of you other members of the Hunan dumpling revolution - both types of Macrovegatarian dumplings.

We did get the 1/2 gallon milk in glass from Byrne dairy, too - I need some feedback.  We don't think the chocolate is as good, but on the other hand, I did make some tasty cottage cheese from their whole and 1 percent.  I'll continue to get the gallons in for sweet Jen M. and her family, and requests for anyone else who asks.

And we'll have the New York Times, starting tomorrow!  Took four months, but Jason did it!  We do need some idea of how many folks want, though.  I love the Times, but I don't want to end up with a whole bunch of them in the evening, yk?

Soups will start beginning of October - after some careful considered debate with our postmaster (after all, Janice will have to smell soup all day long!), we have a lovely list of requests.  Now to get bread!  We might (!) be able to get Bread Alone bread, and I am still getting my home kitchen Ag and Market certified as well, so we have a back up plan.  (At least one of you ( David!) seems to think I should still bake!)

We lost our deli staff this week, though thankfully it's been quiet for the last few days.  We loved having Tiffany here and are sorry she decided not to stay through the fall.  But we have a big mailer going out to schools and businesses about our catering and lunch delivery, so we're going to need help.  We can't offer benefits, other than the sheer wonderfulness of being in Medusa, and the pay isn't going to make you millions, but it is fun and satisfying!  If you know anyone, send them over!

Oh, and don't forget - we are selling amazing cookbooks to support the Medusa Firehouse, and the amazing Kathy Wank (see also her Hilltown Professional Organizing on Facebook!) dropped off a food donation box for the Hilltown Resources Center.

And computer repair, computer repair, computer repair!  Upgrades, virus removal and Jason specializes in refurbishing old systems with a Linux makeover!  Spread the word - I don't have any posters or cards yet, but we are in business!

Love to you all - and see you soon!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Labor Day!!

Last blissful days of summer are upon us, folks - although that also means, for my family, that we celebrated Perin's second birthday today!  (For those of you that aren't familiar with our little ones by name, he's the smallest, though only in stature, blond haired boy child of ours, recently of Facebook fame for mooning Angela's guests!)  It should be a lovely weekend, with temps dipping back down, and lots of reasons to come stroll through Medusa!

We have all of the new sandwiches under control - sweet Will claims that our Philly Cheese Steak is the best he's had!  Wow - we're still beaming!  And the lovely newest artist in residence at the Huyck Preserve has been down several times, too, to enjoy the Medusa Cobb!  What a week!  Boar's Head is arriving tomorrow, just in time for lots of fresh stuff for a long, leisurely Labor Day weekend!  They've been bringing us Tortellini salad, which is really good, and some new potato salad, too.  (I hated the last one - really sweet - potato salad shouldn't be sweet, right?  Maybe it's me...)

United Natural Foods and Albert's Organics arrive tomorrow, too!  I've restocked all of our spices, for all of my picklers and grillers - and I'd love to offer Newman's steak sauce, if UNFI ever has it in their warehouse!  I am bringing in Primal Strips - a slightly healthier version of those beef jerky products so many of you love.  Also - !! - we're finally getting our Cliff Bar display, *and* some amazing Raw Revolution bars, and   Dancing Deer brownies!  (If you've never come across Dancing Deer - they are this amazing company out of Boston, making all sorts of great cakes, cookies and brownies, with great, fresh ingredients!  I'll have to check and see if they are doing any gluten free products.)

I brought in more Tazo iced teas, since those seem to be popular, and restocked us with both the Lakewood fruit garden fruit juice and the Blue Sky sodas - everything is marked down, so you'll be getting a great price.  I am aching to try a new coffee/tea cold beverage with herbal boosters in it - good-for-you coffee and tasty - hopefully we can get that in for next week!  Oh, and the Thai coffee is in - and Tiffany declared that it's like a coffee version of Yoohoo - and I have to agree.  Come in and decide whether we're nuts :)

We've got fresh cider in from Indian Ladder, as well as their fresh plums, and we are using their apples on the deli.  I'm planning another trip down next week for apples - and would be willing to pick up extras for folks who can't or don't want to make the drive.  Just drop in and let me know what you're looking for...

We're trying to get more options on the loose tobacco - I know it is costing everyone a ton of money to smoke these days.  And we're trying to get more ice cream options, too - there have been a bunch of people who've suggested either Hershey's or Perry's in the 1/2 gallons, so we're working on that, too.

We are so close to getting the New York Times I could scream.  Will keep you posted.

Phew.  I think that's it.  Can't WAIT to see you all this weekend!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Summer twilight...

Isn't it hard to see this summer go?  Such an amazing season this has been!

We've had some deliveries this week - some new stuff you should know about! - and we need feedback on a few things.  Plus, there are some sales and events coming up this fall that you shouldn't miss...

We are completely restocked with Boar's Head, including a tortellini salad, for $5.99 a pound.  I'm planning on making a batch of potato salad and bean salad when we get there today, too!  We have been frantically perfecting our newest sandwiches, too - several new warm ones, just in time for cool evenings.  We've got some classic melts that are evolving, as well as a Medusa Ham and Cheese, topped with sliced Indian Ladder apples and honey mustard dressing.  We've also posted our version of a Philly cheesesteak, and a Medusa BLT featuring Wild Thymes moroccan mayonnaise!

United Natural Foods shipped in a ton of sale items this week, from a new Choice Tea - Green Gunpowder (and at a sale price of $3.82!), to all those gluten free pastas we've been discussing over at Facebook!  We got the Conte's Spinach and Cheese Ravioli (retailing for about $7.99 per bag) , as well as the Tinkyada pastas - Fusilli and Spaghetti, both with a sale price of $3.82 per pack.

We have a ton of Kettle chips in - including Sweet Onion in the 5 oz bag, for all those who've gotten hooked on those - as well as the Miquel's.  I was able to get Jim's coffee on sale, too - so if you come in for the Blend X (Witch's Brew) or the Sweet Love, the prices dropped.  There was also a request for Ian's Panko breadcrumbs - so that is on our shelves now, too.  (We are gonna need more shelf space very soon!)

And in honor of that sweet guy who dropped in last week and said I made his day by having Sonoma wraps (which I fell in love with, too - we're using them on the deli now!), I brought in multigrain and gluten free versions as well.  We also have a few extra cases of the Pirate brand stuff I have on the endcap as a back to school special - and I ordered some more essential oils, too...

Speaking of which...

If you are into essential oils, please give ours a try and leave me some feedback - I have been impressed with not only the quality assurance and testing of Aura Cacia's essential oils, but also that I was able to get us a nice selection for affordable prices.  There are cheaper ways of getting them, for sure, but I was trying to balance quality and affordability - so help me out here.

Similar to this dilemma is the ongoing Meadowbrook milk controversy.  Folks, they still refuse to deliver. This means that one of us has to ship milk over from Berne.  Not only is there the constant concern related to shipping milk in a warm car, but we cannot always guarentee we'll get it to the store in a timely manner, which has annoyed at least a few of you.  We are also quickly running out of room in our home refrigerator, as we're ordering upwards of 6 cases of milk a week.  Our solution?  We would like to try the Byrne Dairy in the glass bottles - Byrne will deliver and we are confident that they are supplying us with quality milk.  I need to know if this is going to be a deal breaker for many of you...

Lastly, I am trying to get deals on everything from meats and cheeses to dry grocery items - the economic news has been sobering lately, and I know a lot of folks are struggling.  As always, let me know if you've been looking for something and not located it, or if you just need it cheaper - I'll give it a try.  We'd like to do some special things around the upcoming holidays, so stay tuned!

My little ones are waking up, so this is the blog for the week, folks - stop in and chat with us - make suggestions, give feedback, we love to hear from you!  (Oh, and send some good wishes, would you? - I have 8 days to submit a final draft of my dissertation!)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Essential oils, herbs and seaweed!

And so much more!  I skipped a blog last week - so a belated thank you for an amazing last weekend - the Medusa Yard Sale Day was history making!

We've got amazing things planned for this weekend - Boar's Head is restocking us today (they've lived up to their promise of every week deliveries!), and just in time for several new warm sandwiches and wraps to be unveiled, including a BLT with a special Wild Thymes mayonnaise, and a grilled pressed ham and cheese.  We are rapidly working on getting an acceptable oven in here as well - I have been handing out samples of my pumpernickel bread this week, which I'd like to perfect for a Medusa Rueben.  Drop in - I think I'll have some other bread samples this weekend!

UNFI and the amazing Chris from Albert's Organics have sent us some incredible stuff this week!  In, by popular demand, is a wide selection of essential oils.  I have the foggiest idea where I am going to put them, since space has become so limited (but plans in the works there, too - maybe in the next blog!).  I chose Aura Cacia, mostly because they had a great selection, and the prices were reasonable - you'll have to try them and inform me of the quality.  I also picked up a few nasal posts and salts, just in case any of you have been struggling with lingering colds like we have - also at a really good price.

I have Kinnikinnick gluten free hot dog and hamburger buns in this week, plus more of the gluten free Udi's breads that you all have been raving about.  We've been using the Udi's bread on the deli, too - so if you are gluten-free, just ask us to make you a sandwich on the Udi's.  I have Sonoma wraps in as well - which are an incredible brand - been using them on the deli and have them as part of our new warm melt wraps.  A lovely guy was in last night and declared they were his all-time favorite wrap - imagine finding them in Medusa, of all places!!  I'm still searching for a delicious gluten-free one, though - if you've got one in mind, let me know!

We have coconut water back in, as well as Annie Chun's seaweed snacks!  Oh, and we have an order in for more Freebird chicken - breasts and drumsticks.  Carol Clemens from Heather Ridge has also offered her chicken, which I'd like to start this fall.  We also have fresh iceberg lettuce, avocados and lovely valencia oranges in today - and don't forget the huge selection of fresh produce already here - from tomatoes (lots of tomatoes) to fresh herbs from Full Moon Farm in Medusa.  Of course there are more dumplings in this weekend from MacroVegetarian and fresh artisan tofu in from Vermont.

What else?  Oh, and come an taste a new cool beverage - Thai Coffee, from Taste Nirvana.  And I want some feedback on fish - I'd like to offer some salmon, which I can get from Albert's - it'll come frozen, and I think I'll keep it that way, and it won't be cheap, though I think I'll ask them to keep us alerted of sales.  I think I'd need to take pre-orders, so drop in an let me know if you're interested.

Lastly - soups!!  I can't wait to start soups - we can get soups from a huge variety of places - I can get Kettle Cuisine or Moosewood, and Jason has another supplies with a huge selection.  We think we'll do some taste testing, to see which works for everyone.  The variety is mind-boggling, though - so drop in and let us know your favorites!

Oh, and one more thing - we do computer repair!  Upgrades, new set-ups and repairs - and Jason specializes in transforming old machines by giving them a new Linus face!  More details to come!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Good morning, Medusa!!

Supposed to be a gorgeous August weekend!!  Whether you're planning for a lovely, lazy weekend in the hammock, or have 100 relatives over for a visit, we've got the goods!

First, because it's early August, we've got a ton of produce - especially tomatoes!  (Yes, I'm begging - come buy tomatoes!)  I am hoping to have local apples in soon - we had local peaches, but they sold out really fast.  I'm going to try to pick some strawberries tomorrow, too.  Maybe some blueberries, too.

Our UNFI delivery was in yesterday - lots of iced Tazo teas back in stock, as well as the Macro Vegetarian dishes, even the sorely missed Shanghai dumplings!   Tofu, and - new this week - tempeh.  I tried it last night - it's a teriyaki flavored one - tossed with some grilled eggplant a steamed chard.  Quite tasty!  I've got some new Newman's cookies this week - chocolate chocolate sandwich cookies, and a few others.  Oh, and rice vinegar - how could we have survived for 3 months without rice vinegar?!  The one think I'm still having a hard time getting are capers - they are either wildly expensive or come in enormous cases.

Lots of Julie's ice cream back in stock, too - pints are $4.49, which makes it cheaper than Ben & Jerry's and Haagen Daaz, and - in my opinion - tastier.  Oh, and those really amazing chocolate chocolate bars are back in, too.  Speaking of which, I have two varieties of Larabars in, too.  They look delicious!  No Cliff Bar display yet...still.  (Hint, hint, UNFI!)  Kettle chips are all restocked...

(Speaking of which, I have been politely stalking several Frito-Lay drivers, both of whom claim to want to deliver here.  Neither have made it to Medusa yet, but they don't know how persistent I am, either.)
Back to school soon, unless you're unschoolers like us.  We'd like to help, though - I have a flyer in the works - there are lots of case order deals through UNFI, for brands such as Ians, Cascadian Farms, Back to Nature and Envirokids.  I can get you really great prices, so if you are looking for good stuff for lunch boxes, at competitive prices, stop and see me before you schlep up to BJ's.

Boar's head was here on Thursday, and will now be coming weekly.  Quite a relief, considering we've been out of most of our cold cuts for almost a week!  It did give us the opportunity to try local Morning Fog Farm roast beef on the deli, which was fabulous.  And, for all of you Facebook followers, we've gotten a ton of valuable feedback about which new sandwiches to add - we'll have to have some sort of special unveiling ceremony next week!  Oh, and the survey's done!!  

Charlene Hull made us pies yesterday!  Woohoo - apple and blueberry.  Blueberry because it's seasonal - apple because it's almost seasonal and because it comes home with me if you don't eat it!

If you've been in since yesterday, you've noticed the lovely gladiolas by our front door, provided by Roswell Eldridge, in Rensselaerville.  $1.00 a piece and he says they'll last for weeks!

Last, but nearly most important, we have a lovely young woman - Diedre - who is helping Jason for a few hours in the morning, so there'll be less of a wait for breakfast sandwiches.  Make sure you drop in and say hi - and be patient with her while she learns our computer system!

All for now - go enjoy this late afternoon of summer - leaves will be changing before you know it!

Saturday, July 31, 2010

The weekend's here!

July's a crazy time of year, eh?  Between unpredictable heat and the the head-spinning amount of things to do around here, we upstate hilltowners can just wallow in the abundance of summer!

To support your many goings-on, we've been doing battle with vendors, and passionately trying to keep the Store fully stocked (read: stuffed!).  UNFI amd Albert's arrived yesterday, as did a *NEW* Friehofer guy.  Gillette Creamery has been in with all of our ice creams, and with the sole exception of Tropicana orange juice in half gallons (so sorry, Angela!), Byrne dairy is fully stocked.  Oh, and Meadowbrook milk is fresh in the cooler, too - including the Betty's chocolate!

We've gotten some new things in, as well as a few items that were here and dropped off my list, so I added them back in.  Hunan dumplings are in - and I also have some of Karen Sister's Thai chicken this week as well.  Albert's sent a new MacroVegatarian dish, too - I think it's Soba noodles.  Someone needs to try it and let me know...

I have new gluten-free bread in - this one's called Udi's - and we have a white and whole wheat gluten free variety.  Udi's also sent me a gluten free granola for those of you who've been requesting that.  Rustic Crust was running low, so I reordered the favorites and added a few new varieties, and also now have both shredded mozz in the dairy cooler and a Rustic Crust pizza sauce, for everyone who was horrified that I sold pizza crusts without the pizza sauce.  (I thought you could just use any old sauce!)

We also have a about a billion yogurts at the moment - Stonyfield Farms as well as Brown Cow, in various flavors.  Oh, and some goat cheese, for those of you who requested that, and a nice array of many other cheeses, too.

On the deli, we have had good news and bad news.  First, despite the fact that I haven't finished the final version of my survey and got it out (*what* is my problem!), a whole lovely bunch of you have returned to tell us about our subs and sandwiches - and all of it has been great reviews.  (On the other hand, I have to assume that everyone who hated their subs will not come back, so my sample is a bit biased...)  The bad news is that all of my promoting of the Jason's Roast Beef meant we sold out of roast beef by Thursday, and it won't be back in till next week.  I have a multi-fold solution, though - we just got in Heartland Farms organic bacon, and are planning to offer BLT's this weekend.  Yay!  And, Morning Fog Farm has a number of small roast beefs, and I'm going to have them baked for us, so by Sunday, we'll (fingers crossed!) have roast beef back in stock!

What else?  I am running low on spices, but they are ordered and will be in next week.  I am picking up more hotdogs, hamburgers and bacon, and maybe even a few strawberries, from Morning Fog this morn.  We have a few new chip varieties - including a tasty new one from Dirty Chips - and don't forget about the Tazo iced teas we have in the cooler.  Oh, and no one's been trying the cowboy cookies in the freezer - seriously, they are like eating fresh cookie dough, just slightly baked.  Incredibly delicious!

Keep an eye out for our postcards - you should have gotten them in your mail this week if you are in R'ville, Medusa or Preston Hollow.  We are sending them out to Oak Hill and Cornwallville next week, I think.  And - I almost forgot! - free coffee from 6:30am - 8am, all next week!!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Grilling, lawn signs, Tweeting and the Tribe in Oak Hill!

What a week!  Was it the lawn signs??  Or has July BBQ weather just kicked in?  In any case, what a ride!

We've got some new things from UNFI last week, and more coming this week.  Tons of new meats from Morning Fog Farm, in Berne.  And - so exciting - we are planning to introduce at least one new deli sandwich, and (maybe!) one or two grilled sandwiches, and have our deli survey out for folks to fill out.

We've got fresh Vermont tofu, prepared Falafel, and Macrovegatarian's Hunan and Shangaia dumplings, plus a new Vegan dumpling and Pad Thai.  We've got more of Annie Chun's seaweed snacks - sesame and the wasabi (which I have had so much fun offering as samples this week!).

We've got amazing chocolate ice cream bars from Julie's in - dark chocolate shells with creamy milk chocolate on the inside, as well as fruit bars.  And, new this week, we've got two varieties of Soy Boy Ravioli and two varieties of tortellini, which I am dying to taste.  Or, better, someone! Come in and try a batch and let me know - I'd like to carry a tortellini salad on the deli.

Some of you might have heard that our neighbors in Oak Hill, members of the Twelve Tribes community, have decided to sell their land and leave to other communities.  Many of us have been saddened to hear this, as they have been wonderful neighbors, as well as providing valuable service - our porch on the Store, as well as several porches on our home, were carefully reconstructed or refurbished by their builders.  As it turns out, there is a good chance that the growers might be staying - we had the opportunity to talk with James, their grower, on Friday, and - good news! - apparently some of the community will be remaining in Oak Hill.  It sounded like they might even keep the restaurant open!  And - good news for the Store - he'll be selling us lots of fresh veggies, including mixed boxes of cherry and grape tomatoes, which sold out almost immediately.

Morning Fog's meats have been hard to keep on the shelf lately!  Glad you all have discovered them - see what I mean about the hotdogs??  I've got both pork and beef hotdogs, ground beef in tubes and in patties, bacon, pork chops, sausage, rib steaks and some larger sirloins.  You can get an even better price if you head up to see Susan in person - give her a call - 872-1772 or show up at her farm on the Switzkill on a Saturday.  For you vegetarians, I am going up this morning to pick more strawberries - gotta love those everbearing varieties!

On the deli - first, so sorry about the beginning of the week - we never expect silly advertising like lawn signs to have such an effect on business!  Boar's Head was back in, though, and completely resupplied us and have decided that we are worthy of a weekly visit, so hopefully, we'll be keeping everything stocked up...well, forever, now.  We're going to stay tight lipped about the new deli sandwich till it's finalized, but if you think BLT's or Grilled Portabellas sound dreamy, stop in and let us know.  I also have made some corrections (thanks to my amazing researcher friend, Lara) to the questionnaire and will have it ready by Monday for your deli feedback.

I'm always taking requests and there have been some calls for essential oils. Frankly, this isn't really my area, so if anyone has any suggestions - local would be fantastic, but if you have some brand suggestions, send them on.  We're still planning for some toy lines, have several lined up, in time for school starting.  Speaking of which, we have a BACK TO SCHOOL SUPPLIES box accepting donations - at the front of the Store- if you are out buying, pick up a few extras.

We're also getting ready to sell our home in Berne, and are needing a temporary rental.  Exciting, though a bit overwhelming.  We are a family of five, but frankly don't need a lot of room - so if you come across something, let us know.

Lastly - someone come in and help me figure out Twitter!  We're MedusaGeneralSt there - but I haven't the faintest clue how I get all of you to follow us over there!

(PS: Angela - get your lovely self back to Medusa - we'll feed you - eating lots always makes a girl sleepy!)

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Is it Saturday again?

...which means we got a lot of new UNFI stuff in yesterday!  The Hunan dumpling revolution continues, plus by popular demand, we've also got some Shanghai dumplings, as well as the Artichoke Spinach noodle.  Just in time, considering it's going to hit near 90 again today.  Don't cook - eat here!

I also have more coconut water, the regular and a new variety.  And more seaweed snacks - seriously, we sold out of the seaweed snacks last week!  If you haven't tasted them, drop in today and remind Jason - he has a package he was going to put out for tasting today.

Because that's the kind of week it's been, I also now have Hyland's ear drops, for kids and for adults - we've all been in the Lake a bit too much, I think.  We're stocked back up on all of our chips, and now have popping corn.  (Someone came in for some and he and I were both totally horrified that I didn't have any...!)  We also resupplied all the natural colas...yum!

For all of you carnivores out there, we have meat.  Lots and lots of meat.  Nice grilling rib steaks, as well as pork and beef hotdogs and hamburgers, from Morning Fog Farm in Berne.  Plenty of Freebird chicken, breasts and boneless thighs.  (Chris, from Albert's Organics, even insists he's got ground lamb for lambburgers - it didn't really appeal to me, frankly, but if you find the idea thrilling, give me a ring, and I'll order you some for next week.)

We now have 4 specialty sandwiches - the Medusa Cobb, Jason's Roast Beef, the Mandy and the Medusa Mozz.  (Will have to figure out how to upload our whole menu somewhere here!)  And, coming this week, we'll have an American Club, with Boar's Head's all-natural, preservative free turkey and ham.  We're thinking of switching the pasta salad to the Wild Thymes Parmesean Walnut vinegrette instead, too - you come in and taste.

And, hey, our look continues to evolve - Susan Caumont, from Cocoa Beach Gallery - - has hung paintings for us.  They are all reasonably priced and look fantastic!  (I'll post some pics soon!) It has made our wifi cove look so much more charming!

Soon, we'll be on Twitter (OMG!), and my kids and I have plastered most of Oak Hill, Greenville, Rensselaerville and Berne with lawn signs!  It has been an achingly slow week, but we have high hopes for the weekend and the coming week!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Friday delivery!

So we have coconut water arriving.  No kidding.  Frankly, it doesn't sound like my taste, but Chris, from Albert's Organics, claims it is THE NEXT BIG THING, and he's in the know about this sort of stuff.  Delicious and really good for you. Plus some cool water I just discovered called Waaa-TAH! 

In other news - there's more falafel coming - I can't believe we sold out of it!  And in response to the Hunan Dumplings revolution, I have two cases of those and Spinach Artichoke Noodles arrving Friday, too.  Plus a new something from MacroVegetarian.

Fresh produce lovers - we are looking at a great week - I have peaches, blueberries and strawberries arriving, all at a great price.  We are seriously thinking about lemons for next week - we have to get a juicer first.  Lots of oranges, apples and avocados in stock, with celery, carrots and cukes arriving tomorrow.  Bob Kropp and Stephen Kenney have been working hard keeping us stocked with beans, cauliflower, broccoli and lettuces.  A smorgasbord of fresh stuff!  (Stuffed into a too-small cooler, in some cases!  Sorry!)

We have some fantastic new sandwiches coming up for the weekend, too - mozzarella, with sliced tomato, roasted red peppers and black olives with a drizzle of olive oil.  It would work as a lovely salad, as well, for my gluten-free friends.

Salads, galore, folks - can't seem to keep them in stock on the deli.  I think we still have Beans, Beans, Bean salad and Classic New England Potato, all with organic ingredients.  More pasta salad as soon as I get my Wild Thymes delivery - the Tuscan tomato basil vinegrette is amazing on this salad!  I really want to offer chicken and tuna salads, too, but UNFI's been out of stock of the chicken so far.  Fingers crossed for next week.

Last, but most deliciously - we have blueberry pie coming on Saturday morning!  Tiffany and I have been offering Julie's organic vanilla ice cream on top - you've gotta try some!

Stay cool - hopefully we'll have ice - and iced coffee in another day or so!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

What a weekend!

Wow - what a holiday!  So great to see so many of you!

Just a few reminders...  I am placing a UNFI order this week - let me know by Wednesday if you have any case orders.  Would probably be willing to split some organic soda cases...

We also have a few new sandwiches coming up - the Medusa Cobb has taken on a life of it's own!  Soon, we'd like to offer organic chicken and tuna salads, either tossed onto a salad (Angela-style!) or on a hard roll.  Signature sandwiches seem to work better than relying on me to come up with a sandwich of the week, so I think that's the path we're going to take.

We have fresh Beans, Beans, Bean Salad this morning, and we're making fresh pasta and potato salads later today.

We have pie - strawberry rhubarb and apple - and we're offering them with a scoop or two of Julie's organic ice cream.  Tasty!  If we move these quick enough, we're considering raspberry and blueberry for the upcoming weekend.

We (read: April) is anxious to move onto to a few other plans we've been cooking up.  By this fall, we are hoping to offer a few lines of quality toys, at affordable prices.  We have several brands in mind - the front of the store needs some alterations first.  But stay tuned - this promises to be exciting!

Along the same lines - several of us have an irrepressible interest in the community arts.  As soon as we have accrued enough capital, we are planning a renovation of the building behind the Store, to offer both open space for the community, as well as workshops.  The idea is pretty vague right now, and such a space will share quarters with several other projects planned back there.  But I thought I'd give fellow travelers a nudge - if you are also passionate about community, and about learning, drop in - I'd love to hear what you think!

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Wednesday orders - Friday delivery!

Ordering deadlines are arriving soon, so drop in and see me!  I have the UNFI books on one of our front tables to browse through, plus I'd be happy to help decipher them.  I'm usually in between 11/12 and 7 pm.

Just a taste of the new stuff arriving on Friday - we'll have tofu and hummus and falafel, so if you've been bemoaning the lack of local availability of these vegetarian specialties, drop by this weekend.  We're also hoping to have in a variety of new seasonal products, from bug sprays to water bottles to all natural marshmallows.  For you snackers, there are new chip varieties coming in, from Dirty Chips as well as the Kettle brand.  I also found some really reasonably priced olive oil by Colavita.  And to fill a gap in our whole foods summer line - we'll have Woodstock Farms pickles!

I have been terrifying my produce vendors lately - and they have responding by filling our coolers almost daily - Bob Kropp's got beans, lettuces, potatoes and beets.  One of our postmasters - Laurie Brown - has also been supplying us with eggs and lettuces.  We are out of tomatoes, but they'll be in again on Friday.  There have been a lot of requests for strawberries - so if there are any growers out there, drop in!

There's a new Wild Thymes delivery coming in this week, too - just in time for summer, they are offering a new line of barbecue sauces!

I am planning to have Morning Fog meats in our freezer by Friday as well.  These are literally the only hotdogs my family eats - home raised on local grasses and grains, locally processed and incredibly delicious.  They also have a wide selection of premium cuts as well.

I'd like to order some pies this week, too - so send in your requests - Charlene needs a few days lead time!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Mel's Cuisine, summer veggies and a new freezer!

Happy summer, folks!  We have everything you might need for a day at the Lake (including Lake Myosotis beach passes to borrow!) or the creek!  Briquettes, graham crackers, marshmallows, chocolate (have to recommend the new Dagoba chocolate we got in - it has chili peppers in it!), hotdogs, rolls, condiments, beverages and amazing local vegatables.

Speaking of which...  We've got White Knuckle Farm produce in, as well as Bob Kropp's crop!  Still getting lovely lettuces, though the romaine is about done, some local broccoli (supplemented by organic broccoli from Albert's), beets and new potatoes.  I've got lots of organic avocados, apples and oranges, as well as red onions and potatoes, all at a great price.  Bob tells me that we'll be getting beans in very soon, so stay tuned!

We have a UNFI order coming in next week - lots of good stuff!  I am taking case and/or bulk orders till Wednesday.  We'll be getting in more Free Bird organic chicken breasts, which were incredibly tasty, as well as some new prepared food.  We're going to be trying Mel's Gourmet Cuisine - Caribbean Chicken with rice (gluten-free!) as well as a few others.  Friday, the 2nd, we'll also have MacroVegetarian back in stock, too - Hunan and Shanghai Dumplings, Spinach noodle, and some sushi rolls!

One last reminder - we have a lot of frozen breads that we'll be moving to our new three door freezer over the next few days.  For gluten-free folks - I still have Mrs Turner's gluten-free bread and Chocoroons, as well as some Kinnikinick breads.  I also have room to display Julie's ice cream now - we have a ton of varieties - as well as some frozen Cowboy and Cowgirl cookies.  (Won't describe them - they are adorable and deeply delicious!)  The fantastic guys from Gillette Creamery have also restocked us on everything - even the all-important DIBS, so stop in over this hot weekend!

And - help!, if you are a soy milk lover - I was asked to order a case of Silk chocolate soy milk, but it's not moving - and I need space in the cooler for other things.

We are thinking of asking if we can join the Greenville Farmer's Market - so April and the kids might be over there on Saturday!  Otherwise, stop in for a sandwich - we have a huge fresh delivery of Boar's Head, as well as some organic cheddar we've been trying out.  And stay tuned for a new lunch menu!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Sandwich update

We're easing our way into more complicated sandwiches!

We're starting some hot breakfast options with two breakfast sandwiches - the traditional egg and cheese on a hard roll with bacon - and a second that April's unofficially calling "the Medusa".  Its two eggs with cheese, and optional bacon, on a hard roll with a slight smear of Wild Thymes Thai Garlic dipping sauce.  Delicious folks, just enough of a zap to get you moving without making you run for a drink.

We're also getting a fax sheet together, with a progression calendar.  We'll take delivery orders for subs and hard roll sandwiches for lunch - order by 11, we'll deliver to surrounding regions as we get requests.  For now it is just the regular full or half sub or hard roll sandwich, but we're hoping to offer tossed salads (with all organic ingredients) and other prepared foods, as well as hot subs, in the coming months.  And don't forget the amazing Hunan and Shanghai dumplings (which my family has been living on!) and the spinach noodles, which is like a tastier and slightly spicier version of traditional sesame noodles.  Each are $4.80 each, and there's enough to share.

I wish I had some way of creating an anonymous sign up sheet online, but in the meantime, feel free to email me ( your fax number, or just call the store at 518 239 6980.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Calling all Bicyclists!

 We've mapped some rides - you can't miss the Hilltowns, if you're a rider with a passion for hills, scenic locales and charming rural villages - and stop by the store for a fantastic deli sandwich and a huge selection of beverages.

View our Training Group

Monday, June 7, 2010

What's new and what's coming!

We are getting better at this, folks!  No problems with the staples, as of this morning - we have milk (both Byrne and Meadowbrook), bread (some, Freihofer will be in early this week) and lots of eggs (thanks to both Laurie, one of our amazing Medusa postmasters, and to Steve Kinney at White Knuckle Farm).

Thanks to Gillette, we also have lots of ice cream, though it looks like the weather will be a bit cooler this week!  Just a reminder - even though the freezer is still a disaster (new 3 door freezer arriving next week, hopefully!) - we have new organic freeze pops and lots of all-natural ice cream.

We had a fresh supple of produce on Friday as well, with table carrots and cucumbers, and a new batch of avocados.  And lots of local lettuce from Kropp's Cropps and White Knuckle Farm, rhubarb from Sheepy Valley Farm, strawberries from Morning Fog Farm (by Wednesday), and baby garlic from Dr. Eldridge, in Rensselaerville.  We also have fair trade bananas, Valenci oranges, organic tomatoes (that actually taste like tomatoes!), onions, potatoes and garlic.

On the grocery, we have too many new products to mention, but a few worth noting specifically include Lundberg's rice chips - we have honey dijon and cheese varieties and they are gluten free and taste amazing - and we have a huge batch of natural charcoal briquettes, so for those of you planning to BBQ at Lake Myosotis (which opens on Saturday!!), drop in for a bag.

Lastly, the deli is fully stocked, and waiting for your sandwich orders!  We are planning (still!) some specialty sandwiches and, soon, a few salads as well.  We are also planning to have some samples from Wild Thymes and new cheeses available Thursday - Saturday this week.

Drop in - and spread the word!!

Monday, May 31, 2010

Post-Memorial Day re-stocking!

What a weekend!  How amazing to greet so many new faces!

We ran out of tons of things - we are still trying to get a handle on what folks want a lot of, so be patient with us!  We should have milk again by Wednesday - both Meadowbrook and from Byrne Dairy, including chocolate milk.  We'll also be getting organic milk, cottage cheese, sour cream and some other things from Byrne.

We also ran out of bread!!  So sorry - we have left messages with the Freihofer guy, and hopefully he'll be in ASAP.  Most wonderfully, we are also scheduled to receive a delivery of gluten-free bread from Westerlo's Mrs. Turner's Bakery.  She comes highly recommended, and we are really looking forward to meeting her!

Ice cream is also running low, and hopefully Gillette will be in early in the week to restock - they have fantastic ice cream at really reasonable prices.

Our deli has been fantastically successful - so we are really anxious to see the Boar's Head truck this week.  We are really looking forward to making out own pasta and potato salads, though.  This week we'll (hopefully) have a few specialty sandwiches available to grab and go - we have some fresh mozzarella cheese in, as well as roasted red pepper hummus.

We have a lot of Bob Cropp's lettuces - which we will be retailing as well as using in the deli - they are fantastic.  We also have red onions, tomatoes, broccoli, cremini mushrooms and some avocados in stock, as well as amazing Valencia oranges.  And!! Don't forget that we have portabella mushrooms in as well, if you plan on grilling.

Saturday is MedusaFest and we are planning some grand opening specials - we can't wait to see you!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Correction: We have ice cream now!!

The amazing guys from Gillette Creamery delivered today!  So we have a nice selection of Edy's, Haagan Daaz and Nestle products, in addition to our *very* reasonably priced (and tasty!) Julie's organic ice cream.

If you are barbecuing for the holiday, keep in mind that we have Free Bird organic drumsticks, as well as thighs available in our frozen foods section - as well as a nice variety of marinades and sauces.  We'll have some fresh produce in tomorrow, and I'll be picking more strawberries on Saturday morning.  Irene from Sheepy Hollow Farm, is also planning to bring us in some rhubarb, so for those of you with a craving for strawberry rhubarb pie, come on in!

Jason's had some amazing deli sandwich specials available, too - call for the special of the day - we aren't quite organized enough to start posting ahead of time yet.  Soon...  We're getting more Hunan Dumplings in on Friday, and some other deli salads, too. I'm also trying to get some good quality hummus for a special deli sandwich - known unofficially as "the Mandy" (as in Mulholland Kosich!), it'll contain hummus, muenster cheese and honey mustard dressing, with several veggies.

More to come, folks!  Visit often and stay tuned!

Monday, May 24, 2010

More ice cream!

We'll have ice cream by Friday!  Gillette Creamery is bringing us ice cream by Nestle, Edy's and Haagan Daaz.  Maybe some frozen entrees, too.  They were awesome guys - really familiar with our area and the Store.

And (thank god!) Friehofer's has finally returned phone calls, so we'll have bread available by the end of the week.  And Byrne Dairy was out, too, so if you wanted an alternative to Meadowbrook and don't want to fork over the big bucks for organic milk, we'll have something to offer you.

Please keep spreading the word - we're open, including the deli and the gas pumps!  We're also planning to start a lunch delivery program for businesses in the Cairo, Durham and Greenville area (to start with).  We'll have a weekly menu of subs and sandwiches (and soups, coming this fall) with a few specials and vegetarian options.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

End of the week update

What an amazing week!  Thanks to everyone for your support!

We have a ton of new products in for you to check out.  I have organic chicken: FreeBird from Pennsylvania, for a greatprice - we have thighs and drumsticks, frozen.

We have new produce in - this time I got some loose leaf - Olivia's brand of baby spinach and spring mix.  We also have cremini mushrooms, with portabellas coming in for the holiday weekend. Lots of fresh broccoli, peppers and carrots.  Have a lot of ripe avocados, too.

I saw mention of frozen pizza on Facebook and wanted to point out that we have a lot of frozen entrees, including pizza.  All reasonably priced, and organic.  Have a selection of everything from burritos to fish sticks and chicken patties to lasagna and eggplant parm.  We also have Julie's organic ice cream, which is awesome, and I plan to order some Ben and Jerry's for next week.  And we have Gillette Creamery coming out next week!

Also, some news on dairy - we have figured out a plan to get Meadowbrook milk here, for those of you who asked.  And we'll be supplementing with organic cheeses as well as products from Byrne dairy.

I'll post word when we here about the status of our liquor license, but it's probably going to be a while for that.  But credit cards are now accepted, and you can pump gas!!!

Come in to see us soon!

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Second day update!

Hey all -

Thanks for all the well wishes!  (Please, oh please, don't make me post all of this on Facebook! One online system is about all I can keep up with - so I'll drop in there and let you know when we have updates, and you can follow the link here.)

All is going really well - one correction: we won't have gas till a bit later in the week.  (Have to get Weights and Measures out first. But the pumps are ready as soon as we get approval.)

To answer a few questions and respond to some requests: we do have a lot of gluten-free products. We also have a nice selection of organic produce - lettuce, green peppers, broccoli, avocado, onions, garlic, yams and potatoes, oranges, apples, bananas and tomatoes.  We also have a great line of fresh nuts, from mixed to pistachios, walnuts and almonds, salted and non-salted.

I would love to offer some more along the lines of prepared foods for the deli as well.  The natural foods distributor can offer us some fantastic sesame noodles and Hunan dumplings - a lot of really tasty vegetarian dishes, and, come the fall, they can ship us Moosewood soups.  Boar's Head also offers a nice line of prepared salads - potato and pasta.

I am also seeking local vendors for eggs and chicken.  If you know anyone, please let me know, or ask them to drop by.

I am also willing to order organic products by the case for interested folks - just drop in and see me.

Again, thanks a ton for everyone's good wishes!!  Can't wait to see you in Medusa!

Monday, May 17, 2010

We're open!

We're open!!  

We're officially open for business!  We've got natural and whole foods, including produce, a fully stocked deli, with Boar's Head meats, cheeses and salads.  Plus a full line of convenience store products, like snacks and drinks.  We've got cigarettes and, starting tomorrow, we've got gas, too!

We'll be getting beer and wine soon, as well as the lottery.  We're also planning for more baked and prepared foods, a few lines of toys and books, and few other surprises.

So come on in!!  We can't wait to see everyone!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Can you believe how long this takes??

Our financing is in place.

Due to a few unanticipated tangles, we should close on the property this week!  Finally!  Thanks to everyone for their patience!

Some much needed repairs will be taking place through the end of February.  Design and upgrades will begin by the second week in March.  We are still planning a mid-Spring opening - keep your fingers crossed. 

Please feel free to stop in!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Heading towards closing!

Nearly everything is in place - we are hoping to close by the end of this month. We'll be wading through legal designations and permitting processes, as well dealing with design and layout issues over the next two months, but are planning for a mid-Spring opening date.

We would love to hear from the community. If you have ideas about what sorts of products you'd like to see, information about vendors, or other helpful advice, feel free to contact us!