Grocery wars

Trader Joe's Houston takeover continues: Another new store opens — and it's not cramped

Trader Joe's Houston takeover continues: Another new store opens — and it's not cramped

Trader Joe's_Voss and San Felipe_Memorial_grocery store
Photo by Whitney Radley

Didn't find what you needed at Kroger, Randalls, Whole Foods Market or the Valero Corner Store, or the H-E-B or Rice Epicurean just down the road? Fear not, Memorial-area residents: A Trader Joe's outpost has arrived at 1440 S. Voss to fulfill your grocery needs. 

After a packed grand opening last week, shoppers maneuvered the spacious new store with ease on Monday, filling buggies with the cheekily-packaged vittles for which the California-based chain is known. Employees wore their trademark smiles and Hawaiian garb.

 It feels significantly more spacious — no crowded beer and wine corner, no cramped aisles, no awkward checkout lines.  

"It was crazy this weekend," Joshua Hammond, store manager — or "captain" — of the newest Houston store, said. I had just overheard him patiently explain to an elderly customer the benefits of stocking just one type of ketchup on the shelf rather than a dozen different name brands. 

The store on S. Voss is the third to open in the Houston area over the past year, following frenzied receptions in The Woodlands and in the former Alabama Theater. Though the newest is smaller in footprint than the latter (at 14,000 square feet compared to 14,500 square feet) it feels significantly more spacious — no crowded beer and wine corner, no cramped aisles, no awkward checkout lines.

Trader Joe's aims to be "your neighborhood grocery store." Do you think that area residents will take to it?