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Corrado's Village in Clifton


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#1 Rail Paul

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Posted 02 June 2008 - 11:25 PM

I had business in Paramus this afternoon, so I made a point to stop by this complex of buildings in Clifton, very near the Paterson Farmer's Market.

Every time I go there, I'm amazed by the sheer range of the place. It's about three square blocks of buildings, with active wholesale and retail grocery, meat, garden center, wine and beer making shop, and a small wine and beer store.

The Wholesale building is open to the public, and features the usual 50 pound bags of flour (White Lily in two grades, several millings of semolina, Quincy and Winona whole wheat, Pillsbury, Corrado's own, ConAgra and other white breads), several 25# bags with Arabic descriptions. I didn't notice any 5 pound bags of yeast, but I'm sure there were some.

You could easily outfit a full pizzeria with pizza screens, rising bowls and tops, several sizes of peels, ten pound blocks of mozz, gallon cans of tomato sauce, six oz bags of every imaginable spice, dozens of olives, bags and bats of pepperoni, etc. Tubes of ground beef, 10# pieces of meat. There 7-8 delivery trucks outside, and an order was being prepared with fresh spinach, onions, garlic, celery, anise, etc

The Wine and Beer making place is alongside. Flats of fresh Chilean grapes (Malbec, and many others), must, yeast, sugars, malts, hops, various testing equipment like thermometers, corks and corking tools, bottles.

The Garden Center is alongside. I didn't go in, but the front was filled with seedlings, flowers.

The Family Affair supermarket is cross the street. Huge. Super-center huge. Probably 200 feet of produce fridge space on two sides of an aisle. All of the usual stuff, and lots of unusual stuff, like 3 different kinds of plantains. Many items were tri-labeled (English, Spanish, Arabic). Many people wore headscarves, keffiyahs, while others wore shirts with Brazilian flags, and indications of various soccer teams.

The pasta, beans, and nuts aisle is similarly long, and is divided into separate Italian (Cecco and Bertoni brands, as well as several local makers), Syrian / Lebanese (lots of beans and grains on a Lebanese brand), and South American (a range of Goya beans, grains, etc). Many different bean spreads, hummus, nuts. I didn't notice many people who had obvious identity buying outside their group (didn't see any women in head wrappings buying Italian spreads, or Spanish speaking women buying stuff in the Lebanese section). The selection of olive oils was almost overwhelming. Different Syrian (3 or 4 choices), Lebanese, Italian, Turkish, Tunisian (I think), Spanish, oils.

Lots of frozen foods in various labels. Many, many breads. I noticed Portuguese, Italian, Syrian labels from local bakers.

I can understand how easy it is for this place to become a madhouse ahead of a major feast or on a weekend. The narrow aisles are crowded with standing displays, not everyone expresses the courtesy necessary in a crowded situation, there was more pushing than I would have anticipated as the place wasn't crowded at all.

Definitely a place to revisit and examine in greater detail. I didn't take notes.

The wine and beer place is adjacent. Lots of Slovenian, some Macedonian, some French labels with which I was unfamiliar, some Gallo and Constellation products. I bought a few bottles of Macedonian wines to try out.


Corrado's Market

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman


#2 ghostrider

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Posted 03 June 2008 - 12:12 AM

Excellent writeup! It's a wild place for sure.

I was there only once, got some corn that wound up tasting moldy, which hasn't moved me to return. Got some pretty good fish from their fish counter at the same time, but overall the place is too much of an ordeal, & a tad too far, to be worth the effort for me.
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#3 Rail Paul

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Posted 03 December 2009 - 09:23 PM

I stopped by the Corrado wholesale restaurant supply store, and the adjacent family market supermarket today. I remain in awe with the volume of business they do, and the breadth of stuff they offer.

The wholesale market is designed for restaurant supplies, with cases of this, 50# bags of that, etc. I was looking for yeast, so I got a 2# vacpak for $7.50. Flour prices were amazing, in bulk. 50# bags of whole wheat or rye flour for $19, 50# bags of bread flour for $18, regular flour for $15. Bags of corn meal, semolina, etc were in the $23 - $25 range. Pastry flour was $13.99, which I found amazing, since a 2# bag of the stuff is $5. That could have been a special deal, or limited sale. Name brand stuff, like General Mills, Pillsbury, Conagra, etc. Olive oil in L, 4L, and larger containers. Their house brand EVOO was $6.99 for a L. Lots and lots of beans, dried beans in 5# to 20# sacks, representing India, Lebanon, Colombia, and much of Central and South America.

The fridge section had an enormous amount of fruits and vegetables, with many ctitrus items from south Florida, Peru, Chile. Coriander ($4.99 for a case of bunches), parsley, chayote, melons of many kinds, pineapples, many different kinds of grapes. Tilapia was $5.99, cod was $7.99, they had salmon as well. Lots of 10# vacpaks of cold cuts, proscuitto, pre-cut pepperoni, grated cheese. 48oz cans of college inn chicken stock ($5.99), eggs in 30 dozen crates, priced that way. Butter in one pound ($1.99) and ten pound bars ($12.99). Boxes of lettuce, celery, tomatoes, carrots, many different kinds of produce

Three registers going, people with roller table carts sliding out orders that looked like they were on the way to pizzerias, delis, restaurants, etc

The market is across the street. Huge place, jammed, as always, and representative of the diversity in the area. Without question the largest produce aisle I've ever seen, anywhere. I think it's grown since my last visit, and it's easily double the size of the Wayne store's produce section. There's more produce for sale outside. Far more melons than the wholesale place had. Many different varieties of garlic, I bought a few to try them out.

Overall, the prices for the 5# baking stuff were comparable to ShopRite, cheaper than whole foods. Their packaged yeast was $1.39 for 2 oz, so my 2# for $7 looks like a better price. There's a wide selection of Halal meat, and many different kinds of bread. J&J bakery, Calandra, Banas, and Krystyna bakery from Garfield. The last notes on the table of contents that it uses OVENBUSTER FLOUR (sic) from the heart of the wheat. It also reports the use of margarine.

The cheese island is large, maybe 20 by 20, with dozens of different cheeses. Some were prepacked, while others would be sliced to order. I didn't think this was as impressive as Wayne's island. Some of the prepacks simply had "sliced cheese" and a unit price, making it more difficult to recall what's what. There was an Argentine made Romano cheese for $4.99, I wonder how long it will take the EU to go after them?

Exceptional dried and canned beans aisle, enough to make Rancho Gordo weep. Lebanese and Syrian beans, Indian beans in many varieties, though the sizes capped out at 10#, from what I could tell. The larger sacks were across the street.

Corrado's always has a wide selection of dried spices. Clifton has probably 60 feet of shelf space for their own label spices, in 2 oz to 10 oz jar sizes. Exceptionally cheap. 10 oz of granulated garlic for $1.99, 6 oz of caraway for $1.59, 5.75 oz of cumin for $1.49, and many house brands of less common spices.

Nice place. Checkout was easy and efficient, with 10 or so registers open, several baggers, etc. Even big orders slid through easily. There were two checkers wearing head scarves, which I thought was a respectful and thoughtful touch

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman


#4 marauder

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Posted 03 December 2009 - 10:49 PM

I'm in there weekly. However, you have to be careful with the produce. Lots of it is banged up or just plain spoiled. There is no disputing the value though. The week before Thanksgiving they had gallons of Red Jacket Orchard cider for 2.99. Red Jacket is a great artisan producer from upstate NY. The same gallon is usually 6.99 at Whole Foods.

#5 double 0

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Posted 04 December 2009 - 02:05 AM

You also have to be careful with expiration dates, they tend to keep stuff around too long. I have to admit they've done a nice job on their renovation.

#6 Rail Paul

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Posted 04 December 2009 - 02:42 AM

QUOTE(double 0 @ Dec 3 2009, 09:05 PM) View Post
You also have to be careful with expiration dates, they tend to keep stuff around too long. I have to admit they've done a nice job on their renovation.


Thanks for reminding me about the renovations. I meant to say something about them. The whole place was much brighter, with new flooring, displays, etc. The bakery area, meat service cases, coffee bar were much more pleasant than before.

And, thanks to each of you for the advice on produce / expirations.


The retail stores south along Main Avenue, past the GSP, also looked to be significantly more Arab-influenced than I recall from my last visit. A new (to me, at least) bakery, several restaurants, and very few empty storefronts. Looks like a thriving business area now, much like the area north of the GSP on Main Avenue, and east on Crooks Avenue. Might be time for another walking tour, I love to do those things.

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman


#7 marauder

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Posted 04 December 2009 - 03:15 AM

There are lots of interesting stores in that stretch. Nouri is still the best of the bunch, but some of the other places are pretty good. Down Crooks Ave, by the entrance to the Paterson Farmers Market, is a Middle Eastern store that has great spices and other grocery items. I will get the name of the store and update this post.

#8 menton1

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 05:02 PM

The main issue I have with Corrado's is the inferior (albeit cheap) produce and the dusty cans on the shelves that expired a couple of years ago. It gets a "just OK" in my review.

#9 OTB

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Posted 06 December 2009 - 05:38 PM

QUOTE(marauder @ Dec 3 2009, 10:15 PM) View Post
There are lots of interesting stores in that stretch. Nouri is still the best of the bunch, but some of the other places are pretty good. Down Crooks Ave, by the entrance to the Paterson Farmers Market, is a Middle Eastern store that has great spices and other grocery items. I will get the name of the store and update this post.


Nouri is good, as is Fattal's.

http://offthebroiler...fattals-bakery/
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#10 menton1

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Posted 14 December 2009 - 07:32 PM

One of the nice parts of visiting the complex is the Papaya King place. Nice not to have to go to the city to get a great grilled dog. (Rare in NJ).

Also of note is the new Pet Food section. This place has a tremendous variety of all the Premium foods, and their pricing is about 15% lower than at the other Pet food outlets. Definitely worth a trip to stock up on pet food!

#11 Rail Paul

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Posted 12 March 2010 - 02:54 PM

Nice write up by Amy Kuperinsky on La'Ziza, 341 Crooks Avenue. That's about four blocks down Crooks Ave from the Corrado's warehouse, past the railroad tracks.

BYO, prices between $12 and $20

QUOTE
Chef Gladys Chamoun brings her 20 years of experience in Lebanese cuisine to La'Ziza's kitchen, where all meat, including chicken, beef and lamb, is certified halal. The menu is largely traditional. Cold appetizers include hummus, baba ghanouj, labneh (yogurt cheese) with toasted pita chips, and stuffed grape leaves. Hot appetizers include sambusic (meat turnovers), spinach pies and sautéed lamb liver, as well as soujuk and cheese arayes, a grilled pita stuffed with spicy sausage and cheese — "basically a cheese and pepperoni sandwich, Lebanese style," Nabhan says.

Tabbouleh, a traditional salad, is prepared with cracked wheat, parsley, onions, tomato, lemon juice and olive oil. Other sandwich-style items are falafel and shish tawook, a chicken kebab. Entrées include kufta and filet mignon kebabs, and La'Ziza's chef's platter, with grilled lamb chops, kufta, shish, filet mignon, a chicken kebab and grilled vegetables. Seafood includes fried whiting and grilled striped sea bass, salmon and shrimp. Other perhaps more exotic dishes include grilled quail and sautéed frog legs.




La'Ziza

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman


#12 marauder

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Posted 13 March 2010 - 11:45 PM

La'Ziza is very good. Nabhan is a friend, so I'd like to see him do well. This is his first go around in the restaurant business.

#13 Rail Paul

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Posted 08 June 2010 - 11:56 AM

QUOTE(OTB @ Dec 6 2009, 01:38 PM) View Post
QUOTE(marauder @ Dec 3 2009, 10:15 PM) View Post
There are lots of interesting stores in that stretch. Nouri is still the best of the bunch, but some of the other places are pretty good. Down Crooks Ave, by the entrance to the Paterson Farmers Market, is a Middle Eastern store that has great spices and other grocery items. I will get the name of the store and update this post.


Nouri is good, as is Fattal's.

http://offthebroiler...fattals-bakery/



Bill Ervolino of The Bergen Record did a very nice write up on Nouri (983 Main Street in Paterson) this week.


QUOTE
I run across all sorts of pickled items at Nouri's, including pickled turnips, which don't sound too appetizing, and pickled wild cucumbers, which do. (A jar of the latter winds up in my shopping basket and turn out to be delicious.)

I will also eventually fall in love with lebni, which I find in the dairy section. The container says "pasteurized kefir cheese" but, as Ghazal explains, "it's strained yogurt, with a taste that may remind you of sour cream."

Because of my lactose intolerance, I haven't eaten sour cream in more than 20 years. Yogurt has rarely been a problem for me, though, so I take a calculated risk. And, I'm not disappointed.

As they don't say in the Middle East: Lebni have some more!

I'm also hooked on Nouri's spices: I find an enormous bag of bay leaves for $1.99 and a 3-ounce container of oregano, also for $1.99. (In the grocery store where I regularly shop, a half-ounce of oregano costs more than twice that amount.)

Ghazal can't tell me why spices are so much cheaper in Middle Eastern markets, only that they are. Espying the most recent additions to my basket he adds, "I think you will not have to buy bay leaves for the rest of your life."

Ditto for my sumac purchase. I pick up a pound of this brick-redspice for a mere $2.99. It's often sprinkled on chicken, rice dishes, salads, hummus and even hard-boiled eggs. The complex taste (tart, sweet, salty and a bit smoky) is terrific. And a terrific bargain.

I'm less sure what to make of the labneh — balls of strained yogurt, floating in olive oil, which look, alas, like something you left in the back of your fridge for 12 years. Ghazal assures me I'll like it, and maybe he's right. But I can't stand looking at it.


Exploring a mideastern emporium

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman


#14 Rail Paul

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Posted 05 October 2010 - 08:53 PM

La'Ziza is very good. Nabhan is a friend, so I'd like to see him do well. This is his first go around in the restaurant business.


Very nice write up in the Record.

Served with pitas from Paterson's Nouri bakery, Chamoun's menu has some definite standouts. Our colleague, who is part Lebanese and a meticulous Lebanese cook, would not stop raving about the kibbeh nayeh ($10.50). This is a dish that's not for the squeamish — it's made of raw beef, finely ground to order, laced with peppers, onions and bulgur wheat, and shaped into a thick loaf. You scoop up mounds of raw meat with wedges of onion and add fresh mint leaves. Our co-worker explained that it's imperative that the meat be extremely fresh and cold, as this was.

We both loved the labneh, a thick strained yogurt seasoned with dried mint, topped with pools of olive oil, and served with toasted pita chips coated with za'atar, a Middle Eastern spice mixture with sumac ($5.50). Baba ghanouj had a smoky tinge from charcoal-grilled eggplant ($5.50). Muhallabia, a milky pudding with rosewater, was creamy and generous ($3.95).

Crisp patties of falafel had a sweet, almost cinnamony, flavor — Chamoun won't divulge her secret to this dish, only to say it doesn't actually contain cinnamon ($4.95). Strips of shawarma — marinated beef and lamb stacked on a rotating skewer and thinly sliced — were flavored similarly ($12.95). You can try plain hummus ($4.50), or have it garnished with chopped filet mignon and pine nuts ($6.95).


La Ziza

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman


#15 Rail Paul

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Posted 18 November 2010 - 10:25 PM

Melody Kettle has a nicely illustrated visit to the Corrado's in Clifton on her website. Also a video tour of the store.

She seems to be in awe of the many kinds of sausage (Brooklyn sausage, Mexican, Hungarian, etc), the vast expanse of greens, and the acres of fresh bread. I found the store's claim of "thousands of pounds of white fish" sold weekly to be amazing.


Corrado in Clifton

“Jazz musicians just get better and better as the years go by. I think chefs are the same way. You know who you are.”

 

...Jonathan Waxman