We’re Waitrose-less on this island, but never fear; Tom Doorley has Marks and Spencer alternatives
I suppose shopping remained much the same for several centuries; you went to the grocer, the greengrocer, the apothecary, the stationer, the butcher, the poulterer, even the chandler.
I’m just about old enough to remember – around 1967 - my mother buying loose butter from the Monument Creamery in Dublin; but the rest of our groceries were delivered once a week in the maroon van of Findlater’s. It was the twilight of an era. The way we shopped was changing and soon it was the age of the super-market.
Across the water I hear there’s an interesting trend emerging. People are doing by far the vast majority of their shopping in Aldi and Lidl (just like here) but also going to the superpremium supermarket Waitrose. Shopping behaviour has been polarised between the best value (for most of the shop) and the often breathtakingly dear (for the venison paté and pickled walnuts and the odd loaf of Poilâne).
Despite the prices, I will confess to being a fan of Waitrose – I wander around their big branch in Westfield in London every few weeks, in a kind of daze. Their wine selection is not as fabulous as it once was, it has been culled, but the quality is excellent.
We don’t have Waitrose on this island, but we do have Marks & Spencer, a place in which I think we all like to spoil ourselves occasionally. And their wine selection is pretty impressive (and refreshingly adventurous) these days. The era when their selection was dull and safe is long, long gone.
Here are a few suggestions in lieu of Waitrose...