By GARY FONVILLE
Forgotten NY correspondent
If you have lived in NYC for a long time, you may have witnessed the disappearance of many of your favorite supermarket chains. Chains that come to my mind were once ubiquitous in NYC. The list includes Grand Union, Waldbaums, Daitch Shopwell, Safeway, A&P and Pathmark.
Almost every neighborhood in the city had one. Since A&P was a national chain, they even had two in my hometown of New Bern, NC.
But what I most remember was the strong aroma coffee beans being ground in the store’s coffee grinder that was almost always up front near the cashiers.
A&P may be gone, but there are many traces left around the city. Most of its former locations never stopped being supermarkets, they just took down the A&P sign down and put up the new store’s name.
I only have a few examples here, but I’m confident there are many around New York City.
Note: A&P, the Great Atlantic & Pacific Tea Company, went out of business in 2015 after 153 years. A concise history of the food distributor can be found here.
In the title card: Some former A&P locations are easily recognizable even today. If you see that peak on its roofline, BINGO. This former A&P was located on the NE corner of Throop & Gates Avenues in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn.
A hardware store now occupies the long gone A&P here on Fulton Street, between Nostrand and New York Avenues, north side.
This old sign oversees the parking lot at the former A&P at east side of Nostrand Avebue and Empire Boulevard, Crown Heights, Brooklyn.
Just think, grocery shoppers used to occupy the aisles in this building on West 125th Street, between Old Broadway and Amsterdam Ave, Harlem.
Pitkin Avenue, between New Jersey Avenue and Vermont Street is now the home of C-Town.
My local A&P in Bay Ridge was at 4th Avenue and Senator Street. The front, facing 4th Avenue, has been altered but in the parking lot, you can still see a telltale peaked pediment. –ed.
Gary Fonville, a former MTA bus operator, has seen more of the city than I could ever hope to. –ed.