The new Dierbergs in Des Peres has a bowling alley, a shoe-repair service, a shooting range, a juggling academy, a 24-hour burlesque show near the meat department, a puppy farm, and complimentary blood-pressure screenings.
Just kidding — mostly.
But the new flagship Dierbergs is huge, huge, huge, with so many amenities it’s worth the trip just to gawk at how tomorrow’s grocery store is looking more and more like Disneyland.
Check out what this freshly opened mega-grocery has to offer:
1. Everyone is hypnotically fascinated by the “Cartolator,” an escalator for shopping carts. It allows shoppers to descend easily to the underground parking area (which is super-nice on rainy or icy days) without having to hump their boodle, if you will.
2. Many of the departments here are the biggest and most diverse of any Dierbergs — the cheese, meat, produce, seafood, and European-style pastry areas are all expanded and stuffed with more obscurities than usual.
3. The sandwich cafe offers pizzetta, paninis, dips, subs, BBQ, and salads to eat in the store or take home. Using various methods, the seafood counter will now cook anything you buy while you wait. It has never been easier to fool dinner guests into thinking that you know how to cook.
4. This Dierbergs has a liquor license, and you can drink while you shop. Two separate wine bars use controlled-pour machines to dispense glasses of 28 different bottles daily — and the carts have wine-glass holders. It ain’t just Muzak that makes you linger and buy more than you intended at this grocery store — it’s the happy juice. The “Party Center” is expanded, too, with large floor displays of recommended wines in the “Treasure Bin,” a la an actual wine shop.
5. Regularly scheduled events with registered dietitians and nutritionists in comfortable surroundings (above left) are a really good idea. The American grocery store has come a long way, but it’s gone backwards, too. There’s no reason for so many of the staple items to be made from laboratory-borne corn derivatives. Knowledgeable people who can counsel shoppers on our eating habits are appreciated.
6. The Culinary Events Center is the flagship teaching kitchen of the Dierbergs empire. It is so swank, it doubles as a TV production studio for the “Everybody Cooks” program the store produces.
7. “The Mezz” as in mezzanine level, is a cafe and wine bar with a bank of high-def TVs, free wifi, live music on weekends (5:30-8:30 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays), and seating for more than 100.
8. Every Saturday morn from 7 to 11 a.m. (starting Aug. 11), Chris Cakes invades The Mezz to offer an all-you-care-to-eat “pancake teppanyaki,” where cooks flip pancakes high into the air and across the room onto the plates of diners. The Kansas City-based company has its own custom eight-foot griddle on wheels, and its own fascinating machine for pouring out pancake batter in different colors and shapes. Fun, fun, fun.
Article by BYRON KERMAN
Dierbergs Market at Des Peres
1080 Lindemann (Manchester Rd. 1 mile E of I-270)