WIC Experience Review: Uptown Grocery

Uptown Grocery is the liberal idealist little brother of Buy For Less, and I love it. The fancy cheeses, yummy bakery and quality prepared foods are right up my alley. Sometimes I’ll even indulge in their in-house sushi rolls. The new one at Britton and May is never busy (when I go),  and everything is clean and organized.

Shopping for WIC items there is pleasant, but can be frustrating. Particularly for bread and cereal, they only had a few items that would count for WIC. Unlike at Target, WIC items at Uptown Grocery are not clearly labeled. My advice for WIC users at Uptown Grocery is that you be very familiar with which specific cereals, breads and pastas qualify and which do not. A huge benefit of shopping at Uptown Grocery with WIC benefits is that the produce section is plentiful and well-priced. That $8 per child in produce stretches pretty far. We were able to get lemons, limes, bananas, onions, cucumbers and some frozen veggies too!

By far the best part of WIC experience at Uptown Grocery was checkout. There was no line at all, and when I asked the cashier if he was familar using the new eWIC cards, he said he had done it a few times, but that he would be happy to get a manager to come assist just in case. The manager came over and cheerfully made small talk with my 4 year old and I while the cashier rang everything up. A third employee saw me bagging the groceries while wearing a baby and watching a chatty four year old and came to offer her assistance bagging and loading them into my cart.

One of the major issues with using WIC is that we sometimes can feel burdensome or irritating to store employees or other customers. The staff at Uptown Grocery was so kind and went out of their way to be helpful and express kind sentiments to my family.

Review: The shopping itself takes some time because WIC eligible items are not clearly labeled. Be prepared to sift through all the different options to find the specific products that qualify. The staff is extremely kind and helpful, and checkout was a positive and affirming process.

Score: Three packages of overpriced (but totally worth it) house-made sushi rolls, two of which you’ll eat in the car on the way home because you refuse to share with the toddler.



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