Immediately on the heels of the opening the new multi-cultural supermarket, Al Premium in Toronto’s Scarborough borough, another Asian supermarket opened exactly a month later just nine kilometres away, also in Scarborough.
Bestco Fresh Foodmart opened to massive crowds on Jan. 10 and at around 50,000 sq. ft. the new store is the second, and the largest Bestco in the Greater Toronto Area.
The first one is located in Etobicoke. Like Al Premium Bestco advertises itself as trying to appeal to Toronto’s diverse ethnic backgrounds, but the enormous crowd of shoppers on opening day, and nearly as large a crowd five days later, was almost mostly Asian. So, too, is the staff predominantly Asian.
In many ways Bestco is a typical Asian supermarket with all the fresh fruit and vegetables Chinese prefer, and many packaged foods from China, but with some product (mostly shrimp) from Thailand, and a Japanese-style sushi bar with terrific looking sushi on display for sale.
The mandatory fresh prepared hot foods counter (HMR) is expansive featuring Chinese dishes, and there is a eat-in area near the front of the store.
The store features a small organic foods section, and small (by Asian store standards) fresh seafood area and an in-store bakery.
Product selection runs the gamut from pork stomach tips and pipa duck, to McCain frozen pizzas.
There were four coffin freezers that contained nothing but frozen shrimp from several suppliers.
While Bestco may aim to be multi-cultural but clearly its clientele is Asian. And the parking lot has been full every day since opening.
Here’s a tour of Bestco: