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Just as a hearty assortment of restaurants that deliver is an important neighborhood amenity for apartment hunters to consider, the bodega/corner deli situation can also impact your day-to-day quality of life, especially if you're farther than a couple of blocks from a grocery or drug store or one of those fancy new hybrid Duane Reades.
So what makes a good bodega? Funny you should ask.
Over on CurbedNY, Bodega Week is unfolding, a fascinating Curbed-Eater-Racked collaboration featuring bodega maps and facts, a reader-voted contest for best bodega, architects’ futuristic visions for bodegas and more. We read with interest the criteria mentioned by readers in a couple of early nominations for best bodega:
- Fast delivery
- Will spot you a couple bucks if you come up short
- No weevils in cereal; fruit/vegetables not spoiled
- Great Ben & Jerry's selection
To which we would add, a great bodega will also:
- Pretend not to notice your dog
- Spy on your teenage children (food choices, friends, etc)
- Card said teenagers when they try to buy beer/cigarettes
- Know you by name or at least face
- Perpetually have guacamole-ready avocados on hand
- Charge less than $8 for a box of Cheerios and $6 for Wheat Thins
- Serve fresh coffee without that bottom-of-the-pot burnt flavor
- Save you a Sunday Times
- Accept packages if you live in a non-doorman building
- Sell stamps
- Have stroller-sized aisles
- Carry baby necessities like diapers, formula, even organic whole milk, plus Pedialyte and Children's Tylenol for when your tyke gets sick in the middle of the night (see above)
- Wrap flowers in paper that doesn't look like it came from the bodega, for gifting purposes
How about you? What's on your bodega wish list? Comment below.