Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Jungle Jim's International Market

Jungle Jim's International Market has been on my Bucket List for years. When I recently went to Butler County to tackle the Donut Trail, I was excited to finally be able to see what all the hype was about.
As you drive up, it looks like an amusement park combined with a warehouse store. This ain't your average grocery store for sure! Jungle Jim's slogan is "It's more than a grocery store! It's a destination!" - and they aren't exaggerating!

Some tips:

* Grab a map. The store is HUGE! So huge in fact, you should plan on spending at least two hours there. Seriously.We had to hustle because we had to get Buffy and check out of the hotel so we didn't even come close to seeing everything. A map helped us hit the must see departments and products.

*Bring coolers. If it's hot outside, you'll want one for produce and one for dairy, meat and frozen goods.

* Don't go crazy on perishable items. You'll be tempted to buy EVERYTHING but try to only buy what you can realistically use. 

* Try something new! Definitely take advantage of the huge inventory and explore some of the unique products. You never know what you might end up really enjoying once you try it!

Here are some of the highlights:

CHEESE
So.Much.Cheese. The variety is amazing! It's separated by county of origin and by style. Plus there is a ton of imported butter too. 
PRODUCE
I am an expert level produce girl and even I found things I had not only never seen before, I had never even heard of them! Not surprising since this department is 1.5 acres with 800 different kinds of produce, including almost 100 varieties of Organic Produce. The Bac Ha was something I just had to try!
WINE + BEER
The selection is crazy! Definitely look for the close-out section because you can find some major deals. They have a tasting bar and Friday is Pint Night. Prefer to home brew? Guess what - they have supplies for that too.

HOT SAUCE
Can you believe there are 1,200 kinds of hot sauce at Jungle Jim's?? If I didn't see it, I might not believe it. 
ETHNIC FOODS
Food from more than 70 countries with items from Asia, Europe, South and Central America adds up to over 70,000 items. Unique, obscure, childhood delights and cultural favorites, the shelves are filled with everything imaginable. They have rows and rows and rows of cans and jars and boxes of food, coffee, tea and candy from every country you can think of, and then some. Salted Snake-Head Fish in Brine, anyone? 
AMERICAN FOOD
Do not miss the Craft Ice Cream aisle. Filled with frozen treats from local, regional, and national producers, you'll be wanting to stock your freezer. Check out a dizzying assortment of chips, crackers, soda, juice, coffee, and everything in between. They have great olive and kombucha bars too.
EVENTS
In addition to their Jungle Fests, they also have events, classes, and tastings. You can also find recipes on the website to help you use the unique ingredients you bring home.
If you can't make the trip, but still want to experience the fun, you can order special boxes. This Discoveries at the Jungle Mustard is perfect for your summer cookouts. Plus they are offering free shipping!
If you are on the fence about going, get in your car now! It's so much fun! Plus you can discover all the fun things that Butler County has to offer while you're there. Stay tuned for a post detailing our adventures soon.

You can follow Jungle Jim's on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

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