After eight years of waiting, Whole Foods on The Alameda in downtown San Jose opened to the public today.
Hundreds gathered to break bread with community members, market managers and Sharkie of the San Jose Sharks.
Adam Smith, executive coordinator of store development for Whole Foods Market Northern Calif. stated that the market located on The Alameda between Bush Street and Wilson Avenue sits at the epicenter of the Diridon Station as part of the downtown redevelopment plan. He also stated that it is walking and biking distance for those in the neighborhood as well as “steps away” from the SAP Center to serve event attendees.
“I am so happy it is finally here,” said Miranda Vonstockhausen, a San Jose resident who biked to the grand opening. “The rumor has been around for years and the neighborhood needs it.”
Michelle Hohmeier, marketing and community relations liaison for Whole Foods Market in San Jose, stated that the San Jose community has been very supportive of the project.
“The Billy DeFrank Center let us use their space for artists to draw the chalk signs that shoppers will see in the store ,around 400 of them,” she said.
Once the doors opened, people poured into the market rushing to buy groceries ranging from fruits and vegetables to meats and cheeses as well as partaking of delicacies from the bakery and pizza counter. This location is also home to the second Whole Foods microbrewery.
“Whole Foods Market opened the company’s first tap room … in Santa Rosa in 2010. With its popularity, we’d been looking to expand the concept with our own in-house brewery,” Smith said. “The shape of this (location) lent itself to the brewery model, that is it made sense for two buildings—one for the main store and one for the brewery. We also recognized the growing craft beer movement in San Jose, and this location is near to the former Falstaff Brewery; that gave us design inspiration.”
Despite the the morning ceremony, customers couldn’t resist a morning beer. Hohmeier stated there are 21 taps for beers and three or four are reserved for Whole Foods’ house brews, which will premiere at the end of the week. Other brews are locally allocated from Hermitage Brewing Company, Santa Clara Valley Brewing, Camino Brewing and more.