The Foodie Report
Ruminations on food, cooking in and eating out in our area.

It's entirely possible to be a vegetarian in Porkopolis. Pop culture reporter Lauren Bishop blogs about products, recipes and restaurants she's tried for others who eat meat-free. E-mail her at lbishop@enquirer.com.

Nicci King is an unabashed foodie and the Lifestyle/Food editor in The Enquirer's features department. She loves to discover new food faves, and she's on a daily quest to answer one burning question: What's for dinner? E-mail her at nking@enquirer.com.

Enquirer Weekend editor Julie Gaw tends to order the same dish every time she eats at a restaurant, but periodically ventures out to discover something new and fabulous. After living in China, Hong Kong, the Philippines and Thailand for more than 8 years, she craves tasty Asian food. E-mail her at jgaw@enquirer.com.

Food/dining writer Polly Campbell loves every quirk and secret of Cincinnati's food personality, and is on a constant lookout for something good to eat. Keep an eye out for her restaurant picks, or see how she's progressing toward becoming famous for her apple pie. E-mail her at pcampbell@enquirer.com.

Communities reporter Rachel Richardson is on a mission to prove vegetarians eat more than lettuce. She shares both her graduate work on American food culture and food-related news.. E-mail her at rrichardson@enquirer.com.

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Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Price of Food

I'm doing a story about how the rising price of food is affecting people's grocery shopping and dining out habits. If any of you have recently made changes--like bringing your lunch more often, not going out to eat, eating at less expensive restaurants, or working hard to spend less money at the grocery store, I'd be interested to hear from you. pcampbell@enquirer.com.


at 4:42 PM Anonymous Stepfanie R said...

I know you probably can't quote me, but Fred and I are shopping at Findlay Market, Shadeau Breads and the downtown Kroger... with the rare monthly trip to Whole Foods. (Yes, I brave the Vine Street Kroger alone. During daylight hours. It carries soft tofu, soymilk and whole-grain pasta. I'm set. Those are the only items I can't get at Findlay Market on the weekends.) We're also switching to bulk goods (from those monthly trips to Whole Foods and rare trips to my hometown where there's a Mennonite-rune bulk natural store).

at 8:15 AM Blogger valereee said...

Polly, paying more for meat makes me likely to look for recipes using meat as simply another ingredient rather than as the star of the meal. Which in the end is better for us and better for the environment, so for our family I count it as progress of a sort.

Of course, this is easy for me to say. No matter what the price of food goes to, we'll be able to afford to eat well. Obviously for those folks who already were pinched by food prices, increases fall somewhere between major change and complete disaster.

at 8:46 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know I am definitely eating out less. We used to eat out 2-3+ times a week. Now we're down to maybe once a week and sometimes it's a cheap as Costco pizza ($2.00 a slice and 55ยข drink!)

I haven't noticed a huge jump in my grocery bills because I shop at Meijer and Wal-Mart Supercenter and know who has what items cheaper. When Meijer has a sale on an item I use regularly, I stock up. I also shop Aldi and Costco and buy only what is cheaper than buying it at Wal-Mart or Meijer. I've always been thrifty about buying food - and now it's certainly paying off.

at 3:05 PM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I work at a nonprofit, so money is always tight, but having food (and gas) become such a huge portion of my budget, I have made changes. I am eating out less, barely at all. I tend to only buy items on sale and stretch my meals. I make huge portions of chili or lasagna and then freeze the leftovers for another time. I have begun inviting friends over for brunch or dinner less often too. Those are my strategies :-)

at 9:19 AM Anonymous Anonymous said...

I work at a nonprofit too, so you know that I'm just raking in the dough as well. I used to be a loyal Biggs customer, but I've switched to Krogers temporarily because of the 10 cents off per gallon of gas for every $100 spent. They also have double coupons and the Private Selection house brand which is less expensive and pretty good stuff. Also, I've had to switch to regular milk from my usual organic. I just can't afford $7 for a gallon of milk with these high gas prices. Like Stepf, I shop at Findlay Market as well. The produce prices are so much cheaper. I'm also planning my meals a little more to ensure that I don't eat out as much.

at 9:28 AM Blogger Ruedisueli said...

I've faced increased gas and food prices a few different ways. I've always clipped coupons and tried to stretch out meals, but high prices have made other changes worth while.

First, it makes more sense to spend time and money keeping the garden. I invested in more equipment, seeds, seedlings, strawberry plants, and berry bushes. These investments seemed unreasonable a few years ago, but now the total was less than a few weeks groceries.

None of our friends has more than a half acre yard, so we joined up to form a garden co-op. A small garden in each yard gives us greater variety, and staples planted by everyone will help out if someone's crop doesn't make it.

In addition to growing our own food, we're trying to support local farmers more. I used to buy ground sirloin for $2.50 a pound. Now, with sirloin $3.50 a pound, and "enhanced with 'natural' flavorings," it makes more sense to buy pastured beef from a local farmer. It costs about the same, but I'd rather my extra money go to them than the oil company.

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