Archive for the ‘Store Experts’ Category

Winning recipes pictured. Starting in the top left and moving clockwise: Bernard (Lake Grove), Kim (Macadam),  Eli (Burnside), Robin (Belmont)

Winning recipes pictured. Starting in the top left and moving clockwise: Bernard (Lake Grove), Kim (Macadam), Eli (Burnside), Robin (Belmont)

Did you know it’s estimated that 8 million pounds of guacamole is consumed during the Super Bowl? With that much green goodness being smashed up, Zupan’s Markets decided to hold a competition this week among its store associates for the best recipe. With 32 different entries the decision was a hard one for store associates, who were the judges. Unique ingredients included pomegranate seeds, bacon and curry. But in the end there could only be one champion per store.


Below we have included the 4 winning recipes for you to try. Have a guacamole secret of your own? Share it with us!

Lake Grove Champion – Bernard, Produce
4 avocados
1 lime
6 garlic cloves
1/2 cup cilantro
1 sweet onion
2 jalapenos
1 container pico de gallo
salt and pepper to taste

Macadam Champion, Kim, Service Deli
1 jalapeno, diced
4 oz green chiles
6 avocados
6 green onions, chopped
2 oz lemon grass, chopped
Juice from 1 lemon
1 tomato, chopped
4 T chopped garlic
1 T pepper
1 T smoked sea salt
4 T cilantro, chopped

Burnside Champion, Eli, Meat
Jícama Classic Guacamole
5 avocados
2 shallots
1 large lime
¼ lb jícama
1 T sea salt
1 t granulated garlic
1 t black pepper
1 bunch greek oregano, chopped

Belmont Champion, Robin, Service Deli
6 avocados
Juice from 5 limes
1/3 c sour cream
2 t salt
2 t cumin
1 t dry oregano
4 roasted jalapenos
2 t granulated garlic
1/4 t red pepper flakes
Smash with whisk

Top with roasted corn, four roasted, peeled & chopped poblano chiles, crumbled queso fresco, chopped cilantro and a squeeze of lime.


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This week we talked to Mandy, who works at our Belmont store.

Where did you grow up? What brought you to Portland?
I grew up in Kelso, WA. For college I went back east to Penn State and when I came back my mom had moved to Sandy, OR so that is where I relocated.

How long have you worked at Zupan’s and how long have you been in your specific position?
I’ve been here for 9 years now, with my last 5 months as the store PIC. I started at the West Linn store, then moved to Raleigh Hills and have been at Belmont for the past 3 years. My mom worked at Zupan’s, so when I moved back here after college I was hired for a summer position and I’ve been here ever since.

What Portland restaurant do you frequent the most?
To be honest, I hardly ever go out to eat. My husband (Jeremy Alcatraz, Assistant Director, Macadam) is a phenomenal cook.  We shop at Zupan’s and have great meals at home. My favorite is probably a Rib-eye steak with mushroom risotto.

What do you think it takes to be good at your job?
First, you need to like food. Second, you need to know food. Third, you need to be good with people.

What do your days off look like?
I love to be lazy and relax in my sweatpants. I’ll workout, spend time with friends, referee the fighting between our fat cat and small dog. I also love to snowboard. Jeremy and I just spent a weekend in Lake Tahoe snowboarding.

What’s your favorite part of working at the Belmont Zupan’s?
I love the atmosphere that is around our neighborhood and our store. It’s comfortable. Everyone respects each other— employees and customers alike.

If you could jump on a plane tomorrow for a 2 week vacation, and money were no object, where would you go?
Tahiti. I want to be warm. I’d spend my days lying on the beach, not in my sweatpants of course!

Next time you stop into Belmont, find her and ask her about her days riding a 6-foot  unicycle.

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At  Zupan’s, we believe that great food and great wine go together.  The world of wine is vast and exciting, but some basic knowledge can help even the novice navigate the Zupan’s wine departments. 

First, a few words about the Zupan’s Wine Program.  Our fully-staffed wine departments show our commitment to offering our customers the best service & selection of wine in the city.  In addition to in-store tastings on Friday and Saturday afternoons, Zupan’s customers enjoy a 10% discount on purchases of 6 bottles or more, and even greater discounts on whole, unmixed cases.  Zupan’s offers thousands of choices of wine from around the globe.  Our selection runs from great value wines to some of the most highly sought-after wines in the world.  Our mission is to provide our customers with excellent wine choices for both daily enjoyment as well as special occasions. 

Zupan’s Wine Departments:

You can learn quite a bit from observing the layout of the Zupan’s wine departments.  A little bit of information will help this make sense.

In what we call the New World (areas with a relatively short history of wine production, including the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, Chile, and Argentina), wines are generally named after the grape.  So in our wine departments, you will see the following large categories of wines:
– Chardonnay
– Sauvignon Blanc
– Pinot Gris
– Blends (white wine)
– Cabernet Sauvignon
– Merlot
– Pinot Noir
– Syrah
– Zinfandel
– Blends (red wines)
Most wines in these areas are from New World producers.

In what we call the Old World (areas with a much longer tradition of wine production) wines are often named after the place where the wine is produced.  These wines are categorized by their country of origin. So you will see sections from:
– France
– Italy
– Spain
– Portugal
In these sections, you will notice names like Barolo, Chianti, Bordeaux, Cotes du Rhone, etc.  These are all the names of places. Further study will help you to learn what grapes are used to make the wines named for places.  In many instances, it’s the same grapes that the New World uses to name the wines.  

Next time you’re in our store, stop by the wine department and say hello.  Venture out of your comfort zone and try a new bottle of wine.  One of our wine stewards will help you pick the perfect bottle.  Cheers!

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Katherine, our Executive Chef, features a complete gourmet meal consisting of Mac & Cheese, Caesar Salad, and Zucchini & Corn Fritters. Enjoy! (more…)

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Zupan’s store experts are all well-trained and passionate about what they do. Furthermore, they have their own personal backgrounds that make them who they are—both in and out of the store. Marie, our Belmont Seafood Expert, shares her story.


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This week, we had the pleasure of getting to know Suki, our knowledgeable Salad Expert at the Burnside store. She provided us with some great insights into her experience at Zupan’s Markets.


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Love meat? Love the outdoors? Why not combine the two for dinner tonight?


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