After Christmas I was driving back to Atlanta from Greenville, which isn’t a bad drive, and offers the side benefit of a trip through Duluth. Besides offering outstanding views of the “Gwinnett is Great” water tower, Duluth also has a surging Korean population, which has drawn the interest of national grocer Super H Mart.
A far cry from some of the dingy grocery stores on Buford Highway (not including Buford Highway Farmer’s Market, which is very nice now), H Mart’s offer a large variety of Korean, Japanese, Chinese, and Hispanic produce and dry goods at very good prices. In addition, H Mart’s have fairly large food courts where mom and pop vendors offer everything from sushi to Korean soup. The house wares sections are fairly large too, including a large appliance (rice cookers!) selection.
Not just a specialty store, H Mart is great for your every day shopping – I find the quality and prices to be excellent compared to any grocer. But particularly if you are hunting down an Asian ingredient (kochujang, fish sauce, fermented vegetables) you are going to get a much better selection and value than if you try to find it in that four foot “Ethnic” section your local Publix offers. It makes sense – if your local grocer sells five blocks of tofu a week, they’re probably going to have to charge a higher price for it, and there’s a good chance it’s been sitting there a while. That tiny bag of slimy bean sprouts at Kroger that costs $3? For half that you will get a huge bag of crisp bean sprouts at Super H.
I’ve been to the very large Super H on Pleasant Hill, but this time I stopped at the smaller and less crowded location on Lawrenceville Suwanee Rd, right below 985. Being very hungry, I surveyed the food court options and went with the Kalbi Tang soup. For $7 I was brought a huge bowl of soup, a small plate of banchan (kimchee, fried tofu, bean sprouts, etc), and little bit of rice.
The soup was a simple broth with green onions, lots of egg, short ribs on the bone, sliced cross ways in the normal galbi style. Eating a huge meal before grocery shopping really is economical.
I had been looking to make the Ad Hoc at Home beef stock a few weeks before this, but I called my local Whole Foods, Publix, and Kroger, and none of theses places had beef bones. I was told that they sometimes had them, but they were out.
Not so at Super H. They had a huge floor freezer filled with bags of beef bones at $1/lb.
Super H always has a huge meat selection, particularly because they carry a lot of cuts of meats that aren’t popular with your average white person. Beef heart. Beef tongue. A whole section for pork belly of various precut sizes. Pre-sliced ribeye in 1lb, 5lb, and 10lb sizes.
Below I found short rib that was basically the bone cut side, as if you were removing the bone from a short rib roast. When I had Whole Foods remove the bone from a short rib roast for me, I guarantee you they threw the bone side out. Not so at Super H, they sell it for $0.99/lb. This meaty bone is very valuable for soups and stocks, so I bought some to add a bit of meatiness to my beef stock.
Even if I did find all of these items at in-town grocers, I’m sure the beef stock would have ended up being very expensive.
I have yet to visit the new Super H location (by Shoya Izakaya), but I’m pumped to have one close to town. Anyone have any word on the food court there? Are there some good vendors set up?