Bi-Rite Market is more a lifestyle than a shop. It’s a corner market with several varieties of raspberries or figs or citrus you’ve never heard of—only in season, of course. It’s a deli/take-away with wild-caught roasted salmon and grass-fed pastrami. And let’s not get started on the cheese case behind the produce section or impressively chosen wine inventory filling in the space between the bottoms of the shelves and the floor. (Don’t miss the Beaujolais Nouveau under the sustainably sourced, locally made chocolate bars!)
A store so popular it spawned its own creamery (Bi-Rite Creamery across the street), cookbook (Bi-Rite Market’s Eat Good Food), farm (to supply the produce section), and community center (18 Reasons), Bi-Rite goes well out of its way to support local food producers. Consumers appreciate it, of course, but these projects and local connections are just the way owner Sam Mogannam, who grew up helping his dad run the market and then became a chef and restauranteur before taking over—and transforming—the family business, believes things should be done. Food should taste good. Shops should be fun to go to. Staff should know about the food they sell. Bi-Rite sells the food Sam wants to eat: largely organic, sustainably made, plenty of small-batch and artisan products, and lots of fresh house-made items to boot.