I suppose when it comes to groceries I’m a brand slut. I shop at the local farmer’s market for specialty produce, Whole Foods for healthy stuff, Trader Joe’s for something different, Vons and Ralphs for everyday meals, Marukai for Asian and Hawaiian food, and Costco for bulk items.
Anyway, after a great deal of trial and error, I’ve learned how to shop at Costco — without bringing home a bunch of stuff we’ll never finish up, that is. Lately, my favorite Costco buy is a box of Cuties® brand California Clementines. Also known as a mikan, satsuma, or Christmas orange, a clementine is a delicious little easy-to-peel variety of seedless mandarin.
I’m not a big fan of your garden-variety orange, but Cuties are just right. I love the expressive name, the cute logo, and the just-right five-pound box they come in. It seems like a nice step back to the “good old days” of the early 20th century, when California citrus came packaged in crates adorned with the most elaborate and colorful labels imaginable. It’s good to see more and more of our local growers are rediscovering the art of branding.