10 Things You Don’t Know About Harmons Grocery Store

I had the chance to do something very fun today. Today’s Mama hooked a bunch of local bloggers up with a cooking class and store tour at the Harmons City Creek location. I wasn’t really sure what to expect, but I love Harmons and I’ve shopped there for years, so I figured it would be worth checking out.

Such a good time!

The City Creek location is amazing (and they have a FREE parking garage, btw) so it was great that I had a reason to check it out. Here’s what I learned:
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1 /// Harmons offers cooking classes in their dedicated kitchen spaces. You can sign up for prescheduled classes or book a group class as a fun activity or interesting birthday party. Apparently they will pretty much teach you how to cook anything you request, so I think I’m definitely going to get some friends together and make something I’ve always wanted to make, like sushi or even fried chicken. I’ve never made fried chicken!

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2 /// Harmons has a huge selection of local products and they actively go out to farmer’s markets and local businesses to pull in new products. Many of the things they sell can really only be found at Harmons unless you can get it from the source directly. We tried some amazing local pickles – how fun is that?

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3 /// Harmons doesn’t use anything fake in the bakery goods. Everything is made with very basic ingredients (flour, sugar, vanilla, etc.) and the majority is made on site so if you have a question about something, you can probably ask the person who made it that morning. Because it’s so fresh, you need to eat everything by the end of the day after the day you bought it. Harmons also offers half-loaves if you won’t make it through a whole loaf.

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4 /// Harmons has a separate cutting board that is just for nut-free bread. Although they can’t guarantee any of the baked goods, this cuts way down on cross-contamination risks, especially for families like ours where we (Kyle and I) might want to eat some of the bread but we don’t want to bring nut residue into the house.

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5 /// Harmons at City Creek offers fresh pressed juice, including tangerine juice (which I purchased as soon as the tour was over).

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6 /// A lot of thought goes into the meat selection at Harmons and you can ask them about the source of everything. They also have dry aged beef, which they sell almost at cost because they want to pull people into their store by having something different. I also bought some of this after the tour so I’ll tell you how it is when we eat it tomorrow night! (UPDATE: It was yummy!)

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7 /// The people who work at Harmons are really passionate about food and they’re constantly trying to improve it. Bob Harmon, who led us on the tour, talked a lot about traveling around the country to see what other grocers are doing and what’s working. It was very interesting to see all the little things they’ve done to try to make the shopping experience better and the food selection more elevated. (Related – they also pay really well, which means they encourage people to make being a grocer their career and to invest time in educating themselves and getting better at their work. I love that.)

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8 /// Harmons makes their own mozzarella and they have one of the largest selections of cheese around. Yes, I came home with multiple cheeses today, including one that got all gooey as it warmed up. I may or may not have eaten the entire wedge on some sourdough.

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9 /// All of the Harmons stores have a healthy checkout line. Instead of junk food or candy, it features snacks picked out by the four dietitians who work for Harmons. Also, no matter which checkout line you pick, your cashier will bag your produce for you so it doesn’t get dinged or bruised as it rolls down toward the bagger.

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10 /// There are blue labels throughout Harmons that signify that the product is local. Green labels means that the food is approved by the dietitians as being a healthy food with reasonably low saturated fat, salt, sugar, etc. Purple labels are gluten free. (I really want them to do nut-free labels on things like cereals, crackers, or breads because it would make my entire existence easier, so they might be getting a barrage of friendly emails from yours truly.)

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Thanks, Today’s Mama and Harmons for the fun day!

Disclaimer: I received a free cooking class and a selection of yummy food for participating in this event. The opinions above are my own.

For more local Salt Lake City love, check out:
/// Eva Goes to the Dentist: A Review of Burg Pediatric Dentistry
/// Pioneer Day in Salt Lake City
/// Last Saturday at the Salt Lake Farmers Market
/// Salt Lake City Christkindlmarkt
/// Salt Lake City in Autumn

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22 thoughts on “10 Things You Don’t Know About Harmons Grocery Store

  1. I LOVE LOVE Harmons!! I’d never been to one until they opened up that City Creek location, but I’ve been the biggest fan ever since. Oddly enough, the thing I buy the most there are bones for my dog from the butcher department. I can choose exactly how large of marrow bones, they’ll cut them right there for me. And I know where the cow came from etc. And you CAN TOTALLY TELL that they pay their employees well. They are super nice and knowledgeable. I’m so glad you have such a great day!! GREAT POST!!

    • Of course you’re getting dog bones there! Penny deserves the best. I never would have thought of that, but I spent forever talking to the meat guys (and left with waaay too much beef). Those meat guys are awesome.

  2. When you learn how to make fried chicken…PLEASE POST THE HOW TO!!! I’ve never done it either and I’m too far away to do it with you…

    • Yes, you need one! Everyone needs a Harmons. If we leave Utah, I’ve decided I’m taking Bob and his team with me.

    • Adjusting to new grocery stores is such a pain. When we lived in Ohio, there was an amazing cheese that we used all the time and they don’t sell it out here. I should probably talk to the cheese guy at Harmons now that I think about it…I had just given it up as lost!

  3. I like how you pointed out how well they pay their employes. I work for Harmons (so I knew everything on the list already) and I must say they treat the employes better than any other grocer around. (I have worked for others and have friends who work for the remainders) Great post and thanks for shopping Harmons.

    • Thank you for your comment! I’m glad you like working there. I dated someone for a while who worked there for years and I still remember how well he was treated at his job (even while starting at the bottom and working his way up).

  4. City Creek Harmon’s might just be the only store I miss since leaving Utah. After I had the twins, I walked there from our house everyday, and everyone was so friendly!
    I’ve also taken their nutrition and cooking classes, but I’m adding two more things: Themed Events- We went to their Mad Men Party last year and it was fantastic! Everyone dressed up and drinking martinis (in Utah!) and having a great time!
    Commitment to MS Research and Funding- a percentage of their earnings go to fighting multiple sclerosis. They have employee-sponsored bike treks, hotdog stands in summer (with proceeds to MS), and other events. If you notice the design of their store; several water stations, wider aisles, and lower accessibility for disabled folks. Also, elevators near handicapped spaces, and AC like a refrigerator!:) As someone who has struggled with MS for 9 years, I felt encouraged as a young mother to have a place to shop with my babies that was easy to navigate. I wish I knew why they have championed MS, but I am grateful they have.

    • Lady, I miss you! I wish I had been shopping at City Creek back then because we would have run into each other more often. And the themed events sound like a blast. I had no idea they did stuff like that!

  5. One more thing to add to your list: Each Harmon’s store employs a local artist to create all of those amazing signs you see throughout the store, so they’re also supporting the local art community. 🙂

    • Thank you!! I forgot about that one. I love that they have an in-house artist and what a fun job for that person!

  6. I love Harmons! Such a great store. And I saw myself in a couple of your images! Didn’t get to meet you in person, but love the image you created “10 Things You didn’t know about Harmons Grocery”! Great article.

    • That was such a great event – I’d love to do the tour again! I think I need to test some more local food… 😉

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