SAY CHEESE: SICKLES SHINES IN NYTIMES

Bob Sickles 2Bob Sickles Jr.


Sickles Farm Market in Little Silver got some lovin’ this weekend as one of four specialty grocers called out in an article in the New Jersey section of Sunday’s New York Times.

Dovetailing off the opening of a Fairway store in Paramus later this month, the Times pops in on that Manhattan refugee and three others: Eden Gourmet in South Orange (which opened last May); Zeytinia in Oakland; and Sickles, now early in its second century of operation as a market.

Sickles, says author Kelly Feeney, has a “country chic feel” under the
stewardship of third-generation owner Bob Sickles, Jr., who began
offering obscure goodies like Marcona almonds from Spain and Madagascar
dark chocolate in the 1990s in response to a growing exurban clientele

From the article:

The shop is on the smaller side by grocery store standards, at about 20,000 square feet (including gift area and garden center), but it stocks a good selection of carefully chosen specialty and conventional goods: ordinary spaghetti as well as coin-shaped croxetti, a pasta typically served with pesto Genovese; corn flakes as well as steel-cut Irish oatmeal; packaged white bread as well as crusty baguettes from Balthazar Bakery. All the makings for a meal can be found here.

“Old-time gourmet shops sold caviar, foie gras and a few cheeses,” Mr. Sickles said. He sells those things, too, but he also stocks all-natural chicken, local produce and organic frozen foods. (There¬ís no fish department, though.)

Mr. Sickles recently hired a consultant to revamp the cheese counter; now there are about 150 aged and fresh types (availability varies) along with an assortment of quince spreads, nuts and preserves. The retail area also sells high-end table linens, ceramics and home decorations. The adjoining garden center, a sunlit 5,000-square-foot greenhouse, has exquisite orchids and other plants.

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