When we were back in Ohio, Matthew said we had to go to a place called Jungle Jim's. We were thinking it was a play place where the young girls could horse around. We were wrong. The place bills itself as Foodie Paradise. This giant frankfurter was just outside.
Yes--these lights really work.
Emilee and Megan pose in front of one his statues. I watched the video clip where Jungle Jim--Jim Bonaminio--talks about how he likes to mess around with animatronics (among other things).
High above our heads--a swinging soup can. So at this point I'm thinking that it's just a giant grocery store with regular food. Wrong.
Matthew and girls near the deli section.
Barra de Salsa, where they have a variety of fresh salsas.
Dave, in blue, stands by the blue cheese section. Yes--all those packages are blue cheese. Overall they have over 1400 cheeses. I began to wonder if I could buy another suitcase and take some things home.
A display of salamis.
Now, I really wanted to take some of their selections home. A butter bar?
Hand rolled butter from Wisconsin. Think what my shortbread cookies would taste like with this as the base!
European-style high fat butter content. I've been buying some Plugra at home, but I'm sure this outranks it.
And cheeses in animal shapes and packaging. I was beginning to catch on to why this store was famous.
I caught up with Kim & Megan at the candy aisle. Yes, I bought a gumball monkey that clangs its symbols together when you push a lever. Who cares if the candy is any good--I love the packaging!
Lots of displays--this, obviously, is the bakery.
Kim got us totally hooked on Servatii's pretzel slices. They take a giant fat pretzel, run it through their bakery slicer and you use the little rounds for dips or snacks. We brought a bag home with us all the way to California and we are down to the last little bit.
Random flying pig.
Alligator meat. In case you don't like that, there are buffalo steaks (below).
Bet you didn't know there was more than one kind of coconut, did you?
The hot sauce aisle, complete with fire engine.
Along the side wall are little alcoves that have products from a single region. Here's Scandinavia.
And a theater where you can watch the history of Jungle Jim (some of it is in the video I linked to above).
The Holland alcove has fuzzy slippers in the shape of wooden shoes.
We were running out of time, so we made a beeline for the chocolate aisle.
We bought the bacon flavor, plus two others.
And one of those machines that gives your fortune--the Brain! (Dave posed under duress.)
We had a great time there, and if I lived there, I think I might make this a regular habit--esp. for that butter! Matthew said he's already gone back once in order to get Blenheim's Gingerale, which this place carries. (It's one of his favorites, esp. the red-lid variety.)
So, when you go and visit Matthew--go to Jungle Jim's!