Delano's is Dead

It had been on suicide watch since around April, but now the Mission’s only supermarket (is Duc Loi a supermarket? That’s a whole other debate–not helped by an 8pm closing time) appears to be gone for good.  Sure, the prices were atrocious, and the selection wasn’t great, but it was open late (a great boon for folks who didn’t finish up their busy days until 10pm) and the staff was exceedingly friendly.  What will happen to that charming security guard?

Now we are left with the question of what to do with the massive industrial husk left over on South Van Ness.  Do we try to get Trader Joe’s to move in (they are having trouble securing that Market Street location).  Finally move forward with that Peace Park in the parking lot?

What do you think?


Not a Very Happy Thanksgiving for DeLano’s Market Employees

Scenes from The Final Days of Delano’s



61 Responses to “Delano's is Dead”

  1. Chicken John’s humble subject says:

    I don’t know about you, but I’m ready to agree with whatever Chicken John deems suitable for this property. Take us to the Promised Land CJ!

  2. bodah says:

    i vote for a whole food pop up until the new one on market and duboce is finished. the drive to rhode island st. is too far.

  3. el jeffe says:

    How about something different for a change? What about a community market / farmer’s market that takes place in the parking lot once a week? What about a decent grocer / market that isn’t Whole Foods or Trader Joe’s (these actually exist!)?

    The location is a bit difficult, but if the new business did something to bring the community in it could be a great thing for the neighborhood.

    Sadly, it will probably become over-priced condos / apartments.

  4. Mike says:

    Isn’t Safeway in the Mission?

  5. Rhiannon says:

    Y’know, of all the awful places to put a TJ’s, this aint one kc em. Plenty of parking, accessible, close to my house, I’m OK with that, especially considering the business with TJ’s and the Castro Cala.

  6. Zouaf says:

    Duc Loi is totally a supermarket!

  7. Todd_Lappin says:

    Bring the Trader Joes! Please!

  8. Glenparker says:

    I’m betting on housing of some sort.

  9. Matt says:

    if this spot becomes a trader joes, the mission is officially dead.

    • mitchun says:

      I’m really curious how this follows. I suspect your view of the Mission doesn’t extend back further than 5 years or so.

    • Herr Doktor Professor Deth Vegetable says:

      Yeah, I mean, how terrible for a neighborhood to have high quality low-price food available at a store that treats their workers extremely well.

    • no.thanks. says:

      bitch please. take a walk down valencia street. then take a walk down mission street.

      • Matt says:

        i’m sorry, i just don’t believe that the homogenization of san francisco is healthy for our fair city.

    • Rusty H says:

      One man’s dead mission is another’s awesome place. IGA is a world-wide chain. Cala was owned by Kroger. You’re saying that replacing one massive chain grocery with a smaller chain grocery is ruining the neighborhood?

      I guess we should try and keep the mission shitty, right?

  10. tack says:

    My 5 gallons of sangria recipe depends on a case of $2 chuck. So that would be convenient around turkey day, sure. But Cala and DeLano’s seem to both have failed in this location because… well… I don’t think it’s a great location for a supermarket. It’s tucked away enough that if you know about it at all, you’re not driving there. And if you’re not driving there, you’re not buying a whole cars worth of food.

    Add to that the case that many people walk past closer mom and pop groceries on their way there which are much better places to support.

    If only Duc Loi were open later…

    • mitchun says:

      In fairness, they failed because they were really, really terrible 1950′s-style supermarkets that didn’t hit any demographic (too expensive for poor people, not gourmet/organic enough for the rich people).

      Honestly, TJ’s could put a location in Antarctica and it would be packed. Look at the one at Geary and Masonic. You really can’t come up with a worse location and there is a line out the door from open to close.

      • James O'Boston says:

        word. on both paragraphs.

      • Rusty H says:

        Not to mention a TJs would bring in a lot of jobs. The people I talk to at TJs seem to think it’s a good place to work. Way better than Safeway or the old place.

        Delano’s was more expensive than Whole Foods, and for the most part the quality of the food was worse than Safeway. The deli counter was OK but closed really early (6:45?!) and it would take forever to check out because there were rarely more than a single cashier open.

  11. Ryan says:

    What neighborhood do you consider the Mission St Safeway to be in? Could be called Bernal Heights I guess, but it feels more like the Mission to me. And no, “La Lengua” is not an actual neighborhood…

    • Herr Doktor Professor Deth Vegetable says:

      False. The Mission St. Safeway is in La Lengua.

      • salsa says:

        Except that it’s in the Mission; La Lengua is not a neighborhood no matter how much you (or the other dozen people who care) keep saying it.

        As for DeLano’s, I’d like to see it built out with a bunch of stores. Or a Trader Joe’s. Or whatever business the property owners see fit to rent to– it’s theirs, not the Mission’s.

        Man, the stuff I saw there late night when it was still Cala’s– always crazy shit going down if you went there after midnight.

      • johnny0 says:

        Call it a sub-neighborhood. In the Mission. Or the Bernal Liminal Area. (The fact that we are even having this discussion seems to prove it exists.)

        And whatever you want to call it, it seems we have a supermarket and you don’t.

        (Also, the lines have gotten much better over the past year.)

      • dantsea says:

        Incorrect. The Mission Street Safeway is in the Mission. Your descriptor enabling you to be released from the horrific burden of having to tell people you live “Near 30th and San Jose” has no relevance.

      • Dude. Mission-La Lengua Venn Diagram. Wave-Particle Duality. Deal with it.

  12. hmm says:

    thank god that place was the worst, overpriced, understocked bs. i hope they put in a traders joes

    • Marisol says:

      I agree that it was overpriced. I remember going to get two gallons of milk and not having enough money. Luckily the guy behind me in line was kind enough to pay the difference for me.

  13. Kim says:

    This was the only supermarket that I could walk to (no car) other than the one in the Castro, which is also gone.

    I like to walk to shop, and not have to wait for the 22 or the J to get to a Safeway for the items I cannot get nearby.

    I bet we see high end condos go in there in the end. Just what we need!

    • Rusty H says:

      Luckily, there is no market for high-end condos in that part of the Mission at this time. Too far from cool shopping areas for rich people.

  14. yim says:

    hopefully the next place will still have a coinstar

    • thegrinch says:

      That’s one of the first things I thought about too!! Apparently the one at FoodsCo is the closest one now.

  15. Herr Doktor Professor Deth Vegetable says:

    Trader Joe’s would be terrific, and the location would be perfect. Plenty of parking, good street access, etc. However, I doubt it will happen.

  16. SCUM says:

    Safeway on 16th, Safeway on Mission and Foods Co on 15th. Also the hated Rainbow.

  17. mark says:

    The Lengua Safeway may not be in the Mission, but if one considers the Mission to be bounded by Potrero Street and 13th/Duboce, the 16th/Bryant Safeway is definitely in the Mission.

    Duc Loi is also definitely a supermarket – I can’t think of any common grocery items that they don’t have (not to mention a whole lot of uncommon ethnic ones most often not found in supermarkets). As for the 8pm closing time, considering that the owner (Amanda, I believe) is there every day at 8am until 8pm making sure everything runs smoothly and cheerfully helping customers, I think she’s entitled to some rest.

    Foods Co. is also definitely a supermarket, and definitely in the Mission.

    Rainbow is not a supermarket. Supermarkets have MEAT.

    • SCUM says:

      “Rainbow is not a supermarket. Supermarkets have MEAT” Thanks Mark, you rule.

    • olu says:

      Duc Loi is absolutely a supermarket. plus you can tell a lot about a neighborhood by the grocery stores, and when you have to rely on the “ethnic” foods aisle in Safeway then you might as well be in the suburbs.

      TJ sucks, real supermarkets have butchers and don’t pack their fucking produce in plastic.

    • Marisol says:

      I love FoodsCo!
      Esp. their cheap microwaveable pizza-flavored Tina’s burritos…

  18. no.thanks. says:

    remember a few years back when there was talk of the space in the upper haight at haight and stanyan becoming a berkley bowl satellite? I love TJ’s but I love Berkeley Bowl so much that I drive out to it to get groceries a few times a year!

  19. tacotron says:

    and at my new place, no longer in the mission there aint jack shit except an asian market with flies everywhere. So I gotta go to the potrero center…and luckily enough I have a roomie that works at veritable vegetable, so we got awesome produce covered

  20. Jane says:

    There are already gajillions of small fruit & veg markets, bakeries & butcher shops on Mission, 24th and pretty much everywhere else in the neighborhood where you can get ingredients for some really delicious meals way cheaper than at chain grocery stores. I think we should be patronizing locally owned small businesses and keeping money in the community instead of encouraging big box chains to homogenize the neighborhood.

    • moderniste says:

      As someone who uses EBT (food stamps), supermarkets and stores like Trader Joes are necessary–low prices and they take EBT. Those little markets on Mission and 24th St. are not so fabulous for pricing and EBT access–sad but true.

    • NIMBY says:

      No, I think YOU can patronize locally owned shops if YOU want and WE can patronize whoever WE want, local or otherwise. Obviously, just because a chain store goes into a location it doesn’t mean it’s going to work or cause the ‘hood to lose it’s color/flavor etc.

      That said, I’d love a TJ’s in that spot!

    • SFDoggy says:

      There are lots of small grocery stores and I patronize them sometimes, but the tend to have very limited selections. A TJ’s or a Berkeley Bowl or whatever that new chain is from England would add variety to the neighborhood shopping. I actually think those would draw business away from Whole Foods, not from local merchants

  21. James O'Boston says:

    So sad about the pickin’ on Trader Joe’s. They aren’t and never have tried to be a full-scale grocery. Much of what they sell comes from smaller producers, and local producers. TJ’s stuff in California isn’t the same as TJ’s stuff in Massachusetts isn’t the same as TJ’s stuff in Ohio. Been to both, sometimes in the same week. WIne, sure. Ginger cats and black bean salsa, thank god. but i’m glad for the store. the quality is good, and consistent. The prices are within my reach. And on the whole, things taste really good. I consider (selected) TJ’s items to represent a really good value.

  22. marco says:

    Bring it on TJ’s. We need you here!

  23. Welsh bach says:

    Be nice to see Good Life opening up down here for us lowlanders. Can’t be assed to climb a hill to get there.

  24. codesmith says:

    RIP Delano’s. You were handy in a pinch but boy did you suck.

    A Trader Joe’s would be very convenient but we don’t need more people driving to that part of the Mission. I’d only support it if they did something else with the parking lot.

  25. SF Lboogie says:

    I declare it the official Coffee Wars Battleground. Litter the ground with grounds! Be prepared for NIMBYistic tirades against litter and bathroom access! Mission Creek shall run brown with mis-brewed lattes!