Whole Foods has a way of changing communities. Just ask residents of Venice, whose dating histories are now broken down into "pre-Whole Foods" and "post-Big Lots" eras. Next up is Whole Foods Tarzana, 30,000-square-feet of the crunchy corporation opening this coming Wednesday. Planned as a flagship store, this one will boast Los Angeles' largest olive bar, an "umami" section, kombucha on tap, Alexander Valley pickles in barrels, a garden section, and a selection of bakery items and specialties that reflect city's melange of cultures. This means the usual suspects of pre-made comfort food will sit alongside Armenian, Greek, Persian, Thai, Indian, North African, and Mexican recipes, with plenty of lavosh and baklavah mentioned. Okay okay, but where do you hook up in here?
In a sure sign the market knows its match-making abilities, a forty-seat wine and tapas bar will be a central feature of this Whole Foods. Here, if you're not distracted by your neighbor, you can find tasting events, a panini grill, feta plates, and salted-edamame, all while you practice sipping coyly from your glass. If wine works too slowly for you, a granita bar with slushies made from Italian wine and spirits is nearby. And if you succeed or fail in your pursuit of love, this will also be the first Whole Food with a hard liquor selection, making it a worthwhile night out no matter what happens. Until you look at your receipt, that is.
Whole Foods Tarzana opens Wednesday at 9:00 A.M. 18700 W. Ventura Blvd