instore - March 2018 - 21

t

The
grocer-chef
of

San
Francisco

Sam Mogannam of Bi-Rite Market takes retail foodservice to a whole new level
by Andy Nelson

W

hat is Bi-Rite?

For residents of San Francisco's Mission and Western
Addition neighborhoods -and for foodies throughout
the city and beyond -Bi-Rite Market is a two-store retail grocery
business known for locally and responsibly sourced foods and
top-shelf quality.

BI-RITE, ©XTRAVAGANT - STOCK.ADOBE.COM

But there's also the Bi-Rite Creamery, an ice cream shop across the
street from the flagship market on 18th Street, in the Mission. (Advice: go
early to avoid the Apple Store-like lines.)
And don't forget 18 Reasons, another Bi-Rite creation. Located next
door to the Creamery, it's home to cooking classes, dinner with a
local farmer, family food swaps, art exhibitions and other community
events. And the Bi-Rite commissary, a central kitchen in San Francisco's
Bayview neighborhood where foods are made daily for the two retail
stores and for yet another eponymous entity: Bi-Rite Catering.
Last but not least, there's the company-owned three-acre farm in
California's Sonoma County, where much of the produce sold at Bi-Rite
is grown.

There's no simple answer, one thing's for sure: Bi-Rite isn't what it used
to be.
Owner Sam Mogannam's dad, Ned, and his uncle, Jack, purchased
the 18th Street Bi-Rite, which opened in 1940, in 1964. For the quartercentury they owned it, it wasn't much different than many other small
neighborhood markets in the city: a good place to stop for cigarettes,
soda, snacks, groceries, other standard fare of varying healthfulness.
Growing up, Sam, 49, worked at the store after school and on weekends.
The Mission district, a present-day foodie mecca and home to many
tech workers (a bus stops near Bi-Rite every morning to take Google
employees to Silicon Valley), was a different place in the '70s, '80s and
early '90s. Dolores Park, half a block west of Bi-Rite, was a haven for
drug dealers. Sam got robbed twice.

"I'm constantly in motion.
There's never a routine day."
Sam Mogannam, owner, Bi-Rite Market

So what is Bi-Rite?

instore * MARCH 2018 * 21



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of instore - March 2018

instore - March 2018
Need to Know - Dabates and definitions
Spotlight - By the numbers
Merchandising - Branded baked goods
Specialty Insights - Organic deli products
Cover Story - Bi-Rite Market's Sam Mogannam
Commissary Insider
Insight Insider - Bi-Rite commissary
Equipment - Pizza Production
Food Safety - Allergen detection
Packaging - Grab 'n Go grabs market share
R&D - Investing in the Silicon Valley of food
Equipment & Packaging - Latest innovation: Frying technology
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instore - March 2018 - Need to Know - Dabates and definitions
instore - March 2018 - 9
instore - March 2018 - Spotlight - By the numbers
instore - March 2018 - 11
instore - March 2018 - Merchandising - Branded baked goods
instore - March 2018 - 13
instore - March 2018 - 14
instore - March 2018 - 15
instore - March 2018 - Specialty Insights - Organic deli products
instore - March 2018 - 17
instore - March 2018 - 18
instore - March 2018 - 19
instore - March 2018 - Cover Story - Bi-Rite Market's Sam Mogannam
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instore - March 2018 - Insight Insider - Bi-Rite commissary
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instore - March 2018 - Equipment - Pizza Production
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instore - March 2018 - Food Safety - Allergen detection
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instore - March 2018 - 45
instore - March 2018 - Packaging - Grab 'n Go grabs market share
instore - March 2018 - 47
instore - March 2018 - 48
instore - March 2018 - 49
instore - March 2018 - R&D - Investing in the Silicon Valley of food
instore - March 2018 - 51
instore - March 2018 - Equipment & Packaging - Latest innovation: Frying technology
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