Friday, May 30, 2008

Are You Being Served?

Johnson's Grocery, Colombo Street, Christchurch. May 2008. Ajr
I wandered in to Johnson’s Grocery in Colombo Street this morning on my way to meet a friend. At Johnson’s the shelves bulge and things are done the old way. Long before the trendy age of delis and specialist food stores, Johnson’s were importing Stilton cheese, French escargot, Scottish haggis, French truffles, and English sweets along with a myriad of other edible delights from just about every corner of the globe. They still are and what’s more, Colin Johnson still wears his white grocer’s apron and calculates his customers’ bills in his head – although he has conceded to adding EftPost facilities. Colin’s father Stan bought the business way back in 1949 – I wonder what he’d make of the fact that Johnson’s Grocery is now a tourist attraction.


HFM said...

Did Johnson's Grocery survive the quake? What is its current status? I loved visiting that place when I lived there years ago - they were the only shop in Christchurch where I could find Almond Roca. The shopkeepers in there were like old and trusted friends. Please let me know what you know about this place - thanks.

Adrienne Rewi said...

No, the original Johnson's Grocery shop did not survive the quake - that whole shopping block has long since been demolished.
BUT Johnson's have moved into the Container Mall in Cashel St and are doing a roaring trade in their new premises - more modern but still a bit quirky.


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