Groceries – ir de compras

Most things are new to me here in Tenerife. I’ve been fortunate enough to travel to a few places, but I haven’t seen much of Europe, and I haven’t shopped in many countries either. All this with the added ‘allure’ of a different language means recognising food brands has been something of an adventure.

As far as supermarket chains in the UK go, I had no real loyalty to any of them. I was a member of pretty much every loyalty scheme going, but convenience, need and the occasional deal (probably in that order) were the main drives in where we shopped. Tenerife can be different for us.

I have to say that the cost of living has been difficult to gauge so far and I think that there are several contributing factors to this. The fluctuation of the value of the British Pound has meant that on some days, the exchange rate to the Euro has been  down to £1: €1.05. On days like that, any card transactions looked comparable to the UK. The euphoria of just having arrived, and still feeling a little bit like we’re on holiday has also meant some unnecessary spending. It’s also difficult and seems unfair to compare a week’s worth of shopping from UK- mid-winter (including ingredients for stews and bakes – good, warming, comfort food), to a week’s supply of lollies, aftersun lotion and vests.

Our first shopping trip in the south was about familiarity. We went to a Lidl. They are the same everywhere. Pleasant enough, plenty of products, many that look like brands you know, but that’s not what Lidl’s about! They also have the “Once it’s gone, it’s gone” clothes and items. I thought it was a bit expensive for what we went in there for. Nothing that will break the bank, but it felt like I was shopping in a UK shop. I don’t think I’ll be going back there often,

We have a mini – Hyper Dino in our town (village? I don’t know… I’ll find out what where I live is.) which we have been into several times. It’s a holiday maker’s trap as all the smaller shops tend to be. The shops are in the most convenient of places (it’s our local milk run if necessary). The bigger hyper-dinos are pleasant enough to walk around. We have been in several now, all along the south, including the one at Siam Mall and the large one just before the exit for Adeje (from the TF-1). I would happily shop there.

Orange juice maker at a local super market
Most of the larger supermarkets have fresh orange juice machines. This makes too much sense to me.

Mercadona supermarkets appear to be the most popular as it seems to be a little busy every time we have been. The range of goods on offer is good, including some that I recognise, and enough that look familiar enough to try. We have one fairly close to us and I currently consider it my favourite super market. The fish counter in our branch has so many different types of fresh sea food that I could lose a few hours just looking and watching.

Tu Trebol was our last discovery. We have a large one near us and, as it looks like a warehouse, we just drove past it without giving it too much thought. Curiosity got the better of us, however, and we ended up going in to explore and see what the place was about. Our local branch is fairly large so they have furniture there, as well as the usual stock. It seems comparable to the Dino prices.

I’m looking forward to the next few weeks when I feel less restless and so more willing to think of interesting food to make. Hopefully, I can make things that are worth adding to the I Enjoy Trying pages and get that going! I’m off to gather tools to grow ingredients!

Do you have any tips for grocery shopping in Tenerife for me? Anywhere you avoid? Let me know in the comments!

Be good or be good at it!


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