The Mountain Times

°F Mon, April 21, 2014

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Bananas Market: A new neighborhood grocery serves northeast Rutland

Bananas is a neighborhood market serving northeastern Rutland and the Route 4 corridor. It first openned at the end of October and carries a selection of foods typically found in a small grocery store.

Located in the building that was formerly Green Mountain Boys Beer & Wine on Route 4.  The property has served various businesses since its initial construction as a Taco Bell, and owner Mike Muller contends "There are a variety of perceptions about the store, including the idea it's a produce stand or fruit market, or a specialty store, or a tourist-oriented/gift shop, or a health food store," he says. "We are a neighborhood grocery market, and although we do have some selections that could be considered natural foods, and some Vermont products, and some produce, we are not exclusively any of those things." Muller adds that in this early stage, they are using customer suggestions to shape the story inventory more specifically, "so let us know what you want!"

Currently Bananas Market inventory includes a variety of offerings, for example, for mac & cheese options, Banana's offers Kraft and Stouffer's (national brands), as well as Annie's (natural brand), and Mrs. Leeper's (gluten-free option). 

After nearly two months in business, Muller has new plans he hopes to develop, which include: prepared foods (he is working on equipping and licensing the building, which has had the kitchen equipment removed since being a restaurant), expanding the selection of produce, expanding the selection of Beer & Wine. ("We have a way to go before we carry quite the selection that Green Mountain Boys offered, but we're working on it!" he says.) Additionally, Muller plans to include the sale of lottery and cigarettes.

"We have made many updates, opened up the inside space, and we welcome our neighbors to drop by and see," said Muller, adding, "The purpose is to provide a market for residents, commuters and other local customers… Like so many area businesses, we welcome the additional traffic of ski season, but local business is our priority."

Prior to openning Bananas Market, Mike Muller was GM at the Rutland Co-op, a position he held for nearly four years. This past spring, he handed over that role to a new manager, but remains a member of the Co-op, and enjoys the opportunity to refer customers to the Co-op for things that aren't available at Bananas.

For more information visit www.bananasmarket.com or the store located at 206 US Route 4 East, Rutland, Vt.