Sunterra Market, Calgary

Condo dwellers of the Victoria Park area can now rejoice with their very own supermarket. Granted, it’s not a discount grocer, but the Sunterra Market (in the shiny Keynote tower) has its advantages especially for young professionals who live and work in the area.

Sunterra Market, CalgaryAs Calgary’s closest answer to Whole Foods, Sunterra Market stocks organic milk in bottles, lovely stacks of cheeses, and gorgeous cuts of meat. (Did you know Sunterra started as a farm in Acme, Alta. 40 years ago before it branched into retail in 1990?) While not the cheapest items in town, I was pleasantly surprised to see that they weren’t as expensive as I would have expected.

There’s a huge selection of pre-made meals, or ones that just need a heating. From sandwiches and deli salads to lamb chops and lasagnas, who needs to slave over a stove?

The more than ample number of smiling staff are ridiculously helpful. The man behind the deli counter meticulously made sure I had an even portion of feta and different coloured peppers in the small take-out Greek salad I ordered.

There’s also a Starbucks counter, salad bar, and gelato counter with sweet offerings from Amato Gelato.

In addition to the grocery part of this Sunterra, there’s a classroom for demonstration cooking, and a modern cafe and huge patio on the top floor called MARKETbar.

Sunterra Market, CalgaryHere, Sunterra has set up comfortable seating from early morning for breakfast in the bright, airy front area to way past dinner time in the sleek bar/lounge.

Sunterra’s tried and true concept of ordering from a station and then paying at the cashier continues here. You can get savoury and sweet crepes, pasta bar, the Big Pan special and carving roasts. I also spotted a pizza oven at play.

I settled on a chicken and artichoke crepe ($6.49) expertly made right in front of me. The gigantic portion was stuffed with cubes of chicken breast, fresh and sundried tomatoes and a silky white wine cream sauce. For $6.49 that’s a hell of a deal.

If I worked or lived nearby, I could easily grab all my meals here.

P.S.: If you’re driving there, Sunterra will reimburse you for $2 for the Impark underground parking. You pay upfront and then exchange the stub of your parking ticket for the $2. Yeah, confusing.

Sunterra Market, in the Keynote building, 200-12th Ave. S.E., Calgary, (403) 261-6772.

MARKETbar open Sunday to Thursday, 6:30 a.m.-10 p.m., Friday & Saturday 6:30 a.m.-2 a.m.
Grocery store open Sunday-Thursday 8 a.m.-8 p.m., Friday & Saturday 8 a.m.-9 p.m.