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“Grocery Stores”



Pre-Listening Question

What is the name of our favorite grocery store, and why do you like it?

Vocabulary and Expressions

Here are some words and expressions that appear in the video:

pretentious (adjective): be regarded as more important  or successful than something or someone really is
– This very pretentious store sells high-end health foods, and the managers claim that you can’t find their items anywhere else.

organic foods (noun):  food grown without the use of man-made chemicals
Organic foods often cost more at the supermarket.

bougie (adjective): luxurious, fancy, or upscale
– My sister spends too much money on bougie home decorations that she can’t afford.

produce (verb): vegetables and fruit
– The produce at this store is amazing. Everything is so fresh.

heirloom tomatoes (verb): tomatoes that have been grown without cross-breeding from seeds that have been passed down without modification
– I really love the taste of heirloom tomatoes.

Listening Comprehension Questions

Now, watch the interview and answer the comprehension questions. You can also turn on the automatically-generated captions for the video once you start it.


Randall: In this video, Aubrey, let’s talk about your favorite grocery store. I think people look for a particular grocery store that’s going to contain the items that they want. It might be based on location and so forth. But tell us your favorite place. What do you like about it and why?

Aubrey: Yeah. So I have a couple of favorite places. The first one I’m going to mention is Whole Foods. There isn’t one here. I have to drive to Salt Lake, which is a couple hours away to get to one. And I will admit it’s the fancy, pretentious grocery store.

Randall: Now, what do you mean by that?

Aubrey: Um, it’s where you go. You have health foods, and it has organic foods, and it has this and that. And it’s known for being pretentious and bougie, right? But it has great produce. And I have some food allergies, so it’s a really good place to get what I want, and the cheese section is amazing.

Randall: And describe what you might find in that cheese section.

Aubrey: Oh, you’ve got your Gruyere, you got your brie. You’ve got, you know, aged Gouda. You know, just lots of different ideas. Camembert, I believe that’s a cheese. Um, but yeah, there’s lots of different options, and they usually have free samples. Okay.

Randall: So you mentioned cheese. What other items do you like?

Aubrey: Uh, they have heirloom tomatoes, uh, which taste very different than your average grocery store tomatoes.

Randall: For those that don’t know what heirloom tomatoes are, describe those for us.

Aubrey: Yeah. So grocery store tomatoes have been bred genetically, um, so that they all get ripe and beautiful at the same time. [Okay.] But the gene that does that also makes them taste watery and gross. Now, heirloom tomatoes have not been modified that way, so a couple of things is that you can take a seat out of an heirloom tomato and get the exact same tomato. That’s what makes it heirloom. Um, but also because, you know, it hasn’t been modified in the same way, tt tastes different. It’s delicious. If you don’t like tomatoes, try an heirloom tomato. You might change your mind.

Randall: So cheese, tomatoes. One more thing.

Aubrey: Yeah. My favorite grocery store that I live by is one that also has a cheese section. They tend to have, like, little baskets full of, like, the little cheese ends, like when they were cutting the cheese. They’ve got little leftover sections, so you can get try new cheese for a dollar or two. And that’s really nice. Um, produce is okay, but yeah, that’s my favorite place around here.

Randall: Great. Well, thanks for sharing.

Conversation Questions

Imagine that you are going to have a party with a group of friends. What kinds of food items would you buy for dinner? Explain why you would choose those items.

Related Language Activities on Randall’s Web Site

The following activities deal with related topics to give you additional language practice.

Try More Free Listening at