Sorting Out the Whole Kroger Situation

Posh KrogerI’ve been seeing a lot of you ask on Twitter, “Where the hell is Zombie Kroger and why is it called that?” By “a lot,” I mean like three people I sorta know but have never met.

So, I figured I should put together this little rundown of the four Krogers that have been given monikers and why they are so named.

Disco Kroger
Montrose at Hawthorne (near Westheimer)

The original. I don’t know when people started calling it Disco Kroger. I first started going there when I worked across the street. I also had my truck towed from there when I stupidly parked in its parking lot during a show at Tower Theater (you know it now as Hollywood Video – sigh). But, if you’ve ever been in there later at night, particularly on the weekends, you understand just how it got its name.

Ghetto Kroger
Shepherd at 11th

As far as I know, I’m the one that handed this Signature store with the name dating back to this post about how crappy that store can be. I first started going to Ghetto Kroger when it was decidedly less ghetto many MANY years ago. It was also significantly smaller. I’m told this will be the largest Kroger store in the US when re-modeling is complete. To understand its ghetto nature, all you have to do is go in there, see the construction and note ZERO signs saying “Please excuse our mess” or anything like that. I guess in a few months, we’ll have more ghetto to love.

Zombie Kroger
Shepherd at 20th

As outlined here, Zombie Kroger is so named because it is marked both by really sweet, exceedingly slow elderly people and a dearth of checkers most of the time. Plus, it seems to be in some sort of vortex that swallows normal time and has soda that looks like Windex.

Posh Kroger
West Gray at Dunlavy

Only recently this River Oaks store (pictured) got its name for both its clientele and the fact that you feel as if you are walking on diamond-encrusted floors and breathing caviar-infused air as you mill about in this hoity toity market. I see a blog post in my future.

So far, those are the Krogers with nicknames. I’m sure others could be determined if necessary. Hell, add your own if you like!

Photo via Wikipedia

  27 Replies to “Sorting Out the Whole Kroger Situation”

  1. September 4, 2009 at 7:16 am

    20th will always be Ghetto Kroger to me

  2. September 4, 2009 at 7:17 am

    I still drive 20 miles round trip to get to “the good Randall’s” on Memorial at Dairy Ashford. I’m sure it has something to do with the aged, wealthy clientèle.

  3. Jay
    September 4, 2009 at 7:18 am

    Don’t forget Combat Kroger on Cullen and Polk!

  4. KeviKev
    September 4, 2009 at 7:20 am

    I’m still waiting for the OST/Cambridge store to get properly named.

    Any ideas?

  5. September 4, 2009 at 7:23 am

    Zombie Kroger – Do you mean Yale and 20th?

  6. September 4, 2009 at 7:24 am

    Ha! “Combat Kroger.”

    Home of the 6 Formed Ham Loaves.

    Represent!!

  7. CandacitaBOnita
    September 4, 2009 at 7:28 am

    When I was in high school (somewhere around a decade ago) there was a Kroger on W. Little York and 290 that everyone called Punk Rock Kroger. I still don’t know why. Maybe @tideturns on twitter could explain….

  8. September 4, 2009 at 7:30 am

    Brilliant.

    One addition: Kroger on 43rd and Ella is Redneck Kroger, or possibly Toofless Kroger. Redneck Kroger is the best of the Kroger bunch, but that’s not saying much.

  9. Joe
    September 4, 2009 at 7:54 am

    I’ve been thinking that the Kroger at 43rd in Oak Forest is White Trash Kroger, though the moniker might not be unique. The store is pretty well run and clean, but the clientele has a lot of the overweight, the guys in wife beaters, etc.

  10. Rebecca
    September 4, 2009 at 7:54 am

    Personally, I call the store on 20th “The Kroger That Time Forgot.” Of course, that’s too wordy for Stephen who just calls it Depends Kroger. The one on West Gray, for obvious architectural reasons, is Deco Kroger (which I think dovetails nicely with it’s nearby neighbor, Disco Kroger). Of course, all of this helps explain why I do my grocery shopping at Fiesta on 14th. That place is Happy Crazy Booze Land. Wheeeee!!!!!

  11. Nate
    September 4, 2009 at 8:03 am

    Combat Kroger was the first “named” store I visited. It’s well known to UH students.

  12. September 4, 2009 at 8:14 am

    The names are all rat own, especially the Zombie Kroger. I live around the corner from that place and when in a hurry, usually just go down the street to Fiesta at the corner of West 23rd and Shepherd. Normal time does indeed have a tenuous hold on the cosmos in that place. Very strange.

    As for “Ghetto” Kroger, I think that appellation would have worked better in its previous incarnation pre-Signature. Now it just seems to apply as a sort of wink, wink nickname that those of us who went into that store back in the day understand.

    Fiesta on 14th = Happy Crazy Booze Land = Hilarious. Rebecca, trademark that name now!

    However, at the Ghetto Kroger a few weeks ago, there was a woman set up at a bench next to the wine aisle giving away free samples of Stella Artois. First time I had ever seen THAT with an acolholic drink.

  13. Rob
    September 4, 2009 at 8:15 am

    Let’s not forget Spanish Kroger at Buffalo & Westpark; not “espanol” Spanish, but because of the faux-Mediterranean architecture.

  14. Sinjin
    September 4, 2009 at 9:13 am

    this topic is just too fun to pass up.

    The Kroger by I45 has been Redneck Kroger for a long time, not just because of the people there.

    The one down the street at 2920 @ Kuykendahl = Infinity Kroger, because it is open 24/7 and also because of the parking lot. 😉

    The HEB stores don’t seem to have as much personality, except for their widely differing music choices.

  15. September 4, 2009 at 9:16 am

    Thank you for breaking this down Jeff. It’s a real public service to those of us who have recently returned to Houston.

    That being said, after shopping at the HEB on Riverside and Wickersham in Austin for years, there ain’t nothing Houston can do to shock me.

  16. Erin
    September 4, 2009 at 10:31 am

    The Kroger on OST near the medical center is most definitely a Ghetto Kroger. One visit & you’ll understand why.

  17. DanB
    September 4, 2009 at 12:07 pm

    I have referred to the nasty Kroger on 20th as Ghetto Kroger since moving to the Heights in ’87. It serves those who can’t drive or whose cars can go any further. It has all the appeal of a convenience store with dirty floors. They are frequently out of whatever you are rushing in to get because you don’t want to go all the way to 11th.

    And Disco Kroger has gone by that name ever since it was built in the late 70’s or early 80’s. One cruise through it on a weekend night and no explanation is necessary.

  18. Jason McElweenie
    September 4, 2009 at 6:10 pm

    Danb

    20th has been Ghetto Kroger for me since I moved 3 blocks away from it 5 years ago. Thankfully we moved away from there. Now we are near the one on 43rd and who cares about the clientèle at least it’s not the 20th st Kroger

  19. Matt
    September 11, 2009 at 7:32 pm

    I die a little inside each time I walk into Ghetto Kroger on 11th. Deco/Posh Kroger got most of my business for years before moving closer to GK. With the current construction and dearth of any customer service as basic as speaking to people I go hungry for a few days rather than go there. I’m tired of having my groceries covered in dust the second they’re placed on the shelves. Being a properly raised San Antonio man I try to seek out the nearest HEB to be reminded what grocery stores should be, sadly the closest is across from Deco Diamond Kroger. That place has a parking lot smaller than any grocery store I’ve ever seen. It gives me shingles just thinking about driving around searching for a spot.

  20. September 13, 2009 at 6:35 am

    Out of all those, I only really know the Disco Kroger. But there’s a Kroger down the street from me out here in Missouri City. So that could be East Bumblefuck Kroger.

  21. Jeremy
    September 16, 2009 at 8:26 am

    Funny — I’d always heard the Kroger down at S. Post Oak & W. Bellfort referred to as “Ghetto Kroger”. It’s a heck of a lot closer to the ‘hood, right down the road from Hillcroft & W. Airport…

  22. Steve S
    November 2, 2009 at 7:42 am

    What you call “disco Kroger” I have always known as Kinky Kroger. I called it that even before standing in the checkout line between a 6’4″ transvestite and a presumably gay many wearing chaps, a bar vest, and a lot of exposed butt hair. I love my neighborhood.

  23. jasonw
    November 6, 2009 at 4:05 pm

    Great post!

    I’ve lived and shopped near each of these. I think Disco Kroger should be re-named to “who took a crap in here?” Kroger. I used to live walking distance from that one, but would rather drive anywhere than go into that foul smelling store.

    I see that they have a sign up like the lot is for sale for the fiesta on 14th. Anyone have any information on that?

  24. November 11, 2009 at 4:13 pm

    I’ve always heard Posh Kroger called “Hot Mom Kroger”, but that title should then go to the 7747 Kirby Kroger. Or Doctor Kroger, that’s funny. The Med Center Kroger should be called Retro Kroger because of the more classic Foodarama style layout, small size, and building age. Calling it ghetto because of demographics is a little weird.

  25. November 12, 2009 at 12:58 pm

    Oh man … you are so right on with these names (though I have been known to call the Kroger on 20th “Skroger” which I also think is a good name for it – ha!). I live between Ghetto and Zombie. I’d give anything for a kick-ass HEB around here (and no, the “pantry” store on 18th doesn’t count). I’ve been driving to the new HEB on Bunker Hill lately. I’m just not a fan of Kroger and my expectations remain low for the expanded Ghetto even w/ the new part that’s open now.

  26. dhh
    August 27, 2010 at 12:30 am

    I’d always heard the OST/Cambridge Kroger referred to as Ghetto Kroger.

    Folks at work call refer to a “Gucci Kroger,” but there is some debate over whether that would be the Buffalo Speedway/Westpark location or the West Gray location.

  27. Mike Rastiello
    December 11, 2010 at 6:51 am

    I’ve only heard of the West Grey Kroger referred to as MILF Kroger.

    Awesome post, though.

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