International Grocery Stores Every Foodie Should Visit
learn about other cultures through their food
there is currently – finally– a push to make Toowoomba a thriving and inclusive multicultural city.
As much as we’re a city of born and breds, we’re also a city of travellers and visitors who decided never to leave. The annual Toowoomba Languages & Cultures Festival is always a melting pot of people who want to celebrate this diversity – and, of course, one of the absolutely highlights is always the food.
We can all do more to understand those who come from backgrounds different to our own, and these international food stores are all owned by incredible people who have travelled very far to make Toowoomba their own! We’re proud to call them local businesses for local people. So whether you’re looking for ingredients to remind you of home or reminiscing about overseas adventures, it’s time to explore some new food aisles! If you’re unsure what to do with something, or how to recreate a favourite dish, don’t be afraid to ask! You never know what you’ll learn. As they say, there’s far more that unites us than divides us.
Afghan Convenience Store
This store has a much-loved range of Middle Eastern-style groceries, as well as delicious hot food to go (think curries, kebabs and lamb shanks that fall right off the bone). While the focus is on representing Afghanistan cuisine, traditional ingredients from Iran, India and Turkey are also available. There’s rows and rows of bulk spices and dried goods too, so you can stock up.
For those who may want to continue a tradition first tried after dinner at El Attar, the store also sells the water pipe known as a shisha with accompanying ingredients.
Where: 183 Margaret Street (near Bon Amici’s)
Jasmine Asian Food
This large food mart sells ingredients traditional to Filipino, Japanese and Singaporean cuisines. The selection is comprehensive, with plenty of dried and frozen options if you’re not making kaldereta regularly. There is easy parking out the front as well as along Annand Street.
Where: 139 Herries Street (corner of Annand Street)
The Jerky and Coffee Hut
Continuing the success of its Ipswich store, The Jerky and Coffee Hut opened their South African grocery store in Toowoomba a few years ago. The store has since become famous for its biltong, a tender jerky-style snack that any South African would vehemently argue is nothing like jerky. The store holds 24 varieties – they are not messing around! There’s plenty of other boutique foodie items too, including cheesy garlic snails…
True to the other part of its name, The Jerky and Coffee Hut serves delicious Ethiopian brews.
Where: 100 Hill Street
Hanaro Mart Asian Grocery Store
Hanaro Mart is the state’s largest Asian-Korean supermarket chain. With a focus on Korean ingredients, you can expect more brands of kimchi than you can shake a stick at! There are often free tastings out the front, which is the perfect way to try something new.
Where: Grand Central Shopping Centre (near Woolworths)
Did we miss your favourite? Please let us know!