Inside Jungle Jim’s, one of the weirdest grocery stores in America

#FoodTripping Day 11: Fairfield, Ohio

There’s nothing ordinary about this massive destination supermarket. A “semi-functioning” monorail greets you in the parking lot, animatronic creatures sing to you as you browse the aisles, and you might just be greeted by a tall man in a wizard costume. That would be the founder, Jim. He’s like the mayor of this place (which is probably bigger than some small towns), and patrons were visibly excited when he came down in full garb to hang out with us during our broadcasts.

His magic power? Something about price busting. But he also has managed to curate a crazily comprehensive selection of international produce and ingredients, along with one of the best hot sauce collections we’ve ever seen. “He’s clearly very passionate about his store,” said Molly (watch her trying to keep up in the video above), “plus he’s wearing a wizard costume, so bonus points for that.” We had both hosts in tow, and had to navigate around countless shopping carts as we live-streamed our way through the aisles and filled our cart with the oddest offerings (including a $300 wheel of Wisconsin cheese, and a $150 gummy bear the size of a human infant).

“It’s part grocery store, but part amusement park,” said Bobby, who approved of the robotic cereal mascots who sang oldies over the seafood section. Even though it might be a bit farther away than a typical grocery chain for many shoppers (there’s a second location in Eastgate), everyone shared the sentiment: Where else can you get serenaded by the Trix rabbit and also get a great deal on steaks?

Click here to meet Jungle Jim and here for more stops on Zagat and The Huffington Post’s #FoodTripping tour.

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