Growing up in New York City, I didn’t have a Wegmans or a Walmart growing up. Places like Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods didn’t explode in popularity until the last ten years or so, and for many, those places were too expensive to shop anyways. I became used to
relying on corner stores and small markets for staple goods but also for things that are new and exciting. I never thought I would find something like that out of New York City, especially in the Rochester area, but I was wrong. Rubino’s Italian Market is everything and more. They have everything you are looking for, there it be ingredients or meals. They have imported dry goods like pasta and risotto, and my wife was marveling at the olive oil selection like a kid in a candy store. I felt the same way as her once we got to the bakery section. Rainbow cookies, sfingi, and cannoli all under one roof? It’s a no brainer. And I’m still basking in the beauty of their “cannoli cookie sandwich” which is sweet cannoli cream in between two chocolate chip cookies. I’ll take ten, please. If you’re trying to cook an old school Italian meal, this is the place to go. Or, if you don’t feel like cooking, but you want to eat an old school Italian meal, you’ve also come to the right place! They have a full selection of hot foods like pasta, chicken dishes, arancini, and roasted vegetables. Their hot items are available for purchase as a meal, and they also sell cold versions packaged up to be heated at home. Rubino’s is a small space (when you consider everything they have in there!) but they have filled it to the brim with a wide variety of foods. They have specialty sausages which are Rochester-renowned; a rotating selection changes based on seasons and right now they have a lamb sausage available. There’s also a regular meat counter where you can get cuts of beef, chicken, and other proteins. There’s a separate deli meat counter where you can order cold cuts and cold salads, like tortellini salad, a variety of pasta salads, and their selection of imported olives is more impressive than Wegman’s. If you want a deli sandwich, they have those too, they even have their own version of a garbage plate sub. Part of the charm of going to those little corner stores were the personalities working there, and at Rubino’s it’s no different. The family-owned business has many employees in the store that have been working there across generations, and their knowledge and their kindness know no limits. If you’re looking for an Italian product, it would be surprising if Rubino’s didn’t have it. Their selection and service are a rarity nowadays, and I have no doubt that I will continue going with my family for years to come.