So Mt. Pleasant will be getting the much-ballyhooed Trader Joe’s as well as P.F. Chang’s, according to reports in The Post and Courier. If the hype is to be believed, Trader Joe’s is the best thing to happen to the food world since sliced bread. It’s like a cross between Whole Foods and Walmart when it comes to gourmet and organic food items, which are sold at lower prices than you’d expect thanks to the company’s innovative production and distribution system (Fortune Magazine published a great article on the subject in Aug. 2010). They also have super enthusiastic employees who wear Hawaiian shirts and provide excellent customer service and respond to ringing bells. Trader Joe’s fans are rabid for the place and have been known to create Facebook pages just to beg for them to open stores in different towns. We’re a little concerned for our wallets. According to the P&C report, Trader Joe’s will be opening in the Hungryneck Antiques Mall space on Johnnie Dodds but no date has been set.

P.F. Chang’s is another chain with lots of fans. It’s kind of like the Olive Garden of Chinese restaurants. They have a massive menu of Chinese-American classics like fried rice and lo mein along with Warrior Cards for frequent guests that entitle the bearer to aggressive discounts (if 10 percent is your idea of aggressive). According to the P&C, the Arizona-based restaurant group will be demolishing the old Chili’s at Mt. Pleasant Towne Centre and building a brand-spanking-new 6,400-square-foot building. Expect a horse to be stationed there sometime in the late summer or early fall.

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