Q&A with The Goods Bodega
We caught up with owner Shawn Zenthoefer to get "the goods" on downtown's new bodega.
John Gibbens and Shawn Zenthoefer
The Goods Bodega has been a bright spot for those who live and work downtown. We caught up with owner Shawn Zenthoefer. She runs the bodega with her general manager and BFF John Gibbens. Shawn gives us the goods on the Goods Bodega.
Tell us about The Goods.
The Goods Bodega opened last September. We are a small urban market offering grocery and pantry staples and prepared food meal solutions for downtown residents. We also make grilled cheese sandwiches for lunch Monday through Saturday.
Did you model it after a favorite bodega in another city?
There are so many we love! Jimmy’s Food Store in Dallas, Lolita’s in Boulder, and all the nameless bodegas and markets found all over larger cities. We did visit Royal Blue in Austin several times. They have a very successful model.
People who live and work downtown were starved for a bodega like yours. Do you have a lot of regulars?
About 80 percent of our customers are regulars. It’s been great getting to know everyone in the neighborhood!
Even those who aren’t in walking distance have been making the drive specifically for your grilled cheese sandwiches. What makes them so great?
We use local Farrell Bread and quality cheeses. Plus, we make fun dipping sauces in house so you can give your sandwich a different twist each time.
What’s the strangest or most unique thing you sell?
Cheesy Cups. It’s a blend of four different cheese-based chip products in one cup.
Where do you like to eat in Tulsa when you’re not at The Goods?
We eat tacos. A lot. The truck behind Fair Fellow has become a favorite. We’re also regulars at La Flama on 11th Street.
How long have you lived in Tulsa, and what do you think of the changes to downtown in the last decade?
I have lived and worked in downtown for the last 12 years. Being part of the downtown culture and witnessing the growth has been amazing.
What would make downtown Tulsa even better?
As a mom, I would have to say better education. As a bodega owner, I would have to say more downtown residents. As a hip downtowner, I would say more downtown retail and entertainment besides just food and drinking.