BEST MIDDLE EASTERN GROCERY (1999)
From the two full aisles of olive oils to the four or more varieties of feta in the cooler (try the Egyptian double cream!), Bill's has an astonishing array of inexpensive, easy-to-use ingredients. There are sweet-pepper-based spreads, frozen artichoke hearts, vinegars of every imaginable flavor, and the freshest assortment of baklava and other pastries in the Twin Cities. Nostalgic southeastern Europeans come here for the flavorings of home (this is where to find giant tins of Vegeta, a dried-vegetable medley that is the secret ingredient in many Balkan dishes), while frugal gourmets of all backgrounds line up for the bargains on extra-virgin olive oil and bulk supplies of everything from dried cherries and blueberries to--pesto lovers take note--pine nuts.