WACO, Texas — East Market and Goods is a specialty shop in Waco with a variety of Asian grocery items, many of which you won't find at your local grocery store.
Co-owners and husband and wife, Tim Kulkarni, first-generation Indian, and Joni Navarra, first-generation Filipino, said opening an Asian market in Waco was a passion project and labor of love. After working on it for two years, they finally opened their doors in November 2020.
"We've seen tons of growth and talked with a lot of families and made friends and they all experienced the same kind of troubles that we had as far as looking for ingredients that were kind of basic in our household," Navarra said.
"Bringing those ingredients from home to really make Waco a home," Kulkarni said.
At East Market, you'll find a broad list of items like produce, spices, snacks and drinks from India to Japan and the Philippines.
"Everything in here is a curated list of either requests that we have from the community or things that we know, we've tried, we know are really excellent examples of what the world has to offer from Asia," Kulkarni said.
With the growing diversity in Waco, they've also noticed a growing curiosity so they hope this gives people more options to be creative in their cooking.
"One of the feedbacks that we get outside of thank you for being here, is man this place looks great, we love it, but I have no idea what to do with any of this," Kulkarni said.
They encourage the community to ask questions and soon they'll do cooking demos in person and on YouTube to educate those who are open to learn.
"Through diversity we hope to just form unity, at least," Navarra said. "I mean let's all come to the same table."
East Market and Goods is Open Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. and on Sundays from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.
They're located on 6500 Woodway Dr Ste. 101, Waco, TX 76712.
To visit their Facebook page, click here.