I started off at Manhattan Bagel and presented my tattered loyalty card that I've been stamping religiously since January. Buy 12 dozen bagels, and the next dozen is free! There is nothing quite like walking out with a hot bag of bagels with no exchange of funds, it is a great feeling. We go through a dozen a week easily. My daughter loves the egg & poppy bagel with cream cheese, and their minis are the perfect size for lunch boxes. I like a toasted whole wheat with egg, swiss and a sliced tomato. I redeem them 3-4 times a year, saving me roughly $35 annually.
One reason I love working part-time at Alan's Orchard is that I get to sample new products. As one of the official tasters, my input helps to determine what they sell. I have the "busy mom who wants convenience but healthy food" nailed, because I am one and I know what we want. We want vegetable pot pies. A large package arrived with 12 boxes and 3 flavors to sample: sweet potato, lentil and spinach & goat cheese. Already considered "healthy tasting" by some of the male testers and almost rejected...I saved this one from doom. With 5 minutes from freezer to microwave to taste buds, this pot pie was filling, wholesome, and all natural. It was amazing! I tried the spinach and could taste the difference olive oil makes in a crust to replace butter. There was a nice lemony accent and it wasn't too creamy. With about ten ingredients, all low in fat and only 360 calories per pie, they offer a lighter alternative to the meat and chicken pot pies that have become a best seller at the store. We loaded up the freezer and 7 were sold before I left to pick my daughter up from school. It comes in a cute little box and makes a great lunch or dinner with a salad.
Loyalty also pays off at Wild Greens. They stamp their customer loyalty card when you purchase salads and/or sandwiches so you can mix & match 12 items to get a free lunch or dinner. I had fun with this one, trying a different item each time, until I honed in and perfected my ideal sandwich. My favorite is definitely the chipotle chicken sandwich, on a pressed wheat wrap with grilled chicken and extra spinach. The chipotle aioli is all that and more, I dream about it. The menu suggests the sandwich prepared with crispy chicken, semolina roll and no greens but I have tweaked it a little. The sandwich guys seem to be receptive to substitutions which is very important to me. I also like their egg salad BLT wrap, the Baja chicken and the tuna melt. A sandwich goes for about $7.50 and they are huge so I eat some now and save some for later. A friendly hello from Danny makes it complete.
Luckily I didn't get a parking ticket, or my whole savings plan would have been busted. Where do you redeem your loyalty cards?