Trader Joe's called 'a food adventure' as Chattanooga store readies to open Wednesday

Staff photo by Mike Pare / Noah Stevens, left, is the "captain" at the new Trader Joe's store on Gunbarrel Road. He and other employees prepare for the store's grand opening on Wednesday.

Noah Stevens says that Chattanooga will see what he terms "a food adventure" when the Trader Joe's grocery store he oversees opens to the public on Wednesday.

"We're in the customer experience business," he said on Monday during a preview of the 2111 Gunbarrel Road store. "We happen to sell food."

The new store employs about 60 people, chosen from some 800 applicants, said Stevens, who came to Chattanooga from a Trader Joe's market outside Memphis in Germantown, Tennessee.

The 19-year veteran of Trader Joe's said the Chattanooga location is "a neighborhood store." He pointed out that a number of murals, which depict various scenes of the Chattanooga area, are placed on the walls around the 11,000-square-foot store located outside one of the Hamilton Place mall entrances.

Just as Chattanooga offers people who live here a variety of activities such as boating and rock climbing, Stevens said Trader Joe's will provide shoppers with "a culinary adventure."