Wednesday, September 29, 2010
Ann's House of Nuts In Columbia
They shuttered the Bridgeport factory and moved into World Headquarters for another decade. It was a converted two-bedroom house behind a gas station. Rundown. Completely unprofessional. But a place where the brothers went daily to talk, read the paper, and be ready for the main event: lunch. At one point, they had stationary with "World Headquaters" across the top.
Ann's House of Nuts isn't as ironic. Ann's is a serious nut and trail mix company with a factory in North Carolina, and their world headquarters on Snowden River Parkway in Columbia. It's a real headquarters with a serious retail store.
Ann's retail store sells a few different lines. Up front was an outlet section -- big bags of peanuts or yogurt-covered raisins for $1. Much of the store was Ann's House of Nuts branded stuff -- nuts, trail mixes, rice crackers, and more. Then the back was bulk items, including candy and tons of baking supplies.
Obviously, you should go to Ann's for nuts. My nephew and I got a huge bag of peanuts, and they had walnuts, pecans, pistachios, and almonds. You can buy pounds of nuts if you needed, including whole nuts in their shells if you wanted to put out a bowl with a nutcracker.
But fall is the perfect time to check out Ann's for all kinds of stuff. Seasonal stuff and candy for Halloween. Baking supplies like sprinkles and chocolates. Exotic dried fruits like figs, kiwis, etc. I had expected a pretty basic outlet, but Ann's runs a professional space. It's shelved and displayed like a regular store, and they worked the crowd -- winning over my nephew with a lollipop.
Ann's House of Nuts store is open weekdays. I don't know nut prices, but I got the vibe that prices were good. The outlet stuff was clearly a deal, and the rest seemed like an amazing selection with reasonable prices.
Ann's House of Nuts World Headquarters
9212 Berger Road
Columbia, MD 21046
NEAR: Ann's faces Snowden River, but it is actually on Berger Road. You turn onto Oakland Mills Road -- a right turn if you're coming from Rte 32 and a left if you're coming from Rte 175. Then right on Berger Road. Click here for coupons.