JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (WJHL) — Piere Herrmann knows the grocery business inside and out after nearly two decades for a corporate chain, and he plans to put that knowledge to use at Piere’s Marketplace, opening in late October at 205 E. Main St. in Johnson City.

“My wife and I, we had this passion for the small mom and pop, very intricate specialty grocery store,” Herrmann said. He and his wife Jules have wanted to pursue the dream of a small, independent full-service grocery since spending four years working in Austin, Texas last decade.

  • What: Piere’s Marketplace (full service independent grocery store)
  • Where: 205 E. Main Street, Johnson City
  • When: Planned opening Oct. 25, hours 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday-Saturday
  • Who: Piere and Jules Herrmann

“We saw our groceries start to shift from kind of conventional-based foods more to organic, natural, like looking at what’s in your food, that sort of thing,” Herrmann said.

Piere Herrmann stands in front of the future home of Piere’s Marketplace in downtown Johnson City, Tenn. Sept. 26, 2023. (Photo: WJHL)

That also included consumers’ desire to purchase from local farmers and artisans when they could, he said. That’s specifically what’s on offer at Boone Street Market in Jonesborough, but with a large and growing resident population in and around downtown, Herrmann said Piere’s will also include national brands, dry goods and everything else shoppers need to exclusively shop there if they want to.

“Think of like a European market, you know, minimalistic style,” he said of the 2,400-square-foot space that’s being finished out now for a projected Oct. 25 opening.

“You can get all of your stuff. If you want pasta, if you want canned vegetables, if you want rice and beans.

“It’s going to be a very open concept. I can’t wait for the community to see because I think they’re going to love it. I’m taking the big box concept and the little box concept and combining the two, which I don’t think we’ve seen yet here.”

For the Herrmanns, who moved to Johnson City two years ago from Piere’s last post in Richmond, Va., the “big box” element will mean pretty much every section a shopper would need at a large supermarket. That will include refrigerated and frozen products, canned goods, dry goods, meat, cheese, dairy and vegan options.

How will it all fit in 2,400 square feet? Brand selectivity for one.

“You may not have 3,000 different varieties of the canned corn, you’ll have two,” Herrmann said.

At the same time, the store will have both an on-site and virtual “suggestion box” for potential curated orders.