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Best Trader Joes in the DC area

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Last weekend I was in Chicago and wondered into a TJ off Michigan Avenue. I was absolutely amazed by all the products I'd never seen before. I was wondering which TJ around here has the best selection of products. Am itching to try some new stuff . . .

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  1. That's interesting about the different products. I know the CA ones have diff products than here on the East Coast. There are three TJs equidistant from my house, and while there are a couple of items I'm more likely to find at one than the others, their stock seems to fluctuate at the same rate.

    1. THe one in Rockville is quite large and has pretty good selection of products

      1 Reply
      1. re: benzipperer

        Wow, the Rockville one drives me nuts. Parking in that strip mall is a hassle and the other customers drive me bonkers. Most likely, I'm just a crank.

        Regardless, to the OP--the big advantage (I can think of) for heading to one of the VA locations is that local liquor laws keep TJ's in MoCo from selling wine. I'm not a huge TJ's fan, but my impression is that the good deals on wine are part of what many folks love, and you won't find that in MoCo stores.

      2. I shop regularly at several TJ in the area (Chevy Chase, West End & Alexandria). The selection seems to be basically the same at all these.
        If you go on their website they do post different products regionally under the NEW products section.

        However probably due to their amazing expansion, recently they have run into problems supplying some of our regular/favorite products.

        thai dumplings (veggie + shrimp) have been out until they find new supplier.
        stir fry noodles are also having suppply problems, you can still find the udon and curry but maybe not soba.
        asparagus cuts & tips have not been seen for over a month
        they used to have nice frozen tortellinis and those have been discontinued recently.

        1. TJ in Old Town Alexandria used to carry super jumbo brown eggs frequently and the one in Springfield far less frequently. Now neither of them do. I go to the DC farmers market and get double yolk brown eggs at a reasonable price. That farmers market also sometimes carries jumbo lump crabmeat at a good price.

          1. It could be the Chicago one is being stocked by the California-based TJ distribution center, rather than the east coast/Massachusetts-based one.

            Of the local ones I've been to, the Annapolis and Springfield outlets seem to have the best selection.

            1. With the exception of the West End location, which is always so crowded and/or picked over as to be not worth the time, I have found the other 4 DC-area locations I've tried all completely interchangeable.

              1. The TJ's in the Burnt Mills shopping center in Silver Spring, on Rte 29, is pretty good. Space-wise, I like it much better than the Bethesda or Rockville ones, but I haven't been to the latter two enough (at all) lately to compare what they stock.

                1 Reply
                1. re: Chocolatechipkt

                  I prefer the Silver Spring location--it seems less crowded than at Rockville and it has more items. I once stopped in at Rockville looking for some of my regular staples and found that they didn't carry them.

                2. One of the employees at the SS location told me last year that's actually one of their top-selling locations (on the East Coast or in this area, they weren't clear). It's a better organized store than the Rockville (and Bethesda!) locations, I think.

                    1. I prefer the Rockville location to the Bethesda location and I find that if I go right after work, it is not too crowded. I finally got to the TJ in the West End (MUCH closer to me) but it was packed! I think I will have to head there late at night or during the day on weekdays from now on.

                      As for things being out of stock, the Rockville store was out of the frozen french toast for a while and now I can't seem to find the frozen jasmine rice. Has anyone seen this lately?

                      1. The terrible thing about TJs in Maryland is that they have no alcohol.

                        1. I like the Rockville store, but also shop at the one in Tyson's (Rte. 7).

                          1. TJs isn't the type of grocery store to stock things on a regular basis, which is why they only have about 10% of the SKUs of even a Whole Foods (let alone a conventional market). They only purchase products that they can sell less than anyone else. If the manufacturer doesn't cut them an exclusive deal, they'll refuse to carry it.