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Your disappointing purchases from Costco

  • Monica Jun 17, 2011 08:53 AM

Mine definitely would be premade sushi...I couldn't finish it....no matter how much I tried.

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  1. Big tub of fresh mozz balls in herbs and olive oil. Tasteless and awful.

    Big tub of spinach artichoke dip. Way too oniony, not even worth eating.

    3 pack of costco bacon. AWFUL. I took it back.

    10 Replies
    1. re: rockandroller1

      We love that spinach and artichoke dip. Disappears in a day in my house.

      1. re: ferret

        I heat the spin/art dip and it is really good!

        1. re: ferret

          I really love spin/art dip and have eaten it all over, but something was just really unpleasant about theirs for me. Ah well, to each his own I guess.

          1. re: rockandroller1

            at my costco they sell two different spin/ art dip....one is very good , the other NOT

        2. re: rockandroller1

          Those mozz balls are clearly a case of YMMV. We like them a lot. I like to melt a few on a plate, then scrape the puddles onto some nice toasted bread. Instant white pizza.

          1. re: rockandroller1

            I haven't tried the spinach artichoke, but didn't like the spinach dip with water chestnut at all.

            1. re: gemsquash

              Agreed. Not at all.

            2. re: rockandroller1

              I agree that the mozz balls in herbs and oil are not very good (and I actually bought them a second time recently when my daughter asked for them), the texture was hard and unpleasant. HOWEVER, I found that putting a few of them in the microwave for 10-15 seconds made them nice and soft and they tasted much better. I see that someone else here suggested melting them.

              1. re: rockandroller1

                I like the Spinach Artichoke Jalapeno one ....

                1. re: hawkeyeui93

                  Us too. Especially when warmed ....

              2. Got some Phillips branded frozen barramundi fillets that tasted very fishy

                2 Replies
                1. re: redfish62

                  Yes, the same experience - ugh. A friend of mine tried them as well with the same reaction.

                  1. re: Rene

                    I threw the bag away after one taste. I like Phillips crab cakes, though, mostly crab, not carbs.
                    We love the spinach/artichoke dip heated, it's VERY garlicy. Had those mozzarella balls once and threw them away, we couldn't stomach them. Their fresh mozzarella is very rubbery, too.

                2. The artichoke and cheese chicken burgers. The texture was more spongy than meaty, salty and it just plain didn't taste good. And I can eat some junk food!

                  1. I just took a chance on the orzo salad from the refrigerated case near the salsa, bruschetta, hummus, etc. It contained orzo, artichoke hearts, sundried tomatoes, pine nuts, feta cheese, and herbs, in a red wine vinaigrette. Sounds awesome, right? I'd totally order that at a restaurant as a side order (or even a main course) with a description like that. Unfortunately, it doesn't taste very good. Extremely salty and overly pungent, and I usually LOVE vinegary pasta salads. It was $7 for a pretty big container, so I'm going to eat it all, little by little.

                    From the same case, the plain hummus that isn't Sabra brand was really bland and boring. The only Sabra flavors Costco carries around here are pine nuts or roasted garlic, which aren't my favorites. I decided I'm better off just buying smaller containers of the flavors I like (including plain) when Publix puts them on sale.

                    I didn't love the huge bag of croutons either, but I eventually made it through those. I think they were bruschetta croutons from FreshGourmet, but I could be wrong. Definitely came in a white bag. They were too hard and dry, very inferior to Pepperidge Farm and Texas Toast croutons.

                    I absolutely love the fresh mozzarella balls in herbs and oil, though!

                    8 Replies
                    1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                      I looked at that orzo salad last week, Voodoo Lou, and although me & orzo are pretty tight, the container looked too soupy. Sad to hear it wasn't tasty but not entirely surprised.

                      And a side note, I bet you could chickpea the shizzle out of what you've been buying, by making your own hummus. Tailored to your tastes and so much cheaper. Please do consider it. :)

                      1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                        Same here! Should've known when a neighbor gave it to me after she said she didn't like it. It was extremely oily and goopy.

                        I'm also going to add the lobster salad that is premade. Had it two weeks ago and gave it away . So, so salty. Such a shame--it wasn't cheap.

                        1. re: gloriousfood

                          I ended up returning the horrible orzo salad yesterday, along with a really bad container of pre-sliced mango that we usually love. I feel guilty returning perishable food that will immediately be thrown away, but both were extremely disappointing and not cheap. In the past, I forced myself to eat the entire containers of crappy mango-peach salsa and bland, gluey hummus, but from now on, I'll take advantage of Costco's liberal return policies when food is just BAD.

                          1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                            I don't go out of my way to return things to Costco or to TJs for that matter either. But it's not just (good) customer service, it's good business. They use that information to deal with their suppliers resulting, hopefully, in more satisfied customers, increased sales, and increased profit. So don't hesitate.

                            1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                              no need to feel bad....if you dont return it they dont know that a problem exsist. Thats why they have Quality Control.

                            2. re: gloriousfood

                              I agree on the lobster salad but i just put it in a colander and wash off the bad "stuff". I then re-make the salad to my liking.

                            3. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                              The freshgourmet ones are fantastically greasy. MUCH MUCH better than pepperidge farm. which suck.
                              the freshgourmet ones have flavors, and garlic oil!

                              Also, I throw them in with dressing. I EXPECT them to stand up to the dressing. HATE soggy bread.

                              ymmv.

                              1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                                We bought the roadshow "BABA" brand hummus, spicy pepper (had to buy 3), and just today, had to go to another CostCo for refills. Just delicious. Wish they'd carry the Baba brand regularly.

                              2. Just went thru a package of cremini mushrooms. Used them before the sell-by date but they'd already started to go slimy and had a fishy smell. Will stick to buying them bulk at the grocery.

                                1 Reply
                                1. re: azveggieguy

                                  How were they packaged? If in plastic film, transfer them into a paper bag (so the moisture doesn't condense & make the 'shrooms slimy & mushy), then store in your veggie bin. I also buy in bulk (from a local mushroom farm) & they'll last a couple weeks some times.

                                2. I don't shop at Costco but I went to a pool party last night where two friends both showed up with the 7-layer Mexican dip. Blech.

                                  1. At least you can return any purchase for a refund with no questions asked, so bring the premade sushi back.

                                    43 Replies
                                    1. re: cstr

                                      Yeah, my cousin told me the samething but I didn't think it was worth the trouble. I have never returned any food items in my life but my cousin on the other hand, returns everything..fruits...vege....I usually don't have that kind of energy or time. lol

                                      1. re: Monica

                                        In most instances, just bringing the receipt, the next time you're in the store, and explaining what happened is all you need to do. They really don't care if you return the questionable product, especially if it's a perishable.

                                        1. re: cstr

                                          Really? So you don't have to bring the actual stuff...huh..that's good to know..thanks for the tip.

                                          1. re: Monica

                                            I bought the large pack of chicken legs that comes in a segmented package that can be separated into 5 individual packs. I opened one and put the rest in the freezer and they smelled terrible. I called and asked if I needed to bring them all back and was told that I should.

                                            When I put the quadruple-bagged mess on the counter the person looked at me like I was crazy and said not to bring the opened part it if that ever happened again.

                                            1. re: JRSD

                                              It is best if you bring it back so QC can have a look see for their paperwork.

                                        2. re: Monica

                                          I have returned all kinds of fruits and vegetables. We shop once a week, so there is no energy involved to return them, except to step up to the customer service and get the money back.

                                          However, my solution to the problem is: DON'T BUY most of the produce at Costco; consequently, fewer returns.

                                          I Don't Buy:

                                          Peaches: dark and mostly rotten inside, even when they look good outside.

                                          Avocados: rot before they ripen (yes, I know how to ripen them).

                                          Pears: rot before they ripen.

                                          Bananas: never - they don't taste good

                                          Mangoes - never ripen properly - I will buy the yellow ones, but mostly they look pretty bad even when in the plastic egg-type carton.

                                          There is more, I'm sure, but I have no energy for it :-))

                                          1. re: Rella

                                            never had a problem with any produce at Costco, in fact, some of the best peaches, berries, pears and assorted melons I've had. Also, the fish is always clean and fresh with no fishy smell at all.

                                            1. re: cstr

                                              Oh, I wish this were true for my Costco in Winchester, VA, but I have to admit that I see many people buying these. I'd love to buy the pears, mangoes, avocados and peaches. I am still able to buy California naval oranges that are almost always good.

                                              1. re: Rella

                                                give the manager a holler. they do respond, if enough people shout.

                                                1. re: Chowrin

                                                  Yes, they know me in produce and the customer service after about 18 years now :-))

                                              2. re: cstr

                                                One time I had great asparagus from there while another time, it got all mushy after 15 minutes of transit and smelled off. I do not like to have to take the remaining products back that I did not like. Interesting to hear about the refunds with just the receipt.

                                              3. re: Rella

                                                Good to know, but I do buy their bluberries. Can't go all year without them on my cereal and yogurt...and in my muffins.

                                                1. re: monavano

                                                  I've ordered and used for some time now from Honeyville freeze-dried blueberries for cereal and yogurt, when there is no fresh. They use "No additives, no preservatives, no sugar." http://store.honeyvillegrain.com/free...
                                                  I usually order the freeze-dried peas also for stews.
                                                  They are the two freeze-dried items that I recommend. I've tried other items, though and would recommend those items, as well.

                                                2. re: Rella

                                                  A year or two back, I bought a big container of kiwi fruit that looked beautiful, but many of them were shmooshy and rotten on the inside. I didn't hesitate to return those!

                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                    I don't know where you live but I've never had a problem with bananas. I am in SoFla

                                                    1. re: Rella

                                                      I am in Canada, and I know the suppliers are different but I have had excellent luck with Costco produce, especially the mangoes (and I know mangoes don't have to co through a hot water bath in Canada like in the US)

                                                      1. re: Rella

                                                        Totally agree on the bananas and avocados. The bananas never ripen and the avocados are black inside...

                                                        1. re: Rella

                                                          I live in NJ and the produce is one of the main reasons I shop at Costco. We're very fussy about produce & I've even had guests comment that they've never had fruits and vegetables as good as mine. Everything: the bananas, Rainier (sp?) cherries, avocados, campari tomatoes. Only fruit that hasn't always been great were the peaches.
                                                          And around Thanksgiving time the brussels sprouts were the best I've ever, ever had.

                                                          1. re: helou

                                                            Perhaps the Garden State motto carries over to Costco warehouses in NJ.

                                                          2. re: Rella

                                                            One of the reasons I originally got a Costco membership a few years back was that the peaches and nectarines there were amazing. (If I remember right, they were shipped from the West coast.)

                                                            This year I have yet to see any peaches or, especially, nectarines there that aren't rock-hard and totally lacking in peach/nectarines aroma. I just keep seeing the kind that you know will never ripen properly.

                                                            But -- the same is true for most of the peaches/nectarines I've been seeing everywhere in the markets around Miami this year. I did catch ONE crop of nectarines at Publix back in July that was amazing, so good in fact that it almost brought tears to my eyes. Nothing since then though.

                                                            1. re: racer x

                                                              Some of the nectarines from our Costco this year have been great, some not so much (we're on the west coast). If you look at the end of the case you'll see the variety printed. Some are better than others.

                                                              Generally speaking, the fresh food we get at Costco is fresher and of higher quality that what we can get anywhere else. It's the only place we can regularly get Prime meats, except for one Supermarket in our area, and it's about one-third the price for the same stuff. Generally, produce is astonishingly good. Supermarkets and even Farmers' Markets pale by comparison, at least in our area.

                                                              East Coast Costcos we've shopped at haven't been quite as nice.

                                                              1. re: acgold7

                                                                Many time bitten, many times shy. About the only fruit I've bought within the last 3 months, that I can remember, are CA naval oranges, which were excellent, and some cherries yesterday. Even the last lemons I bought could have been picked unripe, or something was strange - no zip!. All the rest is a bust IMO; looking hard, or old and soft and green mold, or from experience, tastes off or flat.
                                                                Winchester, VA.

                                                                I've been told when complaining that "We sell tons of stuff here, a lot of stuff goes out of here, no problems."

                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                  I've had great luck with their fruit, the CA peaches were like the size of softballs and really sweet. The champagne grapes were excellent and they have had a run of fresh figs from CA also.

                                                                  1. re: cstr

                                                                    OMG..they have the champagne grapes in..
                                                                    Those little nectar pearls of goodness are my faves..
                                                                    Had peaches sliced as a sample last week at the Poway Costco and they were delicious..

                                                                    1. re: cstr

                                                                      We had those figs too -- they were very fresh and looked so lovely, but were so lacking in sweetness and flavor. I cooked them down into an oatmeal topping but was bummed.

                                                                  2. re: acgold7

                                                                    imnsho, buying prime beef from costco is silly. they have the BEST choice in the country. then again, I don't like fatty beef too much... ymmv

                                                                    1. re: Chowrin

                                                                      I agree, their Choice grade is better than what we normally find in the Supers... but when you can get Prime at Costco for much less than Choice elsewhere, and dry age it yourself, and end up with a steak or roast better than you can get at the best Steakhouse in your city... why wouldn't you?

                                                                      Not that you'd do this every day.

                                                                      But as you say, it's a matter of personal taste.

                                                                      Interestingly, in some parts of the country, Costco also has Business Centers that are more geared towards restaurants. They don't have Prime but do have Select as well as Choice, which in some cases is just fine, especially if you want much leaner (and cheaper) beef. Sometimes I go there and get that.

                                                                      1. re: acgold7

                                                                        Know my opinion is in the minority concerning Costco meats, - but I am NOT a fan of their meat department. I have tried several items ( boneless beef short ribs- no flavor, nice-looking pork chops - tasteless, farm-raised salmon- blah, and their frozen bacon-wrapped fillets are tough and tasteless). I do love their Seafood Road Show and being able to purchase (frozen Artic brand(?) shrimp with ONLY salt added, is a plus. And, their one-pound tub of Dungeness crab can't be beat.

                                                                        Unfortunately, Costco seems to be inching closer to WalMart's practices in some of the other (non-food) items they offer. NO QUALITY due to the short cuts in manufacturing so the item can be offerd to Costco members at a reduced price.

                                                                        None-the-less, still love Costco, (I am also not one to return items, but I will have to give some thought regarding the person who mentioned that "returning an item" helps in QC.)

                                                                        1. re: shasta21

                                                                          I certainly can't say this with any authority at all, but my impression of their seafood Friday offerings (the little stand with fish on ice), is that it is frozen fish thawing out on ice in the separate compartments, and that this sometimes is the frozen fish in bags in their frozen fish department.

                                                                          The reason I say this is that I've asked a couple of times if the fish is all frozen and they are presenting it here in the 'thawing out' stage, and each time, they said 'yes, you are right, it is."

                                                                          I'm interested in what you are saying about inching closer to Walmart's practices in the non-food items. But, IMO, so far the quality in furniture is good, seasonal outdoor items are very good.

                                                                          If you are at all dissatisfied, please return. I have NEVER had a return not accepted. Don't know what you mean, "in QC."

                                                                          1. re: Rella

                                                                            Rella - QC - quality control I should have clarified my views on other Costco items that I found inferior. When I mentioned "inching closer to Wal-Mart's practices", I meant that SOME manufactures specifically make products for Costco (just like Wal-Mart). Since Costco's profit margin is very slim, the manufacture tries to omit some features that add cost to the item. (Some, but not all.) A few items that I can think of right off: slim-line clothes hangers/omitting the attached hook found on the best c. hangers, Food Savers are a cheap version of the original quality machine, (I have taken back two that quit working within a few months.), Karcher Pressure Washer- leaks all around the connection, screw driver set that the parts could not be accessed. Rubbermaid 'Snap Ware' - virtually all the flaps have broken off within a year. (Stick with Lock N Lock) And, some items are made WITHOUT A RESET BUTTON to save money. However, on some items, the manufacture adds an extra port on electronics or adds an extra cup size to the product that doesn't neccesarily cost extra to make.

                                                                            I only take back non-food items and sometimes not even those. Just hate returning "stuff" since it takes time, not to mention gas. And, also I know people sometimes make a habit of this. I guess it could be said that every Costco purchase might be considered "Buyer Beware". However, next to Nordstroms, I know Costco has a good attitude/reputation toward return purchases. That is definitely a PLUS. (Just don't expect to apply for and get a job at Costco, if you are an "OLDER" adult.)

                                                                            As for your furniture purchase, - there are many items that are of high quality. There are also manufactures that like to introduce their product throught the Costco route. Find it once and never again except through other merchants (later) at a much higher price. Whatever the case, it can be both enlighening and frustrating not being able to re-find a new product that you consider a "great purchase".

                                                                            It will be interesting to see what, if any, changes occurr under the new CEO, now that Jim Senigal will be stepping down at the end of the year.

                                                                            1. re: shasta21

                                                                              Thanks for your further post. I didn't know that there will be a new CEO; I've oft wondered just how much a CEO is involved in the fine points of merchandising, but leave this to their employees. For instance, can I count on the new CEO to downgrade or upgrade the wine they are selling by getting a new wine purchaser? Does he get this specific or does he instruct all goods to be downgrounded or all goods to be looked over to see if there is a higher profit margin on each item?

                                                                              I have found that certain brand name models of computers are made for Costco. But I have also found that Best Buy does the same thing - at least on one of the Samsung laptops that I was considering.

                                                                              I think Buyer Beware is important for all purchases whether they be at Costco or elsewhere.

                                                                              To sum up my 'buyer beware" attitude: I purchased a set of pans from Costco years ago. Since then I have seen them go from "made in Italy" to "made in Thailand (I think) and then to "made in Indonesia" - I think in that order. All under the Kirkland brand. Although they seem to be the same; in design, they are not, I don't feel they are. I am sooooo glad I purchased their first horse out of the barn, "Made in Italy." Actually I did purchase also another horse - "made in Thailand" because I wanted MORE pots.

                                                                              1. re: Rella

                                                                                >>>does he instruct all goods to be downgrounded or all goods to be looked over to see if there is a higher profit margin on each item?<<< Note that the profit margin is always the same: 14%. That was one of Sinegal's decrees. Costco has been punished by Wall Street more than once for that. It will be interesting to see if that remains with the new CEO.

                                                                                1. re: acgold7

                                                                                  "Note that the profit margin is always the same: 14%. That was one of Sinegal's decrees. Costco has been punished by Wall Street more than once for that."

                                                                                  Do I assume correctly that Costco stock has gone down because it is:
                                                                                  a low of 14% or a high of 14%.

                                                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                                                    Too Low. The Wall Street geniuses think Costco is "leaving money on the table" by not charging their customers enough, so they downgrade the stock.

                                                                                    1. re: acgold7

                                                                                      Only happy that Jim Senigal is NOT the typical CEO and cares MORE about saving the members money instead of catering to shareholder expectations. Costco stock still seems to be doing VERY WELL, considering these difficult economic times. It's pure Wall Street greed to expect more.

                                                                                      1. re: shasta21

                                                                                        I agree. He's built long-term loyalty. We'll see if his successor can maintain the tradition and do the same. (They have announced that the $1.50 hot dog will remain. Whew!)

                                                                                        1. re: acgold7

                                                                                          Although I am a reliable customer, I haven't eaten the hotdog, nor pizza, nor frozen yogurt in years. Most of the tables are filled eating these food groups as I pass by. I wonder, is this 14% profit?

                                                                                          1. re: Rella

                                                                                            Less, I'm guessing. Probably varies by item.

                                                                                            1. re: Rella

                                                                                              Almost all their profit comes from the membership fee. Their goods and services are basically sold at cost.

                                                                                2. re: shasta21

                                                                                  It's true that some manufacturers make "bargain" models of their products for discount sale. I met the CEO of a well-known cooler-chest manufacturer a while back, who told me that the models they sell at Costco and other discount places have no insulation in the tops of the coolers, while their standard retail models did.

                                                                                  1. re: Steve Green

                                                                                    I've been so optimistic that I've thought about it just the opposite for many years; i.e., that manufacturers/companies offer Costco an upgraded version, or the same version with an added feature or item to go with the offering.

                                                                                    Perhaps I should be a little more aware of business practices when it comes to the big warehouse stores; Best Buy, Costco, etc.

                                                                                3. re: Rella

                                                                                  Regarding the Friday "fish on ice" stand - the seafood road show, as they call it, it definately varies by region. I've seen bags of live cockles, clams and mussels at the Phoenix locations. In the bay area, I've seen 8-10 lb wild caught whole king salmon - head-on, gills and fins included. Also fresh halibut.
                                                                                  Seasonality appears to play a role, too. Sometimes in the summer, I'll see whole main lobsters. Other times of the year, I'll see the previously frozen Australian tails on ice.

                                                                      2. re: Rella

                                                                        Weird, I've never had problems with Costcos produce. Even the peaches which are notoriously horrible at the grocery store. Admittedly they will never compare to the ones I used to buy from the orchard down the road from our old place but they are at least edible and tasty.

                                                                  3. Just bought a nice slab of Ling Cod and the package date was the date I bought it, rushed home and put it in the fridge and cooked it that night..
                                                                    When I cooked it up, the smell was horrific...I rinsed and patted dry..seemed to take away the smell until I served it and the smell was through the fish...Gross!
                                                                    $18 bucks but I saved my receipt and got my $$ back..

                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Beach Chick

                                                                      Ling Cod usually has an unusual smell when cooking. Not a fishy smell, it is unpleasant to me.

                                                                      1. re: Alan408

                                                                        I have been talking to several people who fish/eat ling cod. 2 people said they also do not like the smell of ling cooking, 3 people said they didn't notice anything unusual, 1 person laughed (knowingly) and that had happened at least once before. Several years ago, I remarked I didn't like the smell of ling cooking and a guy on the boat laughed.

                                                                        In my case, I catch a few fish, they are fileted and put in a bag. I don't know the species, but occasionally I get a fish that has an unpleasant smell during cooking and doesn't taste like fish. Or, I catch a few fish and clean them myself, and when I cook the ling, I don't like the smell.

                                                                        This morning, I talked with a commercial fisherman who fished for ling Monday. He said he occasionally gets a "smelly" ling, but not all the time, he also said, maybe it was something it (smelly ling) ate.

                                                                        1. re: Alan408

                                                                          I frequently catch lingcod on my recreational fishing trips out of San Diego. I have quite a few fillets in my freezer right now as a matter of fact.

                                                                          I've never noticed it being 'fishy' or smelling different than the other rockfish I catch. It is common, however, for some of the fillets to be blue because of the food the fish is feeding on (the blue disappears when you cook it).

                                                                    2. I tasted salsa from a jar that was bought at Costco - it was the worst salsa I've ever had. Thank goodness it wasn't me who had paid for it!

                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                      1. re: woodleyparkhound

                                                                        Oh no, was it the Kirkland Organic medium salsa? I just bought a jar of that!

                                                                        I used to love whichever brand they carried of refrigerated pico de gallo salsa, but they switched brands semi-recently, and the new kind was horribly bitter and metallic-tasting. The refrigerated peach-mango salsa isn't good either.

                                                                        1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                                                                          So far, the Kirkland Organic salsa is pretty good, after buying a few dud brands in a row.

                                                                          1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                                                                            I buy a cases of their org diced tomatoes and make my own. So easy w/blender. Love that with their kirkland thick tortilla chips-so yummy

                                                                          2. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                                                                            makes a decent base. it's restaurant salsa. they expect you to adulter it.

                                                                            1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                                                                              I think it was Kirkland - I know it was in a jar on a shelf and not the fresh, refrigerated pico de gallo ype.

                                                                          3. Most disappointing food purchase from Costco: fresh (?) fish. Think it was cod or some similar fish. Purchased and attempted to use well before X date. Smelled fishy. Will continue to pay an arm and a leg for really fresh fish at the grocery.

                                                                            9 Replies
                                                                            1. re: c.gibbs

                                                                              I had a bad experience with mussels. Opened the package and the foul smell was overwhelming. I returned them and was told "lots had come back". Decided to steer clear of the fish and seafood after that. No longer a deal if you have to add additional gas charges to return items.

                                                                              1. re: c.gibbs

                                                                                One doesn't usually find fresh halibut here in Winchester, VA. The price was indeed hefty and I couldn't resist. Phew!!!!
                                                                                They didn't hesitate to take it back. Yes, I returned the bad package and all. Once, the manager told me that I needed to return the whole kit-and-kaboddle, vs. one poster here who was told not to bring back the bad chicken -- Costco's policy is so liberal that I try to be compliant, as much as possible.

                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                  My Costco generally has it most Friday's, again excellent and usually the center cut. You should consider moving!

                                                                                  1. re: cstr

                                                                                    I've moved too many times to chase a halibut ;-)
                                                                                    But you have a point.

                                                                                2. re: c.gibbs

                                                                                  The only time we buy fresh fish at Costco is in Maui... Locally caught, not frozen, very good. We've gotten fresh sashimi as well as freshly made poke (6 different kinds). All has been terrific and competitively priced.

                                                                                  1. re: RWCFoodie

                                                                                    Totally agree with the quality of fish at the Maui store. Sashimi is consistently high quality and about 1/2 the price of Safeway. I wish I could find the frozen clams like they have there at my local Costco

                                                                                    1. re: rexster314

                                                                                      As with most Costco's, local produce fish etc are a plus, been to Maui Costco several times, same with SoCA, the fruit and wine selections are excellent. In the Northeast, Atlantic seafood, fresh clams, mussels etc are the stellar. A good reason why I like Costco.

                                                                                      1. re: rexster314

                                                                                        The Maui stores also have boxes of live oysters - quite large boxes - can't remember the size but they were enough for a big barbecue....

                                                                                      2. re: RWCFoodie

                                                                                        I live in BC and the salmon from Cosco is good... I often just get the frozen individual fillets of fish from the freezer section, though. It means I can just thaw out a piece and have a nice piece of wild salmon, tuna or cod on a weeknight- what a treat!

                                                                                    2. Decided to be lazy with my husband's poker group. I purchased the frozen Mexican chicken rollups. They were awful. Never again............

                                                                                      1. Carnegie Deli branded pickle spears are practically inedible. The Carnegie Deli, a lauded Jewish deli located in New York and Las Vegas, serves excellent pickles.

                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: Encinitan

                                                                                          I was wondering about this. Thanks for the clarification.

                                                                                          1. re: Encinitan

                                                                                            I LIKE them! and they fly out of my store like hotcakes!

                                                                                            1. re: Encinitan

                                                                                              I could not disagree more. The Carnegie Deli pickles are much loved here.

                                                                                              1. re: Rene

                                                                                                ETA: they are not Carnegie Deli pickles... at least not like in ny. that said, they're FANTASTIC compared to the vlasic.

                                                                                                I'm in Da Burgh -- why won't they carry heinz???

                                                                                            2. The ready made falafel's(sp) and the Manchego cheese. The cheese was not even close to a proper Manchego but then at 7.99/lb, I should have expected it. Otherwise I love the place

                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: loeborg

                                                                                                I used to love their Manchego, but for some reason I more-or-less turned against it and have been buying other cheeses, foregoing it, although it is not out-of-mind.

                                                                                                I don't know if they changed the brand or supplier, but I have wondered. Maybe I just got used to it and it was no longer special, I don't know.

                                                                                                1. re: loeborg

                                                                                                  I forgot what brand the ready-made falafel was, but it was pretty bad too, come to think of it. I've taken a lot of expensive food plunges at Costco, and I figure I come out ahead maybe 60% of the time. Too often, I end up forcing myself to finish a large quantity of bland, mediocre, or just plain bad stuff!

                                                                                                2. Frozen spanakopita. Bland, small, awful! Had a friend who used to make the real deal, maybe I'm too spoiled.

                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                  1. re: applgrl

                                                                                                    these used to be nice but now they have a strange wet dog smell and are either soggy or overcooked I can't get them to brown just right. I stopped buying them a few months ago.

                                                                                                  2. I recall back in the day the 1/4 lb Hebrew National hotdogs sold at the concession stand used to be delicious. I read on CH (old thread) that Costco they discontinued their use and only sells HN dogs in the cold case now.

                                                                                                    Well Saturday my AL Costco was sampling the HN ones but never had them when I walked by the stand. I went back today to look at options since we are grilling out dogs for the 4th and decided to try one for of the Kirkland concession dogs too (since they have the 1/4 lb ones for sale too). While a giant 1/4 lb dog, it was mushy and bland so that one is crossed off the list.

                                                                                                    The only other (real) options are HN regular (not 1/4 lb), bun length (I think) beef dogs. I think it's like 3.5 lbs for around $10. They also have Nathans skinless for $13 for 4 something pounds. I rarely get skinless hotogs - are those skinless Nathan dogs worth it?

                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: Dax

                                                                                                      Personally, I do not like any skinless hot dog: there is no "snap" when you bite it and they remind me of the look and feel of intestines.

                                                                                                      1. re: ospreycove

                                                                                                        which is funny, since the snap IS intestine.

                                                                                                    2. Another big thumbs down for the falafel (comes in a 2-pack). It was bland and so dry it sucked the moisture out of my mouth, and no amount of Fage could overcome it.
                                                                                                      Blech. Waste of money.

                                                                                                      Has anyone returned food simply because it wasn't good (not spoiled)?
                                                                                                      This stuff is going in the trash if I can't return it.

                                                                                                      37 Replies
                                                                                                      1. re: monavano

                                                                                                        As long as you have the receipt, they'll take it back, no questions asked. I learned that from this very thread, and returned two disappointing food items last week without a problem.

                                                                                                        1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                                                                                                          Wow, thank you! I'm already going back to return a sheet set that was shockingly poor quality, and a pair of pants that I grabbed the wrong size.
                                                                                                          I wish I saved the receipt for those artichoke cheese chicken burgers that gagged.

                                                                                                          1. re: monavano

                                                                                                            You used to be able to return anything...then people started bringing back computers, televisions and cameras which were out of date/had old technology...so now electronics have their own policy.

                                                                                                            http://www.costco.com/Service/Feature...

                                                                                                            1. re: monavano

                                                                                                              you don't have to have the receipt....everything you ever have purchased comes up from your card. I have returned stuff without my receipt with no problem....and when you do return something they don't ask any questions although I always tell them my issues so they can correct it.

                                                                                                              1. re: LaLa

                                                                                                                Very true that everything you have purchased is on your card. Over the yeas, we have received phone calls and post cards regarding recalls of items we have purchased.

                                                                                                                1. re: Cathy

                                                                                                                  I'm going to get a refund on that falafel. Also returning a sheet set that I used once and decided the quality was so poor, it was like the darn things were 8 years old with hundreds of washings.
                                                                                                                  They won't be happy about it, but they've got enough of my money over the years!

                                                                                                            2. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                                                                                                              DOH!!! shoulda done with the Spanakopita I bought. I always save the receipts to double check since the total is quite big. You're right, they're the champs at refunding, if you have time to stand in the line.......

                                                                                                            3. re: monavano

                                                                                                              Yeah the falafel balls sat in my freezer for a long time till I finally tossed them. I was really excited when I got them but they just didn't hold up to my standards

                                                                                                              1. re: tiffaniec

                                                                                                                I also bought the falafel, they were dry and never really seemed to get hot before they dried out.

                                                                                                                1. re: smartie

                                                                                                                  like most restaurant food,probably better to put a dollop of butter on top.

                                                                                                                  1. re: Chowrin

                                                                                                                    I swear, I don't think even butter could make these falafel better. I have a years old box of falafel mix that I'd bet is better than these babies!
                                                                                                                    I mean, it's bad ;-(

                                                                                                                    1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                      hahaha I agree! And buttah makes everything betta but I don't know that anything could save those little suckers!

                                                                                                                2. re: tiffaniec

                                                                                                                  Funny cuz u just reminded me i still have some in freezer to. I make them from scratch so i forgot they were there. They're going to taste like freezer-yuk

                                                                                                                3. re: monavano

                                                                                                                  Yes, I returned some Pink Lady apples. Previously I'd gotten the organic ones that were very flavorful. I wanted more of them but they were out of the organic so I got the regular ones. They had absolutely no flavor. Both came from Washington state. I took them back, no question, got my $$$ back.

                                                                                                                  1. re: RWCFoodie

                                                                                                                    reminds me of the Seinfeld episode where Kramer returned the peach to the sidewalk vendor...........for lack of taste........

                                                                                                                    1. re: RWCFoodie

                                                                                                                      Mostly, I'm outta-here at the produce department at Costco, Winchester, VA. I used to love it, but the last few things I've bought there are tasteless, no flavor, mush. I bought the figs which some said were flavorful, as well as apricots; but instead of returning them, I decided to add them to the list of produce never to be disappointed about AGAIN.

                                                                                                                      I'm wondering if the Pink Lady were last years' US, or this year's Chile or elsewhere. Sometimes I think that Costco's produce has been kept at too cold of a temperature; I'm not sure what's going on. But I still love their CA oranges.

                                                                                                                      1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                        The Pink Ladies were labeled as Washington State - don't recall any date on the pkg.

                                                                                                                        Speaking of pkg. - is anyone else as irritated as I am about the plastic pkg for most of the produce? What a humongous waste...

                                                                                                                        1. re: RWCFoodie

                                                                                                                          Those 'clamshells' help protect produce from becoming bruised and smashed. They not only keep the product in good condition, it also reduces product waste.

                                                                                                                          1. re: RWCFoodie

                                                                                                                            I like the plastic packaging. I am a 1 person household, but I can get Honey Crisp at Costco in the clamshell and they don't bruise or spoil or get mealy before I can finish them.

                                                                                                                            1. re: RWCFoodie

                                                                                                                              I live in Wenatchee, which is one of the two main cities that produce apples in Washington State. I've noticed that when I travel to the east side of the country, that the apples in the stores there from Washington are kinda sad. A lot of times they're little teeny things that would just be a couple bite sized snacks. We seem to get nice crisp big ones in general, here in town.

                                                                                                                              When Stemilt had a little storefront in town (they've closed it, unfortunately), you could buy fujis that were so big you could barely get both of your hands around them, they were pure heaven to eat. I wish that I had taken a picture when I could.

                                                                                                                              But even living here, I've noticed that the apples from Costco are quite inferior. The packages we get start going bad very quickly. It's February, and they seem like apples from the year before last harvest. Maybe they are. :-( I try to get apples in the grocery stores when they're on sale, if I can. Of course, harvest time is the best, since we have relatives that have apple and cherry orchards and we can get free fruit.

                                                                                                                              1. re: Ambrosia_apples

                                                                                                                                Consider yourself lucky to have had orchard fresh apples, unfortunately most all apples in super markets have come from storage.

                                                                                                                                1. re: Ambrosia_apples

                                                                                                                                  Also living in Washington State, I feel fortunate that decent apples are available year around. I would never think of purchasing any fruit from Costco, other than lemons, limes and onions, because there are so many other "fresh sources", here in Washington. (I'm on the west side of the Cascades/Seattle area.) I also LIVE for fresh asparagus from Yakima. When I see asparagus offered from Peru, it amazes me to see people buying it. Same with Safeway offering "fresh fruit from Chile". lol

                                                                                                                                  Yes, you are lucky to live in Eastern WA. and Wenatchee is the Apple Capitol of the State. Love your cherries too, although I have a Bing Cherry tree in my yard. Some years production is spectacular; other years very disappointing. All up to Mother Nature.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                    Would you recommend buying Washington state apples in any other state than Washington?

                                                                                                                                    Or bing cheeries from anywhere else than where grown during season?

                                                                                                                                    I'm not sure this is possible for many people. There are lots of chowhounds that would not be able to complete their COTM recipesif they followed the code of not buying except locally and in season.

                                                                                                                                    I don't know the answer to nourishment and good health if one's cannot grow or purchase all the local fruits and vegetables needed to fulfill that need.

                                                                                                                                    My grandparents used to store potatoes from the garden in a bin until they went bad - People just have the starvation motivation to go this route anymore.

                                                                                                                                    1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                      I'm not well versed on either of your questions as far as what to expect when purchasing WA fruit in other States. However, when I was a King County Food Adviser, we were told that the BEST QUALITY APPLES that are grown in our State were exported.

                                                                                                                                      From the one post that stated the apples from WA were tiny, it leads me to believe it was the store buyer who based their decision (on quality) and maybe based on price??? Like potatoes and onions (amongst other produce), there are different grades based on age, size and shape. I'm sure everyone who reads this column is well aware of grading, so that could have been left unsaid. BTW, if you do have the opportunity to try a "Honey-Crisp apple", you must try one. An old favorite was "Pink Lady", but H.C. has now won over. Some are so big, - like someone said who described a Fuji, "hard to get your hand around", and oh so crisp and SWEET.
                                                                                                                                      A little pricey at $1.99 lb., but can be found on sale for around $1.49 lb. here in Western WA.

                                                                                                                                      What are other readers experiencing with WA apples in Midwestern States and the East Coast? .....assuming they are available

                                                                                                                                      One more thought, - Are you fortunate enough to have a Costco nearby that has a "commercial restaurant equipment/supply department"? MANY MORE frozen items are now available, including a vast selection of fruit. (Sometimes fresh frozen is better than "old" fresh fruit; much like fish. IMO) Costco's new adventure with restaurant equipment and expanded frozen food items seems to be giving our local Cash & Carry some unwanted competition. And, the prices are beyond reasonable on restaurant quality cookware. My first purchase was a 20 quart stock pot for around $30.00(?) for making home-made stocks and broths to freeze or can. Also the perfect size to cook live crabs. Love it! What have others experienced with merchandise from this new department?

                                                                                                                                      Not sure how many Costco's offer this new department. Also love the extended hours; now opening at 8 a.m.!!! .....for this reason

                                                                                                                                      1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                        "I'm not well versed on either of your questions as far as what to expect when purchasing WA fruit in other States. However, when I was a King County Food Adviser, we were told that the BEST QUALITY APPLES that are grown in our State were exported."

                                                                                                                                        I said quite some time ago that I would not be purchasing apples from Costco any more - a week or so ago I did because I forgot myself - and I had to return them - looks good, rotting inside.

                                                                                                                                        Though, I'm pretty sure these were not WA apples, unless they had been in storage. I used to live in WA - am aware of their good apple taste. We 'may' get WA's best apples here in Winchester, VA, which is another apple capital, and then WA 'may' get Virginia apples; who knows how these apples travel around these days.

                                                                                                                                        I've never heard of, nor seen, a Costo commercial department. Probably only in the major VA cities.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                          I think Shasta may be referring to the Costco Business Centers, which are only on the West Coast. According to an exec with whom I spoke recently, there are no plans to open any more.

                                                                                                                                          Although they certainly could be adding new depts to existing stores. Would love to hear about locations where this is true.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: acgold7

                                                                                                                                            I found this review that may be of interest. Or, it may make you envious that YOUR local Costco store doesn't offer. lol

                                                                                                                                            San Diego, CA
                                                                                                                                            5.0 star rating
                                                                                                                                            I have been hearing about the costco Business center that replaced the Expo center for a year now...from my mom, from my husband....and i just have not made it...hubby and i finally tried to go last Sunday...boo they are closed on Sunday.
                                                                                                                                            so i stopped on the way home from work a few days later.
                                                                                                                                            parking lot...empty (ok maybe there were as many as 25 cars). i parked right in front...
                                                                                                                                            i entered the store and had to catch my breath...this place was amazing! the first section you see is all kitchenware...pots, pans, dishes, mixing bowls, bar accessories and gadgets galore...all at ridiculously cheap prices...EVEN CHEAPER THAN RESTAURANT DEPOT!! i picked up some small stainless steel "mixing bowls" that are the perfect size for cereal for $1 a piece! i spent a week in India trying to find bowls like these...i came home with many many bowls...that do the job, but none as perfect as these...and the one's i bought there were just a tad cheaper. Stainless steel at almost India prices (and yes, these are made in India)...
                                                                                                                                            the rest of the store was rows and rows of beverages in bulk (i guess that would be useful for a party situation)
                                                                                                                                            a great deal of the products are the same as a regular costco...but for particular items there is way more selection. for instance...frozen french fries...there are like 6 different types.
                                                                                                                                            the meat section is ridiculous! they have two walk in areas (like the produce in a regular costco)
                                                                                                                                            #1 is refridgerated...dairy (cheese, milk, creamer etc...) and fruit and veggies in massive bulk (not for home use...0
                                                                                                                                            #2 is frozen....cases of meat!!! perfect place to prepare for a grill party (superbowl!!!)

                                                                                                                                            1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                              Just looked at some pictures online of some of the food; ice cream 3 gallon size; big hunks of queso fresco, Wondering if one has to buy a more expensive membership, or actually it should cost less, because the people are buying more! Whatta place!

                                                                                                                                              1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                It's the same membership.

                                                                                                                                                The Business Center does not sell dog/cat food, does not have the photo developing center, pharmacy, eyeglasses/hearing aids or in-store bakery. The items that are sold in the 'regular' store (8 packs of SPAM, the giant pillow size bag of spinach) are the same price. The pillows, towels and bedding are basically for a business/hotel and are only in white, one brand, no choices.

                                                                                                                                                I like that the Business Center sells half gallons of milk. The bakery items are individually wrapped and sold in flats of 6. The frozen lamb is marked as Halal.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                  Rella, No, - regular membership applies. Yesterday, I was practically accosted at checkout about upgrading. As a single person, and having analyzed my monthly Costco purchases, it would not serve me well to upgrade. They seem to target members who have large purchase items in their carts to go after. I mention this because it has happened before. (Yesterday, I had a Cuisinart coffee maker in my cart; the first time, a TV). He was quite persistent.

                                                                                                                                                  Being told by friends I'm a salesman's dream, I was proud of myself for saying, "not interested". lol

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                    There's an up-side to this, too. Observant Costco employees may take note of your high-end purchases and be of great help to you whenever you seek out help on your high-end purchases.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                      They can be persistent in trying to get members to upgrade. We are upgraded, but still get approached. Otherwise, I've found everyone pretty helpful, especially in Newington, VA.

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                                                        Helpful here, too, in Winchester, VA. It's home Costco, so I have a particular friendliness to most of the people who've been here since the opening. Almost like going down to your local hardware days of old :-))

                                                                                                                                                  2. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                    So the article above is about a Costco Business Center, which I've talked about many times. They are not adding new departments to regular Costco stores; this is a totally different store, although anyone with any Costco membership can shop there. They are identified as Business Centers on the Website. They are only on the West Coast -- there are two in WA, none in OR, three or four in CA, and one or two in NV and AZ.

                                                                                                                                                    The one near me is in Lynnwood, WA, and I suspect the one you are talking about is the one in Fife.

                                                                                                                                                    But no, they are not adding a Commercial Restaurant department to any regular Costco, as far as I know.

                                                                                                                                                    Here's a list of Business Center Locations:

                                                                                                                                                    http://www.costco.com/Service/Feature...

                                                                                                                                                    ..although you can't get to it from their website; you have to Google it.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: acgold7

                                                                                                                                                      Tukwila, WA has a Restaurant Supply. Thread from Seattle board: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/841582 [Split from Chains]

                                                                                                                                              2. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                on Long Island, in NY, the only apples I ever buy at Costco are excellent, large grannies. Crisp and tart, not mealy. In general, elsewhere, I've noted WA apples to be kind of large, actually.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                  To find the best specimens of Washington-produced apples, look in the premier supermarkets of East Asia. They look so perfect you can't help but think they're genetically engineered from the ground up. The best fruits and foods from the agra-producer regions of America gets exported there these days.

                                                                                                                                  2. Canned crab meat. Was watery and tasteless.

                                                                                                                                    My ophthalmologist told me that Costco was a good place to get glasses, so I went there. Small selection, but I found something that was okay, and the price was better than the optician I normally use. When I went to pick up the glasses the optician just handed them to me without seeing how they fit. I tried them for a few days and they didn't seem to fit right, so I took them back. Got a full refund; the person at the optical counter was not even interested in seeing if he could adjust them. Got much better service at my regular optician.

                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                    1. re: souschef

                                                                                                                                      Agree about the canned crab meat, but in fairness, it is a national brand available elsewhere, and always tasteless.I don't know Ocean's is able to sell this product.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: souschef

                                                                                                                                        sorry to read about your bad experience with glasses. I've bought mine there (and I have uber prescription plus no line bifocals) and always have had great service. Once, tried a pair for a few days, something seemed "off," went back, and they were super nice about replacing.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: pine time

                                                                                                                                          I'm suspecting that this service varies greatly by location. Both my sons have had contacts and glasses from Costco and their experience has been excellent. It's a little more complicated to generalize about this kind of service at Costco than it is about specific products because each location operates a little differently.

                                                                                                                                      2. Not only is it offensive...I actually took my receipt back for a refund....which I received. Threw the "sushi" in the trash. So gross.

                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                        1. re: dothepuyallup

                                                                                                                                          I just saw your ID and can't help but comment...LOVE the Puyallup. The scones there were so yummy, but then again that was over 30 years ago since I've had one.

                                                                                                                                        2. Bought Maple leaf duck halves and grilled them outside...wasn't really good and the sauce was horrible. Very disappointing purchase as it was pretty expensive.

                                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                                          1. re: Monica

                                                                                                                                            I just bought them and just wrapped in foil and heated in the oven. I think my blackberry gastrique saved it!
                                                                                                                                            Actually, I'm not a big fan of duck, but DH loves it, so I thought it was an easy way to cook him duck and me, something else.
                                                                                                                                            He liked it well enough. Not the best he's had, for sure, but he was pretty happy with it.
                                                                                                                                            I tossed the orange sauce as soon as I saw it. That had disaster written all over it. Yuck!

                                                                                                                                          2. Boise, Idaho. Big.Open.Pistachios. Kirkland. They are larger, and they are all open, they just taste odd and quite unpleasant. I will return and get the regular ones.

                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                            1. re: justicenow

                                                                                                                                              I find most of the freebie samples tha eithertCostco or Sam's offers to the famished masses of customers who wolf the little paper cups full of mystery blend, etc. down are not worth smelling no less eating.. Being one who buys very little prepared foods, I like the Prime Beef,when available at Costco) Colemans whole chix as well as the boneless thighs, 5 lb bag of shallots, lasted until the final one was minced and sauteed. Costco butter is a "High score" butter, very little water, and the unsalted has a pleasant taste.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: ospreycove

                                                                                                                                                I, too, like the Costco/Kirkland butter for clarifying. It seems to have less water.

                                                                                                                                            2. I bought sushi there (once) too and it was the worst sushi i ever had

                                                                                                                                              17 Replies
                                                                                                                                              1. re: crowmuncher

                                                                                                                                                I've bought sushi (once) also. Makes one wonder if there recipe is a Costco recipe used for all Costco's, or it is a local recipe. I'm always tempted to buy some and eat it in the car after I leave Costco's (for a pick-me-up), but then I remember.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                  I know it really sucks that you can't just take a tray of that Sushi home. After doing all that shopping it's nice to not have to cook, but the Sushi is sooo bad. You just reminded me that I used to buy a basil/fresh mozz pizza there for this very reason. I thought that pizza was so good and would always get it and have it for dinner the same night I went shopping, but over a year ago they changed the recipe and now they sell you 2 thin crust ones that suck only a little less than the sushi. It's not worth buying to me- I'd rather make my own. Also, I can't believe I forgot- they changed their ravioli recipe. Costco's frozen ravioli (Kirkland) was my favorite until they changed that too around a year ago. I guess they look for ways to increase profit here and there? It's a shame cuz I would have kept buying that pizza and those raviolis. I'm in South Florida. I wonder if this happened in all Costco's or just ours?

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: crowmuncher

                                                                                                                                                    Thanks for the heads-up on the Kirkland frozen ravioli. I've not bought it for some time now, but it used to always be on my list to buy. Simple enough to just add some marinara sauce.

                                                                                                                                                    Sometimes while shopping at Costco I do buy something specifically for dinner that evening after a day-in-town. It's disappointing to see some of these items losing their appeal.

                                                                                                                                                    Regarding sushi, I did wonder if someone decided that that is the way sushi should taste. We are on the border of WV and some might not know how good sushi can taste.

                                                                                                                                                    Before anyone gets irate about the WV comment, I'm from WV, too, and I just had some long beans from my garden cooked 4 minutes, not 4 hours. Perhaps if this post doesn't get reported/taken off, just reminding that it could be sent to a "Southern Cooking" home-cooking post.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                      ... you mean pole beans? if they've got beans in them, they ain't edible after four minutes.
                                                                                                                                                      (tons of folks from WV at my costco, even though it's at least an hour into Pennsylvania. wv -- high taxes and smart farmers).

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Chowrin

                                                                                                                                                        I will also be shopping in Pennsylvania on a (semi) regular basis beginning September.
                                                                                                                                                        What Costo do you shop?

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                          Pittsburgh's Waterfront costco (we have three in the area... this is the one closest to the city). It's also the "kosher" one, as it has tons of kosher food.

                                                                                                                                                          It's also the least crowded costco in the country, in terms of lines.

                                                                                                                                                  2. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                    Most sushi in super markets etc lack, I stick to the pros.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                      No supermarket sushi is "sushi" (the type most people are familiar with) - which is freshly prepared rice with the freshest fish available. The stuff you find in markets are rice rolls; anyone expecting a fresh sushi experience - or anything close to it - from a factory-packed container that has a week or more of stated shelf life is setting themselves up for disappointment.

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: ferret

                                                                                                                                                        While I agree that supermarket sushi is generally disappointing, most supermarkets near me have a little booth near the entrance door with someone making sushi. It is generally boring and bland, but it is not in a factory sealed package and is just as fresh as what one gets at a sushi restaurant. Now, the frozen sushi is the freezer at Costco is another matter altogether :(

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: CanadaGirl

                                                                                                                                                          Just clarifying: The sushi at Costco I was referring to is not in/from the freezer. It is made up if-not-daily, it does have a date on it, but it is in a saran-wrapped plastic bottom. I don't mind as a general rule these little rounds of rice with a center filled with some vegetable and some seeds on the top, but these are just absolutely tasteless and certainly not giving me any kind of relief for a snack.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                            that's how i bought it there too...

                                                                                                                                                      2. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                        agree, but i will say Costco is the worst I've ever had...I've had sushi form publix and whole foods and i can't say it was good, but not as gross as the Costco one. The Costco one is totally inedible.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: crowmuncher

                                                                                                                                                          It's tough when you have to prep for the masses and a variety of tastes, which is why flavors are boring and I include Whole Paycheck, TJ's et al. Those are super market/big box items I skip because I have high expectations and you just can't deliver at that price point. Now the other 99.99% of the world will probably enjoy that stuff.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                            I thought I was the only snob cstr. Thanks!

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: crowmuncher

                                                                                                                                                              Sometimes you just have to set your standards on certain things. Keep that nose proudly up in the air.

                                                                                                                                                          2. re: crowmuncher

                                                                                                                                                            costco sushi is bad but the worst is trader joes sushi.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: divadmas

                                                                                                                                                              The Supermarket Sushi Association thanks you!

                                                                                                                                                    2. I tried a "paella" they sold, clearly a way of using up unsold roasted chickens, which in itself is something Costco usually does more successfully. This yellow rice mess was pretty wretched. Might be one of those things that varies from store to store, though. This one was in Hawaii Kai, Honolulu.

                                                                                                                                                      1. I am surprised at the amount of variance in products from one Costco to another.
                                                                                                                                                        Individual managers must have more freedom to choose items for their own local
                                                                                                                                                        population than I had assumed.

                                                                                                                                                        7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                        1. re: justicenow

                                                                                                                                                          I only go to a few different Costco locations, but I find that when in CT, I like to go to the Milford, CT location because of the possibility (and usually it is probability) that a few Italian products will be there that are not in the Winchester-Manassas-Fairfax locations. I do find that the Fairfax location will provide products such as atta flour, and Asian products.

                                                                                                                                                          As I used to live in Hawaii Kai, Oahu, when there were no Costcos, I'd love to have a run-through-the-aisles to see the products they carry. Must be a heaven Costco.

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: justicenow

                                                                                                                                                            I have two Costcos near me, perhaps 10 and 15 minutes from my house and 20 minutes from each other. There are certain items that one always has, the other never. One has two brands of fresh salsa, the other only has one. I have noticed that for some items, such as eggs, they use different suppliers.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: justicenow

                                                                                                                                                              local is local. at the harrisburg costco, they have fantastic grandma utz chips, straight from the factory (I think they offload them everyday, they're that fresh! much better than anyplace else).

                                                                                                                                                              also, the sliced bread varies in quality greatly based on local bakerys.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Chowrin

                                                                                                                                                                I'm hoping to find some local apples in the Harrisburg, PA, Costco this year. Or for that matter, just about anything locally grown or processed here in my local Costco Virginia area.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                  Ping the PA board, they can surely find you some local applegrowers nearby Hershey. If not, there's probably a ton near Gettysburg.
                                                                                                                                                                  [get some Grandma utz chips while you're at the harrisburg costco ;-)]

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Chowrin

                                                                                                                                                                    Thanks, I would have never thought of that - seriously!!
                                                                                                                                                                    A novice chowhounder thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                      anytime! be happy to give you better recs if you're ever out Pittsburgh way. ;-)

                                                                                                                                                            2. I had a picture in my mind of a regional center (maybe three states) doing the ordering for a bunch of stores to get lower prices for volume and the savings passed on to customers.

                                                                                                                                                              Surely they do nation wide ordering for say books, electronics, tools, clothing and other non perishables. Now it sounds like even Kirkland products can vary store by store.

                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                              1. re: justicenow

                                                                                                                                                                yup. buy local when it makes sense. ;-) buy big when it makes sense there.

                                                                                                                                                              2. 1) Riceworks Salsa Fresca "tortilla (brown rice) chips." We tried these because of the $2 off coupon and the texture is weird and the power flavoring tastes ... just wrong. Maybe with salsa.

                                                                                                                                                                2) Usually we grab the pack of 6 (or is it 8?) chicken thighs (non-organic) and they are fine for whatever, This last time when we finally opened a pack we had frozen they smelled of sulfur/dirty feet. Ughh. Sure they take returns but that sucked. We still bought another pack hoping it was an one time issue. The lady at returns said her most recent pack had been bad too.

                                                                                                                                                                1. I just do not like their version of Raisin Brand, organic or not, the flakes are not good.

                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: mty917

                                                                                                                                                                    I like the texture and crunch.

                                                                                                                                                                  2. Two trays of lasagna. Tasteless. Expensive. Never again.

                                                                                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Maggie19

                                                                                                                                                                      I avoid prepared entree's as much as possible, doesn't matter whether it's TJ's, Whole Paycheck or Costco, they tend to season in a very general way when you are preparing for the masses

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                        In my experience...."Prepared, processed foods are less desirable than those made fresh by you, with ingredients that you are proud to use", no matter where the pre-packaged, prepared items are from. COSTCO, for me, is my food source for many cheeses, some prime beef, Coleman's fresh organic chickens, wine, shelled almonds and walnuts, canned Kirkland Tuna and Salmon, Olive oil for salads and cooking and some fresh veg when they look great.

                                                                                                                                                                    2. They are currently on purveyor #3 in my area.Over how long? You are right.IMO the sushi is just nasty.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. I'm surprised to hear about the easy returns. I used to buy all my dog food there, the Kirkland brand. One bag out probably 80 or so I had bought there was bad. I brought a ziplock as an example, but obviously didn't want to load a 40 lb bag of moldy dog food into my car. The customer service desk practically cross examined me about it. How had I stored it, etc.. They spent forever on the computer, presumably looking at my purchase history. I eventually got my $25 back, but they made me feel like a scam artist. Definitely discourages me from making a future return!

                                                                                                                                                                        Has anyone had a problem with the 10 lb bags of brown/yellow onions? I hadn't bought them in years, I usually get them cheaper at the ethnic market I shop at. I was in too much of a rush to go to multiple stores, so I picked up a bag a few weeks ago. A few were slimy striaght off, and the rest rotten within a week, so gross. That made me remember I had had that issue before, which is why I stopped bying them there. It just makes me wonder, do I just have luck with onions there? If this is a common problem, who makes a repeat purchase?

                                                                                                                                                                        La Habra, CA

                                                                                                                                                                        28 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: aimeekm

                                                                                                                                                                          I always look closely at produce, take some time and look at the condition of the product. As for the dog food, think about how many stories they get like yours, you buy a 40 lb bag and bring back a 6 oz sample, really? Put yourself in their shoes, they are quite liberal with returns.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: aimeekm

                                                                                                                                                                            My solution to small sample,or not right away will stink stuff destined for return.Call customer service,your location,explain problem,10# onions,nasty.I can't store something llike this for ?days until next trip.Answer,save bag and receipt,take name and never any problem.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: lcool

                                                                                                                                                                              lcool - thanks, good to know if I ever want to make a return again.

                                                                                                                                                                              cstr - I would understand if they had no purchase history, but they would be able to see I had been 1-2 bags a month for 5 years (2 - 100 lb dogs), and this was the first one I was returning. With that history I would expect them to refund my money without blinking an eye honestly.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: aimeekm

                                                                                                                                                                                aimeekm, i'm totally in your corner on this. costco has the ability to review your purchase history, and while it would be foolish for them to take the time to do it on a routine dogfood return, they can easily note your volume of purchases, and compare that to the frequency of returns, if they suspect "dogfood fraud". if they receive a large number of returns on dogfood, rather than suspect the customer, (as cstr suggests), putting myself in costcos (very large) shoes, i'd think that rather than suspect the customer, they ought to suspect the batch! seriously doubt that a large number of customers are going to take the time to defraud costco on a dog food purchase...but grilling a customer on a dogfood return is very likely to lose them that customer.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: chez cherie

                                                                                                                                                                                  Although the decision by the clerk is subjective, their train of thought might be something like this: If you took the time to prepare a small baggie of the product why not just bring the original partially used bag back instead? I can't second guess the clerk, just trying to put some logic to the situation. Lastly, Costco will always give the refund.

                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: aimeekm

                                                                                                                                                                                  I've been shopping at the same Costco since maybe 1993. All the people there recognize me. This sort of scenario happened to me, too. I had a hard time convincing the manager that I hadn't eaten the product that I was only returning one piece of, telling him that I certainly wasn't going to keep that nasty product around my house. It was handled eventually. But since I know the people involved, I felt no ill-will, but I did at the time think it was not necessary. Business is still business. They knew and know they have mine. And I'm glad to give it to them.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                    My experience is that staff can vary wildly by store and especially by region of the country. Here is a two-part, somewhat lengthy anecdote:

                                                                                                                                                                                    When we were living in CT I went to the Norwalk location to buy a small digital camera. It was of those things where you bring them a card after you check out and they give you the item from behind a locked fence. They hand me the camera and I notice the seal is broken on the box. I ask if I can have a sealed one and they say they open them all to check them. You don't have one with an unbroken seal? No, but I can put some tape on that one if you want, the manager says. So I shrug and go home.

                                                                                                                                                                                    When I get home I open the box to find the software CD and cables are missing, the date on the cam has already been set and there's a thumbprint on the viewscreen. I bring the cam back the next day and a different manager finds me a new one with an unbroken seal and exchanges it.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Flash forward a few years. We're now back home in WA and a brand new Costco has just opened up just down the hill from me. I go in and buy a few things, and as I'm checking out, the cashier asks me if I want boxes. I must have gotten a weird look on my face because she asks me what's wrong. I tell her I haven't heard a Costco person ask me that for years -- if I wanted boxes at the Costco I'd been used to recently I had to get them myself; I'd been specifically told to do so in that special East Coast way more than once. And I told her the camera story. She asks me which location it was, and when I tell her Norwalk she gets this knowing smile on her face and says, "Yeah, Norwalk. I was the manager that opened that store. It's the worst one in the whole company."

                                                                                                                                                                                    Interesting.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                      Good point about businesss being business and feeling no ill will, they're just doing their job. Try bringing one piece of a product back to a regular super market and see where it gets you.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: aimeekm

                                                                                                                                                                                      This happened to me in Toronto, On. I bought what was labelled fresh salmon. Kept it
                                                                                                                                                                                      in the fridge, cooked it the second day for Christmas dinner. It was tasteless and soggy, couldn't eat it. My H agreed it must have been previously frozen. I threw it out with the packaging. I went back with the receipt and got a hard time and run around. I was supposed to know to have brought back the packaging so that they would have a number for the supplier. OK this is reasonable reason to save packaging but not of bad fish for several days. I did get my money back after the clerk talked to a supervisor but I was not happy with the unpleasant attitude. I think some clerks don't have enough experience or
                                                                                                                                                                                      agency to be allowed to make a decision. I'm now wary of any of their salmon in the fresh
                                                                                                                                                                                      fish aisle. If they had taken it back with grace I would have let it go as a one-off
                                                                                                                                                                                      experience.

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: bobbielou

                                                                                                                                                                                        My practice, on food that we eat, is ....Don't buy fish, unless you can see the water where it came out of, Meat/poultry, let me see where they are pastured, no factory raised chickens or feed lot steers wading up to their shoulders in manure, or pigs that do not live outside and have free space to root and stay high and dry. It is not easy but we have established a group of small producers/growers that are passionate about what they produce/raise/grow. The list includes organic or at the least naturally and humanely raised dairy, cheese, butter, eggs, honey, chickens, ducks, beef and pork.;as well as several organic vegetable and fruit farmers, obviously all local. Again it takes some investigation and visits to the farms, (boat docks), and you will be spending more for better tasting, fresher, and healthier food but you avoid having to return "tasteless and soggy" foods to COSTCO, that sources worldwide.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: ospreycove

                                                                                                                                                                                          This is a good outlook.

                                                                                                                                                                                          At Costco I still buy their frozen wild Pacific salmon. I liked their frozen New Bedford scallops; however, I just noticed that now Kirkland has their brand on frozen scallops. I'm going to have to look at the source.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Now, honey is really a problem.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                            how can honey be a problem? As far as I remember, it comes from bees, right?

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                                              Most honey sold in the U.S. now is imported from......China!!

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: ospreycove

                                                                                                                                                                                                Just looked at the honey I purchased from Costco, 100% US Honey, right on the label. Get your facts before making a statement. BTW - I really don't get the China thing, are those bees really different? Do they not do the same bee things?

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                                                  There have been recent articles about Chinese honey. Here is one I just found:

                                                                                                                                                                                                  http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2011/08...

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: woodleyparkhound

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Good article but, it only speculates on the possibility and does not have hard facts. Thankfully, Costco is very careful about it's suppliers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                                                      CSTR, As far as COSTCO goes see the analysis results in the following article. It has all the pollen filtered out, thus, making it untraceable. Read the entire article for proof of the scam that is being foisted on the American consumers by imported honey. COSTCO among others is mentioned as being tested.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2011/11...

                                                                                                                                                                                                      How do you feel about Chinese honey now?

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                                                    CSTR for your info. Please see current issue of FOOD SAFETY NEWS, then you will get enought info to decide what you would want to consume.. After reading this analysis of honey, do you still think Chinese honey is the same as local/unfiltered/raw product?
                                                                                                                                                                                                    http://www.foodsafetynews.com/2011/11...

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ospreycove

                                                                                                                                                                                                      OSPREYCOVE, Can't compare commercial to local, it's like comparing apples to oranges. I live near many farms that produce local honey and enjoy it very much but, it's a completely different animal. Never stated that Asian honey is the same but when an article begins with 'likely' to have been smuggled and 'may be tainted' that's not a strong intro to an article. I didn't see Costco mentioned at all. I believe I understand your position with food sources, in general but, remember today you are the minority in the world of super markets including Costco. I think it's important, to the topic of this thread, to keep this in context, you're not the average shopper, not even for Whole Foods, Trader Joe's, Wegman's et al shoppers. You're on the far end of the bell curve, i,e. farmers markets, local sourcing, grass fed etc. For the average Costco shopper attempting to feed a large family on a budget, they're not in your league and I'm not even counting the non-food offerings at Costco, gas, tires, tv's etc. Just saying keep that in mind when commenting about a company.

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: ospreycove

                                                                                                                                                                                              please remember, some famlies have to adhere to a budget and Costco helps famlies get good value for their dollar. Costco always identifies sources on their meats, produce and fish. As for organic offerings, Costco has plenty of options as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                                                I am not downgrading COSTCO, I shop there for Coleman Organic Chickens, staples like nuts, canned fish, cheese, (excellent selection and value) wines, Flour, rice, etc. Overall I think COSTCO has very high standards; but some products like fresh fish are just very tricky to handle.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ospreycove

                                                                                                                                                                                                  In the case of seafood, what I look for is the origin i.e. wild caught, farm raised etc. In beef and produce, I look for country of origin. Even the farm raised salmon, for example, can taste very good if it's preped and cooked good. When I read your "tasteless and soggy" comments, I wonder if it's the product or the prep. I don't think I can rap Costco, as they are clear about their products. On the organic front, Costco is very competitive and stocks some quality items.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                                                    It is a good practice to stay away from "Farm raised" Salmon.http://www.albany.edu/ihe/salmonstudy...

                                                                                                                                                                                            3. re: bobbielou

                                                                                                                                                                                              I have heard that Costco is getting a lot of food "returns" lately, particularly of expensive products, including meat. Apparently, people have been gaming the system: buying things like prime rib or steaks, having a good dinner, and then returning to the store for a refund because "the meat was bad". I think the policy is that they would like to have at least 50% of the product returned to the store (you can always freeze the remainder until you can get back to the store) but have been relaxed about the policy in the past. I know that you're not doing this, but it happens more than we would like to think. I think that's probably the source of the "bad attitude"-- it's a shame that a few bad apples make us all look a little rotten!

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: chococat

                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm sorry to learn that people might be buying expensive food at Costco, eating part of it, and returning the rest for a full refund. If this is happening, it's obviously going to result in higher prices for all of us. I've always subscribed to the caveat emptor notion when buying food. I might return food that was spoiled, but I'd never return food just because the taste didn't happen to suit me. In my case, I bought 2# of pastrami that was properly prepared and properly packaged. I ate about 3 ounces, found it rather bland, and have slowly fed the remainder to my terriers, who seemed to consider it quite tasty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Mangobob

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I agree that's wrong. It's sort of self-correcting, though. Costco tracks member purchases and returns, so if anyone makes a habit of taking advantage of Costco, they will probably not let them renew their membership. As it should be.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Steve Green

                                                                                                                                                                                                    It takes all kinds of low lifes to rip a store off cause they have a liberal return policy. Eventually, they'll get caught as Costco tracks this data very closely.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Steve Green

                                                                                                                                                                                                      I return judiciously and have a great appreciation for the ease of which I can return items, which is really not much. Good to know Costco is there for me if I'm not satisfied.
                                                                                                                                                                                                      Most recently, I returned a large pack of chicken thighs because they were leaking and I though better safe than sorry.
                                                                                                                                                                                                      I also returned a set of sheets *after* giving it a wash because I could not get over the poor quality (and I thought things would get better with a first wash) of this particular set.
                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm glad they track crap like returning perfectly good food because those members will eventually drive the price of food up for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Was in a hurry trying to shop for a Labor Day Weekend getaway... Picked up a 48 oz. bottle of "Santa Barbara Mango with Peach Salsa" - I usually make my own but just didn't want to take the extra time to buy tomatoes, etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                          The ingredient list didn't look bad:
                                                                                                                                                                                          tomatoes, mango, assorted peppers & chilies, onion, cane sugar, peaches, tomato puree, cilantro, red wine vinegar, salt, lemon juice, spices, citric acid, with sodium metabisulfite, sodium erythorbate (to protect freshness) and xanthan gum.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Perhaps this is just our taste, but we found it to be way too sweet and unbalanced. I didn't want to toss a 48 oz. jar and didn't want to schlep it back so I doctored it with fresh diced onion, a can of chopped green chilies, several tablespoons of hot sauce, a good glug of red wine vinegar and some salt.

                                                                                                                                                                                          It's better now but I wouldn't buy it again...

                                                                                                                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: RWCFoodie

                                                                                                                                                                                            Nice recovery.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: RWCFoodie

                                                                                                                                                                                              I've bought that salsa before, and didn't care for it either. Too sweet and too watery, all at the same time.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Big Bad Voodoo Lou

                                                                                                                                                                                                Yes, way too sweet but I thought it had a gloppy consistency - I think it's from the xanthan gum...

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. You've probably read my posts that complain about the produce in Winchester, VA, and my comments regarding the response to my complaints. I buy only a few vegetables and fruits anymore and am sooo disappointed. I decided to take another chance with some Pink Lady apples -- simple enough, one would think. I took two out of the bubble pack to juice this morning, after buying them yesterday. The first one was ok, the second one looked like this

                                                                                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                                                                              16 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                Where they grown? I try to buy only local fruits like apples, peaches plums etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ospreycove

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I leaped to this package seeing NY as I needed apples, but if I would've been better served, if I had looked further "Chile."

                                                                                                                                                                                                  A few days ago at Wegman's - about 55 miles away I bought a bag of "local" apples, which didn't last me long enough. As I love the Pink Lady's and thought,, oh, this is the season," I was caught!

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I've not seen local apples yet here in Winchester,one of the apple capitals in the US, yet. I only want to buy local myself, but that isn't always happening for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Costco's $1.41 a lb. for these apples, I'm hoping to find some local this year. My favorite apple farm didn't have any apples last year.

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                    yup, I get duped, in my haste and end up with Garlic from China...for example.......

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                      You want pristine, liberty, something like that. It's not nearly main apple time on the east coast especially for varietals like Pink Lady (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pink_Lad...

                                                                                                                                                                                                      )

                                                                                                                                                                                                      http://www.schrammfarms.com/apples.php (this isn't NY by any means...
                                                                                                                                                                                                      )http://www.kretschmannfarm.com/fruit%... (again, not NY).

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Chowrin

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks for the charts. The area is close enough to my growing zone of 6a, here in the Shenandoah Valley, VA.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Rella, - As I have been absent for some time, I am now getting caught up with comments posted on this web site.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          For that reason, AND, after reading about the various varieties of apples, I have to ask, - are you familiar with "Honey Crisp"? "Pink Lady" use to be my favorite until this past year when I tried the H.C.. OMG, - how sweet, crisp and wonderful. Are they available in your area? Would love to send you a sample, but not sure how to do so. Is leaving a personal email address illegal for follow up on personal comments? Anyway, let me know how we might connect and I would be glad to introduce you to this wonderful semi-new variety of apple.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Chowrin

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Chowrin....Hey both those places/orchards sound great!! especially compared to sitting in a container from Austrailia, China or Chile! EAT LOCAL!!!!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                          It's not apple season quite yet, so that's probably the best PL you're going to get for a while. I'd wait a bit longer and stick with Fuji's or Gala's for now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                                                            After a while of reading one person's reply, I start recognizing them more and more. Cstr, you are one of the people that I have gone to on chowhound and have found that you have no preferences enumerated; i.e., where you are from, your favorite cookbooks, dinner, etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Please don't stay unknown -

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                        apples are funny, anything that's not a weird color is probably safe to eat. we get pie apples for free from our CSA, because they're such a pain to peel and remove the icky bits.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Chowrin

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sure wish I could find an open CSA in my neck of the woods, but they are 'full up' on their subscriptions and have been for several years now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          At least in a 35 mile radius which is all I'm willing to travel for a CSA basket; now that I have Wegman's 54 miles away - closer to a 'big city' of Fairfax, VA.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Follow up - took apples back. Costco return clerk said they had been getting a lot of returns. Not glad to have bad apples, but glad to see that others are returning bad produce.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yesterday, picked up a box of oranges, some of the oranges were rotten, some were not. Takes a lot of looking over. There was a produce man there and I mentioned it,but nothing else I really can do. I believe they are aware of this; how could they not be?

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                            ... buying fruit out of season is like buying "fresh squeezed orange juice" out of season. bad idea.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Chowrin

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I guess it's like any other market, look carefully and purchase when in season. Between the pickers, transporation etc, some produce will not survive, kinda a fact of life. Rella's apples looked like they may have suffered a colder than normal truck refrigerator unit, hay stuff happens. Glad to see Costco's liberal return policy, other markets I shop in would have grilled me about how I kept them etc. So, for me it's not a Costco disappointment, it's life.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: treb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Tis a good outlook - "It's Life."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Shortly after leaving Costco I stopped at my 'other' grocery to buy organic celery $2.50 per stalk. The produce person said that they throw out all bad celery - I kept picking up celery and showing him, "What about this one with withered leaves, what about this one with the yellow leaves, etc." He took the first one and threw it in the trash, but after that, he just 'looked' at me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yes, truly,"it's life." :-))

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  don't you just love that blank stare?

                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. Sabatino's chicken meatballs with garlic and basil got a big thumbs down from me. They were spongy and had too much processed (jarred) garlic flavor. I've got to get the opened package out of my fridge and toss them into the disposal because they smell very strong.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Oh well, can't win them all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Your circumstance is one that I would have considered a return on - especially if I had bought within a reasonable period of time of opening.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Next time, don't accept a loss.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Thanks, I thought of that but had to get them the hell out of my house! We probably have the receipt so maybe we'll try it sans the stinky balls.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I've been there-done that! Even recently -- The money is just not worth getting further involved. On the other hand, I'm as feisty as a rooster and will hang on to a purchase - no matter what price, nor distance - just for my own satisfaction.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                "Who knows the minds of men."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  You're right, I should have Costco stand by their word and get my money back. Heaven knows we spend a LOAD of money there! Sometimes I think my standards are higher as a "foodie" who does a great deal of cooking from scratch, so that when I get prepared products, they let me down because they just don't compare.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  While, many folks might think these meatballs are good...
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  just the thoughts that go through my brain...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I make most of my food from scratch, too; and when I buy prepared products, they let me down, too. My problem is that I'm both optimistic and pessimistic about 'some' of the prepared foods, but I am weaning myself slowly, but steadily away from them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    For instance, I used to buy spanakopita, lasagna, a ready-made frozen pizza, that sort of thing, but now I am able to pass them by not missing a heart-beat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Confession time: I have now in my refrigerator a container of the Holy guacamoley (I think it is called.) I swore it was disgusting a year or so ago, but I recently I tasted a demonstration of it with a whole-grain chip and was convinced, "Well, it is not as bad as I thought." But not so. Stung again by my own noggin' head - and not being able to buy a decent avocado in years.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Bought a large pack of bacon only to discover at home in small print that it's "maple-flavored." It has a vile artificial smell and taste ... should have kept the receipt and returned it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Whoa.....you want me to ask directions, and now return something to COSTCO, nope, too many other priorities like finding Pompano in the bay and going to my fav breakfast place to tell fishing lies!!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. The three pack of organic ground beef. Beef paste would be a better name.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Cameraman

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Yes, what a disappointment. And when it cooked, everything was swimming in oil. Regular non-organic ground beef is not as oily.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: plantainchips

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    First of all, it's not "oil", it's fat. Secondly, organic or not, fat content is a function of what cuts go into the grind. Typically a lean mix of ground beef will be 10-15% fat by weight, so if you're buying a pound, then there's at least 1.5-2.5 ounces of fat in there. You will never have a situation where you brown ground beef and not end up with some liquified fat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ferret

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      There is usually oil/fat from ground beef, but this was way more than normal (for me, at least. ymmv of course.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: Cameraman

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    That's sad to hear. I just bought this two days ago and put in the freezer to do a food prep/taste test along side the organic farm ground beef that I buy from a local farmer (which is part of the side.) I wanted to freeze it, so they would both be thawed ground beef for the test.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I don't use ground meat except for two dishes, as a rule. Bolognese, and meatballs.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Maybe the beef paste from Costco might be ok for the meat balls, hopefully.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I had used the beef for bolognese too and had to spoon off the excess oil, which I don't usually do. But this was a few months ago, so hoping your batch turns out ok.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. Last year, one batch of mangoes was totally black inside - all of them, but they refunded my money no problem. I just bought a bag of pistachios yesterday (3 pounds for about $15 or $16) but about 20-25% of them aren't open enough to get eat, so I'll stick to Trader Joe's (for about the same price, with the option of no salt).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Claudette

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      That's the nature of a pistachio, TJ's are no different, except for their price, can't compete with Costco.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: treb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Don't ya' hate it when Pastachios aren't cracked open enough to get your fingernails in them!!!!!!!! Especially if you are really starving.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: ospreycove

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I know, you struggle to get those suckers open, I've often used my teeth to try to crack them, no such luck.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: treb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Pistachios are graded by size and openness, I think. Some brands, Sunkist comes to mind, are fatter and more likely to be open than the ones from Costco and they taste much better, too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yup, some pistachios are easy to open and some brands are not. You get what you pay for.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. I seem to always be disappointed in the Earthbound Farm Organic Spring Mix. Even when the "use by" is dated 1 week ahead of purchase, sometimes when opening it will have the smooshy bits of greens that will smell the next day, permeating the whole box of greens, making them unuseable.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        When putting them in water, it doesn't do much good, because the rotten part clings to a leaf. Particularly bad is the red leaf.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I will stay away from these because of past experience, but every now and then I will buy again just to be disappointed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I don't expect them to last to the 3rd day, but I'd like to get at least opening day and the next day's use.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        12 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I noticed precisely the same thing, Rella.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: RB Hound

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks for your reply. I'm sure if it happened to us, it happens all the time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              It goes beyond that. I really liked the heirloom baby lettuce packs when they first started carrying them, but it seems that in the past year they have not look as good, have often been dirtier (requiring a very thorough wash), and have not lasted as long.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: RB Hound

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I've not seen the lettuce packs you speak of ever here in Winchester, VA, other VA locations or in Pennsylvania. Sounds like it would have been one more disappointment.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My Costco used to carry the Boston bibb lettuce, 2 in a plastic container. I could get some use out of it. They were the last time I saw them $2.99 for 2 in the container; whereas my supermarket charges $2.69 to $2.99 for one in a container and is never worth buying.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I hope I can get a few green things out of the garden this fall/winter. But it will never be enough - cause I like greens!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I get longer use out of them by keeping them on the coldest part of the bottom of my fridge... those little dark leaves are the ones that get slimy and mess the others up. You can get rid of them by putting it all in a clean sink or big bowl full of water and swirling it around, but the ick factor is still there. Mine keep much longer than a day or two after purchase.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              With a "date of purchase" 10 days before the "use by date," after opening I will get use out of the greens the day I open, then the next day. The third day will defintely have the slimeys apparent, but this has to have the use by date of 10 days. 7 just doesn't do it for me..

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I used to take all of the greens out and put them in the large FoodSaver containers and vacuum them and get more days. I chucked my FoodSaver and did not replace it, so I don't have that option now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I guess I could buy the mesclun at a market, where everyone has been picking through, but I choose not to do that. At the local supermarket, a few weeks ago, I bought a vacuumed bag of arugula which looked fabulous, and which had previously been wonderful, it was so horrible tasting, it was inedible.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Last week I would have bought at Costco the romaine, which my husband prefers, but it was just too old-looking.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I have tah-tsai (sp?) growing in the garden and collards which should be ready soon ....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I don't ever buy the baby greens if the pull date is just a few days away. In that case, I'll buy a small package elsewhere. More money, until you factor in how much you throw out of the cheaper one from Costco.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Right. I used to think I could afford to throw away a half bag of whatever, because the price difference was so great. But now that the prices are rising, that price difference is nothing to sneeze at.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              This is exactly the reason why I no longer buy the organic salad mix. I usually end up throwing out most of it. it's a waste of money.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Monica

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Truly it is a waste of money. And time. And wondering "How will I get my fresh greens this week."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                My go-to greens are Broccoli Rabe from the supermarket. They almost never fail me, if I choose wisely.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Broccoli Rabe is one of my go to veggies, tasty. I only buy a baby greens salad mix when I plan to use most of it that day and I agree, the super markets bulk version that have been picked through are gross. I rather but the packaged one from Costco knowing that one one's snotty little hands have been through it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: treb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I can see we are on the same page. :-))

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. Looking thru a cookbook reminded me that last week I saw the prepared butternut squash offering in a plastic container, cut into neat squares.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I noticed that the package said something to the effect: Product of U.S. 'and' Mexico;
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              or Product of Mexico 'or' U.S.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I've noticed this on much of their produce. I can't believe that they can't figure out where the produce comes from. Maybe not.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hey Rella, I've noticed that you pretty much own this thread but, reading your post about the organic mix it made me think of an issue I had a few years ago, this may help. So here goes, I was having similar issues, with a shortened life, with produce no matter if it was from Costco or the farmers market. After some mental analysis, I decided to put a digital thermometer in my refrigerator, the refrig was still set the same as the mfg. recommendation. After a 48 hour stay, my chill chest read 34 f, which was 6 degrees cooler than the recomendation of 40. I changed my setting and am now getting at least 2 weeks on romaine lettuce, celery and cukes, at least 4 weeks on carrots, up to eight weeks on lemons and limes and on such items as mixed greens and spinach, which are more delicate, I'm getting a full week. So I'd recommed checking you're chill chest, it may need a tweek!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: treb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  My main refrigerator is a sub-zero and I have it maintained religiously. I also have another refrigerator which is maintained religiously. I keep thermometers in 4 freezers, and 2 refrigerators.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Otherwise I would wonder if it were something other than my refrigerator. Thanks for your thoughtful recommendation.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  How would my owning this thread negate my disappointing purchases from Costco?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Over the past 15+/- years of purchasing from Costco, my experience has been the polar opposite from yours, so my suggestion, for extending the life of your produce, was that it might not be the produce.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: treb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Eye, Eye, Eye.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I've been purchasing from Costco since 1988.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I've been purchasing mostly from the same Costco since 1993.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      You and I do not shop at the same Costco.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      My produce used to be quite satisfactory.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      In produce, I still find things that are satisfactory - some, some of the time. Some, none of the time. Some, sporadically. I still find carrots, onions, lemons quite the bargain. But that is another thread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I make my comments known to Costco. Everyone who works there has worked there for almost all of the time since opening and I feel on friendly terms.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm glad that your produce has been the polar opposite of mine.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Again, thanks for your thoughtfulness.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: treb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        If the OP is buying it within a few days of the pull date, it surely is a product problem. I've often experienced it unless I buy it with a longer window of time and I carefully monitor temp, as does the OP.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I've had the same experience at times, and storage temp was something I addressed as well. I didn't mean to negate your observations, for the record, only to suggest what helped in my case.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: mcf

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks, mcf. I am myself concerned about storage temperatures; probably the reason I care so much is that I bring so much produce into the house and want to maintain its freshness.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          We are home all day most days and cook to the hilt. We are in and out of the main refrigerator, so a lot of the produce will be kept in a lesser opened refrigerator.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Mine for the most part is produce and we live in OC. You think living in CA you would get lot's of fresh produce, but that is not the case. It seems like every other week I have to return some fruit or veggie back . I bought a bag of frozen organic asparagus a while ago and I was finally ready to use it yesterday unitil I noticed, it is a product of China!! I was very surprised and will return it. I am sure the organic standards in China are not the same as here. I have noticed their organic mixed veggies had a soy from china mixed with othere veggies from US. I can't believe that Costco has to import organic veggies from China.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    15 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: mrsjoujou

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I agree!!! Organic products from CHINA??? Gotta wonder what they consider "organic". I also find it unbelievable how many people buy (locally available) produce from COSTCO here in the Pacific Northwest when there are so many FRESH options to choose from - produce stands and farmer's markets; available without driving any distance. Why buy that awful garlic from China when it is available locally and so far superior AND for only a few cents more.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Now, if only we could grow limes and lemons in my area (Western WA). Using an obscene amount of limes in many of my favorite recipes, I try to find "juicy limes". I buy them by the bag, and after a few days, I zest them, and squeeze the juice and freeze both in ice-cube trays for future use. It's hard to tell by looking at them which ones are higher in juice content than others, other than by size.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It also seems that certain times of the year that limes are larger than at other times. My question
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      is this: is there a way of knowing which limes offer the most juice. I try to buy CA limes when possible. Any other tips on lemons and limes would be welcome.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Agree, I always try to get veggies and fruit from the farmer markets. No problem getting CA lemons and limes, limes are mostly the peruvian type, and garlic is from the garlic capital of the US in CA as well. I always look at the country of origin, I prefer to get my produce from US producers when possible. Buyer beware!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I got to thinking about your question and I went to a couple of sites and I like these recommendations:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          http://www.associatedcontent.com/arti...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I like these helpful hints mentioned: look for yellowish color, avoid tiny limes, shouldn't feel as hard as a baseball, subtle fragrance.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Almost all the limes I buy are just the opposite of these requirements :-((

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Almost all the lemons I buy do not meet these requirements. However, for some reason the Meyer Lemons seem to meet all the requirements.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I, too squeeze the juice of lemons and lime; it is quite a job, is it not? If they do not look waxed, I will try to get some zest.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I use at least one fresh lemon per day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Rella, - Thanks for the link. It all makes sense. Recently, I found a bag of "close out" limes from my favorite produce stand (Carpinito's - Kent, WA) which looked to be definitely past their prime; but, they were big and juicy looking, although a couple of them were almost turning brown on one end. I couldn't resist the price of $2.00 for about 8 of them. After arriving home, I immediately juiced them and got about 1/3 cup juice from each!!! These were not candidates for zest. But, on that note, when I zest, I run them under hot water to remove the wax and use either my zester or another tool that contains the zest as it's made; place in the freezer and later use for a favorite mango mousse recipe. As I'm a kitchen gadget fanatic, I have several to play with. As for juicing, my favorite is what I see chefs using on TV cook shows. I'm not sure of the name - "Squeezo"? Yellow for lemons and green for limes. It actually makes juicing FUN and it does an excellent job in squeezing out every last drop. What are others using?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            .....a lemon a day - keeps you - puckered up??? lol

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Not sure how I ended up on this board where most folks are from your area of Virginia, and the East Coast, but enjoy the comments from most of the readers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I know Kent. I used to live on Vashon Island, WA. Twice:-))

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I used to get great limes in Fairfax, VA at the Asian markets, but (this was about 7-8 years ago), then all of a sudden the Asian markets in that area jacked the prices so high that it was not worth putting shopping off just to go about 60 miles for their produce; although one did have more choice and somewhat better produce. But it really turned me off. Also about the time I gave up most of the Asian cooking I was doing, which was a small part of the reason for going. All in all, purchasing produce is one of those things that keeps us alert ;-))

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              What I have been using for a big job of lemons and/or limes is an attachment to my KitchenAid Food Processor (that they no longer provide). Over the years it is the best I've used.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Since I recently bought a Breville juicer, I use 1 to 1-1/2 lemon each day along with 4-5 oranges for juice. The next time I have excess, I'm going to try juicing them in the juicer. This should be an easier job than the KitchenAid, which takes a bit of pressure holding it down.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oh Carpinito's is great! My Mom misses it dreadfully after she moved from Star Lake to Campbell, CA where she is near my sister. There used to be a sweet corn stand at the bottom of 'Star Lake Road' in the Kent Valley, and she would buy their corn which was amazing. They have since left, so she was a die hard fan of Carpinito's instead.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                As far as juicing lemons and limes, I finally broke down and bought an electric citrus juicer so I can do lots of them. If I just juice one lime or lemon, I use one of those little plastic things on a cup and it's just fine. :o)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              ... you should see the organic coffee that Whole foods sells/used to sell. Certified "we burnt the rainforest down" to grow the crap. (note: not the fair trade stuff. that has a higher pricepoint).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Chowrin

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                In Fairfax, VA, a few years ago, a new WF came to town. It was astounding. Some decent restaurants, etc. inside. One thing I liked was that their coffee was up-to-date, and one could buy a cuppa of the one you would possibly buy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                They ground it in front of you, brewed it in front of you. They had always on hand organic. Their coffee I would say was from around the world - and seemed fresh.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                But I don't go there anymore -- Wegmans is closer and I like their produce.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Interesting - small world. I love your Shen. Valley as well. Very beautiful. How did you end up there?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Is Wegmans the same as our PNW Safeway? ....which I never shop since they only sell "select meat", aka Rancher's Reserve, in their regular meat case.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Since you live in "peanut country", and I love Hoody's peanuts, (they seem to be the top of the line as peanuts go), but are there any other brands, other than Hoodys, that use Virginia peanuts? I tried to switch to Dr. Oz' suggestion of toasted soy instead of the calorie laden peanuts, but sorry Dr. Oz - they don't come close. My squirrels don't seem to care for them either. lol

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The easiest way to explain ending up in VA - We were searching for a retirement place. We both were basically east coast 'bent' even though we lived on the west coast for 40+/- years. You CAN go home again, but it was a shock for a while.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I don't know a thing about peanuts. I only see Hoodys in Costco, but I've never bought them. I'm not an advocate of soy, so I would choose peanuts if I had to choose.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    If you know WF stores, then you might say Wegmans is similar without the hype. We have shopped at 3 Wegmans in Pennsylvania and they don't come close to the one here in Gainesville, VA, which is in sort of an up-scale farm/horse community which probably has something to do with it. Also, Wegmans has the best wine department I've ever seen. WF's isn't bad. Wegman's is near where years ago Disney thought about building Disney World -- it's so cold in the winter, I have no idea why this was a consideration.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wegman's is somewhere between Giant, - which you probably don't have in WA - and WF. I've not seen a Safeway in years; Kroger and Safeway left the area years ago.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Based on what I've seen of Wegman's it seems to be closer to our QFC or even the late lamented Larry's. Much nicer than even the best Safeway.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: acgold7

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        WOW! You remember Larry's? I was so saddened when they closed. It was even a "notch up" from QFC, IMHO. When the son took over, that was the beginning of the end. Now, Tukwila Produce - what a disappointment to the neighborhood; unless you live 20 to a household and don't mind buying 3rd rate produce for 10 lbs. or more, etc. But, that goes hand in hand to what the neighborhood has become over the past 20 years.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Loved Larry's -- definitely a step up from QFC. Wasn't *that* long ago, was it? Great seafood and Produce, although ridiculous for anything else. Very sad to see them go. Metropolitan Markets fills the niche when I'm feeling rich.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Haven't heard of Tukwila Produce -- did they take over the Larry's location in your area?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          (Sorry for the OT digression, non-Seattle CHers.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: acgold7

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Unfortunately, YES, - Larry's on Pac Highway is now Tukwila Produce. The demographics of the neighborhood have changed SO MUCH over the past 20 years; and, not for the better. That is why they cater to folks who live 20 to a household and offer 10 lbs for etc. .... and don't even think of shopping for their "ungraded" meat. With only a minor adjustment in the past year, their meat case use to look as if they slaughtered the cow and bagged up the parts in plastic bags. It was nauseating just passing by their meat case.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The closest Metropolitan Market to my area would be the Queen Ann store; many miles away. As it is, I have to travel 5 miles to the closest QFC store for U.S.D.A. Choice meat in a REGULAR meat case. Being able to purchase quality meat outside of a "true meat market", is getting ridiculous unless, the consumer buys into a store's "gourmet meat counter".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            If you know people in their 70's and 80's, they will tell you that even what we have come to know now as U.S.D.A.Choice, it is a far lesser (quality) grade of beef than what we are accepting NOW. So, it is not surprising that our young people in their 20's & 30's have become accepting of the "select grade" of beef. How sad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        costco has virginia peanuts, blister roasted too!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        *halo appears* original topic returned to! ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. I never bought Kirkland paper towels until earlier this year. I was pleased at the overall quality and especially because they had "select-a-size" perforations. It took me a long time to use them up because I had a large pack of Bounty at home at the time. I only shop at Costco every 2-3 months. Last week I bought another big pack of the Kirkland, and was annoyed that the perforations are now every 14.5 inches. The previous ones had a perforation every 7.25 inches, I still have an old roll to compare. The new package says they are "more absorbent" but the actual toweling is identical, so this parses out as bigger towel absorbs more. It's not worth my gas mileage to return these so I'll tear them and use them but after that it's back to Bounty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Anyone know when this change happened? I e-mailed Costco to gripe but have not had a response yet. Presumably they did this because it costs less to produce this way, and they figure people will use up a roll faster. Similar to relocating inventory often and not labeling the aisles. They figure by forcing people to browse, they'll buy more. Not me - it hurts too much to trudge around on that cement floor. If I can't find it easily, I cross it off my list and spend less than I would if they labeled aisles and kept things in place.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I certainly agree with your philosophy. I often NOT MAKE A PURCHASE if I have to back track to find the item; especially if they have moved it from the previous week. And, Costco being Costco, I sometimes assume they have discontinued it from my last visit. Unfortunately, they use this marketing technique of forcing people to tramp up and down the aisles to find what they are looking for thinking it will expose us to other items of interest. This only irritates me and shortens my shopping experience. Obviously, a few customer complaints will have no affect on the way Costco does business; or, they would have an express lane requested by thousands of members.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Also, I believe their Kirkland brand TP is shrinking. Anyone else notice the difference in thickness or roll length over the past year(?)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. I've shopped at Costco for years. In general, I'm a happy customer and a strong supporter. But you asked about disappointing purchases. I recently bought 2 lbs. of pastrami in the deli section. I found it inedible; my terriers did not.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Mangobob

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    my husband loves that pastrami. He makes pastrami and pickle sandwiches and freezes them for his lunch. I don't get it but he's happy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: oohmommy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I admit I never thought about freezing it before I ate it. Perhaps that's the secret. In any event, I'd never criticize another man's program. If he likes it, he likes it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Mangobob

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It is truly dreadful, my husband and I agreed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. Bought the "fresh" anchovies packed in olive oil from the Staten Island location. Flat packed filets in two tubs. Can't put my finger on why I don't like them ( they are not mushy like canned ones) but I can't stand the flavor- is it vinegar?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: carfreeinla

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        they're packed in a brine, cuz their fresh, luv'em!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          If they are white filets they are a real treat!!!!!! Until a few years ago the "Fresh white anchovies" were impossible to find, now they are available but quite expensive.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ospreycove

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Interesting. They just don't do it for me. How do you eat them? I tried them over pasta, with hard boiled eggs, and by them selves...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: carfreeinla

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              They're really best suited to eat in a salad or as an app with a small bit of crustini and olive oil. Definately not over a hot entree like pasta as they will partially cook and change the taste. As ospreycove stated, they are a treat and at Costco prices even better.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Just bought the heat and eat pepperoni pizza for the first time - woah - wayyyyyyy too salty for me, and I'm a salt-hound.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. Bags of yellow onions. I'm sure this appears somewhere on this thread but really, I have never bought a bag of onions where there hasn't been at least 2 of the onions that were rotten. Do they not sell quickly? Are their standards very low with their suppliers? I've mentioned it to the store managers an they write it down but truthfully it never changes. OK, I'm done now and I'll get off my soapbox.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: jnk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I rarely buy the yellow onions for that reason. The price is always tempting.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The yellow onions to me seem more spongy or airy. I try to buy either the red or sweet and get the hardest onions. If they are not hard, I don't buy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              What I usually do is peel the entire bag as soon as I get home, slice them, put them in a roasting pan and into the oven. Within a couple of hours I have 10 lbs (minus a couple 0f onions)of caramelized onions ready to use however/whenever needed. That's why I don't buy the sweet onions, they get too sweet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: jnk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Yes, I have used "almost" an entire bag of yellow onions in a slow cooker to make caramelized onions. I agree that the sweet onions are a little sweet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: jnk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I bought that big bag of yellow onions (S. San Francisco Costco) for Thanksgiving -- what luck, all were good. The ones I did not use for T Day were just fine for Christmas dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              For the price, even if they had not lasted until Christmas, I would still have been ahead.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: walker

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I, too, used to buy a lot of produce that I always felt, "Well, even if I don't use it up, or even a third of it, I will still be ahead. Not so much anymore.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                In spite of my not buying yellow onions as everyday onions, a big bag of yellow onions are great for onion soup, are they not?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Glad you had good luck.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I guess there's a lot of turnover at the Costcos here, always crowded. Friday at SF downtown and then Sat. at S. SF, they were completely out of kitty litter. I'm not going there on a weekend again, the parents let their kids run wild. AND it's so crowded.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    It has a huge parking garage; I think most people going to that one have cars. I live near the ocean and park so am closer to SSF one on El Camino but if I'm downtown for other reasons, sometimes I'll just go to the SF one. It's on 10th St near Harrison. Mine in SSF just started carrying big hunks of fresh ginger, maybe it's for all the Chinese New Year dinners.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: jnk

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                tend to rot from the outside in. used quickly, you can save most of the onion.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Chowrin

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Once an onion gets that slimy feeling I just can't use it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3. A 3 pound clamshell package of fresh apricots. They took like 2 weeks to ripen and then all got ripe at the same time. Maybe they were a secret to forcing them to ripen and I could have done them in batches.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. Just visited a new Costco in Pewaukee, WI with my sister, who's a member. Bought a 2 lb package of "prime" USDA grade New York Strip steaks, for $17 a pound. We are able to buy
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  "prime" grade beef at a number of our local supermarkets, for about the same price. It's been a treat, similar to the beef served in high end steak houses.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I seasoned the steak, thawed and dry aged it in the refrigerator at 38 degrees overnight. Expected great things, since we have a professional grade grill. Spouse cooked the steak perfectly. HOWEVER, it was one of the toughest, least flavorful steaks we've ever had. Extremely chewy, not a pleasure to eat. We both had the same impression: the beef was misgraded by accident or misrepresented.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Consequently, and because I saw pretty much the same type of food and merchandise as carried by the nearby Sam's Club, I will not purchase a Costco membership. I thought that was a good test, and Costco failed, miserably.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: WIWInegirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Costco will gladly take it back and refund you your $. Just bring back what you have not eaten, the packaging and receipt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I've had prime steak from there that was excellent -- you just got a "bad" one somehow.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: walker

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Not sure if Costco will do this without a membership card.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Good question, how did WIWIengirl purchase food at Costco without a membership? I still question how they can dry age a steak overnight, I usually dry age a primal section, i.e. the whole rib eye, for about 2 weeks. Just say'n this post has me wondering if it's just to slam Costco. I've never had an issue with any Costco meats or poultry.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Maybe a promotion for the new store (I know I get offers for free 60 day membership to BJs a few times a year), maybe a visit with a membership holder.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "Just visited a new Costco in Pewaukee, WI with my sister, who's a member" - I assume that means the sister bought under her membership.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Second time I've bought the baby romaine hearts...they were filled with sand and were extremely dirty..

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Beach Chick

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I hate that. I usually don't find excessive sandiness with romaine, but have cleaned mustard greens and spinach to many times I start to wonder if I've spent more money on water than the food!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: monavano

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I get that feeling too when I'm running a lot of water for cleanup. But then I think that afterall, each rinse of water I do is from absolutely clean water and am glad I had the opportunity to rinse it myself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Surely, I am gratified if I've found a few bugs to rinse, as well :-))

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My general rule of thumb, if it says pre-washed, I'll wash it anyway!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: cstr

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yes, I agree. I have an unopened bag of cut-up kale that that I plan to use shortly - just went to have a look-see. It does NOT say that it's been pre-washed. The kale even though it is cut looks fabulous. Perhaps a pre-washing by the packager would have deterioriated the quality, I don't know.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I wash prior to cooking. No matter what.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I usually find that those large green leafy veggies, kale, mustard greens, escarole, collards et al are generally sandy and will always wash thoroughly.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: monavano

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Me too monavano!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            When I pop open that plastic box, I don't want to be washing my lettuce...especially, when it's filled with sand!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. We want to be fair and not just present the negatives:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          On the plus side: Costco produce has been very good, we purchase cherries, carrots, brussles sprouts, baby carrots, strawberries, and peppers. We have enjoyed them all without problems.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Regarding fruits such as pears, peaches, apples; we buy theses at our local farm stand and even these can be less than stellar, meaning tough, or less than flavorful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Disappointing have been purchases of several meat products:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The pork country style ribs were tough and needed significant brining. We smoke our ribs and to try to smoke them to tender would dry them out. We went back to our local small family run grocery store for country style ribs and other fresh meats.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Ground beef is too lean for burgers, meatloaf, or meatballs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Chuck roast has a higher silver content than we would like but, we mix this with other cuts for our own "custom" ground beef.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          We purchased flank steaks, marinated them for 24 hours and grilled them on a charcol fired grill and found them to be very good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Seafood we purchase at our local Wegmans or preferably at Klines, whose product is fresh, in Belmar, NJ.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          A note on Wegmans, we don't eat cold cuts often---maybe once a quarter, and I don't like Wegman's approach by slicing them in advance. I'll wait for fresh sliced which means we only buy them at the local family run grocery store.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. My biggest disappointment wasn't a food purchase. I bought a pair of Calvin Klein Jeans that were under $25. Unfortunately, they tore off seam a few months after purchasing them. The materials seem inferior to the ones I have purchased in the past at Macy's [or another department store].

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. I am in So. Florida and i was shocked a few weeks ago. I was going to purchase the large bags of frozen broccoli. In very small print on the back, you really had to look for it, it says that it is a product of CHINA. Last week they had in the regular section bags of roasted chestnuts. They are also from CHINA. There is no way i would ever even consider ingesting anything from china and i am really disappointed in Costco. In the past i have tried contacting corp. about another product and they really didn't want to hear about it. In fact the man who called me back was downright sarcastic so i no longer bother. I simply tell anyone who happens to be near the product considering it to check the country of origin for themselves.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: faleentoby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                It's really good advice to look out for foods that are being imported from China. I'm not a purist on many food issues but that is a HUGE turnoff for me. I have noticed it more and more, too. Even in our regular Stop n Shop I am seeing it - for example, bulbs of garlic are imported from China. Really? UGH!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Garlic is native to China. They grow most of the world's crop. Have for, well, centuries.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Shazam

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    If you have the choice between garlic from China verses that from the U.S., I would rather support ALL CROPS GROWN IN THE U.S. rather than other countries, especially CHINA.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    California is a major grower of garlic and the additional cost is minimal.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: shasta21

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      That's fine, but no one should be surprised that garlic comes from China.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Shazam

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I don't have a problem purchasing garlics from China as long as they don't inject them with chemicals to stop sprouting.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      One thing I noticed from California garlic is that in the very beginning when the california garlics were becoming popular..maybe 5 years ago, I noticed they were sprouting only a few days after purchasing but now even California garlics don't sprout as much...which means, they are adding more chemicals.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I try to buy organic garlics from Trader Joe's now whenever I can.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. My wife and myself have bought fresh fish (I use that term loosely) at Costco many times over the years. Sometimes it smells bad enough that I throw it out. But I have noticed that sometimes it does not have any odor at all. I have caugt enough fresh fish in my life to know that really fresh fish has a slightly sweet smell to it. And bad fish has an ammonia smell to it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I am convinced that Costco is doing something to their "fresh fish" to give it a longer shelf life. They process $214,000,000.00 worth of fresh fish a year. As consumers we have a right to know what Costco is doing to their fish. They have the date packaged on the fish but not the date caught.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: winemaker777

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I don't think I've ever seen a 'date caught' on any fish package not matter where I've purchased it. Have you contacted Costco with your question? Do you know how many times a day/week Costco replenishes it's seafood stock in their stores? I think you need to perform some serious research before making such statements. Oh, congrats on your 1st post to CH.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: treb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The statement(s) ("I am convinced") are my opinion(s). I thought that was what this message board was about "different people's opinions". Just because I think fresh fish means caught very recently does not mean the next guy may think fish is fresh if it was caught 2 weeks ago. Why heck, some people might like a real fishy smell or no smell at all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Fish has about a 3 day window from when it is caught to when it starts going south (my opinion). The processing and distribution time pretty much prohibits any major chain from having fresh fish, on a regular basis, as far as I am concerned. It does not matter how many times a week Costco or anyone else replenishes their fish. It is the quality of what they replenish it with that matters.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      My point is that I think (my opinion) Costco does something to their fish to give it a longer shelf life. Maybe I'm wrong. You can decide for yourself. Have I asked Costco if they do anything to give their $214,000,000.00 worth of fresh fish a longer shelf life? No I have not.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: winemaker777

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        How much of the "fresh" fish at Costco has never been previously frozen? For a lot of the fish, when it was thawed is probably more relevant than when it was caught.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: winemaker777

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I agree with you 100%! That is why I would rather take a chance on "frozen" verses "fresh" fish. However, I have been so disappointed in any fish (salmon) I have purchased lately, by any retailer, that I'm wondering if the farmed-raised salmon are escaping and mating with the wild salmon? Is that too strange to believe??? The Sockeye are tasteless. My cats even turn their nose up at it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: winemaker777

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            This is a message board about individual opinions but, it's also about giving accurate and correct info. "I am convinced that Costco is doing something to their "fresh fish" to give it a longer shelf life" and "As consumers we have a right to know what Costco is doing to their fish". To me that sounds like more than an opinion. IMHO, I believe Costco turns seafood over quicker and far more often than most of your average super markets, it's just fresher, I'm talking seafood like Ahi, Salmon etc. not shell fish like shrimp, lobster tails etc. Also, I'm sure you're aware that most seafood is flash frozen on board the processing ships. Lastly, part of posting will generate many questions, other opinions and credibility about posts. Get used to it as we all share in the fun.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: treb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Agreed, treb. Most of all, go to the source! Ask if Costco does anything. Ask at the store. Contact them online or call them. Then and only then come to a conclusion, but do the legwork fist.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              It's only responsible. In the end, your inkling could be, in fact, true.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: treb

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                "Also, I'm sure you're aware that most seafood is flash frozen on board the processing ships"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Do you think that frozen is fresh? Should consumers be made aware of fish that is being sold as fresh, if it was previously frozen? Would this be a means of giving fish a longer shelf life?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Your opinion "I believe Costco turns seafood over quicker and far more often than most of your average super markets, it's just fresher" to me sounds like more than an opinion. Hey, that's your opinion and I respect that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: winemaker777

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Most seafood states whether it's previously frozen or not as well as origin.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: winemaker777

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    When I was commenting on Costco's seafood is fresher, I was referring to how quickly they turn their seafood inventory.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: winemaker777

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Freezing, if it is to a low enough temperature and is maintained for long enough, does kill certain microorganisms, so it probably should extend shelf-life somewhat after thawing, assuming the fish is not contaminated during handling after thawing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: racer x

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        more importantly,
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        deep freezing will kill some parasites that may not kill you but are pretty darn yucky.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: westsidegal

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Tell that to everyone who eats sushi as most all fish is flash frozen at sea and still maintains 'sushi grade'. I did check my Costco last week and a most of their wild caught seafood is 'fresh' i.e. halibut, pacific cod, ahi tuna etc, not previously frozen.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Stuff I like at Costco is in a different thread. Recent try's and will-not-buy-agains:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Refrigerated bin - Chicken patties with carmelized onion. I heat these at work in the micro. The packaging must be cut open with scissors, so then scissors must be washed. They tasted like bland cafeteria salisbury steak without the brown. I will finish them for cheap easy work lunch.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Garden Lites Grilled Zuchinni Souffles - came out mushy and soggy in the micro! Taste/texture was mushy soggy bleah. I will take these home for emergency but they might eventually get tossed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              some Chicken Enchilda bake that serves 5. Used this for emergency lazy dinner. It does not finish cooking in microwave in 10 minutes. That's just way wrong. The taste was below average but edible.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm on the fence about the Chicken Apple sausage. I really liked it the first time I grilled it. But the second time I thought it was too sweet. That is just a personal preference though. I would recommend that chicken apple sausage if you like a sweet tasting meat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: fuji315

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Papillon Roquefort. I ADORE cheese...especially blues (I love the stilton Costco sells around Christmas), but after having another salad ruined by even the smallest amount of this roquefort I've decided to throw it out (for me to throw away cheese is extraordinary). It is incredibly harsh and offers none of the flavor payoff.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: o_pinon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I 'think' Papillon was on the Costco thread of things people liked at Costco. I looked for it here in Winchester, VA, and didn't see it. DH just bought some Cropwell Bishop BlueStilton at Costco a few days ago - hasn't tried it yet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sorry you didn't like the Papillon. I know how sad it is to throw away cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Rella

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I didn't particularly like the C.B. Stilton they had last winter. I found it bland and not creamy. I mean, it should have a hint of richness, but not as much as Roquefort or Gorgonzola.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    This was a new brand of Stilton, the previous one was pulled for listeria, although I liked it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: fuji315

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  fuji: I "baked" the chicken enchilada bake and you didn't miss much microwaving it ....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3. only worst sushi is trader joes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. I recently tried the take and bake pizza in the meat area. I had modest expectations. They weren't met. The crust was half cardboard, half soggy uncooked dough. Flavor of the sauce was good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Why did I move out of my fav pizza places delivery area?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    10 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: meatn3