HOME > Chowhound > Chains >

Discussion

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - July 2014 [OLD]

We're moving right along through summer. The days are getting shorter but the party's just begun. July brings Independence Day for those of us in the US and plenty of time for picnics and BBQ.

What products have you tried recently? Would you rate them a YAY, MEH, or NAY?

  1. Click to Upload a photo (10 MB limit)
Delete
  1. Resurgence Yay for the 1000 Day Gouda. Already a favorite but just cracked open a new wedge and was reminded how great this cheese is.

    1. YAY Salt and pepper pistachios. Not overly salty and a good bold black pepper taste. Dangerously addictive.

      7 Replies
      1. re: weezieduzzit

        Haven't tried them yet but they sound great. I have been shying away from pistachios for a while for the SOLE REASON that my thumb-nails get so chewed-up they hurt for days after. Maybe I have weak nails or something.... but it becomes an issue.

        Or maybe it's just that when I start crackin' open pistachios I can't stop at just 50 of them....

        I'm going to give 'em a go, though. I love pistachios too much to not try these. The TJ's nuts in the 1 lb. bags I've purchased (usually cashews or almonds) have been absolutely top-notch quality from my experience.

        1. re: Dave B

          You can spare those thumbs by using a half shell from your first opened nut; insert it into the opening of the nut and twist. The downside of this method is that you can eat a lot more pistachios with minimal thumb pain (the bag disappears WAY too fast)!

          1. re: Pwmfan

            I did try the salt and pepper pistachios and boy they are great! I didn't have a lot of luck with the thumb-saving technique. Probably need more practice. This time I ended up going back to the traditional thumb-nail wrecking method. It was worth it.

            I never thought to look before, but there are some specifically designed tools out there. Thinking about ordering the plastic ones at 2 for $9.96 with free shipping!

            http://www.pistachionuts.net/
            video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nw_L3...

            1. re: Pwmfan

              I've also used a well washed new flat head screwdriver. When you have to open lots of them!

              1. re: adventuresinbaking

                My pistachio opener tools arrived (two for $10 including shipping) and I will say I'm surprised at how effective and easy to use they are.

                Had to make another TJ's stop yesterday just to get more Salt & Pepper Pistachios so I could test my new opener tool. The sacrifices I make.

                And my fingernails are in magnificent shape after all this pistachio experimentation. Go figure - people start talking, and stuff gets done.

                 
          2. re: weezieduzzit

            I agree - they are absolutely fantastic.

          3. Had shied away from the rosemary raisin crackers but finally tasted them a few weeks ago & both my mom (who's visiting) & myself are hooked. Tried them with the triple cream wild mushroom brie and a hot pepper jelly and it is a great combination.

            Also yay for the peach nectar.

            9 Replies
            1. re: Barbara76137

              These have been a meh for me because I could never figure out what to put on them and ate them straight from the box. Your post made me think they might be pretty good with a little smear of ricotta and a tiny piece of fresh peach. I'm going to have to pick up another box.

              1. re: Harts52

                I had some rosemary raisin crackers today with my (boring) salad. I topped each with a little goat cheese. Half got a blueberry or two and the other half got sliced strawberry. So tasty. And now I know what to serve for lunch on the 4th!

                Just got a jar of pepper jelly last week. That combo sounds great as does the ricotta and peach. Thanks for the ideas.

              2. re: Barbara76137

                They are awesome with goat cheese - especially the honey chèvre at TJs.

                1. re: RabbiBeth

                  Just got the honey chevre to try for the first time.

                  1. re: RabbiBeth

                    when I reheat pizza, I put some dabs of that on it..and maybe some of their cooked applewood bacon pieces.......yummy

                    1. re: RabbiBeth

                      The rosemary raison crackers with the honey chevre is a magical combination.

                    2. re: Barbara76137

                      Used the cracker/cheese/jelly combo for a quick appetizer Sunday night and my two guests devoured an entire bag of crackers & wedge of cheese! All that's left is some of the jelly (16 oz. jar! )

                      1. re: Barbara76137

                        Had them with chopped liver yesterday, which sounds like a weird combination but is actually really good.

                        1. re: TVHilton

                          Not at all! They are amazing with pate for sure... the funk. the salt. the sweetness all is highlighted with these crackers... luv dem.

                          --Dommy!

                      2. Yay to the aloo chaat frozen Indian pockets. I only bought one box and I'm hours away from a TJ's...

                        1. Yea - Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate. It's iced coffee season and this is the quickest and easiest way to make it. (I've tried a couple of cold brew methods and the results were too weak.) "100% Arabica coffee beans." The label says to refrigerate when opened, so iced coffee shouldn't melt too much ice, and to dilute by 2-1 water to concentrate. That's OK by me, but those who like their coffee stronger can add less water. Whether I'd like it hot, I don't know.

                          Yea - bananas. A commodity, same as you find in every other food store (Chiquita), still only 19¢ each. A real bargain even for TJ.

                          11 Replies
                          1. re: John Francis

                            So wanted to try the cold brew concentrate but was waiting for a recommendation. Thanks, it's on my list now to try.

                            1. re: missylrn

                              I actually really didn't like the cold brew and prefer the version i've made myself. But i prefer a darker roast and very intense flavor, more like espresso. Even barely diluted the TJs cold brew was a "meh" for me....

                              1. re: Ttrockwood

                                I didn't love the cold brew concentrate either. had a strange flavor to me.

                              2. re: missylrn

                                I haven't tried it recently, but got a bottle last year. It was fine; it's hard to make cold brew coffee taste outstandingly good or bad (which is why it's a good use for mediocre or stale beans). Convenient, though, and much better than instant, but not as good as iced coffee made with hot water and immediately cooled over ice.

                              3. re: John Francis

                                I am curious about this because of the convenience. But I am very picky about my coffee and somewhat skeptical how good a concentrated coffee can be.

                                The best cold brew coffee I ever tasted was at a cafe in Tokyo. So full of flavor, strong and robust, yet it was so smooth and had no bitterness or the acidic taste that hot brew coffee generally has. I can't figure out the way to recreate it myself till this day. But I think properly made cold brew coffee is far better than pouring the hot coffee over ice for sure.

                                It seems the vote is split on this product. I am still on the fence either to try or not...

                                1. re: Ashibi

                                  In Japan it might have been made using the Kyoto method of drip. Here is a little toy I've been dying to get myself...

                                  http://www.amazon.com/Sur-La-Table-Br...

                                  1. re: Dommy

                                    Woo, I'm putting it on my wish list!

                                  2. re: Ashibi

                                    TJs is not strong, and nothing like the cold brew i've had from blue bottle, ninth st espresso, etc....
                                    Try it and just take it back if you don't like it, but its more of a mild/medium roast than an espresso flavor.

                                    1. re: Ttrockwood

                                      Cold brew is never an espresso flavor. Totally different brewing methods.

                                      Blue Bottle is also a lighter roast, like TJ's, but I believe they normally add some chicory to their cold brew. At least, the 'New Orleans' cold brew they are famous for.

                                      1. re: Ttrockwood

                                        I was at TJ on Riverside in Sherman Oaks yesterday, but it was totally sold out. It appears it is very popular.

                                      2. re: Ashibi

                                        I don't care for cold-brew coffee but I also hate places that make iced coffee by pouring hot coffee on ice - it's always watery. I get around this at home by making a pot of coffee, adding espresso (I have a Bialetti) and pouring both into a mason jar. I keep this in the fridge and just add a new pot of coffee when necessary, or add the leftovers from pots I brew for my husband (who prefers his coffee hot, even in summer).

                                        If I want an iced coffee out I order a quadruple espresso and a cup of ice. I add milk to the espresso first to cool it off, then pour it over the ice - it keeps it from melting the ice too much.

                                    2. Just saw that TVHilton posted about this a few days ago, in last month's thread......but I "discovered" the same thing independently so I'll mention it again this month.

                                      Two new items are great together: the Korean chicken sausage and the TJ's sauerkraut.

                                      The kraut is on the salty side, but very flavorful, so a little goes a long way. (Probably better used as a condiment than as a side dish.) And the sausage is pleasingly spicy.

                                      Good served either with or without rolls.

                                      This may be our pot-luck contribution to the Fourth of July party!

                                      21 Replies
                                      1. re: pugsam

                                        I love that sausage. I saw spicy and ignored it like I usually do, but was pleasantly surprised with how flavorful it actually is. Really unique.

                                        1. re: huntandharvest

                                          Because I saw these mentions of the Korean chicken sausage just in time before a TJ's stop yesterday I snagged a package.

                                          Definitely a Yay. Just grilled them for several minutes and ate them plain. Quite flavorful.

                                          1. re: Dave B

                                            Sadly the Korean Sausage was a nay for me. I've had the Seoul Sauages that they are patterned after and sadly they didn't even come close. In the end to me, they tasted like Kielbasa with sesame seeds...

                                            --Dommy!

                                            1. re: Dommy

                                              I think the TJ's spicy Korean sausages are terrific.

                                              Can you tell us more about your Seoul Sausages? I'd like to try them!

                                        2. re: pugsam

                                          Is there a TJ's recipe thread here or on Home Cooking? I have a standby for summer luncheons or potlucks:

                                          Shrimp Pasta Salad

                                          1 bag medium frozen cooked shrimp (70-100 count size*)
                                          2 packages cheese tortellini (the fresh refrigerated ones)
                                          1 tub bruschetta sauce (fresh/refrigerated, not jarred)

                                          Place about half of the bruschetta sauce in a blender or food processor and puree. Cook the pasta according to the package directions, drain, and toss with the blended sauce while the pasta is still warm. Cool to room temperature. Thaw the shrimp according to the package directions. Add to the pasta and toss with the rest of the bruschetta sauce. Chill for at least an hour before serving (it gets better as the flavors meld). Serves 6-8.

                                          *I like this size because they're about the same size as the tortellini when cooked, so they mix together evenly. However, if you want to use bigger ones this recipe also works well with the pesto tortelloni. I don't recommend the spinach tortellini for this.

                                          1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                            No such thread here, and it really doesn't belong. Home Cooking is the Chowhound board for recipes, whatever ingredients they call for.

                                            1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                              I am not certain if one currently exists (and it is a little better fit on that board) but if not please do start one! What a great idea to share recipes using TJ's ingredients - regardless, sounds like a yummy recipe thanks for sharing it with us!

                                              1. re: Ruth Lafler

                                                There's an old one somewhere in the depths of the past threads.

                                                1. re: pugsam

                                                  I thought the sausage had a really off-putting texture. Really soft, like a veal sausage I once accidentally tried. Is this normal?

                                                  1. re: Deanna H

                                                    No.

                                                    Did you follow the package's "HEATING INSTRUCTIONS: Broil, grill, pan fry or bake for 12-14 minutes over medium heat, turning occasionally"?

                                                    I've also gotten away with just nuking one for a couple of minutes.

                                                    1. re: pugsam

                                                      I did grill them for about 12 minutes or so, but they were definitely mushy. I'll try Dave B's suggestion to cook them well done.

                                                    2. re: Deanna H

                                                      Deanna - I did find that although they are fully cooked according to the package info, the inside texture is "mushy" unless you grill/heat them well. I think that is fairly typical of many chicken "sausage" type products.

                                                      Heat them up well and the texture firms up and they become even better, IMO.

                                                      1. re: Dave B

                                                        Thanks for the feedback. I'll try grilling the remaining two quite a bit longer to see if that helps before I give up on them.

                                                        1. re: Dave B

                                                          "I think that is fairly typical of many chicken "sausage" type products."

                                                          At TJ's, only of the chicken and turkey hot dogs. The other chicken sausages I've tried, a half dozen varieties or so, are firm in the package and firm after 10 minutes of broiling in the toaster oven.

                                                          1. re: Dave B

                                                            It's only with the Korean BBQ sausages that this seems to be an issue for me. The other chicken sausages seem OK even with out a good sear and cook.

                                                        2. re: pugsam

                                                          Those Spicy Korean Sausages are FANTASTIC!!!! Real nice spice without being overpowering. Great grilled and in a roll (with perhaps a little kim chi (not the TJ's bagged kind))... or sliced and with pasta!

                                                          1. re: motorfamilymotorcity

                                                            To me, the spice of the sausages IS overpowering. I sure didn't taste the sesame, or much of anything else. Just the hot peppers. And I did think the texture was too smooth, more like a frankfurter than a typical sausage, which would be coarser, in a good, hearty way. But I have a fairly low tolerance for hot pepper. Kimchi is WAY too spicy for me.

                                                            1. re: greygarious

                                                              I'm not sure whether it's a curse or a blessing to love spicy foods.

                                                              Genetic?

                                                              Whatever........A meal without any element of spicy kick is like dinner without wine.....sadly incomplete.

                                                              Recognizing, of course, that tastes differ, and respecting yours. Even though you're tragically wrong :-)

                                                              1. re: pugsam

                                                                To each their own - I am super sensitive to anything hot/spicy. I love TJ's Chicken Tikka Masala but have to have a tall cold glass of almond milk to temper down the heat! The only reason why I buy it is because I love Indian food spices (not the hot ones) so I endure the "fiery heat" that I perceive in the dish.

                                                                BTW I think you are blessed to be able to handle spicy foods - you are able to experience and enjoy a lot more foods than I can!

                                                                1. re: littleflower

                                                                  I used to positively hate spicy food. Then I had a Thai girlfriend. Slowly but surely, I crossed over to the 'other' side.

                                                                  Now I love it. It's all about building up a tolerance. Though the aftermath sometimes still ain't pretty '-)

                                                        3. YAY- Himylayan Pink Salt Crystals: this is a yay for three reasons 1) gives food a great flavor better in my opinion than sea salt 2) it is natural and unprocessed and 3) contains 84 naturally occurring trace minerals. Bottom line is that if I am going to salt my food I am choosing this one for the added health benefits.

                                                          NAY - Candied Pecans: I think they baked the pecans too long because they look, taste, and smell like burnt sugar.

                                                          10 Replies
                                                            1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                              Me too! The Himalayan Pink Salt has replaced the Sea Salt container on my kitchen table. I love that I can grind it fresh right before I use it.

                                                              1. re: littleflower

                                                                Me also. I keep the salt on my table as well.

                                                            2. re: littleflower

                                                              I love the Pink Salt Grinder. I keep one here at work and it is inexpensive enough I don't mind if someone else uses it occassion.

                                                              BUT! I did just try the new Cypriot Pyramid Salt. LOVE IT! I'm not a huge salt fiend (in fact I'm pretty sensititive to it) but I adore finishing salts and adding a pinch of salt to my salads and this is perfect for that. It add real crunch and a wonderfully clean salty flavor. I'd love to make home made pretzels and sprinkle these on top! :D

                                                              --Dommy!

                                                              1. re: Dommy

                                                                Is it really flaky and light or more like big grains? I love the pink Himalayan but was looking at the Pyramid for using with Padron peppers.

                                                                1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                  It's very night... like thin sheets. It's like the Sarindian Paper Crackers, but in salt form. I'm not a huge fan of those pebbly salts (like on pretzels)

                                                                  --Dommy!

                                                                  1. re: Dommy

                                                                    I haven't had the crackers but have heard they're super thin. I'll have to grab some of this salt- it sounds perfect for finishing the padrons.

                                                                    1. re: Dommy

                                                                      MEH for me on the Cypriot Pyramid Flakes. Dommy I think there must be inconsistencies in the quality control of it because my batch contained quite large hard crunchy pieces. It would make for a good salt to use on pretzels but otherwise just a meh and not going to be a repurchaseable item for me.

                                                                2. re: littleflower

                                                                  Oh man, I LOVE the candied pecans - maybe you got a bad batch, because they definitely don't usually taste like burned sugar.

                                                                  1. re: gildeddawn

                                                                    Maybe so...normally I get the candied walnuts but decided to branch out and try something different.

                                                                3. Tuscan cantaloupes are making my Summer sweet!!

                                                                  1. Had this lurking in the freezer for a while but YAY for Eggplant Stacks Parmigiana. It does feed two as a side.

                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Berheenia

                                                                      Another freezer find- YAY Frozen Vegetable Birds Nests with dipping sauce

                                                                      1. re: Berheenia

                                                                        Yes, I like them. From the freezer to the toaster oven for a few minutes and you've a nice appetizer or side dish.

                                                                        1. re: Berheenia

                                                                          I've only had them once but I agree -- the Birds Nests are a very tasty item. Not sure why I haven't purchased them again.

                                                                      2. Yay to the strawberry lemonade! They were sampling it yesterday and BF and I both love it.

                                                                        1. Meh, to frozen Quinoa Duo with Vegetable Melage.

                                                                          www.saffron215.blogspot.com

                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                          1. re: mcel215

                                                                            Is this the stuff in the orange package? I don't like the frozen quinoa dish with the peppers, but the other stuff without peppers is pretty good. I add parmesan cheese and it makes a great filling lunch.

                                                                            1. re: IndyGirl

                                                                              Indy,

                                                                              I don't know if it's the "one" in the orange package, looks more gold to me. It is frozen, but has red and white quinoa with zucchini and sweet potato. It's just a bit dry for me, perhaps I overcooked it. I don't like cooking with my microwave on 50 per cent power. When I have to do that, to me it dries things out.

                                                                              www.saffron215.blogspot.com

                                                                          2. !!!YAY!!!
                                                                            The frozen meatless balls are back!!! They were gone to be "reformulated" for nearly six months!
                                                                            Tastes the same to me- still vegan, and $3.99/bag.
                                                                            YAY- "just the fruit" apple coconut bar (which i **may** have eaten while shopping and waiting 30min to check out- and paid for my empty wrapper) nice flavor and texture, gave me enough of a snack i made it home for lunch without eating my hand.

                                                                            8 Replies
                                                                            1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                              I'm glad you said they taste the same, I was worried about that. I bought a bag last week, but we haven't eaten them yet.

                                                                              1. re: cbg84

                                                                                I'm glad they're the same cuz i bought 5 :))! That was not cool to pull them for so long....

                                                                              2. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                The meatless meatballs don't taste the same to me. The ingredients list is similar, but they have a more... sausage-y flavor? The texture is also different. More mushy and uniform now. Very bready. I think I prefer the original ones, but I'll see if I can get used to the new ones. I'll miss them if I can't eat them anymore.

                                                                                1. re: hlk

                                                                                  Hmmm. Maybe my memory of them was dulled during the SIX months (!!!) of waiting.....
                                                                                  Still better than the quorn ones i was buying in the meantime at twice the price.
                                                                                  Maybe try pan-searing first vs reheating in a sauce? I did that before adding them to my salad

                                                                                  1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                    They are similar, I just tasted them side-by-side with the old ones (yes, they've been in my freezer a while!) which I'm sure made the differences more pronounced.

                                                                                    I have learned never to heat them in sauce, at least not for long. They absorb liquid so quickly! Pan-searing is a much better idea.

                                                                                  2. re: hlk

                                                                                    Just bought a few bags but haven't tried them yet. I thought the old ones tasted a bit like eggplant which I love....maybe spaghetti and meatballs on the menu for this week...

                                                                                    1. re: geminigirl

                                                                                      So tried them last night and I think flavor is pretty much the same. I do think the texture is a bit different, maybe more smoother / softer, hard to describe, but I still like them so that's all that matters:)

                                                                                    2. re: hlk

                                                                                      To me they taste the same. The packaging is identical, to the best of my recollection. I would expect them to have changed it if the product was different.

                                                                                  3. Just tried the jarred Sauerkraut with Persian Cucumbers that's in the the refrigerated case. It's not like the stuff from the barrels on the lower east side of NYC, but it's pretty good. Perfect on a grilled hot dog!

                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                    1. re: josephnl

                                                                                      It's fantastic! We really like it. Much more crunch and fresh than other sauerkraut out there.

                                                                                    2. NAY- like double nay surprisingly bad- the "handmade flour tortillas". I heated one like always on the stove in a pan and they are really tough. Within two minutes it was really like trying to eat a pink pearl eraser.
                                                                                      Dunno what to do with the remaining 7, tossed most of the one i tried to eat earlier today. Maybe they will work for tortilla chips ok....

                                                                                      22 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                        I just went through a package of the whole wheat handmade flour tortillas. I love them! I'm pretty sure I've had the regular version before without noticing any toughness issues, but it's been a few years.

                                                                                        1. re: chinchi

                                                                                          Didn't see whole wheat...just the flour or corn. I would rather the WW..

                                                                                          1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                            the handmade wholewheat tortillas are a staple for me. love the texture. I've had the handmade flour ones once or twice and they are chewier than the wheat ones, in my experience.

                                                                                        2. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                          I wonder if you got a bad batch? I've been buying them for years and never had any issues. I've heated them on the stovetop when making quesadillas, and have heated them in the microwave many times.

                                                                                          1. re: HeyImBack

                                                                                            Hmmm. Maybe. If i do try them again i'll be sure to have a plan B

                                                                                            1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                              We adore the tortillas. We heat them up slowly with some butter in a fry pan, then flip, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, and if we have it, add some fruit and roll up. Makes a great bfast or snack. The tortillas right out of the package are terrible, but once you put a little (a little) heat on them they taste really nice.

                                                                                              1. re: sasha1

                                                                                                I love them right out of the package!

                                                                                                1. re: HeyImBack

                                                                                                  I find they're a little chewy/gummy right out of the package.

                                                                                                2. re: sasha1

                                                                                                  I have yet to buy these, but after reading your post I am now craving warm buttery cinnamon sugar coated tortillas - you just made me want to add these to my TJ's shopping list!

                                                                                                  1. re: sasha1

                                                                                                    Another one that's good with butter and cinnamon sugar is the frozen plain naan.

                                                                                                    1. re: sasha1

                                                                                                      Ok, i DID give the "handmade flour tortillas" another chance.
                                                                                                      And in nyc those tortillas just plain suck. Heated up in a skillet same thing- tough and flavorless, just bad. Must be the nyc tortilla source.
                                                                                                      However!
                                                                                                      I got a backup package of the corn/wheat blend tortillas and those are SO GOOD!!! Very fragrant, soft, chewy in a good way, didn't get hard or tough when it cooled down a little. Really delicious!

                                                                                                      1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                        Too bad about the regional variation of the handmade tortillas. But I'm happy to hear those corn/wheat blend tortillas are as good in NYC as they are out west. Also a YAY for me.

                                                                                                        1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                          I prefer the corn-wheat tortillas from La Tortilla Factory, but they are hard to find here in DC sometimes. TJ's are a decent second.

                                                                                                          1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                            Sorry to hear it. The ones we get in PNW are tasty.

                                                                                                    2. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                      Maybe they switched vendors? I used to buy these interchangeably with Maria and Ricardo's (a good local brand) when we lived in Boston and they were fine. Haven't had them since 2013 though.

                                                                                                      1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                        Berheenia may have found a potential cause of the split Yay/Nay experiences. Fresh bakery products are regional. Perhaps the vendor where Trockwood lives is different than the tortilla company/companies in Southern and Northern California, where I've always bought mine.

                                                                                                        1. re: chinchi

                                                                                                          And I'm in AZ, so that would make sense.

                                                                                                        2. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                          Aha! I'm in new york city... Which is why i make mexican at home ;) explains it that they have different producers. And totally makes sense that the CA people are getting good tortillas.

                                                                                                          1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                            Last night we had some from the Hyannis MA store. They were fine. I heated them briefly in foil in the oven for fajitas.

                                                                                                        3. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                          2 minutes? I heat flour tortillas in the micro for 15 seconds.

                                                                                                          I used to buy their 'handmade' white tortillas, till price went up. I think they dropped those, and just have the handmade whole wheat. Occassionally I still buy those, but usually get their lowest cost plain tortillas, which are thinner and more uniform.

                                                                                                          The only store bought ones that are better are ones made by an instore machine.

                                                                                                          My home made ones are good fresh, but don't keep nearly as well as these TJ ones - and they aren't nearly as thin and flexible.

                                                                                                          1. re: paulj

                                                                                                            I swapped to the corn/whole wheat tortillas and am loving those! Much better texture and a great flavor too. For flour i'll just stick with the el guerrero brand ones i like (which may be a tristate only brand, not sure)

                                                                                                            1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                              El Guerrero is a national brand. For massed produced I think their corn tortillas are on the better side. I would rather our local tortillarilla corn tortillas, but don't always get over there.

                                                                                                              Which leads me to my NAY. TJs handmade corn tortillas and regular corn tortillas. The handmade are way way too heavy on the guar gum. And they are expensive. I eat a lot of corn tortillas.

                                                                                                        4. Yay for the Bergenost cheese! Semi-sharp and good for snacking.

                                                                                                          Meh-Nay to the frozen cheese enchiladas. Just not that appetizing, and they use corn tortillas, (I prefer flour.) Not worth the 600 calories by a long shot.

                                                                                                          8 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: cbg84

                                                                                                            Don't they cease to be an enchilada when you use a flour tortilla?

                                                                                                            1. re: cbg84

                                                                                                              I finally had a chance to try the Bergenost cheese today and I second your YAY! Good stuff. A nice, middle of the road kind of cheese.

                                                                                                              1. re: cbg84

                                                                                                                couldn't find the bergenost today. turns out it was a special for this month only.so, i'm out of luck. hoping it comes back.

                                                                                                                1. re: wonderwoman

                                                                                                                  I hate when they run out of the spotlight cheese before the month is over.

                                                                                                                  1. re: AmyH

                                                                                                                    Yea, like the Isle of Man last month

                                                                                                                  2. re: wonderwoman

                                                                                                                    My timing was lucky. After trying it a couple of weeks ago I was able to grab one of the few remaining wedges on another visit this week. I recall there were only 3 or 4 left.

                                                                                                                    Who knows..... maybe it will reappear, like the Red Leicester did (yay) after it's Spotlight debut.

                                                                                                                    1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                      AFAIK, the Red Fox Red Leicester has not come back. The one they have, and had before the RFRL was the October spotlight cheese, has hot pepper in it and is not the same.

                                                                                                                      1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                        Yes I keep seeing the one with chiles and bell peppers, wish the red fox would return.

                                                                                                                  1. re: pugsam

                                                                                                                    Try making an ice cream sandwich with it using the Bistro Biscuits! It's my favorite, too.

                                                                                                                    1. re: pugsam

                                                                                                                      OH YEAH - I think it's the best coffee ice cream I've ever had.

                                                                                                                      1. re: pugsam

                                                                                                                        Agree that it's the best coffee ice cream I've ever had.

                                                                                                                        1. re: pugsam

                                                                                                                          I saw it in the freezer and almost bought it from the recommendations here. However, at 300 calories per 1/2 cup, it's out of my league diet wise.

                                                                                                                          www.saffron215.blogspot.com

                                                                                                                          1. re: mcel215

                                                                                                                            wow --- really?!?! I never looked. Wonder how anyone gets that many calories into plain ice cream? I'm going to have to wipe that bit of information out of my brain and make sure it is a treat on salad/fish day.

                                                                                                                            1. re: Harts52

                                                                                                                              Holy Cow! My reaction is the same as yours, Harts.

                                                                                                                              I Googled several flavors of Ben & Jerry's and Haagen Dazs. All of them have somewhat less than 300 calories per 1/2 cup. However, several of them have more fat than the 14 grams said to be in the TJ's coffee.

                                                                                                                              I wonder whether this could be another case of the TJ's nutritional info being off. (Some weird instances have appeared on this forum.)

                                                                                                                              Yeah....that's the ticket.....the correct number for the TJ's is probably more like 100 calories.....maybe 50.....I'll have another scoop, please.

                                                                                                                              1. re: Harts52

                                                                                                                                It's richer and denser than most ice creams. That's why it's so good.

                                                                                                                                INGREDIENTS: Cream, Milk, Sugar, Egg Yolks, Coffee, Espresso Beans, Cocoa (Processed with Alkali), Coffee Extract, Carob Bean Gum, Guar Gum.

                                                                                                                                1. re: RussTheRaccoon

                                                                                                                                  Exactly. Ice cream servings are specified by volume, but many ice creams whip a lot of air into them (so you get less ice cream in the same-sized container). TJ's ice cream is ridiculously heavy, more actual ice cream in a given volume, thus more calories for the same volume serving. (BTW, this ice cream is rebranded Steve's Double Rainbow, and it is excellent!)

                                                                                                                                  A big yeah to the vanilla and Jo Jo's ice creams too. Heck, and to the peppermint chip and chocolate ones!

                                                                                                                            2. re: pugsam

                                                                                                                              I specifically bought this ice cream because of the comments in this thread about it, and I'm glad I did! It's really great. Thanks for the tip!

                                                                                                                            3. MEH - Sea Salt and Pepper Rice Crisps: Not quite sure what to think about these, they have a decent flavor and great crunch but the pepper was pretty overwhelming after a eating a few chips. I think I would have liked them better if they left the black pepper out. I am not likely to buy these again.

                                                                                                                              6 Replies
                                                                                                                              1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                Hmmm.... I'm going to have to try these, I usually feel black pepper seasoned items don't have enough!

                                                                                                                                1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                                  Haven't tried the rice crisps, but the salt and pepper ridged potato chips are my all time favorite grocery store chips. Plenty of pepper. These are the only item I can think of that I just cannot buy - I have excellent willpower but not with those ridges.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                                    You will probably like these then...I personally just couldn't get past the dominant pepper aftertaste that it left. When I season my food with S&P, I do tend to go a bit heavier on the salt and much lighter on the pepper.

                                                                                                                                  2. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                    i like those. You (ME) get used to the pepper. Plus i love pepper ! :-)

                                                                                                                                    1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                      These were a NAY for me. It wasn't so much the pepper. I actually thought they were a little bland. But I couldn't figure out if I was eating a cracker or a chip. It was just kind of a weird in-between.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                        I give those a definite YAY. Try them with the Cilantro and Green Onion Yogurt Dip (another HUGE YAY). Great combo.

                                                                                                                                      2. YAY!!! sauerkraut with cucumbers. Just what i was looking for. Naturally fermented and no more spending $8 at Whole Foods on sauerkraut. I wish they started to carry Kombucha. that would really round out their fermented food section.

                                                                                                                                        Meh -Lowfat vanilla ice cream. it's lowfat. what can you do? you have to set the bar pretty low when it comes to these kinds of food but i think they skimped on the vanilla flavor. i've got to try it again.

                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                          1. re: trolley

                                                                                                                                            Try their vanilla soy creamery ice cream. Its low fat and very vanilla-y

                                                                                                                                          2. I stopped in at TJ's today for a new canister of Cafe Pajaro, and also bought a round of Triple Ginger Snaps and some blueberries. I made a salad with greens, tuna in olive oil, blueberries and homemade Russian dressing for dinner, and am now having cookies and coffee for dessert.

                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                            1. re: Jay F

                                                                                                                                              Speaking of coffee, a YAY for the Breakfast Blend. My favorite TJ's coffee is the French Roast but for a medium roast the Breakfast Blend is a winner to me.

                                                                                                                                            2. Has any one tried their Burrata? Two small balls come in the container. Had a sampling when I was in Boston and couldn't believe it was from Trader Joe's. So rich and delicious! I made a sandwich of avocado, arugula and burrata and also use it on fresh fruit. Decadent!

                                                                                                                                              6 Replies
                                                                                                                                              1. re: Pat Hammond

                                                                                                                                                I love TJ for many things but Burrata is now one of them. IMHO it lacks flavor.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: Pat Hammond

                                                                                                                                                  I have had it and enjoyed it, although I agree with Ashibi that it's not as flavorful as a good Italian imported burrata can be. It's easily as good as the other domestic products I've had, though, and half the price.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Pat Hammond

                                                                                                                                                    I, too, liked their burrata. Not as good as some I've had in restaurants, but for Trader Joes, and the price, I thought it was great and would buy it again. I had it room temp with walnut-sized roasted tomatoes on the vine, basil-infused olive oil, and balsamic reduction. It was delicious!!

                                                                                                                                                    Speaking of balsamic reduction (glaze), Trader Joe's gets between a YAY and a MEH from me-I don't like it by itself (I prefer to make my own, their's has a weird aftertaste) but I LOVE it for roasting veggies. I just chop, toss in olive oil and the balsamic glaze and some herbs, and roast in my oven. So good hot or cold. Definitely beats my old method of brushing each veggie slice with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, which was so time consuming.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: schrutefarms

                                                                                                                                                      Yep! I kinda feel the same way. It also works well in making your own salad dressing. It really needs other ingredients (and a bit of salt) to shine.

                                                                                                                                                      --Dommy!

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Dommy

                                                                                                                                                        On first glance I thought you were talking about the buratta. I was thinking, what kind of salad dressing does one make with a big hunk of creamy cheese? :)

                                                                                                                                                      2. re: schrutefarms

                                                                                                                                                        We really like the balsamic glaze - drizzled on caprese salad, roasting veggies, for dipping Italian bread and herbed olive oil - good product!

                                                                                                                                                    2. YAY - Fully Cooked Oven Roasted Turkey Breast (comes in a box in the prepared foods section): I was a bit skeptical to try this one until a shopper standing next to me picked one up and said her family enjoyed it, so I decided to give it a chance. Seasoned well, took only 10 min. to heat in the microwave, fairly moist with great flavor. Is it as good as homemade no, but as far as prepared foods go I enjoyed it. This will be a repeat purchase for me without a question.

                                                                                                                                                      1. Meh for the mango and cream frozen novelties. Just weren't worth the calories.

                                                                                                                                                        Nay for the Indian pizza made with bean flour (forget what it's called). I thought that the pancake was sort of mushy and kind of tasteless.

                                                                                                                                                        1. YAY- new to TJs (yet not a new product) are Clif Builder bars, 20g of vegan protein, 270 cal, $1.49/ea which is about half the price of these elsewhere in nyc. The peanut butter is my favorite but they also had a few others. I keep a few on hand for emergency mini meals, love that they are vegan and fill me up for a solid few hours.

                                                                                                                                                          1. YAY - Bergenost cheese (cheese of the month)

                                                                                                                                                            8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                              1. re: gildeddawn

                                                                                                                                                                It's very creamy and I think the description fits it well-a mild Havarti, Muenster type cheese. It's a little light on flavor for me but it's a great buttery flavored cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                  I bought some yesty and did not taste it plain yet, but tonight I used it to "cream" some spinach, which turned out to be a very good thing. In exchange for free fish, I have a "volunteer" gig that involves sitting in front of a cooler for a couple of hours, every other week, doling out fish orders to members of a CSF (fish equivalent of a CSA). I don't find out until the same day what kind of fish it will be, so I tend to cook it on the fly. I baked the fish on a bed of fresh baby spinach, with TJ 21 Seasoning Salute, sliced lemon, shallot, and paprika. Of course the spinach shed lots of water so after removing the cooked fish I nuked the greens to evap some of the water, then stirred in a little Bergenost, Stonewall Farms roasted garlic/onion jam, and brown jasmine rice that had previously been cooked in mushroom broth. That was even better than I thought it might be. I think this would be a great cheese for mashed potatoes, mac&cheese, and grilled cheese sandwiches.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                    This cheese has really grown on me; I prefer it sliced thinly, eaten as is.

                                                                                                                                                              2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                I got some and realized that Wegmans used to carry this back in the day, before the store went to shit. It's like a very creamy mild cheddar to me.

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                  It's like you said creamy and mild, not sure I'll by it again but will definitely finish it. Oh no, have you fallen out of love with Wegmans?

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                    Not yet. But we might go on a break for a while '-)

                                                                                                                                                              3. Yay - Cheddar & Gruyere melange cheese. I used it to make some nachos, it melted very nicely, creamy and wonderful flavor.

                                                                                                                                                                1. Yay - I just LOVE Grade B Maple Syrup. But despite the drip-less design on the pour spout, this red cap always drips no matter how careful I pour. Does anyone else have the same problem or am I the only messy one?

                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Ashibi

                                                                                                                                                                    Happens to me, too. I transfer it to another, clear, bottle. Even in the fridge, maple syrup is prone to developing a spot of mold. I want to see that. According to The Maple Syrup Cookbook, when this happens, strain it through a cheesecloth, bring it to a boil, then pour it into a clean container, cool, and return to refrigerator storage.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Ashibi

                                                                                                                                                                      yeah......that's my love! and I just put up with the drips

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Ashibi

                                                                                                                                                                        I believe that the expression, "finger-lickin' good" applies to this situation.

                                                                                                                                                                      2. NAY NAY NAY to..... TJ's discontinuing the fresh buffalo mozzarella. I am so, so disappointed that they are no longer selling it. Not exactly a steal at $6.99, but still 2 bucks cheaper than Wegmans.

                                                                                                                                                                        Sorry, just had to vent :-(

                                                                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                          What??? Ouch that one hurts...it was great on pizza and as an appetizer.

                                                                                                                                                                          If you would like, you can continue the venting and let others know on the updated Trader Joe's discontinued products page: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/981403

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                            Aw, thanks for the link! I thought I remembered there was a 'discontinued' thread.

                                                                                                                                                                            I shall head over there and whiiiiiiiiiiine.

                                                                                                                                                                        2. YAY!!
                                                                                                                                                                          The canned dolmas are actually good! I **think** they are new, they have had the refridgerated ones for a long time but i thought those were way too acidic- in a citric acid way, not yummy lemon.

                                                                                                                                                                          Anyways, the canned ones are just $1.50, vegan, had nice texture to the rice, no funky acidic flavor and the leaves have no noticable tough veins (which i've found in other brands). Great addition to my snacky dinner plate tonight :)
                                                                                                                                                                          Thrilled my $1.50 gamble paid off. They're over by the olives.

                                                                                                                                                                          11 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                                                            Will try them soon...I am used to eating dolmas without meat so sounds like a yay for me too! thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                                                              Thanks for this. I've seen them and wondered. Will try them.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                My bad! They're $2.50. Still a great deal, about a dozen stuffed leaves inside.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                                                                  I bought them a couple days ago and can't wait to try them.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                    I think they are fine but not as good as those they used to carry in a glass jar with a slice of lemon, they were from Turkey I believe.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: walker

                                                                                                                                                                                      They're good for what they are- that jarred version does sound good! I'm not a fan of their refridgerated version but maybe those are also different suppliers regionally? My favorite dolmas are at sahadi's but i'm too lazy to schlep out there much.... (45min ea way via subway and walking)

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                        Had a chance now to try them -- they're only a MEH to me. I much prefer other brands that are lemonier. But I like me some lemon flavah with dolma, so that might just be my preference.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                          I tried them for the first time last weekend. I love dolma -- I try them everywhere I go. I though the TJ ones were good, but I always squeeze lemon over mine so I don't really know how they tasted without the lemon.

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                                                                    Just had them with our "make your own salad" dinner. I thought they were good, but might have preferred the discontinued refrigerated ones. These didn't seem too tangy and were kind of soft. But since they're all TJ's has, they'll do just fine.

                                                                                                                                                                                  3. Usually my first impression is very accurate, but I will revise my initial opinion of the Peanutters Peanut Butter cookies to a solid YAY. They are incredibly addictive and am on tub #2 after only a week!

                                                                                                                                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                      They were sampling the raspberry sorbet this weekend, and I thought it would make great ice cream sandwiches with those PB cookies - PB and jam!

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Savour

                                                                                                                                                                                        Yum that is a good idea to pair the sorbet with the PB cookies! Have you tried the Peanutters PB cookies yet? Did you find them as addictive as I have?

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                          I haven't - but the new products shelf is right next to the sample station at my TJ's, so that gave me the idea ...

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Savour

                                                                                                                                                                                          If you like the raspberry sorbet, try the blueberry-pomegranate sorbet, too! I enjoy it with the frozen wild blueberries sprinkled on it.

                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Yay for the current spotlight cheese, Bergenost.

                                                                                                                                                                                        I haven't noticed any mentions of it here. It's a somewhat unusual cheese and seems fairly unique (to me). It reminds me of a young, fresh, slightly moist Gouda - salty, with a bit of pungency (in a nice way). There is a neat cratered separation layer (see photo) in the center which isn't evident until you start slicing and handling it.

                                                                                                                                                                                        I always buy the spotlight cheese, and am rarely disappointed. I suspect the Bergenost won't be to everyone's liking, but I think it is a wonderful cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                          I mentioned it above. It's very tasty and I'm not usually into the creamier cheeses but this one is good.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                            I just searched the thread and did find that a couple of people mentioned Bergenost and liked it. Must have missed the mentions, or just wasn't paying attention.

                                                                                                                                                                                            Glad to see some others enjoyed it too. This is one of the reasons I love TJ's.... so many new and interesting things to try. I almost certainly never would have grabbed a wedge of Bergenost if it had been at the grocery store, but it being a spotlight cheese there's a really strong chance it will be something different and special.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                              Me neither, I only bought it because it was the spotlight cheese. I paired it last night with smoked duck breast - delicious!

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                            They were giving out samples when I was last there....loved it so I bought it! Very good! Yay!

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                              I enjoyed it, too. It reminds me of a cheese I was served at a beer hall in Belgium - I think the cheese would pair very well with beer.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                                Sounds good, will check it out! Thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. YAY - Italian salami trio, great price, very tasty. I wish it was resealable but it probably won't last very long anyway

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: drrerio

                                                                                                                                                                                                    As described by the OP at the top, this thread is for opinions on specific products purchased at Trader Joe's, not on the store itself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: drrerio

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Mine is always too crowded anyways.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. YAY/NAY - Burgundy pepper lamb tips. Wow, I've never tried any of TJs pre-seasoned meats and this lamb was fantastic. The only NAY is that the pieces were very inconsistent, about 2/3 of the package was chunks of meat and 1/3 hunks of fat and connective tissue.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Ooh that reminds me, I've been meaning to ask you how was the boneless leg of lamb (I think it was you that said you were going to try it). I love all things lamb but have held back trying their leg of lamb until I hear it is worth the money.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                          The leg of lamb was returned, it had a hole in the packaging. I highly recommend the burgundy tips and they also sell it in leg form.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I looked for the burgundy lamb tips today and only saw the plain leg of lamb and rack of lamb. I hope they aren't being discontinued like quite a few other products have been lately.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I saw them today, I'll keep my eye out next week. Fingers crossed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. yay- horseradish. has a nice kick to it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Vidute

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Good to know. I'm almost out of my standard Extra Hot Inglehoffer. Do you know if it is that kicky?

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Harts52

                                                                                                                                                                                                            It isn't as hot- that inglehoffer is way hotter

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Oh, sad. I don't think Inglehoffer is as hot as i would like. I don't know the name of the horseradish my grandmother used when I was a kid but I loved it - it had a kick that made my eyes water and the vapors invaded my sinuses. I liked that! Maybe I need to grow and grate my own :-/

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Harts52

                                                                                                                                                                                                              mine has a really nice kick after being open a couple of weeks. give it a try.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Vidute

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Cool - that's good to know. I'll give it a try!

                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. I just now tried TRADER JOE'S KEY LIME PIE.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            It was not the most sour and had some sweetness to it but it did the trick.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            It had a nice graham cracker crumb crust and was filled to the brim with the key lime custard. All it needed was a short defrost period [okay, it's hot as Hades here] and remove the wrap.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I would recommend this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            I also have TJ's LAMB KOFTA waiting in the wings ... tomorrow.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: SilverlakeGirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Good to know. I'm not a big key lime fan but my daughter is so I'll pick one up for her. I keep telling her she's never to old to get a treat from the store (she's 35 - and she has to share her treats with hub and 2 sons).

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Harts52

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oooo, thanks. I've been craving key lime pie!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Harts52

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I just tried the key lime pie after sampling it last week and it was delicious. Since you only have to defrost it, will definitely serve it again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: SilverlakeGirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Wow TJ's is selling lamb kofta?!? I am assuming that this is new - is this a fresh or frozen product?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Frozen in with all the other frozen Indian products.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I meant to eat it for lunch yesterday but I got too busy. Today's the day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The lamb kofte was only a MEH for me. Perfectly edible, but not so good that I would seek them out again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: SilverlakeGirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      they were sampling it today. not bad! it was a good morsel.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: SilverlakeGirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Made the Lamb Koftas the other day -- excellent. Very authentic tasting. DH polished off almost all of them on his own. Said they reminded him of the koftas he used to get from a local restaurant when he still lived in India. He wants me to pick up 5 more boxes when I go to TJs this weekend. LOL

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. My number one YAY product at Trader Joe's is their Super Spinach Salad. I buy three of them every week and eat them for my main dinner meal. They help to keep my weight down.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: PontiusPalate

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I just added that to my TJ's list. Will give it a try!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: PontiusPalate

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I read your earlier post so have been buying this salad and like it a lot. Too bad the spinach wilts so quickly, often before I can get to it so I must throw the spinach out. I usually add lettuce, feta, avocado, olives. Instead of the dressing that comes with it, I add olive oil and black raspberry vinegar.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: walker

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              If you take the spinach out of the spinach salad and don't use the dressing, what do you use besides the container? ; )

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: RussTheRaccoon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I can usually get to the salad in time and not have to discard the spinach. It comes with quinoa, grape tomatoes, seeds, dried cranberries .. I add cubed cucumber, feta, avocado, olives, lettuce. I think it's terrific.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: walker

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Oh yes, it has a few chickpeas, too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Super YAY for the Rosemary & Raisin crackers - the bag didn't make it thru the weekend.....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Also a YAY for the coffee ice cream - super rich with a noticeable coffee flavor....I couldn't eat a lot, but it was quite good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: jenscats5

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Second to Rosemary & Raisin crackers. Love them with cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Perhaps not new for July, but I've only tried it yesterday for the first time at a friends place: YAY for the Pico de Gallo. I am not much of a salsa fan, let alone store-bought salsa -- but this actually has a really nice kick of heat to it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              On top of guac it even makes chips edible :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Is that the one in the plastic tub in the refrigerator section?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I assume so.... since I didn't buy it myself. But IIRC, it was in a clear plastic tub.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Just wondering, I bought some last week but haven't tried it yet. Thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. We had the frozen cod pieces tonight...or rather...tried.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                TERRIBLE. Very fishy and all different sizes and thicknesses. Gross--definitely strikes me as discarded trimmings from the decent-tasting cod fillets.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Nay.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Mahi Mahi burgers - Meh for us. These are decent enough, but I prefer the mahi fillets, which have fewer additives. I could see how the burgers would be nice on a bun with some tartar sauce though. They are a little bit salty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                14 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  interesting. got the frozen Alaskan Cod and they were ok. Not bad, but nothing to rave about. i did marinate them in a miso-mirin marinade all day then grilled them. i feel like when i marinade and grill it makes a "meh" protein in "hey, this is ok!".

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: trolley

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Did you get the frozen cod fillets or the frozen cod pieces? Because the pieces we had were disgusting (despite a Japanese marinade), but the fillets were fine, if unremarkable. Two very different experiences for me!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      oh I see. I believe I got the fillets not the pieces. yes, unremarkable but definitely edible.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: trolley

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        When I returned the cod pieces and told the manager, "These tasted gross and I hope you stop carrying them," he expressed surprise and said they were one of their biggest sellers. I suggested it was because of the cheap price (less than $5 for a big package), but I wonder how many repeat customers they really get. This is a new store.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          also, it depends on location. I live in a small-medium sized city with a University and even companies like Google. However, there is not one fish market here except for the ones in grocery stores. I think the cod pieces may be a step up for some which isn't saying much :P my TJ's is fairly new as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yes, price is a consideration. I also like to buy their bacon ends and pieces.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: trolley

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I've had the frozen cod filets and have never had a problem. Never tried the pieces, and probably won't after reading this.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Vidute

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Frozen cod piece -- a real treat on a hot day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: puzzler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Lol -- Shakespeare in the winter...outdoors!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I regularly buy the code pieces (and sometimes joke about the TJ clothing dept). Yes, they come in different sizes and thickness. That's why they are call 'pieces', not fillets or sticks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I have not found anything objectionable about the smell or taste.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              A good use is in a chowder. Or some other stew where the mixed sizes doesn't matter.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. Yay! Dover sole filets. Boneless, skinless (wild caught).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Delicate flavor and texture. Excellent as a base for seafood casseroles, chowders and other multi-component dishes. A great value at $6.99/lb.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. MEH: Mango lemonade. Tastes Ok, but nothing to indicate a mango ever got near the bottle.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Bob W

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  MEH on the Mango Lemonade for me too, but for me it was because it was a strange in between of mango and lemonade flavors that didn't mesh perfectly together. It was just *okay* to me, not likely to buy it again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    We've enjoyed some of the other lemonade flavors much more.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Just tried the new frozen lamb kofta. YEA! They are meant to be dipped into the small amount of accompanying tikka masala sauce, which is as spicy as my wimpy heat tolerance extends.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Given serving size of 3 pieces would not suffice as an adult entree. 5-6 is more like it - there are 11 balls in the box.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Yay thanks for reviewing the lamb kofta - now I can't wait to give it a try! Definitely going on this week's list.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Unfortunately, for me, I found these a little tough (even though I gently steamed them per the instructions), and most of all, too spicy hot for me. Yes, I'm a wimp. But even though I served with TJ's cooling Tzatziki Sauce, it was still too hot for me. Hope hubby doesn't mind eating the extra box I bought himself.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: GourmetLight

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sorry you didn't enjoy them but apparently this means, happily, that my tolerance level for hot spices has increased over time. I thought the sauce was a tad hot but not overly so. Not much of it, though.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: GourmetLight

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          GourmetLight, when it comes to things spicy I'm a wimp too. I love TJ's Chicken Tikka Masala but I can barely tolerate the heat level in that!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Yay: frozen chicken cilantro wontons. These are delicious steamed and crisped up in a pan (just make sure it's non-stick...ouch). They made a fine dinner with homemade dipping sauce and some steamed, salted edamame.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yay: roasted, salted pistachios. At $7.99/lb., I feel slightly ripped off, but not too bad. It's convenient being able to get many of the things we need (haha, yes, pistachios are a "need") in one place at one time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Nay: The fact that Trader Joe's only sells its frozen ravioli pre-sauced in smallish packages. I get that they have fancier "fresh" pasta versions in the refrigerator case, but sometimes, you just want a big ol' bag of cheap, frozen ricotta ravioli to toss with marinara after a long day of work.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yep, those mini wontons are excellent. I've only just nuked them in a bit of water, but loved them nevertheless. Fairly low-cal snack, too, at 40 cals per 5 (FIVE!) pieces. Which means you can eat 16 for 200 :-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Can you tell that I like them?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Along with the fresh raviolis are cheese and spinach varieties of tortellini. Only $1.99 a package.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              They have dried cheese tortellini if that works for you..... But i also wish that sweet potato gnocci (frozen) came without sauce since i can't handle all the dairy in the sauce it comes in...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. YAY-Triple cream Brie with mushrooms. I don't really like Brie but decided to give it another try today. I didn't know which of the several varieties to choose so just went with a likely guaranteed winner since I love mushrooms. Delicious! I guess I do like Brie.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Two new items in our annual vacation grab in the Hyannis TJ's on Cape Cod:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Triple corn muffins: a Nay for us as we had them with chili and they are very sweet but a possible Yay if you had them as a breakfast muffin.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                The Carolina Gold Barbeque sauce was a huge Yay for us but we are yankees. I used it to finish a pan of boneless chicken and onion in a frying pan so it hasn't been tried on a barbeque yet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Two more both Yays:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  TJ bottled steak sauce
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Veg Kabobs in fresh produce- easy peasy to grill and a perfect meal with rice or meat or both

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Never again or NAY to Trader Joe's Grilled Eggplant & Zucchini Mélange . Tried the oven method- a watery gross mess.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Meh to the mild Pico de Gallo as the packaging bulges at sell by time and that can be off putting.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I'm with you on the salsa. My bulging tub is going back.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Ugh, happened to the refrigerated Salsa Especial as well. Had an "effervescence" the day I bought it, which escalated into a bulging container after a few days. The actual product isn't very good either.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I love that sauce, I use it on salmon all the time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. Yay for the Uttapam (sp?), frozen Indian flatbreads. I think someone else said they were a Nay, but I thought they were very tasty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: aching

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          They received a YAY from me in last month's thread. I used the pan cooked method.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: chinchi

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I nuked for expediency, but I could see how they would be even better heated in a pan or under the broiler, or in a toaster oven.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: aching

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I am eating one now and they get a YAY even microwaved. I've had worse Indian food in restaurants.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: RussTheRaccoon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We tried the uttapam - the texture was a bit off from our better Indian restaurants here, but not bad. Flavor was nice and tangy. Coconut chutney had the same aftertaste that much of the preprepared chutney has even when purchased at our abundant Indian groceries. I would rather just grab dosa or idli batter from the Indian grocery and stick it in the waffle iron - but for a quick meal or when no decent Indian is nearby TJs works.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: jsaimd

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I would never have thought of putting dosa or idli batter in a waffle iron - what a great idea!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3. YAY - 100% Pure Florida Grapefruit Juice - Ruby Red (64 oz., pastuerized, refrigerator section) - not as tart as the quart sized fresh squeezed grapefruit juice that they also sell (which while different is also a big yay), it's much smoother and sweeter. One ingredient only - grapefruit juice - and according to TJ's the juice comes from an excellent supplier in Florida so yay all the way around.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Yay - Creamy Tuscano Cheese Soaked in Syrah, a huge favorite. Love the flavor and slightly crunchy crystally texture. Look for the purple wax rind. Watch the sell by dates on their cheeses. Some seem pretty close.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              more Yays (our staples) - dried cranberries, toasted slivered almonds, roasted unsalted sunflower seeds (best prices around for nuts and dried fruit), frozen boreal wild blueberries, organic mango passion granola cereal, organic soft multigrain bread (best toasted, not very sturdy otherwise for sandwiches), organic yellow tortilla chip rounds (but I wish they wouldn't squish them onto the shelves), frozen mini mushroom turnovers, Lattemielle Milk & Honey cookies, 3 pack milk and dark chocolate bars, and the dried garlic powder, basil, and French thyme. Oh! and the frozen French green beans.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Also, the organic virgin coconut oil - best price around, I also use it for deodorant (with a pat of cornstarch), mixed with my hair conditioner, and a tiny bit as a tamer after I dry my hair. Also love the oatmeal honey soap, and our dog does well on the cans of lamb & rice.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I almost forgot the Meh - toasted oatmeal flakes cereal (too sweet for me) and Nay - frozen pie crust (too sweet and fatty/greasy).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: bluejeansbaby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm pretty sure the purple rind on the Syrah cheese is actually wine-soaked cheese. But agreed---delicious stuff!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Yea, it's not wax, it's edible. It's like the black pepper Toscano, I wish the flavor was all throughout but the cheese itself is still great.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Really? I didn't know that, and we tried to stop my SIL from eating some. Lol. Next time, we'll eat it too! Thanks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: bluejeansbaby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Same here. We've gotten the Syrah cheese several times, and always fastidiously trimmed away the rind as we ate. Now, we'll have to get another, soon, just to check out the rind!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I could be the spokesperson. It tell everyone looking over the cheeses about it. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Try this: (a bluejeansbaby original submitted to TJs but never heard back. :-( )
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  It's a Breeze Sea Salt Caramel Vanilla Wafer Cookies

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ingredients:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  24 TJ's Utlimate Vanilla Wafers
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  12 TJ's Chocolate Covered Sea Salt Butterscotch Caramels

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Place half of the vanilla wafers flat side up on a microwave safe plate. Flatten each caramel between index finger and thumb or with the back of a fork, just enough so it won't roll away. Place one flattened caramel in the center of each vanilla wafer. Microwave on high for 30 seconds or until caramels are melted but still holding their form. Cover each wafer and caramel with a 2nd wafer. Gently, press and twist the wafers together with the caramels in the middle until the caramel and chocolate ooze to the edge of the wafers. These will be hot, so cool before serving!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Makes 12 cookies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Total time: 10-15 minutes

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: bluejeansbaby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I resubmitted the recipe to TJ's a few days ago and received a reply within a couple of days. The rep is going to send it to my local store's Captain for consideration.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: bluejeansbaby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      These sound great- very creative! Hopefully they will like your recipe too :))

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Yay for the mint chip ice cream. Tasted it recently and was sold. Great minty and chocolate flavor, smooth and creamy, good ingredients, and no food coloring. We also like the lime fruit floes ice bars.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Meh on the coconut fruit floes ice bars for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: bluejeansbaby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Another YAY for the mint chip ice cream. I found it had such a clean, minty taste (I make it sound like toothpaste!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: bluejeansbaby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        +1 YAY for the Lime Fruit Floes. The Carribean Fruit Floes are very good, too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I hate peeling mangos. If I do have luck, the mango is unripe. If I don't, I have squished mango pieces, not a pretty sight. So I tried the frozen, YUM!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          A huge yay for me, but I know they get good reviews anyway here. I just never tried them and they taste like fresh peeled, not frozen fruit! Nice and ripe too. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          www.saffron215.blogspot.com

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Yay for the 21 Seasoning Salute spice grinder. Really excellent and so inexpensive. I made a marinade for chicken using a heavy dosage of this with just olive oil, cooked on the grill and it was excellent. Pleasant surprise.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yay on the coffee spice rub - very good on steak. My husband was crazy for it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        10 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          They have several seasonings in grinders but I have only seen the 21 SS in regular shaker jars. Is this new, or are you imagining things?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I thought the same thing grey, maybe she meant the Everyday Seasoning grinder?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            While we are on the subject, the Everyday Seasoning grinder is a YAY/NAY for me. I loved the flavor that it gives food but I just can't take the heat that I taste when I bite into a chili flake. Wish it didn't include chili pepper because otherwise it would be a solid yay!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              And while we are on the TJ's spice grinders subject, a couple of months ago in a prior thread, Chow People were talking about the ghost pepper grinder.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I've asked about it in-store, but employee consensus seems to think it was a flash in the pan.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Any sightings?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I got one when they first came out. The peppers were smoked, like chipotle. I will check next time I'm in the store to see if they still have them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ghost pepper grinder not in my store at all today.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: RussTheRaccoon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I think it returns for a few weeks every year. I bought 6 as soon as I saw them in stock this year. I believe it was around February and I haven't seen them since.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I have a question about the ghost pepper grinder (I've never bought one.) Are they dried flakes?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I'm starting to harvest Moruga Trinidad Scorpions and since I save and wash the grinders when we're done with them I'm thinking I could use one for these peppers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      They are dried and smoked broken pieces of pepper, larger than flakes. They are actually in a small plastic bag. You have to open the grinder, fish the bag out, open it, and put them in the jar.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: RussTheRaccoon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks for the info, I think I'll try it with some of my own. At the rate they're ripening I need as many ideas as I can get. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        weez - that would work fine as long as your 'Scorpions' are very well-dried. Otherwise when placed in a similar container they could get moldy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I've saved a couple of the TJ's grinders for a similar re-use purpose, one being for Szechuan peppercorns (prickly ash) I bought at an Asian market. The TJ's grinder has worked perfect for that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. YAY-Cave aged blue cheese. I just needed a simple blue cheese for a buffalo style spicy dish and this worked great. Good flavor and crumbles well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. I actually learned of this via a recorded call from Costco, but Trader Joe's is part of it. Trader Joe's 7/20/2014 recall notice on stone fruit:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  http://www.traderjoes.com/about/custo...
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I bought nectarines from either TJ's or Market Basket 2 weeks ago, but I took the stickers off, so I can't ID them. And they are in a bowl with my other fruit! Guess I lose a bowl of fruit on this one.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  24 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: bluejeansbaby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Are you going to throw away all your fruit? I think with TJ's you can mention it anyway and they will refund - not so sure about Costco. (I just shared this on the Costco board)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I made a cobbler with them and have been eating it with no problem... yet.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I am going to see if MB can tell me if I bought the nectarines there with only my debit card transaction number. The receipt is long gone, and if I paid cash at TJ's, that receipt is gone too. If I can't feel safe, I will throw it all out. :-( If it seems like it was TJ's, I will mention it. I can't see bringing in possibly affected fruit and exposing the store to it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Costco is good about refunds. They looked us up without a receipt and gave a full refund for partly consumed food that was recalled.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: bluejeansbaby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        MB was able to reprint my receipts. No nectarines. Since I couldn't prove to myself that they didn't come from TJ's, I tossed the whole bowl of fruit. :-( Better safe than sorry.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hmm, listeria is not something to mess with. In your shoes, I'd probably toss the cobbler---just to be safe. I've been sick from listeria from poorly handled sushi, and that is an experience I hope never to repeat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I've had three boxes of the peaches and ate all of them uncooked, with no ill effects. I rarely even wash them before eating. Just because there is a POSSIBILITY of contamination does not mean it exists. Caveat emptor.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: greygarious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            As someone who has had food poisoning about 4 or 5 times, I implore you to please wash your fruits and veggies! Even avocados and melons. Anything that might have been handled by someone's bare hand. You never know where some peoples hands have been... :0 The last time was from a latte at $tarbucks…I don't even want to know what happened there.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: schrutefarms

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              It's funny you should mention that - in our Barnes and Nobel, they have an attached coffee section. I asked for a latte - the girl wrote what I wanted on the cup then inserted four fingers into the cup before bringing it over to start making the coffee.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I asked her to please change the cup and not insert her (dear god, where the hell have they been) fingers into the cup. She did but was really p'd off. There was no-one else in line so it's not like I embarrassed her in front of anyone but she was really rude after that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              THAT'S probably how that happened!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I had a similar experience, though not at B & N. I had a cup of ice cream in rural Pennsylvania at this cute ice cream shop. A LONG hair was in the ice cream when I took my first bite. It was served to me by a young woman with a very long, loose, messy pony tail so I suspect this hair may have been a match...ugh! I debated whether to speak up but I did (VERY nicely!) and the girl was pissy and almost wouldn't replace the ice cream. She was really horrible about it, eye rolling and sighing and not wanting to replace it. When she did reluctantly replace it, she filled the cup halfway. LOL

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I wrote of my experience on Tripadvisor and was diplomatic (said the ice cream was delicious and the general store was great, but the experience with this one woman was unprofessional). I then got two nasty private messages from people who know the worker (I didn't name names but I guess they figured it out) and told me I was mean and nasty for posting this on Tripadvisor. I mean, really!!!! One of them called me a piece of $h-t. Sheesh, was that necessary? Why is it okay for there to be a hair in my food and an attitude from the employee but it's not okay for me to write a fair accounting on a review website? Okay rant over! LOL

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That ice cream girl is just lucky you didn't rat her out on the hair, hair in cup, and attitude issues! Usually its a DOH violation to have hair down or not under a hat....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I am sure you are right. And to be honest, I was very polite and pleasant - I couldn't believe the woman's attitude. I was fair in my Tripadvisor review - complimented the delicious product but told about the customer service experience which they should have jumped to rectify when instead this girl was rude to me for speaking up about a foot long hair in the ice cream. Sheesh - people are unreal sometimes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Blech. Gross. One day I'll tell you about the time I found two eyelashes in my cream cheese…
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I do not have good luck eating out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: schrutefarms

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      YUCKKKKKK!!!!!!!!!!!!!! That's it, I am never leaving my house again! LOL

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: schrutefarms

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Ha! Well, I was not traumatized however it was unpleasant. Oh well!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            The ideal way to forget traumatizing events is to focus on other things.... like the thread topic '-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              You got it! : )

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Back to TJ's!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yay on the frozen cherry and berry mixture!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              (I feel better already!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: RabbiBeth

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Never ever send food back. You won't like the results.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Mister Big

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I spent 35 years in the restaurant industry in very high positions. Our chefs would always encourage patrons to return food if it wasn't to their liking. Much better to solve the problem at the restaurant than to have it appear on Yelp after the fact when you cannot correct what was perceived to be wrong. ALWAYS SEND FOOD BACK IF YOU ARE NOT SATISFIED!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Alfred G

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Of course...but only if there is something truly wrong with it. For example, there are foods that I know I'm not crazy about (say scallops and sweetbreads), yet I've occasionally ordered them because the preparation sounded interesting or I wanted to give them another try. I've almost always regretted so doing, and wished I had ordered something else. In these circumstances, assuming the food was well prepared, I wouldn't dream of sending it back. I might perhaps order something else, but would make it clear to the server that I fully expect and want to pay for the returned dish, but decided to have something else.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Ewwwwww. The Starbucks I went to that morning was one I usualy avoid, as it's on an intersection with a lot of suspect people. They usually hang out in Starbucks for hours. Who knows what could have been on those hands.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: schrutefarms

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        What do you wash your fruits and veggies with? I've been known to use toothpaste with hot water, but I usually use plain hot tap water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: bluejeansbaby

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          :) I buy a fruit and vegetable wash. I think I got it at Trader Joes, but it might have been Whole Foods. It's called Natural Veggie Wash, and it's in a spray bottle. I also use hot water when I can (sometimes I use lukewarm or cool on things like lettuce that can wilt, or very juicy delicate peaches).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: schrutefarms

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I use Thieves Cleaner (Young Living Essential Oils). It wipes out everything germy and dilutes 30:1 so it isn't as expensive as it would seem.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. YAY: Brioche Toasts. Crunchy but not hard, no strong flavor so you can put just about anything on them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: TVHilton

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yes, they are lovely. Had them last night with mini brie bites - another yay.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: TVHilton

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I've been buying the Brioche Toasts since i first found them a few months back and am now hooked. They are usually something i buy every trip now. Cheese and crackers in the evening on those is wonderful!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. NAY to the gross chicken pot pie. At least in the Great Lakes, TJ's frozen chicken pot pie used to be a much better product. This one (new supplier?) had a bitterish sauce, few bits of mangled chicken, and bitter carrots and peas. I'm asking for a refund, darn it!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          YAY to the wonderful 6 flavors of frozen macarons. Most are quite good and you can't beat the price versus fresh gourmet bakery ones. Even the less great flavors I'm happy to have with a cup of coffee.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. YAY to the gluten free gingersnaps. I admit I have not had a cookie in a while, so I may be biased. But these are delicious and chewy in the middle.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. YAY - Goat Gouda. I dislike most goat cheeses so I was hesitant to try this cheese but the only other goat cheese I like is a goat gouda so I thought I'd give it a whirl and it's delicious, highly recommend.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Beef Bolognese Ravioli in refrigerator case- a huge YAY!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Made even better with Roasted Garlic Marinara Sauce in a jar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                and Fire Roasted Onions and Peppers from the freezer and TJ's grated Parmesan Cheese. 3 more yays.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I love those fire-roasted peppers and onions! I make a scramble with those, TJ's fire-roasted corn, and feta, and top it with TJ's pico de gallo, avocado, and sour cream. My favorite breakfast!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. My favorite Trader Joe's snack is Trader Joe's Pumpernickel Pretzel Rods. I usually buy one bag a week.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Nay - Chicken Sweet Apple Sausages - someone else mentioned that they became slimy after a couple of days in the fridge and they did with me too. Never happened before but I won't be buying again.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Yay - Key Lime Pie (in the freezer) - this was quite good for frozen. I topped with fresh whipped cream.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Meh - Mini Cheese Sandwich Crackers - they were okkkkay - I'm not an expert so thus a meh - I could have used more filling.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ugh. I almost bought the chicken sausages one time and was trying to decide which flavor to buy when another customer told me that they were "kinda slimy" when he tried them. I decided that wasn't something I wanted to risk.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        That key lime pie is delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: toopie28

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Never had that problem with the Chicken Sweet Apple Sausages and have been getting them off and on for several years. Maybe the packing is inconsistent, though how you'd tell this in the store I don't know.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. HUGE YAY for the Black Peppercorns grinder. This is coming from me, the girl who can't take much black pepper! Quite honestly I was previously using ground black pepper out of the can which had very little flavor just heat. The freshly ground black pepper out of the Black Peppercorns grinder adds such a great flavor to my meats and veggies and little to no heat.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          This along with the Himalayan Pink Salt Crystals grinder (also a huge yay) have a permanent spot on my kitchen table now!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I'm a sucker for the three peppercorn blend (also in a grinder). Very nice for when you want a slightly sharper, more distinctive pepper flavor--salad dressings, sauces, and such.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Nay for the seedless water melon. $3.47 each. At the Sherman Oaks location, I bought one at the beginning of this month and very disappointed. I bought one again today hoping last one was a bad pick. Nope, it was just the same as the last one. It was not sweet, flavorless...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. So I had the eggplant pasta (frozen). Ummm….wasn't a YAY or a NAY….I liked the taste….added some feta…maybe kinda mealy and gluey…The taste was good tho...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. YAY for the frozen turkey bolognese sauce. Much, much better than any of their jar sauces. Not a huge amount, but can be extended with a little tomato paste without doing violence to it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. My store was sampling the chicken salad in the refrigerator section. NAY. The first bite I took had a big piece of chicken fat and it was gross, flavor was good, texture was awful. The pretzel bun was a MEH.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  www.saffron215.blogpsot.com

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: mcel215

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Do you recall what kind of chicken salad it was? I think they carry two kinds, and I have enjoyed the wine country chicken salad without any bits of chicken fat noticeable. That being said, I have come to learn that there are sometimes inconsistencies in quality control among various batches in a few of the products that they carry.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I have bought the curried chicken salad numerous times and have never once found anything objectionable in it. (I'm easily grossed out; always pleased by this product.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: walker

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I love the curried chicken salad. One package of that and a package of ready to use bag of salad green will are a couple of lunches at work.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        littleflower, no sorry I don't, but it wasn't the curry flavor. It was just an ordinary pre-packaged round plastic container that was in the small refrigerator in front of the sample/coffee counter in the back of my store. I'll check it out next week when I go back. I love most of the refrigerator products from TJ's though, so I was surprised by this one.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I bought two wraps recently, the buffalo chicken wrap and the chicken tarragon wrap in the prepared, refrigerated section. Both were excellent.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        www.saffron215.blogspot.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Meh - edamame nuggets. I know they have a lot of fans, but to me, they were just OK. The puffy texture is kind of weird (DH agreed), and I find them rather flavorless.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Yay - almond butter thins. Not unique to TJ's, but they sure are tasty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Yeah the edamame nuggets are weird... The chickenless nuggets are good (same as gardein) and the chickenless manadarin orange version is really very good- i've shared with omnis who preferred it to the actual chicken version

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Was that a "yay?" Doesn't sound like it. I guess Yay and Yeah are two different things ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          If I were to attempt to interpret this, I think it might have been a:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Meh
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Yay
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Big Yay

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          .....in that order for the items mentioned.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          But I'm not really sure.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Dave B

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            "Yeah" is actually closer to "Yea," which is how this series of threads began: Yeas and Nays, meaning Yesses and Nos. I like Yea better because all I want to do is OK something, not cheer for it. But Ttrockwood isn't bothering with all that; he's rating three different products in two sentences.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. YAY--Sauerkraut--I loved it. I want more right now. --Although I had the hardest time trying to get it open because it is so wide, I couldn't grip the lid.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply