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Trader Joe's Products (2002–2011)


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One nitpick I have with TJ's is their lack of plastic bags.  Um, it's Seattle, it's raining, and I'm on foot.  I guess I should just try to remember to take my own bag.

As a card carrying Seattleite (yes, it's a real word, check it out on m-w.com!), how come you don't bring your own bags? Shame on you! Be careful or the hippies will corner you in a dark alley, guilt you up and put their stink on you!

Actually, doesn't TJ sell canvas bags?

Edited by hollywood (log)

I'm hollywood and I approve this message.

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TJ's was selling canvas TJ bags--I bought one for 1.99 yesterday. I asked if they gave credit for bringing in your own bags, as Whole Foods and my local coop does, and they said they were about 1/5 the size of Whole Paycheck. Canvas bags are much easier to carry--sling one over the shoulder.

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My only beef with Trader Joe's is that they quit carrying the very nice frozen duck breasts they used to have. The clerk I spoke to claimed they did it to placate "PETA" (though I find no support that the scruples they listened to were anybody's but their own). Apparently, Trader Joe's wants to be assured that the duck they buy has been treated humanely and kindly. A laudable goal, perhaps, but, dammit, I want my duck. :angry:

A jumped-up pantry boy who never knew his place.

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Ms. Shorter, if you happen to be in Northern Virginia sometime, stop by one of their TJs. NoVa (indeed, AllVa) allows wine and beer sales in convenience stores, supermarkets, and gourmet markets...just not hard liquor.

Thanks for the tip! I have family in No. Va. but always forget to buy my booze when I'm over there.

Inspired by this thread, I made a trip today to the TJ's in Gaithersburg, MD. What a haul for $50! Gruyere, pasta, Total yogurt, chocolate, a couple of sauces, Fiji water, and the best - tuna in olive oil for $1.50 a can. That's $2 less than I pay for olive oil packed tuna at Whole Foods.

Heather Johnson

In Good Thyme

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Closest TJ for me is 130 miles, but worth the drive every three or so months. One example: one quart Maple Syrup, their brand $ 7.45, and it's 'Grade B', which I feel has a stronger 'Maple' flavor (which I like). Plugra at $ 4.00, Morello Cherries and very good imported Swiss Jams. All worth the money, but more important: IT IS QUALITY!!

Peter
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Living in Texas, we don't have TJ's - but I've heard it's nice. Central Market, on the other hand, is by far the best grocery store I've ever been in. It smokes Whole Foods.

It's owned by the HEB chain, and includes a lot of the "normal" stuff you'd find in any super market. It also has an amazing produce selection, a deli with all of the good exotic meats (cured, smoked, weird Euro sausages, etc.) and cheeses, a wall of olive oil, etc. Their wine and beer selection is also very good.

If you're ever in San Antonio, Austin, or Houston ( I think that's all there are) look for a CM and stick your head in. It's been called "Disney Land for Foodies".

Central Market's Web Site

(oh, and they have duck)

Edited by bobdavis (log)
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Oh man, I love Trader Joe's. Every month or so I drive from Philly to the wilds of Jersey on a food-buying circuit (wine store, TJ's, pastry shop, onion rings) and they're the highlight. Always wind up spending way too much money there (because it's so cheap and all). Once we realized how much money we were spending, we wanted to buy stock in the company, but couldn't... Damn those German brothers, anyway!

I think I've got some of those TJ's chocolate-covered espresso beans left... time for a rainy afternoon fix!

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Just came back from my first trip to Trader Joe's in Arlington, VA. What a pleasure. I can't believe I've been shopping at Giant and Whole Foods since I moved here.

We picked up a bunch of different things to sample from different corners of the store: everything from coffee to pasta to rack of lamb to half-sour pickles. Of course we also got some Fiji water and three-and-a-half-buck Chuck. I look forward to sampling the goods over the coming days.

Chief Scientist / Amateur Cook

MadVal, Seattle, WA

Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code

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We also just got back from TJs in Chicago...

It was so awesome!

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Emory entering Trader Joes -Chicago

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Emory and TJ helper recommend 3 Buck Chuck

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The wine that costs $3 a bottle - trying it tonight...

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Em picks a few items

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Liam and Emory and 2 carts of great food

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Frenched to the bone Lamb chops

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All done shopping...what did we get...

2 packages lamb

large frozen shrimp

frozen sea bass

frozen Australian Filet Mignons

Niman Ranch Bacon

frozen chicken breasts

Belgian Truffles

2 cases Shaw wine

Fiji water

Plugra butter

Batali sauces

and tons tons tons more..I was going to list everything but that would be pages of stuff

we spent $450 dollars and have more great food you can imagine and it was a lot of fun! The employees have a great sense of humor and were of great help. I highly recommend this place!

PS The person in front of us was buying 10 cases of the Shaw wine and the check out clerk told him, "There's not that much winter left... :laugh: " The people in the Chicago store have a great sense of humor...one of the reason I really like this place...and they also double bag your groceries without asking! :cool:

Edited by awbrig (log)
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Great pics, Awbrig!

We just had at TJ's lunch. The great revelation of this meal was that the half-sour pickles kick butt. They're very garlicky and much crunchier than any other supermarket pickles I've ever had. The liquid they are packaged in is slightly carbonated. It bubbles when you open the jar. I assume this is due to fermentation in the jar.

Shredded BBQ pork was also a pleasant surprise. There were good size chunks of pork, worthy of further pulling, not just some stringy bits in a tub of sauce. The sauce itself wasn't bad; in fact, with some hot sauce added, it was a good quick lunch.

On the down side, the bread doesn't seem great.

Fiji water, which I've never tried before, tastes purer (in the sense of lower mineral content) than my usual Evian. I don't have a bottle of Evian to compare the labels.

We'll have a bottle of Chuck tonite.

Chief Scientist / Amateur Cook

MadVal, Seattle, WA

Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code

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we spent $450 dollars

I filled a cart and Allison filled a cart...

You should see the food that we got though...If we got the same stuff anywhere else it would be 30-40% more I would imagine...also $80 of that was 2 cases wine and 6 pack of Grolsch beer...the filets were relatively expensive as were the shrimp...

Edited by awbrig (log)
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On the down side, the bread doesn't seem great.

We bought Brioche rolls that we are eating tonight with honey turkey we also bought

Shredded BBQ pork was also a pleasant surprise.

I saw that and almost got it...

Fiji water, which I've never tried before, tastes purer (in the sense of lower mineral content) than my usual Evian. I don't have a bottle of Evian to compare the labels

Fiji blows it away! No contest.

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Fiji water, which I've never tried before, tastes purer (in the sense of lower mineral content) than my usual Evian. I don't have a bottle of Evian to compare the labels

Fiji blows it away! No contest.

We're going to get some Evian and do a blind taste test. That way we won't be biased by the fancy waterfall inside the Fiji bottle. I'm pretty sure the taste difference will be hard to miss, but I want to do a fair test.

Chief Scientist / Amateur Cook

MadVal, Seattle, WA

Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code

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hey awbrig-

glad you had a good time at TJ-s the kids looked like happy campers. That place is great, though I expected their wine selection to be larger. Oh well, I guess it is not the place to go shopping as we do have Sam's Wines and Liquors here as well.

BTW--thanks for sharing yr tab, as I now feel much better about my $100.

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That place is great, though I expected their wine selection to be larger.

I didnt care for I was only looking for one kind of wine :laugh: BTW did you see how many of those Charles Shaw boxes were stacked everywhere throughout the entire store practically!

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Yeah! I even came home with one stacked with assorted bottles. Love that Poland Spring and Gerolsteiner are 89 cents.

I bought a bottle but have not taken the challenge. Hmmm...even it tastes good, I wonder if I will think it tastes like a $3 bottle of wine. Maybe a blind taste would be better.

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The Charles Shaw Merlot is relatively bad, imho.  I had hoped it was going to be better, but its not.  Very tough for me to drink actually... Hope the Cab is better...

I was just jumping on line to report the same. The Merlot burned when I first smelled it-very astringent. On the palate, it was watery, but not nearly as harsh as on the nose. After some time in the glass, it ended up being drinkable, but only in the sense of not being overtly awful any more.

We pressed on through the bottle, and the conclusion we came to was that it was like airplane wine. You know, the stuff in the twist-top bottle that they serve with your choice of dried out beef, rubbery chicken, or mushy lasagna. In that context, it can be the star of the meal. Back at sea level, I'm not so sure...

Chief Scientist / Amateur Cook

MadVal, Seattle, WA

Proud signatory to the eG Ethics code

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thx vengroff- what I thought too - except for me it it didnt become easier to drink the more I drank it...it actually became less drinkable for me...had to crack a beer...actually turned me off red wine for the night ( gasp )

the bouquet ( can you really call it that here ) made me wince and the following sips made my face make expressions I didnt know they could make :smile:

Im saving the case for the eGullet party :raz: (just kidding!)

Edited by awbrig (log)
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