Hello. My name's Nathan, and I love Trader Joe's. My wife Sonia does too. She's a great shopper, has excellent taste and knows good value when she comes across it. As many of you know, Trader Joe's is unsurpassed in the world of good-value grocery stores, so we spend a lot of our time and money there. Although the store fairly consistently delivers great taste with its own unique line of food products, there are definitely some big-hits, and unfortunately, there are some misses...

After doing a couple of internet searches for reviews of TJ's food items, Sonia discerned an apparent dearth of good, quality reviews for the store's offerings. So, at her suggestion, we decided to embark on a journey of systematically reviewing every Trader Joe's product, resulting in the blog you are about to read...

A couple of months into our Trader Joe's rating adventure, an old college friend, Russ, who unbeknownst to me had been following our TJ's blog, decided that I had been slacking in my blogging duties (which, of course, I was) so he decided to contribute his own original TJ's reviews to the blog, thus enhancing it, making it more complete and adding to it a flavor of his own. He and his wife Sandy are also avid TJ's fans and, as you will soon discover, he is an excellent writer and is nearly as clever, witty and humble as I am.

Seriously though, Russ: You go, boy!

So here it is: "What's Good at Trader Joe's?"

Search This Blog

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Trader Joe's Gone Bananas!

It's time for a fictitious adjective. Let's go with "Ridiculuscious!"

I almost went with "Stupidelicious," but I already mentioned that one in a previous blog entry...either word accurately describes these amazing chocolate covered frozen banana slices.

How much can you do with chocolate-banana, really? "Aren't they all the same?" you might ask. Well, for starters, there are only 2 ingredients in these little bites: bananas and chocolate. Then, thankfully, they do break down the chocolate into its constituent parts. Pretty straightforward...you got some sugar and milk and cocoa. The only word I wanted more info on was "soy lecithin." According to Wikipedia, lecithin "controls...the flow properties of chocolate." Well, it must have done what it was supposed to do, because this chocolate flowed right down my throat and into my tummy with delicious ease and smoothness.

My wife's score for these was tragically low (only a 4 out of 5) because she's had taste-aversion to chocolate-bananas since the age of 6. Her story takes us back to Los Angeles, California, circa 1985. Her father had bought her a chocolate-banana from a street vendor cart, and the product was apparently a scary, ghetto version of the classic chocolate-banana. Within its dripping, melting, fake-chocolate shell, an old, semi-rotted, ultra-ripe banana waited...lurking...planning to ruin my poor Sonia's opinion of chocolate-bananas forever. Unfortunately, it succeeded. She became deathly ill, vomited multiple times, and vowed to never again eat a chocolate banana.

These Trader Joe's Gone Bananas! chocolate-covered frozen banana bites have begun the healing process in dear, sweet Sonia. The decades-old trauma is slowly being replaced with good chocolate-banana memories.

And that, my friends, is the only reason Sonia gave these a 4 and not a 5.

The bananas are perfect. Not too ripe, not too young. The slices are the perfect size. There's just the right amount of chocolate around each piece. I have no complaints. The last chocolate-banana I had prior to these TJ's bites was from Disneyland, about 6 months ago. The Disney version had fakey-type chocolate, the banana wasn't ripe enough, and it cost something like a hundred dollars.

To summarize, I really, really love chocolate-bananas, and Trader Joe's Gone Bananas! are the best chocolate-bananas I've ever had. Natural-ish chocolate and perfectly ripe bananas, with the innovative concept to serve the banana bites in little slices instead of the whole big banana-on-a-stick deal. Perfect. 5 out of 5 from me. And the only reason Sonia gives them a 4 and not a 5 is because she had this crazy near-death banana tragedy as a little girl...anyway...I can't recommend them enough. Bottom line: 9 out of 10.

19 comments:

  1. Hmmm...interesting. Where are these at Trader Joes? Freezer? Shelf? Refrigerated section? Need just a little more info before deciding if these are for me. I think I would like them frozen.

    ReplyDelete
  2. They are indeed in the frozen section. They are to be served frozen as well. Wouldn't be quite as good if only refrigerated :-)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I was a big fan of their predecessor,the original "Gone Bananas" was whole chocolate covered bananas, so I will undoubtably love this even more convenient & chocolatey option! Thanks again for the heads up on what's new at TJ's... :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. Dang, looking forward to trying these on the next trip! Been looking for a good new treat.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Whoops. Now that I'm home and not at work with time to pay a little more attention, I see Keep
    Frozen right on the front of the box. Sorry about that.

    ReplyDelete
  6. De-lish snack when u crave chocolate!

    ReplyDelete
  7. These are amazing when combined with strawberry fro yo, and a bit of vanilla almond milk for a smoothie!

    ReplyDelete
  8. Lady Eleven, you just may be my new hero for that suggestion. Sandy and I haven't gotten them yet, but man, they could be awesome for smoothies. I'd imagine they'd be pretty decent if mixed in with some peanut butter if one decides to not go the fruit smoothie route.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I LOVE these, but was told today that they are being discontinued. WHAT?!!!??

    ReplyDelete
  10. Of course these are good. Anything with that much saturated fat is going to be good. I wish they would make a light version.

    ReplyDelete
  11. So so very yummy and gluten free ;)

    ReplyDelete
  12. If you want to taste a really good chocolate dipped banana, try the ones from Totally Bananas. They are all over the state of Florida. They also make bananas with dry toppings or peanuts, rainbow sprinkles and coconut. The bananas are also dairy free and gluten free. Check out there website to find out where you can find the product. www.totally-bananas.net

    ReplyDelete
  13. This comment has been removed by the author.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Actually, they're dairy-free. NO MILK is needed to make these delicious vegan chocolate snacks.

    ReplyDelete
  15. I didn't care for these too much... as I recall, the chocolate seemed waxy. My favorite chocolate banana experience is from Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory (which we sadly don't have in Santa Barbara anymore): a perfectly not-too-ripe frozen banana dipped in perfect chocolate when you order it and then rolled in your choice of nuts/toppings... mine is chopped almonds. ThIS is a chocolate banana.

    But I can see these chocolate covered banana bits used in a smoothie with some peanut butter...

    ReplyDelete
  16. I cannot stop eating these. SO GOOD!

    ReplyDelete
  17. Still in the freezer section. Just tried them for the 1st time. OMG yummy

    ReplyDelete
  18. I'm addicted. I ate a whole box today, a little at a time. Oops. It's fruit, right?

    ReplyDelete