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?"

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Thursday, March 1, 2012

Trader Joe's Tuscan Italian Dressing

Considering Russ's last post was an Italian item—or at least an item with an Italian-sounding name, I figured I should go ahead and do this Tuscan Italian dressing and keep the theme going for a bit. I'll just start off by saying this is one of the best salad dressings I've had in a long time.

We had it with spinach and lettuce and onions and...well, you know...salad stuff. And really, just a very simple salad and this dressing is all you need for a tasty side dish. I was quite impressed.

Lately, I've come to develop quite a taste for balsamic vinaigrette, and also raspberry vinaigrette. And I've always had a thing for creamy Italian. This delectable dressing tastes like a combination of creamy Italian and raspberry vinaigrette. There's no mention of raspberry on the label or the ingredients, but to me, there's some kind of berry-esque-ness implicit in every bite. It's subtle, but I could swear it's there. Sonia agrees.

Sonia likes it because "it's not too oily or salty." She also likes it because she's obsessed with Tuscany and insists we need to go there someday. And, ah, perhaps someday we will...on our massive year-long backpacking through Europe journey that we've dreamed of since we met. And, hey, if all of the dressing there is as good as this one, I'll be a happy camper. Way to go, Trader Joe. Shoulda gone with "Trader Giotto" for this one. It's that good.

We totally dropped the ball and didn't take a pic of the nutrition information for this one. But we can tell you that there's 10g of fat in a 2 tablespoon serving, which is actually pretty average for a salad dressing of this kind.

Sonia gives it 4 out of 5 stars. I'm gonna go ahead and give it a 4.5. Imagine that: candy-craving, junkfood-loving me giving a salad accessory a near-perfect score...

Bottom line: 8.5 out of 10.


  1. This is a staple in our fridge.

  2. We always have this on hand. It's even better when added to a salad that has feta cheese on it.

  3. ooh...yeah, this would be good with feta...

  4. This isn't bad for store bought. It can spark up a simple salad in pinch. :-),
    Susan Cooper

  5. Yes, Matt, and this is especially good on a pasta salad with feta... the flavors just come together so deliciously!

  6. It makes a delicious chicken marinade. I serve it with broccoli and purple potatoes.