I'm not sure what I can attribute those discrepancies to. Perhaps it just tasted much fresher since it was literally only seconds out of the coconut. Or maybe it's one of those dimensional shift conundrums I've been reading about. In my home universe, we read Berenstein Bears books, Nelson Mandela died in the 1980's, and coconut milk came out of tapped coconuts instead of coconut water—not to mention Joe Cocker's "With A Little Help From My Friends" intro to The Wonder Years was pretty good, unlike the one that plays during the opening credits now. Actually, I'm pretty sure that's a syndication/copyright issue rather than a dimensional shift, but it's still pretty terrifying nonetheless. Seriously, if you have Netflix streaming, go play the beginning of an episode of The Wonder Years now. I'll wait for you here.
Know what else is weird? Sonia LOVES this coconut water stuff. She says it tastes much better than the Maple Water and it does at least as good a job at hydrating her. She often uses the term "sock water" when describing a beverage she doesn't like—as in water that's been used to clean dirty socks. I might be tempted to describe this coconut juice as just a small step up from sock water.
It's not that Trader Joe's offering is any worse than other pre-packaged coconut water. I'm just not really a fan of any coconut water since I transitioned into this peculiar universe—and likewise, Sonia generally likes any coconut water. Somewhere in one of our podcast episodes, I said something along the lines of, "If I were forced at gunpoint to choose between the Maple Water and the Coconut Water, I'd take the Maple Water." It's true.
Anyway, Sonia gives this product 4.5 stars, and I'm gonna give it 2.5. That still yields a respectable score of 7 out of 10, but be advised, if you're not a huge fan of other pre-packaged coconut waters, you probably won't be a fan of this, and vice versa.
Now bring on the onslaught of "You're an idiot but your wife isn't" style comments that I've become so accustomed to these past 5 1/2 years ;)
Bottom line: 7 out of 10.