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 10, 2016

Trader Joe's Extraordinary Eggs


Ah, Spring is in the air. And the temperatures are rising here in the mid-Atlantic. 'Tis the season for chocolate eggs—and other symbols of vernality and fertility like flowers, bunnies, chicks, and jelly beans. And much like the subject of Russ's recent post, these are seasonally-appropriate egg-shaped candies with a chocolate base. Now I'm no Russell Stover (in fact, I'd be Nate Velasco had I lived in that hypothetical matriarchal society), but I'm sharp enough to have noticed some significant differences between the two confections which we shall explore in the ensuing paragraphs. Let's get started.

First, these extraordinary candies are actually shaped like real eggs. Plus, they come in what is effectively a golden egg carton—not a carton that holds golden eggs, but a golden carton that holds candy eggs. Second, for $5, you'd think they could include one actual golden egg—or at least plate the carton with gold leaf or something. Goodness gracious, we're on a budget here, TJ's.


Thirdly, there are four flavors in the pack. You may have heard us riffing on that old Forrest Gump quote about life being "like a box of chocolates" from time to time...but in this case, you do know what you're gonna get, because there's a handy cheat sheet on the back of the packaging that tells you which eggs have which fillings. Green = Almond Praline, Pink = Raspberry, Yellow = Crispy Cookies. Now so far, those are my three favoritest flavors, in the order that I like them. Sonia would reverse those three, with both of us holding raspberry as a very close second-favorite on the list. Plus, we both agree the Orange = Caramel flavor is by far the weakest, simply because, in my opinion, it is the least unique.

Each extraordinary egg has a candy shell, not unlike other hard-shelled candies. Inside that outer shell lies a layer of tasty milk chocolate. But the real fun begins when you get to the center of the eggs, where there's one of four respective fillings (see paragraph above). Both the almond praline and crispy cookies are fairly similar in texture, like something akin to cookie butter perhaps, but not as creamy. The raspberry flavor is like a high-quality raspberry jelly, but more like a powerberry than a raspberry stick. And the caramel flavor...has caramel inside. Imagine that.

There are a total of 16 eggs in the pack. When you consider the value per egg, it's definitely on the pricey side, but they are high-quality and they taste really good. For a once-a-year holiday treat, they're worth a purchase just for the presentation alone. I'm sure kids would love 'em. Sonia and I are both leaning toward four stars a piece.

Stay tuned for a titillating episode of Let's Talk TJ's! in which we discuss the exciting relationship between eggs and swimmers and the psychology behind the branding of Trader Joe's candies—unless, of course, Marvo listens to his better judgment and edits out that segment entirely.

Bottom line: 8 out of 10.

8 comments:

  1. In both cartons that I've purchased (and enjoyed!), there have been 16 eggs, four each of four flavors.
    Thanks for the heads-up about the upcoming podcast episode. I've noticed that Russ consistently and ably fills the role of Dirty Old Man on the podcast, while you and Sonia chuckle awkwardly on behalf of your listeners. I assume you cringe on our behalf as well.

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    1. Oh shoot you're right! 16 not 18. Changed that in the post. Thanks! Math isn't my strong suit, apparently. As far as the upcoming podcast, I think I'm at least as guilty as Russ in this case. But again, that part might not make the final cut :)

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  2. Lol, Karen...I'll take that as a compliment. This time around, though, HE definitely started it.

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    1. Just guessing, but about an inch tall I'd say...?

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    3. Damn, that's tiny. Quality over quantity hopefully. Thanks!

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  4. Tried to find these eggs in Sarasota Florida Trader Joe's today. No one had even heard of them and one person told me they were only available in California she believed.
    So disappointed, and when asked at check out of I'd found everything..when I said no, all I got was "too bad" Traders Joe's here is so bad I'll never go back, out of the last 4-5 trips think I've found one thing and when we used it there was freezer burn. Used to love the store..not impressed anymore !

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