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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Friday, September 23, 2016

Trader Joe's Organic Ginger Zinger

"Put your pears on the stairs!"

"Stomp and roar, out the door!"

"Put your sidewalk on the fidewalk!"

Yes...rhyming is all the rage these days with my four year old daughter. It's going on for weeks, nonstop. Most of our conversations sound like the classic Princess Bride talk between Inigo and Fezzik....sometimes with actual words, and as you can see, sometimes not. It's what we do, usually with a giggle...and a wiggle!

I'm fairly glad that I won't have to explain that the words "ginger" and "zinger" don't precisely rhyme, despite looking pretty similar. That "g" at the start of the second syllable is troublesome, isn't it? Close, but not enough. No rhyme, at any time.

But I ought to attempt to explain to all you fine folks how Trader Joe's Organic Ginger Zinger tastes, so here goes. Best way I can explain is, think of a bell curve, with one end designated for lemonade and the other for a mild ginger beer. Your tongue "rides" this curve as you taste this particular drinky concoction. At the foothills, there's the sugary sweetness of the lemonade, but when one would expect the tart bite to kick in, there's the intermingling of the ginger. This mix gets stronger, and just when the flavor you think would apex, it descends once more, this time more towards the ginger, with the very tail end leaving a meek, inoffensive ginger burn.

And that's pretty much it.

One end, a little lemonade, on the other, a little ginger beer, and in the middle between those two points there's a whole lot of not much. Well, sugar and water, yes, but really...nothing there. A little carbonation would have helped carry any flavor through, I think, because really, this kinda reminded me of flat soda. On the plus side, when I mixed a little rum in there, that middle ground picked up fairly well with a more solid base in there.

TJ's has proven how delectable ginger and lemon can be before. It's too bad the results can't be duplicated in beverage form here. Sigh. If this were still the hot depths of summer instead of slowly turning towards hoodie weather here in the Northeast, I might be a little more forgiving and use some words like "light" and "refreshing"...but not to be rude, I'm not in the mood. At $3.49 a quart, no need to rush it to your fort, but might be worth a shot...that's all I got.

Bottom line: Trader Joe's Organic Ginger Zinger: 6 out of 10 Golden Spoons


  1. This time I'm positive this is the same product.


    1. TJ's does have a lemon ginger echinacea product that's probably a good match to your link. The new ginger zinger drink is different.

    2. Not even close. Zinger has no grape juice or honey, for starters.

    3. Even the bottle is the same though!

    4. It's what's inside the bottle that counts! ;)