By the end of the summer, according to multiple online reports, this product had been discontinued. Part of me was relieved, as the pressure to review such a dangerous substance had been lifted. I didn't want to fall off the wagon so soon and return to my caffeinated coma for many more months. But another part of me pined for the opportunity to taste a product that by many accounts was not only one of the best offerings of Trader Joe's 2017 coffee craziness, but perhaps one of their greatest coffee products of all time.
Well, friends, Trader Joe's Coffee Syrup is BACK, and IT. IS. HEAVENLY. It was prominently displayed on the "new products" shelf at the Wilmington, Delaware store. Nothing but cane sugar, water, and coffee. And that's all it needs.
Yeah, sure, there are other coffee syrups out there...and likely one of them is Trader Joe's third party supplier, though I couldn't tell you which one. And I certainly can't vouch for those other brands, but I can tell you that this stuff is divine.
It pours like a maple or agave syrup, though just slightly thinner. The thinness makes for easy mixing with milk, coffee, or your beverage of choice. It's still thick enough to make an excellent ice cream topping though, and the flavor blends seamlessly with vanilla. I tried a spoonful straight. It's got a strong coffee flavor just by itself, but it's also very sweet. I imagine it's not unlike a spoonful of Cold Brew Coffee Concentrate with equal parts liquid cane sugar mixed in. And yes, if one were so inclined, he could drink this stuff straight out of the bottle, though few would find the intensity pleasant after a sip or two.
I'm not even really a "coffee guy," as I've stated many times on this blog, but I must say this is quite possibly the best-tasting coffee item I've ever sampled in my life. My mochaphile wife was even more impressed. She's not only in love with java, but she appreciates many coffee-flavored treats and desserts as well. Up to this point, her favorite coffee-flavored dessert has been Haagen Dazs coffee ice cream—and she's in awe of this product's ability to approximate the flavor and quality of the Haagen Dazs offering when combined with vanilla ice cream. In this case, we used Humboldt Organic Vanilla, readily available at TJ's in our area.
It's actually awesome on pancakes, in place of traditional maple syrup. We haven't gone there yet, but rumor has it this product mixes well with certain cocktails. Its flavor isn't too far from that of Kahlua, so I'm thinking makeshift White Russians or Mudslides...? The possibilities are endless. Let us know what weird and crazy things you do with the stuff in the comments below...though, um...keep it family friendly, if you know what I mean ;-)
Sonia and I haven't added anything to the Pantheon in nearly a year and a half, so it's high time we bestow that honor once again. Five stars from Sonia. Four and a half from me.
Bottom line: 9.5 out of 10.