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Friday, February 23, 2024

Trader Joe's Calamansi & Mango Sorbet


I’m on the record more than once stating that I like stuff in my frozen desserts—you know, mix-ins and chunks of cookie dough or something to bite down on. If I were to make a complaint about this sorbet, it would have to be that: the absence of fruit pieces…because there’s absolutely nothing else to complain about.

This might be the best sorbet I’ve ever tasted. The front of the pint describes the product as “tropical, citrusy, sweet, & refreshing” and I wouldn’t add or subtract anything from those adjectives. It’s just such a bright, clean flavor, I can’t imagine a citrus dessert tasting any better.


Texture-wise, the word “velvet” comes to mind. It’s a cold velvet, for sure, but very velvety nevertheless. It’s superbly smooth and light. I can’t get over how big the taste is without any kind of cloying syrupy feel. It literally and figuratively melts in your mouth.

This is only the second calamansi product I’ve ever had. The first was a citrus beverage from Trader Joe’s called Calamansi Cooler. It just works better with mango. I don’t know why. I guess I like the taste of mango. But this is somehow so much better than just mango.


$3.79 well spent. Sonia loves the product, too, but maybe not quite as much as I do. Will repurchase in the summertime for the refreshment factor. I could probably eat the whole pint in one sitting after mowing the lawn on a hot day. Vegan. Kosher. Five stars from me, four and a half from the beautiful wifey for Trader Joe’s Calamansi & Mango Sorbet.

Bottom line: 9.5 out of 10.

Wednesday, February 21, 2024

Trader Joe's Organic Red Lentil Sedanini


One comment/question/criticism about this blog that we've seen a few times throughout the years is: Why do you spend so much time on products that are somewhat lackluster or mediocre? Just come out and tell us what's GOOD at Trader Joe's. It is the name of the blog, after all.

It's a fair point to make. And to the folks that ask it, I generally just refer them to the "Pantheon" and "really darn good" links in the right side bar of the blog. Those are the links that answer the question: "What's Good at Trader Joe's?" at least in our humble opinions. And the "blahhh" and "not so great" links answer another frequently asked question: "What's NOT Good at Trader Joe's?" Again, in our minds, anyway. Your mileage may vary.


There are now over TWO THOUSAND reviews posted on this blog, many of which cover more than just a single TJ's product, so logically a lot of those items are going to fall somewhere in the middle of the pack. It's just the nature of the beast. We try to cover products objectively and accurately enough so that even if we don't love something our readers might get a hunch if they would like it, or vice versa.

All that to say that this is yet another fine product and should be a hit with folks who do the organic thing or the gluten free thing, but it's pretty much middle-of-the-road pasta in other respects. Three bucks gets you six servings of red lentil pasta imported from Italy. It's easy to make and goes fairly well with basic marinara sauce and parmesan cheese. I'm sure you could serve this sedanini any way you'd serve regular pasta.

It tastes very similar to Trader Joe's Risoni, also made with red lentils. It's an earthy, legumey flavor. Texture-wise, it's not quite a dead ringer for wheat-based pasta, but it's close. It might be a little firmer and less stretchy, if that makes sense.

Probably wouldn't buy again unless we were entertaining guests with dietary restrictions, but then again, it might be a nice break from regular glutenful pasta once in a blue moon. Three and a half stars a piece from Sonia and me for Trader Joe's Organic Red Lentil Sedanini.

Bottom line: 7 out of 10.

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