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Thursday, December 24, 2015

Trader Joe's Rum of the Gods

As alluded to on our booze lovefest/podcast a few weeks back, Trader Joe's Rum of the Gods isn't exactly topshelf kinda stuff. A straight swig or two, and it tastes kinda burny, kinda medicinal, and fairly flat and bland all at once.

But then again...who drinks rum straight?!?!?! Not me.

Not sure what the gods have to do with it, but it mixes well with others. Fancy a rum and coke? Yes. Put some extra jolly in your winter wassail? Absolutely. Spike your egg nog? Full speed ahead, Captain...I mean, not "Captain" like Captain Morgan...sigh. Regardless, it all works, and for a pretty low price - I think I paid about $8 or $9 a few months back at the Princeton, NJ store for this.

It won't make you the hit of your holiday party, but at least it'll be a less of a hit to your wallet.

Bottom line: Trader Joe's Rum of the Gods: 6 out of 10 Golden Spoons.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Trader Joe's Artisan Bread Pretzel Croissants

A year ago at this time, I was making some big ol' fuss about the paleo diet I was trying out and avoid grains this, no carbs that...blahblahblah. Probably drove some of ya nuts. Sorry to drag out the past out into the light.

Well, I'm not exactly following it any more. Don't get me wrong, I still have some caveman-esque diet tendencies...but I like carbs again. Well, never stopped liking them. But I gotta make sure they're a worthwhile indulgence. Hey, I worked hard to knock off a hundred pounds, I'd like to keep them off, all those Christmas cookies be darned. p.s. - Mom, keep them coming!

So...Trader Joe's now has what they're calling their Artisan Bread Pretzel Croissants. Gotta admit, I perked right up when I head that. Must. Try. I love croissants - light, flaky, crispy - and when I think soft pretzels, I think of the traditional Philly style - tough, dense, chewy - so to see how those two would combine carbo-forces into some interesting hy-bread, well, $2.49 for a two pack seemed a worthy investment.

These are some big guys. When I opened the bag there was the familiar deep salty/yeasty aroma of a soft pretzel, except a little lighter and perhaps more buttery. The exterior of each large palm sized pretssant (ugh, that doesn't work) looked much alike the skin of most typical pretzel rolls, except, well, croissant shaped. As for firmness, well, decidedly the crotzels (oh goodness, that's even worse) were much in the middle, again like a pretzel bun.

I am so sorry for quite possibly entering the word "crotzel" into the English lexicon.

Moving on, both Sandy and I had the same idea for these: Breakfast sandwiches. Slicing them proved to be a challenge, due to the flaky nature of their croissant heritage. But we were both able to get a decent sized slab to go on either side of our sausage and eggs...and fell into pretssanwich (I need to stop) heaven. Both the nature of a pretzel and the elements of a croissant were almost equally present. How can something be flaky but chewy at the same time? I don't know...but sure enough, each bite was soft and buttery at first, but quickly turned into something a little more chewable when mashed between the molars. Despite the initial flakiness when slicing, our sandwichable slabs did an excellent job of holding on to their innards. Tastewise, they perhaps veered slightly more towards pretzel, but still, so much butteriness....yum.

Both Sandy and I liked them quite a bit, and personally, I'm pretty happy that we got two bags of them, only for the kiddos and the mom-in-law to not be willing to try them for whatever silly reason. They instead opted for plain white toast. Ugh.  More for us. And that's a good thing. No real complaints here, but a little sprinkle of kosher salt on top of these would have been killer. Definitely worth the pick-up. Double fours.

Bottom line: Trader Joe's Artisan Bread Pretzel Croissants: 8 out of 10 Golden Spoons     

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Trader Joe's Gingerbread Flavor Dog Treats

It's another dog treat review! As has been the case with all of our mostly-pointless pet treat reviews, the dogs inhale the treats with reckless abandon despite the fact that they're clearly optimized for larger dogs. However, in this case, the cute gingerbread man shapes lend themselves to easy bite-size snacks for small dogs by simply decapitating and/or amputating limbs from the hapless cookie men. Be sure to click on the video, because this one features beautiful Christmas decorations, animals wearing hats, and my lovely wife eating dog food! Enjoy!

Bottom line: 8.5 out of 10.

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