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Thursday, July 26, 2018

Trader Joe's Old Fashioned Waffle Cones and Trader Joe's Ultra Chocolate Ice Cream

We haven't crossed too terribly much off the family bucket list this summer, but one thing we've done without fail: go out to a different ice cream shop every week. And not a Coldstone or Baskin Robbins either, but an independent, roadside type place. Without fail...and it's been awesome.

But there's a problem. See, I like waffle cones, a lot. And the Good Lord, when I was born, decided to grace with a tremendous underbite that I have declined to ever get fixed. Surgically breaking and resetting a jaw and being subjected to a summer at home with Mom and Dad eating baby food during college when instead I could be off at campus didn't seem like fun. To help cover this up, and also because without it I look like a 14 year old with an hyperactive pituitary gland, I have grown a fairly large, bushy beard. The wife loves it and won't let me do more than an occasional trim.

As a result, between my wacky jaw and crazy beard, it's impossible for me to eat an ice cream neatly. I've tried all sorts of different techniques...nope. It cannot be done. My three year old is neater than me, and we usually have to hose her off. Strangers gasp. Kids stare. Napkins cringe. It's bad.

Fortunately, bettween Trader Joe's Old Fashioned Waffle Cones, and, say, Trader Joe Ultra Chocolate Ice Cream, I can contain my embarrassment at home.

Waffle cones at first. A good waffle cone, in of itself, is one of life's simple pleasures. Why settle for one of those styrofoam type deals...when you can get a waffle cone? These TJ cones are no exception. They're appropriately thick and sturdy, with enough space to amply hold a couple scoops. That's key. When bitten into, there's lots of crunch-and-munch-ability, with little chance of these guys getting soggy. But then there's an added bonus: there's a sweet, almost creamy, vanilla flavor shining through the batter that adds a really nice little touch. Really, these are pretty greta cones, and at $2.99 for a dozen, not a bad deal. Most ice cream shops charge what, an extra 50 cents (at least) for a waffle cone? These are 25 cents each! Nice!

As for the Ultra Chocolate Ice Cream...meh. It's decent ice cream, don't get me wrong. But chocolate by itself doesn't quite get my motor running. That being said, the TJ's chocolate ice cream is better than average chocolate. The cocoa flavor is rich with depth and is fairly potent, more than a typical chocolate. It's probably a good thing there aren't any mix-ins or added flavors as they would probably be overpowered. And from seeing how hard this ice cream freezes, it's made from good quality ingredients too. Lots of milk and cream and eggs and the like. In all, pretty good, even if it's not all my thing. If you're a chocoholic, though? You'll be all over this.

The waffle cones will be a summer staple, for sure. We do ice cream far more than we should at's hot and we ahve no AC and get tired and cranky easily. Don't judge. As for the ice cream? It'll be in and out, I think. Neither Sandy nor I are huge fans but our kids sure are, and by God, if it'll help them eat anything other than mac and cheese for dinner, we're for it. Waffle cones earn near top marks, while the ultra chocolate ice crwam comes in a little behind.

Bottom lines: Trader Joe's Old Fashioned Waffle Cones: 9 out of 10 Golden Spoons and Trader Joe;s Ultra Chocolate Ice Cream: 7 out of 10 Golden Spoons

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Trader Joe's Soy Cheese Alternative

This product contains milk. It's not considered vegan. Which begs the question: why on earth does it even exist?

Some might say it's got less calories than regular cheese. Okay. So does the soil in your back yard—and I'm willing to bet the soil is more palatable. I guess this non-cheese is vegetarian. But then, so is regular cow's milk cheese. Know what else cow's milk cheese has going for it? It's edible.

Texture-wise, I guess this stuff isn't that far off. It feels pretty similar to traditional mozzarella, but with a detectable amount of tofu-type texture as well.

Buuuut flavor-wise, this is one of the worst things I've tasted in my life. It's difficult for me to describe the flavor. The only other things I've ever had that come close are soft, moist dog food pellets that I tried many years ago. Yes, I sample dog food from time to time...<ahem> but that's neither here nor there. The bottom line is that both Sonia and I found this product entirely uneatable. If you disagree, that's fine. Feel free to share your thoughts below. I'm sure someone will tell us there's a way to cook it or to prepare it that makes it okay, but I, for one, cannot fathom ingesting one more bite of this vile block of bean. This is a big "nope." Going back to Trader Joe's for a no-hassle refund. Half a star a piece on this one. Absolutely revolting.

This "cheese" made Sonia very sad. Please watch and like her short video review to make her happy again. 

Bottom line: 1 out of 10.

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