Tampa Bay Food Monster

…eating food since 1985.

Trader Joe’s Goods

Posted by Tampa Bay Food Monster on January 6, 2011

the always awesome foodette was kind enough to deliver me a package full of trader joe’s goodies, after seeing my enjoyment of trader joe’s mint chocolate creams and s’mashing s’mores. when i received the package, i was delighted to find an assortment of different snacks and condiments.

group shot

holy schnikes!! that’s a lot of stuff. joe seemingly has his fingers in all sorts of things. dirty, dirty things. but mostly food-related things. so what have we got here? three types of chocolate covered items (pomegranate seeds, almonds, and “powerberries”), some type of fun seasoning, a spicy mustard, and… roasted seaweed snack. D:

dark chocolate almonds

let’s begin with trader joe’s sea salt & turbinado sugar dark chocolate almonds. so first of all, wtf is turbinado sugar? words i don’t understand… scare and confuse me. well, dr. wikipedia informs me that turbinado sugar is just natural brown sugar, after being spun through a turbine to remove impurities. i guess that’s pretty straightforward… but i’m a bit disappointed it’s not from a place or people referred to as turbinado.

okay, so it’s basically salty/sweet dark chocolate covered almonds. and it really whips the llama’s ass. this is quite possibly the most addictive snack ever. i already knew that trader joe’s did chocolate really well, with the two chocolate treats i’d had before, so i was expecting much the same here. i was not disappointed. there is a nice, thick layer of chocolate surrounding the almond. but the key here is the sea salt. it turns it from what could well be just another candy into a multi-layered snack experience. the saltiness plays well against the dark chocolate, allowing its sweetness to come out. and it keeps you wanting more, to start with the salty, and finish with the sweet. oh and the almond is somewhere in there too. it’s… it’s perfect.


next up are the so-called “powerberries”, some sort of ungodly amalgamation of açaí berries, cranberries, blueberries, and pomegranates. then they use the power of DARK CHOCOLATE COATING to seal in this berry juice cocktail, solidifying into something that resembles a chocolate covered berry. a “powerberry”. now, they claim that they’ve brought these different fruits together in order to deliver unto you ‘flavanol antioxidants’, ‘vitamin c’, and ‘nutrients’, but i see through their ruse. all they want to deliver unto you is a fucking awesome snack. once again, their delicious dark chocolate works well with the chewy faux-berry center, which brings its own tartness and gentle sweet to the table. it’s a sugary sweet snack that, if not carefully watched, is likely to disappear completely moments after purchase. i’ve limited myself to one powerberry per day, in order to make this sweet bliss last.

dark chocolate covered pomegranate seeds

then there are the dark chocolate covered pomegranate seeds. also quite delicious, and another dangerously addictive snack. perfect dark chocolate mixed with super-tart pomegranate, with a crunchy seed center. a wonderful snack for any mood, from depression to melancholy to the blues.

roasted seaweed snack

so here’s an interesting little… thing. what’s up with this… stuff? it’s roasted seaweed snack, which is not something that i would ever consider snacking on. ever. but this is not that same seaweed that grabbed at my feet so many years ago, in that icy lake, helplessly left alone to ‘learn to swim’. OH GOD. instead, this is a crispy seaweed, resembling badly crumpled lighting gels (rosco 91??). and it’s uh… it’s a bit slimy. it’s crispy, and as you eat it, it turns chewy, like you’d imagine a seaweed would be. the taste is a bit salty, but largely fishy. i do believe i hate this.

21 seasoning salute

let’s now turn to the 21 seasoning salute! this is trader joe’s love letter to the world of spices, using spices… from… all over the world. the spices involved range from the size of pepper flakes to a fine salt. it’s not salt based, which is a good start for a spice. instead, the main ingredient is onions, and it’s immediately noticeable in the flavor. it does have a nice little burn to it, but it’s not immensely spicy. i will have to wait to get a full sense for it after using it on a burger or on eggs, but from what i’ve tasted, it’s quite nice.

hot & sweet mustard

and finally, we come to the most amazing item in the package, trader joe’s hot & sweet mustard. it. is. incredible. it’s got a good mustardy bite to it, enough to give your sinuses something to deal with. a light burn; just the right amount so that it’s not distracting. but there is an incredible sweetness up front, in every bite. it’s practically a honey mustard (it does, in fact, have honey in it). the sweetness is largely due to the fact that the number one ingredient is sugar. oh god yes. it’s a perfect accent to basically anything that comes near it, including human flesh (…try not to get any on you).

and that’s it! a group of awesome shit, none of which is available to you! TAKE THAT, TAMPA. perhaps i will pay a visit to the closest fresh market and see what sorts of goods they feature there. one thing is for sure though – trader joe’s kicks ass, and tampa sucks because it doesn’t have one.


One Response to “Trader Joe’s Goods”

  1. Meg said

    Trader Joe’s is ballin!

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