RussTheRaccoon's Profile

Title Last Reply

Rudest grocery checker remark

I don't think it's appropriate to tell people that you got bit by a raccoon if it isn't true.

do you return items to Trader Joe's?

Not often, but definitely when something is spoiled or of poor quality. I have taken an empty milk carton back when the milk was spoiling before the sell-by (not use-by) date, extremely poor quality chocolate covered ginger that was inedible, and some rotten bagged fruit.

Once I took back an unopened bottle of olive oil because I grabbed the wrong one off the shelf. I would not have taken it back if I had opened it or if it had been unsaleable as it was my fault.

I make a point of buying something new every time I go, but have never taken anything back just because I didn't like it enough. I would if I thought they shouldn't even be selling it, though, they need to know. For example, the new version of the frozen spinach pie has a lot of kale in it so I didn't like it, but there is nothing wrong with it. I didn't take it back, I just wouldn't buy it again.

However, it's okay to take stuff back if you don't like it, they encourage it. There are some things that I SHOULD have taken back instead of eating them, but I eat a lot of things I probably shouldn't eat.

I've had a lot more situations where something rang up twice as their scanners are very sensitive, so I have had to ask for refunds frequently for that. Less often lately, because I stop and check my receipt before leaving the store. I wish that I could see what rings up while they are doing it, but the registers aren't set up that way. They have never been difficult about it, although they don't seem happy about it. A couple of times, I have just gotten the item at my next visit instead of a refund if it was something I was going to buy anyway. The cashier didn't call the manager over for that.

Feb 27, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

If you like that, try the Tarte aux Champignons. Just make sure to bake it until lightly browned so the edges will be flaky.

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

The cheap blocks of ramen have the seasoning in a packet, so you don't even have to add all the sodium if you don't want to.

Feb 26, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

Everything tastes better at camp in New Hampshire! They probably used generic Velveeta.

Feb 22, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

There is a cheese at TJ's sometimes called "huntsman" which is layered like a cake with three layers of double Gloucester and two of Stilton. It makes the BEST GRILLED CHEESE EVER.

Of course, if you are looking for something to make a relatively bland grilled cheese for the kiddies, it probably is not what you are looking for.

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

I don't bake often but I also use the white whole wheat flour from TJ's. It is white (or light) because of the variety of wheat, not because it is refined. It makes excellent biscuits, scones, cookies, etc.

Feb 22, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

Yes, I was severely disappointed in that. I like chocolate or chocolatey anything, even Tootsie Rolls. It was not edible.

Feb 17, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

And the cookie butter ice cream. I haven't tried it because I am cookie-buttered out, but it must be good if you like cookie butter. Also try the cookie butter in a milkshake just as you would Nutella.

Feb 17, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

Oh, that was so nice of you to write out all that! I picked some up on the way home this evening and had it with some of the paneer naan. Yes, it has both seitan and soy protein in it.

Another YAY! for the Vegan Tikka Masala. The portion is dangerously close to small, but with the naan and a couple of the shrimp curry goyza, it was just right. I did sprinkle a few cashews on it. Very saucy, so the naan comes in handy. Had seven one inch "meatballs" in it. They taste very meaty, maybe even too meaty for a vegetarian or vegan. Texture was only slightly off. The rice was very high quality. If this were on a buffet at an Indian restaurant, people would go back for seconds.

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

I'm excited about the vegan tikka masala.

Is it soy protein or seitan, though?

http://www.traderjoes.com/digin/post/...

Feb 16, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

Thanks for posting this as I had wondered about it and how intense the chocolate was but not enough to try it. Now I will!

The soy-based chocolate cherry frozen dessert is good but has a slight soy flavor which seemed out of place to me, although it has been a while since I tried it. I guess it was an unexcited yay for me. I'm not vegan and had rather have real ice cream or the excellent sorbets than the soy version.

Feb 15, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's Frozen Macaroni and Cheese

Probably the version that existed eight years ago in 2007 when this zombie thread got its start. . .

does silence on an rsvp mean they aren't coming ?

When my cousin got married, his parents paid for the wedding and his mother had to make all the arrangements even though it was in his bride's hometown because her parents were divorced and were poor and could not pay for a wedding with hundreds of guests and they would not have known how to go about planning a large wedding, even if they could have paid for it.

I talked to his mother afterwards about all the planning of the beautiful formal wedding, meals, and reception over a weekend in a small historic town that is a tourist destination.

In the course of the conversation, she said not one person in the bride's family had responded to the invitations, while everyone in our family had. I could tell she was not happy about it at all, because it made planning very difficult. She said she had asked her future daughter-in-law about it and she said that her family and friends just didn't know what an RSVP was or what to do. My cousin had enclosed reply cards and I would have thought that it would have been obvious to anyone what to do with them. The bride also said everyone invited was going to be there, and they were.

So yes, there are plenty of people who don't know what an RSVP is because of their social background and upbringing. That may not have been true fifty years ago, but it is today. That wedding was about fifteen years ago so probably they wouldn't know to Google it, even if they had the inclination.

does silence on an rsvp mean they aren't coming ?

If you are going to request a response for an invitation to a 1 year old's birthday party, you need to include stamped postcards so they can check off if they're not coming or tell you how many are coming.

It seems strange that they responded for the welcome home party but not for this invitation. This would indicate that they know what an RSVP is but for some reason don't want to respond at all. Since none of them responded, it sounds like a conspiracy. Don't you have someone in your family other than your father that you can ask why they didn't respond and get an honest answer?

Put it all in perspective. It's a one year old's birthday party, you're inviting adults, and your father said that it is not part of your culture to celebrate it. I can see you being upset, but don't take offense until you understand why they are behaving the way they are. It may have nothing to do with you at all.

Feb 14, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Not About Food

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

This meal does not seem to have characteristically "Indian" spices to me, either, and I use it as a substitute for chili with added hot sauce.

The TJ's shelf-stable Indian meals are the best of the Tasty Bite brand's offerings, camouflaged in TJ's packaging. I have bought the Tasty Bite equivalents at the $0.99 store and from Amazon.

They are made in India for the Indian market and are also exported, and so they are authentic. I don't think they alter the spices for export or for TJ's.

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

I leave them in the oven until they start to ooze and get crispy and then use the organic marinara for a dip.

Feb 13, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

Hmmm. I have considered the lobster ravioli before but the red and white stripes put me off. What about it is so meh? Is it not lobstery?

Feb 12, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Discontinued at Trader Joe's: January 2015 - June 2015

Still there today, but on the top shelf instead of the bottom shelf where the label is.

Feb 11, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

YAY! to the wasabi peas. I guess they are no better than any other wasabi peas, but wasabi peas are good.

The label says "mildly spicy" or something like that, but every once in a while, there is one with enough extra horseradish to clear out the sinuses.

Feb 11, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains
2

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

I had them again tonight. They are definitely not coconutty but I could taste it because I was looking for it to report back here. It is not like a coconut curry, just a background flavor. More shrimp and cilantro.

Feb 11, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

They have a giant display of those in the vestibule at my store.

Feb 11, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

It's not my style either, but TJ's offers that refund policy specifically to encourage people to try the new items that they are frequently introducing. It's part of their marketing.

Usually I will only return items that are spoiled or damaged, but I did return the chocolate covered ginger because the chocolate was powdery and had an odd taste, and the ginger was not good either. The quality just wasn't there.

Once I picked up the wrong bottle of olive oil because I was in a hurry and the bottles looked alike and I took that back, too.

I have also returned an empty milk carton for a refund because for a while there I was having to throw out the milk on the sell-by date or even before as it was getting sour and it should last for another week. After that happened three times in a row, I figured they owed me a carton and that they needed to know about the problem, too.

Take advantage of the policy when appropriate.

Feb 11, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

Just curious, did you microwave it? I am interested in trying it and think that it would probably be much better cooked in the oven so that the cheese would melt and clump and then brown rather than sinking to the bottom.

Feb 09, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

So they are now longer, and cost $1.99 instead of $1.49 for the same 5 oz.! Tricky.

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

Are these the batons? I have had them before, they are good. They are not new, though!

http://www.traderjoes.com/fearless-fl...

Feb 08, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

They ruined the delicious frozen spinach pie with a new version that is kale & spinach. Kale is my least favorite leafy green vegetable, and I agree with you about that.

Quinoa is relatively inoffensive on its own, but it is showing up in places it simply doesn't belong because it's trendy, which IS offensive.

They are also selling jars of red palm oil. That stuff is LOADED with saturated fat. Trendy, but not particularly healthy.

Discontinued at Trader Joe's: January 2015 - June 2015

They ran out of the frozen figs for weeks just after they introduced them as a new product and had them in the Fearless Flyer!

The jarred beets were in my store Tuesday, they were probably just sold out from being in the Flyer. I always see lots of people with the Flyer items in the checkout line.

Feb 05, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

My store is very high volume but I still have to really check the produce regardless of date. It seems to be poorly handled and held for long periods of time in TJ's distribution system. The produce from most of the other stores comes from the Hunts Point Market and seems to be fresher. TJ's really needs to work on getting it into the stores faster and handling it more carefully when unpacking it.

I have had to throw out the bagged greens three days or so after purchase. What I have found is not sealing the bag airtight helps.

With the little cucumbers on the styrofoam tray, I immediately remove and inspect them and use any that don't look perfect first. It can also help to wipe them down with vinegar.

Anything in a clamshell, I look at all six sides of the container and don't hesitate to open it to make sure.

The celery is always grey on both ends, so I trim it slightly when I get it home.

Mesh bags of citrus, apples, etc., I always open and check each one immediately because there have been moldy ones in the middle.

Feb 05, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - February 2015 [old]

I like it a lot but it is very saucy, so I usually have it when there is a little leftover pasta to eat with it.

Feb 05, 2015
RussTheRaccoon in Chains