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Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - July 2015 [Old]

Get better quick FCF :)

about 6 hours ago
smartie in Chains

So many burger chains

I realize there are plenty of independent restaurants that make burgers, and yes there are some great places, but I wanted to ask about chain burger restaurants and which ones CHers like best.

about 6 hours ago
smartie in Chains

Current restaurant pet peeve

Sorry to read this a month late. How are you doing?

about 6 hours ago
smartie in General Topics

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015

YAY for Chicken Balti Pies. Nice pastry crust, good heat and seasoning in the filling.

about 6 hours ago
smartie in Chains

So many burger chains

Seems like a new chain burger place is opening every couple months here in S Fl. Five Guys, Zin Burger, Shake Shack, Shula Burger, Burger Fi .... we don't have In and Out and there are probably others that are chains in the rest of the US.

So what's your favorite burger place? I guess Wendys, BK and McDs count in this thread. Which ones taste the best in your opinion and are the best value for money?

Tonight I went to Shake Shack - my burger was greasy and unseasoned, the fries soggy and greasy and it was really expensive - $15 for a small burger, fries and a milkshake. Zin Burger is even more expensive though the milkshakes are great. For me, Five Guys make the best burgers.

about 7 hours ago
smartie in Chains

Roland Martins Tiki Bar Clewiston

I've been here a number of times but this weekend might be the last. The food is really sub par, service is meh, from plastic silverware and paper cups it doesn't make you want to go back.

Their new thing is Swai as their to go fish. Why?? Here they are a fish camp with plenty of salt and fresh water fish at their disposal and they serve some cruddy farmed Asian fish. Even the waiter said he wouldn't eat it.

The place looks tired, tables were dirty at opening time, crumpled tablecloths, no welcome or hostess, the buffet is in another building and so is the coffee.

2 days ago
smartie in Florida

Odd Ground Beef

I bought it at Trader Joes, it was prepacked and sealed rather than on a meat tray with Saran wrap, so I'm guessing it wasn't switched with another ground meat.

I mentioned it to customer service the following week, they offered a refund but I refused because I said I wasn't complaining I just wanted them to know. I went to the meat fridge to show them which one it was and there were none on the shelf. I wonder if they had been cleared due to other complaints? The customer service person didn't know.

2 days ago
smartie in General Topics

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - August 2015

Sorry you don't love them, I like that they are not sweet but I find a lot of American foods very sweet (I'm English).

Aug 01, 2015
smartie in Chains

duke's mayo -- i think i'm a convert

Reviving this thread just made me have a tomato sandwich with Dukes.

Aug 01, 2015
smartie in General Topics
1

Is Gatorade an acceptable generic name for sports drinks?

If you offered me a sports drink or Gatorade I would say no thanks :)

Aug 01, 2015
smartie in Not About Food
1

Masterchef July 29 2015 spoilers galore

I'm finding her less and less appealing to watch. She's quite smug and without any empathy. Why so mean? IMO a poor choice for MC.

Jul 30, 2015
smartie in Food Media & News

lamb dish for a virgin to the meat

A Shepherd's Pie as opposed to a Cottage Pie. The former made with ground lamb, the latter with beef. Lots of nice gravy added to the cooked and seasoned lamb, add some peas and diced carrots and a creamy mash on top, baked in the oven to get a crispy top to the mash.

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - July 2015 [Old]

YAY to the Kosher Ribeye. Thought it might be tough but it wasn't. I used the BBQ Rub with Coffee and Garlic and it was delicious.

I'm loving TJs since they opened in S FL about a year ago. I wasn't sure at first but I am finding it quite a pleasant experience.

Jul 29, 2015
smartie in Chains
2

Boynton Beach?

Try Zorba's Greek restaurant on Military and Linton. It's not Boynton but it's on Military and saves the traffic going East. It's right next to Big Lots and Aldi.

Location is not pretty, they have a few tables outside with views of the parking lot but the food is fresh and mostly good. A couple things have been hit or miss (meatballs were meh) but their spanakopitas, tsatsiki and other dips were nice.

My daughter and I are frequently complaining there's nothing much along Military that's local. I heard Saltimbocca is closing, apart from IHOP and Friendly's and Sal's were don't have much. I think there's an Italian around Woolbright along Military.

Masterchef U.S. 7-22-2015 spoilers

I'm still not liking Christina as a judge, no warmth, trying the Joe mean look but looking sinister instead. Fed up with baking almost every challenge. Graham barely speaks these days.

Yes the same old same old drama and Ramsay-isms.

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - July 2015 [Old]

NAY for Butternut Squash Soup, oh my that's horrible, tastes like pureed cardboard.

Jul 27, 2015
smartie in Chains
1

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - July 2015 [Old]

YAY to Dolmas (stuffed grape leaves), I know it's been mentioned here before but thanks for the recommendations, they are nice and soft.

My 85/15% ground beef from last week was watery and tasted of liver. I did tell them today, they offered a refund which I refused as I hadn't gone to complain just to let them know it was weird. There's none in the fridge today so maybe other customers thought the same thing.

South African Smoke Spice is out of season now.

Jul 27, 2015
smartie in Chains

Made fresh daily

Yesterday's soup doesn't quite have the same ring to it as fresh made today.

Jul 26, 2015
smartie in General Topics

Odd Ground Beef

I bought a pound of ground beef from Trader Joes, it's 85/15%. It's been in my freezer for about a week, I defrosted it on the counter and added some chopped onions and seasoning.

After shaping it into hamburgers I heated a small frying pan with a little olive oil until hot, put the burgers in to pan fry. Immediately after the sizzle the burgers seemed to leach water so they didn't fry properly. The meat had a 'liverish' taste to it. I ate half of one and the rest will become dog food. The texture, taste and smell was unpleasant but the meat was definitely not off. The meat was not labeled grass fed.

Any suggestions as to what was wrong with the beef? Maybe nothing wrong but not quite right.

Jul 26, 2015
smartie in General Topics

$15 Minimum Wage=No Tip

Actually no, whether $15 an hour is a living wage is neither here nor there, many workers are currently paid this amount. The discussion is about whether traditional tipping should continue. I don't believe the discussion is leading to an excuse to stop tipping, though I would see no reason to tip at $15 an hour compared to $5.75 or whatever the current wage is for tipped workers.

Jul 24, 2015
smartie in Not About Food

$15 Minimum Wage=No Tip

But once servers get $15 an hour there will be no further reason to tip them as they will no longer be a tipped worker but a wage earner.

Jul 24, 2015
smartie in Not About Food

$15 Minimum Wage=No Tip

This is unlikely but however, if true then don't you think everything is going to go up? Who pays the medical assistants? Ergo doing business will cost the doctor more so either an increase in doctor's visits prices(via insurance or cash payers) or you'll get less time with your doctor as they'll need to see more patients per day.

Raising minimum wage to $15 an hour is a false economy but whatever. As long as everybody can have more pairs of Nikes, a new Iphone every year and go out every weekend then what does it matter?

Jul 24, 2015
smartie in Not About Food

$15 Minimum Wage=No Tip

Florida is a right to work state, good luck seeing medical staff better compensated. My boss (a doctor) is correct in saying if you don't like the wages then leave, I can always get somebody at $9 an hour.

Jul 24, 2015
smartie in Not About Food

$15 Minimum Wage=No Tip

Why don't you tip the kind of professions I cited? Once the waitress is earning $15 an hour but your doctor's nurse is earning $11 maybe you should stop one and start the other? I don't know what the trash collector earns, I don't know what my yard guy pays his workers and I'm getting to the point where I won't care what the Barista at Starbucks gets paid, but if they are getting more than me then they won't be tipped.

Sorry but 1 year at Medical Assistant school and responsible for patients' lives and getting their meds correct is more important than whether my iced tea got refilled when I wanted it or whether they got my dinner order in correctly to the kitchen.

Tipping is mainly an American thing. Historically wait staff got paid a minimum wage which started the the circle. I think once their wages are in line with other low paid workers then tipping will, rightly in my opinion, be a thing of the past.

Jul 24, 2015
smartie in Not About Food

$15 Minimum Wage=No Tip

I'm not sure that some of you Chowers realize how many workers are on $15 or less an hour already and are not in a tipping business. The receptionist at my job earns $10 an hour, the 2 medical assistants earn $11 an hour. Most LPNs earn $15-22 an hour depending on age and experience.

What constitutes a living wage? If I want to live in an $8million mansion on A1A then $15 an hour isn't going to cut it obviously. So $30k a year which is approx $15 an hour less taxes is considered a living wage but so is less if your expectations are lowered. Do we really need a new phone each year, 4 pairs of sneakers, do we have to see a movie the day it comes out at the theater, or go for sushi every weekend?

Many economic arguments can be discussed regarding wages and cost of living and standards of living. But I say it's unfair to pay $15 an hour to a burger flipper when the Medical Assistant at my workplace is working for less, checking your prescriptions are correct and drawing your blood (amongst other things she does in her job).
Why should the underpaid medical assistant tip a waitress for her dinner when the waitperson is being paid more than the MA. Does the waitperson now have to tip the doctor's MA for drawing blood? When does it ever stop?

Jul 24, 2015
smartie in Not About Food
1

Does parking make a difference for you ?

Here in South Florida it's seasonal. This time of year (summer) parking is pretty easy all over but as we get into the winter and around Christmas and New Year it becomes pretty dismal in some parking lots that I avoid either shopping or eating at those places. There are a few weeks where I avoid downtown Delray at night because it's almost impossible to find parking, some of the specialty grocery stores have limited parking also and are avoided or visited as soon as they open or just before closing time.

The other incentive to stay away from tight parking areas is the poor parking and driving abilities of some of our visitors!

Jul 21, 2015
smartie in Not About Food

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - July 2015 [Old]

thanks for the info :)

Jul 19, 2015
smartie in Chains

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY Thread - July 2015 [Old]

Yay-ish for the White Bean and Basil Hummus which is very garlicky but seems ok in small amounts.
Meh for Lamb Vindaloo - way too hot (yes I know it's a Vindaloo) and yet not enough depth of flavor.

Brown tomatoes - have not tried them yet but they looked interesting so I bought 4 in a package.

Jul 19, 2015
smartie in Chains

Starbucks

I maybe buy a Starbucks once a month and I am happy with the occasional coffee or mocha that I do buy. So that raise doesn't really affect me.

I do find it mind boggling that people BUY coffee every day when they could make it at home and take a cup to work with them, or drink it at home and make coffee at work. I berate my daughter, an RN, for stopping for some frappamochachino thing EVERY day at $5 a pop that adds up. 3 of my coworkers would rather stop at McDs or DD and pay for coffee each morning rather than drink the free and very good coffee at work. Oh well each to his own :).

Masterchef USA 7-8-15 spoilers

I agree, who was Kerry? And crepes in a Beef Wellington?

Not liking our new lady judge much. I don't see what she adds to the mix, she's trying to walk around and make comments like Joe used to but comes off as mean with her cold stares. I hope they ditch her next season, the baking is annoying me (yes this week's episode didn't really have any unless you count pastry crust).