Go Back  British Expats > Living & Moving Abroad > USA
Reload this Page >

Tips for Trader Joes

Tips for Trader Joes

Old Dec 7th 2017, 5:03 am
  #31  
BE Forum Addict
 
Joined: Mar 2008
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
Posts: 4,910
md95065 has a reputation beyond reputemd95065 has a reputation beyond reputemd95065 has a reputation beyond reputemd95065 has a reputation beyond reputemd95065 has a reputation beyond reputemd95065 has a reputation beyond reputemd95065 has a reputation beyond reputemd95065 has a reputation beyond reputemd95065 has a reputation beyond reputemd95065 has a reputation beyond reputemd95065 has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

Originally Posted by Rete View Post
(s)

I couldn't agree more. I went in one once and that was once too often to visit a place with wilted produce, dirty floors and over priced meat.
I would have to agree with you *if* I had ever experienced those things.

It seems that individual TJ stores vary quite a lot in terms of the way that they "feel" and present themselves. I have never experienced "wilted produce" or "dirty floors" at either of my local stores (but, if I had, it certainly would have put me off going back there) - on the other hand I have visited a couple of stores on the East coast and was somewhat less impressed.

I agree that their meat is expensive but I don't buy very much meat in the first place and, in any case, I don't need or expect to be able to buy everything in one place. My weekly grocery shopping takes me to Trader Joe's, Whole Foods (for their fresh Tuna salad and very little else), Safeways and a locally owned independent store.
md95065 is offline  
Old Dec 7th 2017, 5:17 am
  #32  
Concierge
 
Rete's Avatar
 
Joined: Apr 2001
Posts: 44,806
Rete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond reputeRete has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

Originally Posted by md95065 View Post
I would have to agree with you *if* I had ever experienced those things.

It seems that individual TJ stores vary quite a lot in terms of the way that they "feel" and present themselves. I have never experienced "wilted produce" or "dirty floors" at either of my local stores (but, if I had, it certainly would have put me off going back there) - on the other hand I have visited a couple of stores on the East coast and was somewhat less impressed.

I agree that their meat is expensive but I don't buy very much meat in the first place and, in any case, I don't need or expect to be able to buy everything in one place. My weekly grocery shopping takes me to Trader Joe's, Whole Foods (for their fresh Tuna salad and very little else), Safeways and a locally owned independent store.
I concur it is not a market where one would do their full weekly shopping. It is like whole foods for me. If I go through Sidell, LA on my way to New Orleans I will stop and perhaps pickup an item or three that I can't get in Mississippi.

Other than the condition of the store and its produce which was very off putting for me, I don't particularly care for much of their frozen foods, particularly anything that hints at curry or Indian. Irish products I was able to get around the corner from my apartment, including the freshest meats and poultry, including English imported Cadbury, Roses, Quality Street, Bisto, Bird's custard, Hob Nobs, etc. I had stopped twice in TJ only because my daughter liked it and thought, hey why not stop and give it a try. After the second time, I was cured.

Trader Joe's just as with any other chain can be hit or miss as to its condition and stock. The best TJMaxx I ever was in was in Pittsfield, MA and the worse was in Hartsdale, NY.

It's great that transplanted residents to the US have someplace that they can go and find the things that they love and perhaps crave. I know I can only wish that there were someplace in MS that could fill the void for me.
Rete is offline  
Old Dec 7th 2017, 4:50 pm
  #33  
Under blue skies
 
WEBlue's Avatar
 
Joined: Mar 2011
Location: East Anglia->New England
Posts: 3,620
WEBlue has a reputation beyond reputeWEBlue has a reputation beyond reputeWEBlue has a reputation beyond reputeWEBlue has a reputation beyond reputeWEBlue has a reputation beyond reputeWEBlue has a reputation beyond reputeWEBlue has a reputation beyond reputeWEBlue has a reputation beyond reputeWEBlue has a reputation beyond reputeWEBlue has a reputation beyond reputeWEBlue has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

Oh, and I've never thought to buy meat there (--I go to Stop&Shop for that) but TJ's fresh fish is pretty great. Not exactly as cheap as many TJ items, but very good--love their salmon.
WEBlue is offline  
Old Dec 7th 2017, 6:02 pm
  #34  
Just Joined
 
GeekyGal's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2016
Location: North Carolina
Posts: 17
GeekyGal is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

We buy the vast majority of our meat there. Getting quality meat in the USA isn't as easy as I remember it being in the UK. Everything is so fatty (and antibiotic-laden), but the meat at Trader Joes tends to be lean and tasty. I buy a lot of staples there.

I'm kind of a health nut, so I purchase their tuna because it's the only brand in the region that doesn't have preservatives (it also tastes better), and I buy their tomato sauce. The sauce costs the same as a regular grocery store, tastes better, and has a nice set of ingredients. OH! They also have fantastic fig newtons... if you're into those. I know that's a love-it-or-hate-it item.

They also have some of the best-priced salmon around, and some affordable wild-caught Atlantic cod. I should qualify that I think their selection varies by area, but that pretty much sums up the things that make me smile from there.
GeekyGal is offline  
Old Dec 7th 2017, 6:54 pm
  #35  
BE Forum Addict
 
johnwoo's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2016
Location: Northern California
Posts: 2,246
johnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

I rarely go to TJ's, there's not enough reason to drive the 10 miles to buy the odd item. If I'm in the area I'll take a look around but rarely find much of interest.
Most of the local chain stores sell the odd British items, Colemans Mint Sauce, HP sauce, Bisto Gravy Granules. Avoid ready made meals and soups, far too much salt for someone with high Blood Pressure.
Has anyone been to 'Sprouts' not sure how wide spread they are. 'Ranch 99' Asian Markets are an interesting experience.
johnwoo is offline  
Old Dec 7th 2017, 8:48 pm
  #36  
 
Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 6,844
Englishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond repute
Post Re: Tips for Trader Joes

Originally Posted by johnwoo View Post
I rarely go to TJ's, there's not enough reason to drive the 10 miles to buy the odd item. If I'm in the area I'll take a look around but rarely find much of interest.
Most of the local chain stores sell the odd British items, Colemans Mint Sauce, HP sauce, Bisto Gravy Granules. Avoid ready made meals and soups, far too much salt for someone with high Blood Pressure.
Has anyone been to 'Sprouts' not sure how wide spread they are. 'Ranch 99' Asian Markets are an interesting experience.
I have a couple of (Tetra Park) boxes of TJ’s low sodium organic cream of tomato soup, low sodium organic tomato soup with red peppers; they are delicious!

I also have some tins of their organic vegetarian chili, which is fab comfort food with a baked potato

Our TJ’s is about a decade old, but very clean and the staff are very friendly and helpful. They are a good employer, with employees getting good healthcare benefits.

Trader Joe’s will not move into stores with a very large floor space. In our township, “Wholefoods” moved about a mile up the road into a town with lower taxes, just off the Interstate 78 and with a vast amount of floor space with a dedicated dining area for eating the prepared salads, pizzas and other hot food. There is also a sectioned off bar/dining area. I rarely bother to go there anymore.

However, when ‘Wholefoods’ vacated their store to move up the road, there was a huge effort by residents of the local towns to persuade ‘Trader Joe’s’ to move in....they were inundated with requests and TJ’s moved in; the unit was divided into two and PetCo (or PetSmart) took the other half. The store is always busy and the parking lot is a nightmare with non-attentive drivers almost running shoppers over

Sadly they don’t sell alcohol as our township has a strict limit on how many licences are issued and there are a lot of restaurants in our town (there is the popular Paper Mill theatre where a lot of productions have been or are about to go to Broadway) and the mall at the other end of town. In fact, the Cheesecake Factory paid a whopping $2.3 million for a liquor licence at the mall!

I’m surprised that parent company Aldi hasn’t tried to bring a similar version of Trader Joe’s into Europe and Australia....I’ve never understood why they bring in odd items eg things like scales, taps, shower curtains for the bathroom, gardening and camping equipment, kitchen equipment, keep fit/cycling/ski clothing, car maintenance products etc. every Thursday, never to be seen again until the following year! There is an Aldi about 15 minutes from where we live and it is very small and not very clean-looking and nothing like the European stores.
Englishmum is offline  
Old Dec 7th 2017, 9:52 pm
  #37  
Bob
BE Site Lead
 
Bob's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2004
Location: MA, USA
Posts: 91,929
Bob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond reputeBob has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

Originally Posted by kateinbrooklyn View Post
For some British goodies: the English coastal cheddar and Welsh cheddar,...
The Welsh, Colliers cheese is great and it's usually about half the cost of regular grocery stores.

TJ's, bit hit or miss though, some locations are great, others are a bit scabby. They all suffer from really poor parking spaces.

Snacks are usually good though and the dairy/frozen food line.

If you've got one that has beer/wine, the selection isn't to bad on a budget.

Fresh goods, very hit or miss. Seems to suffer far more seasonal issues and on local market than the bigger grocery stores. Not bad in summer, bit meh in winter, down my way.
Bob is offline  
Old Dec 7th 2017, 10:20 pm
  #38  
Austin. TX.
 
petitefrancaise's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2013
Posts: 5,794
petitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond reputepetitefrancaise has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

I went in with a new to the USA Italian woman this afternoon - it was really nice to see her face light up at all the Italian goodies she could buy - and cheaply too!
petitefrancaise is offline  
Old Dec 8th 2017, 12:47 am
  #39  
BE Forum Addict
 
kins's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2007
Location: Maine
Posts: 2,043
kins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

The Unexpected Cheddar is excellent

Loads of great bries and cold meats

The pre-marinated pork tenderloins are handy to keep in the freezer. The meat generally is good.

Around St Patrick's Day they do good Irish Bangers.

Great salads for lunch - DH quite often buys several for the work week

Meringues
Crumpets
Frozen leeks
Lemon curd
Naan bread that doesn't cost the earth

My kids love the 6-packs of yogurt

Bags of dried fruit and nuts of many types

I like the lack of choice. I don't need 27 types of mayo or pizza to choose from.

I think their cakes and pies are mostly disappointing and the cereals are a bit iffy.

The staff are lovely

I can do most of our grocery shop in there but the parking makes me want to weep...
kins is offline  
Old Dec 8th 2017, 12:48 am
  #40  
BE Forum Addict
 
kins's Avatar
 
Joined: Aug 2007
Location: Maine
Posts: 2,043
kins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond reputekins has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

Oh and the wine.
kins is offline  
Old Dec 8th 2017, 3:52 am
  #41  
He/him
 
kimilseung's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2006
Location: WA
Posts: 16,719
kimilseung has a reputation beyond reputekimilseung has a reputation beyond reputekimilseung has a reputation beyond reputekimilseung has a reputation beyond reputekimilseung has a reputation beyond reputekimilseung has a reputation beyond reputekimilseung has a reputation beyond reputekimilseung has a reputation beyond reputekimilseung has a reputation beyond reputekimilseung has a reputation beyond reputekimilseung has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

Originally Posted by Englishmum View Post
What on Earth is Bulgogi? Is it Korean?
Yes Korean meat
kimilseung is offline  
Old Dec 8th 2017, 3:59 am
  #42  
BE Forum Addict
 
Guindalf's Avatar
 
Joined: Sep 2011
Posts: 2,903
Guindalf has a reputation beyond reputeGuindalf has a reputation beyond reputeGuindalf has a reputation beyond reputeGuindalf has a reputation beyond reputeGuindalf has a reputation beyond reputeGuindalf has a reputation beyond reputeGuindalf has a reputation beyond reputeGuindalf has a reputation beyond reputeGuindalf has a reputation beyond reputeGuindalf has a reputation beyond reputeGuindalf has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

Was so upset last time we went. We put everything int a cool bag for the journey home and get everything that should be there into the freezer when we got home. However, we missed the bowl of frozen Tom Yum soup and didn't find it until we needed the cool bag again several weeks later!

Let's just say it's time to buy a new cool bag!
Guindalf is offline  
Old Dec 8th 2017, 10:52 pm
  #43  
BE Forum Addict
 
johnwoo's Avatar
 
Joined: May 2016
Location: Northern California
Posts: 2,246
johnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond reputejohnwoo has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

Originally Posted by Englishmum View Post
I have a couple of (Tetra Park) boxes of TJ’s low sodium organic cream of tomato soup, low sodium organic tomato soup with red peppers; they are delicious!
.
Low sodium is often misleading, low sodium meaning less sodium which is often still too much sodium. Factory made and restaurant food is too usually too much salt for someone on a low salt diet for health reasons.
Nothing much easier to make at home than tomato soup.
johnwoo is offline  
Old Dec 9th 2017, 2:54 pm
  #44  
 
Joined: Feb 2002
Posts: 6,844
Englishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond reputeEnglishmum has a reputation beyond repute
Exclamation Re: Tips for Trader Joes

Originally Posted by petitefrancaise View Post
oh yeah! Forgot about the frozen croissants. My french friends all buy them. They are really good and so much better than anything we can buy "fresh" locally
Grrrr! It’s snowing here (in NJ) right now so we’re having a lazy day at home. I was in TJ’s yesterday and bought a packet of the choc au pains and thought it would be lovely to have one for breakfast.

Then when I got the packet out of the freezer this morning the instructions on the box say to put them on the baking sheet....and leave overnight before baking!

OTOH....they have brought back the frozen sticky toffee puddings! Hurray!
Englishmum is offline  
Old Dec 9th 2017, 3:03 pm
  #45  
Chocoholic !
 
ChocolateBabz's Avatar
 
Joined: Jun 2007
Location: Houston, TX - Officially Not Shit since 2009
Posts: 2,315
ChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond reputeChocolateBabz has a reputation beyond repute
Default Re: Tips for Trader Joes

Originally Posted by Englishmum View Post
Then when I got the packet out of the freezer this morning the instructions on the box say to put them on the baking sheet....and leave overnight before baking!
Oh yes you have to remember to take them out. I’m often in bed at night weighing up the pros and cons of getting back up to take a couple out for the morning. Wait till you see them in the morning though, they prove overnight and are all puffed up and gorgeous for popping in the oven.
ChocolateBabz is offline  

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2021 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.