Archive for the ‘food’ Category

Trader Joe’s – Select Harvest Curated Coffee – Whole Bean – Food Review

06/03/2017

trader joe, review, price, select harvest curated coffee, whole beanJune 3, 2017
There are only three questions to ask of a curated coffee: how long has it been on the shelf, has anyone blown off the dust, and are there still overdue fines? It seems we’ve come a long way from curating book collections to curating bulk produce.

While claimed to be a 50/50 blend of light, Colombian Morales, and medium, Ethiopian Limu, roasted coffee beans, all the beans in the can looked the same.  Judging by the color and the amount of oil on the beans, I’d call them a medium roast.  When the beans were removed from the can, and compared side by side, there was a mix of small and medium size beans.

Aside from the marketing hype, this is a nice coffee.  In the can and ground, the beans had a nice aroma.  Brewed and in the cup, the coffee had a nice taste.  There was a little bitterness, but nothing exceptional.  Overall this is a smooth drinking medium roast coffee.  Price $8.99 (13 ounce can).

ALDI – Tuscan Garden Premium Caesar Croutons – Food Review

05/31/2017

ALDI, Tuscan Garden, Caesar Croutons, Nutrition, Review, Calories, PriceMay 31, 2017

Garlicky, salty, crunchy, edgy and 89 cents every day – what more could you want?  Add a little zest to your salads or just grab a few straight from the bag to snack on, they’re pretty good. Personally, I do both.  Other, milder, flavors are available.  But the best part is they’re 89 cents every day, meaning there’s no need to wait for a sale.

 

ALDI, Tuscan Garden, Caesar Croutons, Nutrition, Review, Calories, PriceCalories  30 per 2 Tbsp (7g)     Price 89 cents per 5 ounce bag

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ALDI customer contact URL – https://www.aldi.us/en/contact-us/

ALDI – Clancy’s Guacamole Tortilla Chips – Food Review

05/31/2017

ALDI, Clancy's, Guacamole Tortilla Chips, Nutrition, Review, Calories, PriceMay 31, 2017

If you need a guacamole fix, these are unlikely to satisfy.  As a chip, they’re okay and in some ways sort of a mild Doritos.

Rather than have the flavor sprinkled on as an afterthought, these chips seem to have the flavor “baked” into the flour of the tortilla.  In addition there’s still the traditional sprinkle of seasoning coating the chips.  There’s a faint hint of guacamole in the flavor.  As a flavored chip, the flavor is not objectionable. These, or at least this bag, do not taste overly salty.   And like almost any chip, you’re likely to eat many more of these than you should.

ALDI, Clancy's, Guacamole Tortilla Chips, Nutrition, Review, Calories, PriceI suspect these are a seasonal item.  Although they showed up well after Cinco De Mayo, which one would think is the appropriate time?  For me, a regular tortilla chip dipped in some real guacamole is the way to go.

Calories  140 per ounce (28g, about 11 chips)     Price $1.99 per 12 ounce bag

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ALDI customer contact URL – https://www.aldi.us/en/contact-us/

ALDI – Roasted Nut Bar – Almond Crunch – Food Review

05/20/2017

ALDI, Roasted Nut Bar, Nutrition, Review, Calories, Price, SnackMay 20, 2017

In a seemingly endless number of nutty snack bars, here’s one more.  To the possible delight of many readers, if this one becomes a permanent resident on the ALDI shelves, this bar seems to be a variation of the very popular but short-lived Simple Nut Bar.

Without having a Simple Nut Bar present for a side-by-side comparison, this Roasted Nut Bar seems very similar.  From memory, my preference would be the Simple Nut Bar.  But I could easily live with this one.  Like the Simple Nut Bar, this one is mostly nuts.  Comparing the back of the boxes (see Simple Nut Bar box here), the ingredients are very similar.  Both are products of Canada.  That leads me to believe these are produced by the same company and are just variations of the product formula.

ALDI, Roasted Nut Bar, Nutrition, Review, Calories, Price, SnackThere’s a minimal amount of sticky binder to hold all the nuts together (almonds, peanuts and sunflower seeds).   If you’re looking for sweet, or chocolate, this is not for you.  As the bar is mostly nuts, it is hard and crunchy.  For a snack food, this has a reasonably good nutrition mix.  Of course, being mostly nuts, a high percent of the calories come from fat (most likely the nut oils).  Carbohydrates are lower than many other snack bars.  While not a high power protein bar, these do have an okay 6 g of protein.  Calories  180 per bar    Price $2.79 per box (6 bars in a box)

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ALDI customer contact URL – https://www.aldi.us/en/contact-us/

 

Trader Joe’s – Lys Kaffe – Coffee – Whole Bean – Food Review

05/20/2017

trader joe, review, price, whole bean coffee, lys kaffe, light coffeeMay 20, 2017
The beans are light brown with no oil.  Lys means light in Norwegian and Kaffe means coffee. All  the pieces fit together to support the claim on the package of “light roast”. The advantage of a light roast is that the  more delicate flavors in the coffee are brought to the front. They are not hidden behind stronger flavors brought out by a dark roast.

Made in a press, the coffee is on the thin and watery side. After all it’s a light roast by design. Once the mouth adjusts to the fact that this is supposed to be a light roast, there’s a nice flavor to the coffee. When cooled some there’s a bit of sourness.  There’s little to no acid and no bad tastes, making this a very smooth coffee. It’s a different experience and an enjoyable one at that. The coffee reminds me of the Jacobs Kronung coffee reviewed a long time ago.

While the taste is different, for comparison purposes, the “strength” of the coffee is somewhere above a strong tea.  For people who don’t like coffee, this may be a gentle way to give coffee a try.  For an everyday dark roast drinker, this is a way to take a break and clear the taste buds – think of  it as sort of a colon cleanse for the mouth?  Price $7.99 (12 ounce can).

For another reviewer’s thoughts on this coffee, see Become Betty here.

ALDI – Bremer – Gravy & Salisbury Steaks – Food Review

05/12/2017

ALDI, Bremer Gravy and Salisbury Steaks, Nutrition, Review, Calories, PriceMay 12, 2017

This isn’t a well-aged prime New York strip steak to be dabbled with ketchup.  And really that wasn’t expected.

This is something for the person who worries about food wastage or worries more about being able to eat this evening.  With the primary ingredients of the steak being; mechanically separated chicken, beef, pork and soy protein concentrate, this product seems very old school.  By old school, I mean, don’t waste any ingredient or any part of any ingredient.  While we don’t exactly know which parts of what went into the grinder, we can evaluate what came out.

What came out of the grinder are six Salisbury steak patties and a whole bunch of gravy.  The steaks are bland.  The gravy has a touch of beef flavor to it.  The texture of the steaks is somewhere between chewable and gumable.  There’s nothing especially bad about the taste, and there’s nothing especially good about the taste.  For hungry people on a budget none of this is going to matter because it’s also warm and filling.

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ALDI – Clancy’s Cinnamon Churros – Food Review

04/30/2017

ALDI, Clancy's, Cinnamon Churros, Nutrition, Price, Calories, ReviewALDI, Clancy's, Cinnamon Churros, Nutrition, Price, Calories, ReviewApril 30, 2017

If you like cinnamon and sugar you’ll like these. Think of this as very light French toast in a bag. The wheat based churros are crisp, airy and light, fried into a spiral shape about 2 inches long and 3/4 inches around.  Crunchy, sweet and not overly spiced with cinnamon, it’s hard to put these down.  And that’s the only problem, it’s so easy to eat the whole bag (3 servings per bag) at once.  That would put you back 360 calories for the day and still wanting more.

Calories  120 per 1 ounce serving    Price 89 cents per 3 ounce bag

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ALDI customer contact URL – https://www.aldi.us/en/contact-us/

Trader Joe’s – Monsooned Malabar Coffee – Whole Bean – Food Review

04/30/2017

review, coffee, whole bean, trader joe, monsooned malabar, priceApril 30, 2017
This is a new small can which I hope does not indicate another trend of getting less for more.

Once opened, the beans have a nice medium brown color with a satiny finish.  The beans seem a bit oily for a medium roast.  This is a very earthy full-bodied tasting coffee with a bitter taste.  The bitterness is different from that produced by some darker roasts and unfortunately not any better.  Because of this bitterness this is not a coffee I’d pick up again.  If you like dark roast coffee, this may be for you – with a big may?

The can is 10 ounces, but at a price more indicative of a coffee packaged in a 13 ounce can.  That’s about a 30% increase per ounce for a coffee which is not very special.  Now it could be there is a limited supply of this coffee and this is simply a way for Trader Joe to ration it out so more people can try it.

As is often the case, Trader Joe has some creative writers doing product descriptions.  If you come across this coffee, be sure to read the story on the back of the can.  But do that in the store.  And after you do, put the can back on the shelf and drop a can of your regular coffee in your cart.  Price $6.99 (10 ounce can).

Trader Joe’s X-TRA X-TRA Sharp New York Cheddar Cheese- Food Review

04/15/2017

Trader Joe, NY x=tra x-tra sharp cheddar cheese, review, price, nutritionApril 15, 2017

Of the cheddars reviewed here, this one is the best cheddar yet at Trader Joe’s, if you like an American-style cheddar.  Aged “over” 18 months, the cheese is just starting to get crumbly.  Over that time the flavor has matured into a nice tasting cheddar.  Compared to a Kraft sharp cheddar, this one is a bit tastier and definitely not as creamy.  Both those things are good if you’re looking for an aged cheese.  While tastier, the flavor is not overwhelming as the name might imply.  Calories – 110 per oz (28g).  Price $5.99 per pound.

Trader Joe’s Wisconsin Extra Sharp Cheddar – Food Review

03/31/2017

trader joe, cheese, wisconsin, extra sharp cheddar, review, nutrition, priceMarch 31, 2017

This is a domestic (US) extra sharp cheddar from Wisconsin.  While it’s a nice cheese, especially considering the only $4.99 per pound price, it’s not what I’d call an extra sharp cheddar.  So just as a reality check, I went out and purchased an extra sharp cheddar from Kraft.  The Kraft cheese is “sharper” but not as sharp as I remember it.  Still however, the Kraft has more of the cheddar flavor I was expecting.  As would be expected, both have more flavor when allowed to warm to room temperature.  As a comparison, the Kraft came in at around $7 per pound slightly on sale at a regular super market.  The texture was similar for both cheeses, solid but soft.  For those wanting more flavor in their American-style cheeses, the TJ extra sharp cheddar will give you that at a reasonable price.  For those wanting a still more flavorful cheese, look elsewhere.

Calories – 120 per ounce.  Price $4.99 per pound.  Coming up next week is a TJ X-tra X-tra Sharp New York Cheddar. We’ll see.   As an aside, I nicely paired both of the cheeses above with some Amancay Malbec.


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