In honor of the West Seattle Super Store--set to open Friday the 13th--we've been spotlighting some of Trader Joe's extra-special products. What we learned over the past three weeks is that when it comes to TJ's, everyone has an opinion.
Given all the feedback, we thought we'd address some of the products worthy of the attention they received, some "strongly recommended" reader favorites (complete with comments), and a couple of goodies we missed on the first go around:
The Hit-Joe's Diner Mac 'n Cheese
Apparently, my kid and I aren't the only ones who love Diner Mac: "1,000,000% agree with you on the Mac & Cheese. Best frozen m&c by far and it's not $10/package like Beecher's - which is way overrated"- Trader Jonas Bro
"Wow. I love the Simple Times, but any review of TJ's OEM beers that doesn't mention the Mission Street Pale wasn't written by anyone who knows anything about beer. The Pale is brewed by Firestone Walker and has won multiple awards including a Gold in the highly competitive American Pale Ale category at GABF in 2008. It is beautifully-hopped, easy-drinking 4.6% ABV ale that can serve as a nice gateway to craft brews for those who don't like more aggressive IPAs and other high-gravity styles. At something like $6 for a 6-pack, it's one of the best deals there." --Beerz
The Writer Recommendation: Trader Joe's Croissants
Joe's stocks so many salsa variations, we could probably do a Top 5 on them alone. Whether fresh, jarred, peach, or corn, TJ's salsas were the most-often-mentioned "favorite item" of our loyal readers.
The Kid's Pick: Trader Joe's Turkey Corn Dogs
"To me, they taste really, really, really good." So goes the stellar recommendation from my own picky preschooler. For a mere $2.99 for four, you get a quick lunch that is reasonably low in calories (150 per serving). The dogs are made of satisfyingly meaty turkey thighs, while the honey and cornmeal coating has a touch of sweetness and microwaves nicely, making for a tasty treat.