Monday, May 8, 2017

Basmati Rice BAG - Packaging Fail

We.  Love.  Rice.

We eat a boatload of it.  People who swear off rice as part of their diet always amaze me.  When they talk about cutting out rice, in my head I am thinking, "But whyyyy?  And HOW???".  Let's just say, if you and I were on the same team in Survivor, you would have to guard the rice pile...

And we think Trader Joe's Basmati Rice is a great deal and tastes awesome.  Why, in the original review of it we gave it an almost perfect score - it got a 4.5 ( link to review here ).

A bowl of rice, one of life's simple pleasures.
But when we ate it last night we were once again reminded of the goofy, incomprehensible PACKAGING of this stuff.  Check it out:

When full, it was very dangerous to open and handle this bag!  This photo is taken after some has been used.
See how the opening is like a third of the way down the bag?  WHY???
WHO DOES THAT?  Who puts the opening to a RICE BAG, remember, rice is made up of teeny tiny bits that like to jump around - who puts the opening part-way down the package??  Trader Joe's, that's who!  Yes, instead of opening at the TOP, their Basmati opens part-way down the front.  It is downright bizarre.

Poor David, working hard to try and pour rice out of this ridiculous bag without spilling any.
So, Trader Joe's, what say you?  Certainly we cannot be the only shoppers who are confounded by this!  Readers, have you noticed this oddity?  Let's speak up!  Let's make signs!  Let's have a protest!!  Let's make a petition!!!  (Can you tell the current political climate has gotten me worked up?)  Seriously though, I just want to understand the reasoning behind this odd packaging choice.

The product still ranks a 4.5 rating, but the bag gets a 1.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Teeny Tiny Avocados (and Zechery)

Guys, you need to go to Trader Joe’s soon.  They have the most adorable thing right now – little tiny baby avocados!!! 

SHOPPING COMMUNICATION FAIL!  Me: "David, please hold a bag of those cutie patootie teeny tiny
avocados for a photo!"  David (grabbing bag of regular, NOT teeny tiny avocados):
"OK!".  Yeah - wrong avocados in photo.  The ones in this review are teenier and tinier.
I know, I know, tiny versions of stuff is usually a rip off.  You usually have to pay MORE to get LESS.  But in the case of Trader Joe’s Teeny Tiny Avocados, you don’t get ripped off!!  Au contraire, mon frere!  If you have bought avocados lately you know the price is super high right now.  But at TJ’s you can get a bag of petite cutie patootie avocados for $2.99 (each bag has 6 tiny avocados, as opposed the the regular sized ones like David is accidentally holding in this photo which come 4 to a bag).  So teeny tiny avocados come out to 50 cents each!

A medium size price for some teeny tiny avocados
 And with these teeny tiny avocados you don’t give up TASTE for cuteness, either!!!  These little suckers taste amazing!  And, like the sign says, they are perfect for a single serving!  Why, just last night I cut one open and drizzled TJ’s balsamic vinegar (and non-Trader Joe’s olive oil…) in it.  I topped that with salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper, then got myself a bit of TJ’s feta (which we are addicted to and is reviewed here) and a few TJ’s raw English peas (reviewed here).  It was a delicious and healthy side dish!

Here is a little glimpse of a little avocado.  My hand is included for size reference, though
the angle of the photo is a bit tricky I guess.  Sorry.  But you get the idea!
So the long and the short of it is: YOU SHOULD GO GET A BAG OF THESE ADORABLE AVOCADOS.  I wouldn’t say they are Barbie sized, cuz a Barbie avocado would be the say of, what, like a jelly bean??  These could be Cabbage Patch sized avocados

And before I go, let me introduce you to one of our favorite Trader Joe’s employees.  His name is Zechery and he works at our local TJ’s at Bailey’s Crossroads in Virginia.  

BEST Trader Joe's ambassador - Zechery!
Zechery is the friendliest, sweetest, nicest TJ’s employee!!!  He smiles at us every single time we see him, and he always gives us a big hello and stops to talk.  I egotistically thought he just liked us, and that’s why he was so nice!  Then the other day I realized, it has nothing to do with US and everything to do with ZECHERY!  He is that way with all of the shoppers!  He makes everyone feel happy to be strolling the aisles and putting stuff in their carts.  Trader Joe’s is lucky to have him.

So, go get yourself some teeny tiny avocados while they still have them.  And if you live in the Washington DC/Northern Virginia area, go to Bailey’s Crossroads, pop into Trader Joe’s, and introduce yourself to Zechery.  Trust me, you will leave a happier person than you were when you went in.

Price (of the avocados, not of Zechery): $2.99

Rating (of both Zechery and the Teeny Tiny Avocados):  5

Friday, April 28, 2017

Chocolate Almond Butter Tarte (the "e" on the end makes it fancy!)

We had a very special guest reviewer help us out on this one – our friend AMEDEO who was visiting from Italy!  We served him pasta with our homemade pesto (he loved the pesto!!  A rave review on our pesto from a real live Italian, that made me proud.)

An out of town (out of country!) visitor meant we got to sight see in our own city - I love that!
Here are David and Amedeo at the Lincoln Memorial.
But we are not here to review our pesto, we are here to review Trader Joe’s Chocolate Almond Butter Tarte!  Here is what David thought:  “This tarte is very good.  It is chocolate-y, but it is not too chocolate-y.  It is not like a chocolate bar.  It is between the softness of mousse and the moistness of pudding (EDITOR'S NOTE:  It is chocolate GANACHE, isn't that fancy schmancy??).  It has a bottom that I like (I like my tarts like I like my women, with a nice bottom!) (Editor’s note again: he’s here all week, folks!).  It is flavorful.  It has a hint of nuts on it.  it is good for the end of a meal and would be good with an espresso.  I would give this a 4.5.”

Doesn't it look SO PRETTY on the box?
Amedeo thought: “E molto buona dopo cena (it is very good after dinner). I think 4.5 is good.”

It is just as pretty in real life!
My take on it:  I think this is GOOD.  I was worried it might be a bit too chocolate-y for me after eating a big meal, but it is not too much chocolate.  It is a light rather than strong chocolate taste.  It’s a nice dessert and pairs well with a red wine.  I personally could use a little more NUT taste.  We all liked the texture – it is a bit of a double texture when considering the chocolate part and the crust.  That’s nice!

The box says there are 4 servings, but we all agreed that the servings would be too big to cut it into 4.  6 servings seems more reasonable.  Because we did not eat it all for dinner, we had some leftovers the next morning for breakfast and reviewed it again.  I preferred it for DINNER because it was so good with red wine.  I do not oppose eating it for breakfast, but I liked it better at night.  Amedeo agreed that it tasted better for dinner, the mousse part was not as good in the morning after being refrigerated overnight.  David thought it was delicious for breakfast and loved pairing it with coffee, so he votes to eat it for breakfast!!

We all agreed that whenever you eat it, eat it in one sitting for the best taste.  This one is a treat worth getting – try it!  The signage at our local Trader Joe's said it was a new product, so pick one up next time you are shopping. I think the boys got the rating spot on so I will agree with them – it gets a 4.5 from me, too.

This is very reasonably priced.  Recommended!
Price: $5.99

Rating: 4.5 (from all 3 reviewers)

Bonus photo - David and Amedeo with the Washington Monument behind them :)

Saturday, April 22, 2017

French Vanilla Cold Brew

We drank this can of Trader Joe’s French Vanilla Cold Brew on our front porch on a nice, sunny day. 

Pretty can

Our neighborhood had been super noisy all day because they were resurfacing the street out front.  In fact, our house even SHOOK part of the day because the rolling machine also had a “vibrate” function to wiggle and jiggle the new blacktop I guess, and it also wiggled and jiggled our house.  But in the end the noise and the vibrations were worth it because we have now have a nice, smooth street.

A fresh, new street.  Ahhhh.
Anyway, back to the drink.  The 8 fl oz can says the cold brew is made of 100% Arabica coffee.  I bought it a couple of months ago and it got lost in our fridge, but the best buy date is October 8, 2017, so it was still “fresh” when we busted it out.  It was super cold, too, which was good!   I served it with a tasty carrot cake with walnuts donut from our fancy local donut store, Sugar Shack (Sugar Shack website).

Afternoon snack in the sunshine
David’s take on the cold brew: “It is like a coffee flavored Yoo-Hoo drink.  (I, of course, was then curious and asked, “And do you LIKE Yoo-Hoo drinks??” to which he answered, “Not so much…”).   But this is not bad, though, if you like this sort of thing.  It’s not bad actually.  If you like a cold drink, and you want to have coffee, or you wanna have a lot of caffeine going into ya, it’s not bad.  I will give it a 3.5, cuz it does its’ thing quite well and when it is cold it is quite nice.”

David was leery when we bought it...
But liked it better when he drank some

Susan:  Cold brew coffee is trendy, so maybe David and I are just not trendy enough for this stuff…  (Although the day we drank this David did wear a trendy shirt that says, “National Sarcasm Society – Like We NEED Your Support”.)  As far as the coffee, I guess it was good, but it didn’t really taste all that much!  I would like it better if it had a little more coffee punch to it.  I am by no means a cold brew expert – is it always a bit weaker than regular coffee?  I thought it would be the opposite, so my taste buds were surprised.  (David said it like SUN TEA compared to tea made from boiling water, soaking tea bags, then cooling it.)

We usually each just drink one cup of coffee with breakfast each day, but the day we drank this we needed an afternoon pick-me-up.  David had worked hard teaching all day and we were going to a play, so we thought this coffee would help keep us awake.  David also drank some Pepsi with the donut, thus ensuring he had sufficient caffeine to stay wiiiide awake for the show. 

See, if you hold the can the right way you can show passersby how hip you are!
I guess if you are hip and trendy, and if you like to drink cold brew, and if you want people to KNOW you are drinking cold brew, you can HOLD THIS CAN proudly and everyone will know what you are drinking.   Neither of us feel well versed enough in the “art” of cold brew to really rate this product accurately, so I am gonna cheat and just copy David’s score of 3.5.

New Item (well, new a few months ago when we bought it...)
Price – $1.79
Rating – 3.5

Bonus photo for people who look all the way down here to the bottom - us on a night out on the town!
 (Walking to the theatre we happened on this pretty fountain)

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Crappy Reviews - A Look Back At Some TRADER JOE'S PRODUCT CLUNKERS

I recently worked with an interpreter I had never met before, and we hit it off.  We seemed to have the same philosophies toward our work and laughed at the same stuff, so we became Facebook friends.  Today he noticed a Trader Joe’s review I had posted on my personal FB page and commented on it, so I told him about the Trader Joe’s 365 Facebook page and the tons of reviews I have written.  He started reading, found the review on English Butter Fudge and seemed incredulous that we thought a FUDGE was too sweet😊   That got me thinking – I should look though the blog and find some of the products that we gave BAD REVIEWS to and lump them together.  Sort of like a “Worst Of” list!!  So I am going to pick out 10 products that we gave clunker reviews to and list them here.  Here we go (in no particular order):

·         We should start off with ENGLISH BUTTER FUDGE, the review that made me start thinking about what we consider Trader Joe’s clunkers.  We gave it 1.5 stars and said it was tooooo sugary (which is saying something coming from David).  Review here: English Butter Fudge Review

Care for some English Butter Fudge anyone??

  •  Next up is PUMPKIN BODY BUTTER. It scored a 2 star review, but that “high score” was really for the cool packaging it used to have (they may have changed it by now) and NOT for the body butter.  It is a seasonal product that comes out in the fall, so you can’t get it now even if you want to (and WHY would you WANT to???), but this review will serve as a warning to you for when it hits the shelves this year:  Pumpkin Body Butter Review

I will skip this when it returns this autumn
·         Clunker product number three is MANGO COCONUT FLAVORED CARAMEL CORN.  It, too, is seasonal, but the summer mango craze may hit the Trader Joe’s shelves soon and this may re-appear!  If you like eating suntan lotion, by all means buy this popcorn, cuz that is what it tastes like.  2.25 star review here:  Mango Coconut Flavored Caramel Corn Review

The "before" photo - when Mango Coconut Flavored Caramel Corn sounded AMAZING.
·         This wine, a local Ohio wine purchased at Trader Joe’s on a road trip, may well be the only wine we have ever poured down a sink drain…  NASO ROSSO LAURELLO VINEYARDS RED WINE (aka Scary Clown wine) tasted (to us) like a mix of cough syrup, Kool-Aid, and sugar.  It got a .25 star rating – yes, less than half a star.  Review here:  Scary Clown Wine Review
Wine, down the drain, sad, sad, sad
·         I am not sure if Trader Joe’s still carries MOLTEN SALTED BUTTERSCOTCH MACARONS, but if they do, you should know that we gave them a 1.5 star rating and one of the guest reviewers said they tasted like throw up…  Review here:  Molten Salted Butterscotch Macarons Review

Here David was EXCITED about this treat.  This is before he TASTED them.
·         I swear we don’t normally say stuff tastes like cough syrup, but here is another product where we did – the 1.75 star CHERRY CIDER.  Yuck.  Review here: Cherry Cider Review
A bit of cough syrup, errr, I mean cherry cider with breakfast 
·         Trader Joe’s BLACK BEAN ROTINI is a product that received ZERO STARS in our review, not even a teeny tiny fraction of a star!!  And one blog reader (named anonymous :) ) left this comment that cracked me up about it, “My husband can eat anything that even pretends to be pasta.  He spit this out.  Also glad we didn’t waste good sauce on this crap.”  Black Bean Rotini Review

This photo captures the essence of Black Bean Rotini

·         HEAD TO TOE MOISTURIZING BALM, what can I say…  I wrote the original review of it on March 30, 2015, and over 2 years later I am STILL trying to get through the same tiny tin of this greasy crap.  1.5 stars, and one of the most often read reviews on the blog for some reason.  Head to Toe Moisturizing Balm Review

Here I am with greasy crap on my hair
·         We didn’t dig Trader Joe’s COCONUT WATER.  In fact, we thought it was gross…  But hey, this one might just be us.  Still, the review has some funny photos and the water only got .75 stars…  Review here:  Coconut Water Review

·         And the last stinky review for this go-round is FROZEN BRUSSELS SPROUTS.  We love, love, love fresh Brussels Sprouts so thought these would be a no-brainer.  We were oh so wrong…  Frozen Brussels Sprouts Review

These things were disgusting

There you have it.  Those are 10 products that won’t be put in our Trader Joe’s carts again. 

Three things, though.  First, know that we really LIKE most of the stuff at Trader Joe’s!!  Don’t let this rundown of product fails (for us) make you think that we hate Trader Joe’s!  On the contrary – we shop there multiple times every week and eat TONS of food from there!

And secondly - if there is ever a product at Trader Joe’s that you want to try in the store, YOU CAN!!  Just ask any associate if you can try whatever (except beer or wine).  They will open it for you on the spot and let you sample it, no kidding!!!  And they don’t even make you feel weird for asking – it is part of their normal operations to let customers sample!

And lastly, if you ever buy something at Trader Joe’s, get it home, try it, and don’t like it, TAKE IT BACK.  They are the best store about returns!!  We don’t often run into things we need to return but when we do I am not hesitant to bring stuff back.  They have big signs in all of their locations explaining their awesome return policy – buy it, try it, don’t like it, return it!!  Just bring it back to the store, take it to customer service when you get there, and let them know you are returning.  Then shop and get whatever you want, and when you check out tell the cashier you have a return at customer service.  The cashier will ring the bell at their station and get the info on your return and VOILA, no mess no fuss your product fail is returned! 

Happy shopping 😊

Sunday, April 2, 2017

Kung Fu Girl Riesling

I have been tempted by this wine, Kung Fu Girl Riesling, before, solely because of the totally kick-ass name and label.  I mean, what woman WOULDN’T want to drink some KUNG FU GIRL RIESLING, right??  But at $9.99, it was a bit more expensive than some other tried and tested wines at TJ's, and I had just never thrown a bottle in my cart.

Until they taste tested it one night while I was shopping…

See, this guy was handing out samples!  Thanks Trader Joe's!
Yes, once again, the Trader Joe’s wine taste testing resulted in a sale (DO YOU HEAR ME BAILEY’S CROSSROADS, VIRGINIA TJ’S??  IT WORKS WHEN YOU STAND THERE AND POUR COMMUNION CUPS OF WINE TO HAND OUT.  DO IT MORE OFTEN LIKE YOU USED TO! )  (Actually, they have leased what used to be the music store space right next door and are renovating it to be a wine/beer area, so maaaaaybe they will be awesome like the NYC Trader Joe’s Wine Shop and have tastings every day!!  Oh please, oh please, oh please…)

But I digress…  I mean, I personally do not do kung fu, but this wine has such a kick ass, strong woman name that it was hard to resist!! 

Here it is, sideways in my cart.  I swear I had only drunk a little tiny cup to taste it,
so I am not sure why I took a sideways photo.
Normally Riesling is not my “go to” wine, but this 2015 from Washington State was GOOD!  It was very nice.  It was smooth and not too sweet.  I drank it with a rice, leek, chicken, green pepper, and snow pea stir fry and it was a very tasty compliment to the dinner. 
This sign says "new" but I think that might be a fib.  Sometimes TJ's says writes new
but they should write "new", cuz actually they have carried the product a while...
I recently heard a great story on the NPR show Freakonomics about drinking cheap wine.  They did blind taste tests with “wine snobs” – like, people who really KNEW about wine.  Well lo and behold, they often could not tell the difference between cheap wine and fancy pants wine.  (link to awesome Freakonomics story here - you should listen to it)  Maybe YOU think you can tell the difference, and maybe you CAN, but I think that most people cannot.  So, if you want a GIRL POWER wine for your girl get together (your girlfriend dinner or your book club perhaps!) – HAVE A BOTTLE OF KUNG FU RIESLING out.  It is a “Nevertheless, She Persisted” wine. 

This wine tastes good.  It is not crappy.  So how is that for an endorsement?

Me, doing my best kung fu in our kitchen
I am reviewing this product by myself.  Oh sure, David had some, but I don’t really even care what he thought about it!  Because, you see, this wine is about STRONG WOMEN.  So, all of you strong women out there – BUY IT, DRINK IT, SUPPORT IT!  (And yes, I realize that it may well be made by a bunch of dudes in Washington, but don’t burst my bubble right now, ok?)  Get it!

Kung Fu Girl Riesling would have been the wine they served at the Women’s March in Washington DC (had they served wine).  The bottles could have worn little tiny pink pussy hats, and all of the marchers would have loved it.  Missed opportunity 😊 .  

My hat, our posters, and the capitol in the background!!
Thanks for knitting the hat, Karen Hoyer!
Here is a bonus clip - short video of the crowd at the Women's March in Washington DC on January 21, 2017.  And yes, I realize the pink hats are controversial.  But you can still enjoy the video anyway - there are some great posters!

Price - $9.99
Rating – 4.5

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Monsooned Malabar Coffee

Monsooned Malabar Coffee
Monsooned Malabar is a new coffee on the Trader Joe’s shelves (Spring 2017).  It is a medium roast 100% Arabica whole bean coffee, and the label bills it as “full body, woodsy aromatics”.  AROMATICS?  Hmmm, they are using what I think of as an adjective as a noun here, aren’t they?  Let’s look up “aromatics”, shall we??

I checked out  and learned this:  “Aromatics are combinations of vegetables and herbs (and sometimes even meats) that are heated in some fat – like butter, oil, or coconut milk – at the beginning of a dish. The heated fat helps these ingredients release addictive aromas and impart deep flavors into the dish that’s being cooked.”

Well, this is COFFEE so I know they do not mean that definition.  “Aromatics” as a plural adjective sounds awkward to me, but maybe that is just because I haven’t used it that way before.  Let’s assume they have a grammar expert on payroll at Trader Joe’s corporate and roll with it, ok?

This can (10 oz) is smaller than most other Trader Joe’s coffee cans.  It is a short, squat can with pretty monsoon-like artwork. 
Coffee - the civilized way to start a day
Let’s see what David thinks of it, “I like it very much.  It is very smooth and very richly full-bodied.  “Wood-sy flavor” be any better if I knew what to call it??  (Bwahahaha – a little breakfast humor there from David, riffing on the “woodsy flavor” line on the label.)  I am gonna give this a 4.5.”

David tasting the product (and reading the paper).  He is using my currently 2nd favorite coffee mug - HRC.  Isn't it pretty?
As for me, I don’t get the “woodsy flavor” reference.  It doesn’t taste like sitting round a campfire (burning wood) or Deep Woods Off insect repellent to me.  When I mentioned this to David, he thought it meant “wood like autumn”, but that doesn’t make sense either, since they are selling it in the spring… 

$6.99 a can
I agree with David that this is a nice, smooth coffee.  It is not quite as strong as I prefer my coffee, but I liked it.  I think it is perfect for David (who prefers his coffee a bit lighter than I do).  I have no complaints about this coffee.  I can’t say it is the BEST cup of coffee I have ever had in my whole life, but it is better than some of the weak, boring varieties we have tried from TJs.  This is a fine cup of joe.  I give it a 4.

And since ol’ Neil Gorsuch endured day 2 of grilling today, I will include a photo of my current favorite coffee cup here.  It features none other than Notorious RBG, the most bad ass Supreme Court Justice ever.  May she be healthy and strong for at least 4 more years!!!  GO RUTH!!

RBG - fearlessly defined
Price:  $6.99

Rating:  4.25

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Fake Trader Joe's, Mt. Pleasant, SC Trader Joe's, and Salty Honey Toffee Milk Chocolate Covered Crackers


We are on vacation.  Of course, that means VISITING NEW (to us) TRADER JOE'S stores, so I searched on my phone to see where the local Trader Joe’s are near Charleston, SC and 2 came up – one in Charleston proper and one near Mt. Pleasant.  We were in Charleston at the time, so I put the address of that one in the GPS and off we went.

Only, it was a FAKER JOE’S!!!!

Trader Joe's my a** - this is a THRIFT SHOP!
Look!  It was a junky old thrift store!!   And it is so  junky that even as a thrift store it gets some lousy reviews on Yelp!  (Note:  I love thrift stores.  But this one looked particularly sketchy, plus it punked me…)  Doesn’t the font even look like the real TJ’s font???  I think they are walking on thin ice here…  If anyone from Trader Joe’s corporate reads this – check these people out, man!  They are trading on your good name!

Look - they even sell used furniture for college.  (Why do the last THREE items have "and"s before them?
Did they just keep thinking of more amazing products they sell and write them on the truck?
The AirBnb we are staying at is in Mt. Pleasant, so off we went toward that Trader Joe’s address (with me taking a bit more care this time to make sure it was an honest to goodness TJ’s and not another fakey fakerton!).  Found it- REAL STORE.  I think it was our 29th TJ's visited in the 14th state, and it was very nice!!

Mt. Pleasant, South Carolina Trader Joe's!!
First off – look what they have for pooches!

Awwww - isn't that sweet??  A DOGGY DOCK!
I am not a dog person, but even I think it is awesome that they treat their 4 legged friends so nicely!

Secondly, the employees were great!!  They were so friendly and helpful!  The sample area is adorable – it is set up like a light house and very welcoming.  And the employees working the floor were so sweet!!  They helped me hunt for local South Carolina stuff (scored some local brew 😊 ).  And one of them even gave me a Trader Joe’s reusable shopping bag!  Isn’t that so sweet??  (ATTENTION TRADER JOE’S CORPORATE, IT IS ME AGAIN WITH A MESSAGE FOR YOU:  SOUTH CAROLINA NEEDS STATE SPECIFIC BAGS, MAN!  If the other states can have ‘em, good old South Carolina needs them, too!  They are getting ripped off by having to sell the generic bags.  Pony up!  They are totally worth it.)

Even the bathrooms in Mt. Pleasant are awesome!!!!
Gender neutral - if you are a mermaid or a fisherdude, here is where you pee!
I really liked the layout, lighting, cleanliness, and artwork at this location.  Here is my favorite sign:

GREAT SIGN!!!  Whoever paints the signs in Mt. Pleasant deserves a raise
Isn’t it great?? 

I love this sign.  And not just because I am a mermaid and sea shell fan.  It has great info!!  Look - they will open
 anything for you and let you taste it (except alcohol).  And NO QUESTIONS ASKED for returns.  Trader Joe's rocks.
I liked everything about this store.  As we were leaving we saw this sign:

Mt. Pleasant shoppers - find TJ the Turtle!
Their mascot at this location is TJ the Turtle.  I wish we had been hunting for him while we were there!  I didn’t think of it til we saw this sign.  If we pop in again we will see if we can find TJ.

OK, now onto a review!  ,Let’s talk about Salty Honey Toffee Milk Chocolate Covered Crackers.  (We did not get these at the Mt. Pleasant, SC store, these were from our “home store” in Virginia.)

The box says CRACKERS - but are they really CRACKERS?
David’s take on this one:  “These are very nice.  There are all different kinds of sweet and chocolate-y and toffee-ish – the chocolate is very good which is nice.  The big surprise is that in the middle, where you would expect a shortbread cookie or something, it turns out to be something like a SALTINE CRACKER!  It is a little bit more substantial, but a cracker none the less.  And you think, “Well that doesn’t belong in here!!” but then, after you chew it awhile, you go, “You know what??  It is good that it is bringing a different kind of flavor to the experience!”  particularly it is bringing a blank palette – against which the chocolate and the toffee can play – and it brings the SALT, the grains of salt, which makes it so nice and tasty.  I would have to subtract .25 points though, because it doesn’t ADD cookie-ness to it, it just provides a blank canvas against the rest of the cookie can play.  I am gonna give this a 4.75.”

"I wonder what these are like!!  They have CHOCOLATE, I bet I will like them!"

This photo was the SECOND time we got them - he looks happy to be getting them again .
My take:  I also was surprised by the cracker.  Sure, the box says CRACKER, but I thought, “Certainly that can’t mean an honest to goodness cracker….”  I was certainly wrong on that.   I think this whole thing would be better if it were not so THICK.  It is just too HARD.  It is difficult to bite through it or to break it – it is super hard.  I think if they made it half as thick it would be twice as good. 
Aren't they pretty?  (This is on a tiny plate.)
The package says there is a hint of coffee but neither of us could pick up on that.  This product is quite MESSY.  I broke mine in half and then ate them and little bits flew everywhere. 

I do not dislike these, but I wouldn’t say they are amazing or anything.  The box says serving size is 2 crackers – I ate 1.5 and that was plenty for me.  I would give these a 3.5.

Price: $3.99
Rating: 4.25