Trader Joe’s

In shopping on 01/03/2009 at 9:00 pm

Trader Joe’s was the precursor to Whole Foods; before organic was ‘in,’ they were making grass roots products that were tasty and wholesome. We used to live across the street from one growing up, and going there was always a special treat.

A couple years ago, they opened one up in Union Square and it was beyond successful. Going there and seeing the huge lines snaking around the cramped store made it a less than ideal trek. The philosophy of laid-back-ness with the Hawaiian shirt ‘Aloha’ attitude was perturbed by the fast-paced, jam-packed crush of New York City mob mentality. We even found it unnerving when the cashiers always insisted on striking up a conversation, which is akin to the person next to you on the subway trying to talk you up, or shake you down. One time, we discovered this new product on the sample counter and asked the manager about it, which then turned into this whole affair of hunting it down for us and then breaking it open to share with the cashier and neighbors in gratitude. They were the juice-filled Gummy Penguins. Finding a new product there is like a little Christmas present.gummy tummy penguins

Today we ventured into the several months old one in Brooklyn Heights which was birthed into a former bank, formal stone and columns on the outside, luau vibe on the inside. Last time we were there, it was deadly silent and empty. The massive three shopping cart wide shelves were practically suburban. They even have a bathroom for customers! Since it was the weekend this afternoon, it was a bit more crowded but manageable, but then when we checked out, there was no attempt to breach that New Yorker fourth wall. By now, we were anticipating the Trader Joe’s ‘treatment,’ so we were kind of disappointed when we didn’t get it. Come to think of it, no one was wearing a Hawaiian shirt, and worst of all, there were no Gummy Penguins in sight either.

  1. i also was delighted to see the gummy tummy penguins! i sent them off to K, he liked them. i think you should load up on dried pomelo – it’s the best. like this blog.

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