Category Archives: Trader Joe’s

Trader Joe’s – Las Nubes Estate Coffee from Nicaragua

3 out of 4

Presentation is everything.  Everything and everyone has an image to uphold.  A reputation to upkeep.  Back in my Greaser years I had the cigarette box rolled up in my tight white undershirt sleeve.  Back in my Disco years I had the flared out tight in the junk pants.  Back in my “Rebel against the town who has banned dancing” years I had the tight white tee shirt and tight in the junk jeans to wear.  It’s amazing how things come back around.  So to the coffee.  This Medium Roast from Trader Joe’s is the opposite of a date arranged by the internet.  The avatar sets high expectations and, for the most part, the actual coffee delivers.  This coffee sits pretty on the shelf inside a collectible (my word, not TJs) burlap bag.  It’s whole bean coffee so make sure you grind it before you leave (if that’s your bag baby).  It’s a smooth rich cup of coffee that has the common notes of a Central American coffee.  Nutty with a nice fruit sweetness to it.

And now for the ladies, some sweet pics:

Trader Joe's Las Nubes Estate Coffee from Nicaragua

Trader Joe's Las Nubes Estate Coffee from Nicaragua

Trader Joe's Las Nubes Estate Coffee from Nicaragua

Trader Joe's Las Nubes Estate Coffee from Nicaragua

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Posted by on December 10, 2012 in Trader Joe's, Whole Bean Coffee


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Trader Joe’s – Limited Edition Peaberry from Colombia

There is a saying, “When life throws you lemons, make lemonade”. I’d say “When life throws you lemons go to Trader Joe’s, buy this Colombia, cut a slice of the lemon and taste it in comparison to this blend”.  I think it’s too long to stick but that’s what I would say. This Medium Roast isn’t lemony by any stretch of the imagination but the contrast of the two is so dynamic that it will enhance the flavor of this Colombian. With a Toucan on the can the first thing I thought of was Froot Loops but this isn’t fruity sweet. It’s more like honey sweet. Clean taste, good body. Pick it up when you’re in there because it’s there for a limited time.

Now for the pics:






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Posted by on November 18, 2012 in Trader Joe's, Whole Bean Coffee


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Trader Joe’s – Limited Edition Peaberry from Kauai

If Kona had a rebel brother it would be Kauai (talking about coffee here, not travel destinations.  They could be more like cousins in that regard).  This coffee has a very potent floral body with a very smooth finish.  The Medium roast is great for this bean as it has a lot of flavor to offer your tastebuddies.  Don’t let the label of Medium Roast fool you.  Much like Matt Damon buying a zoo but then you realize he’s really Jason Bourne, Peaberry from Kauai will surprise you.  Not sure if that sentence is grammatically correct but hopefully you’re picking up what I’m dropping.

Enjoy the Wisdom from this 10oz can:

Peaberry beans are very rare, occurring at a rate of about 5% in all coffee crops.  Only one of the beans inside the coffee cherry develops, rather than the normal two, leaving an ovoid bean – a peaberry.  These tiny beans, when selected from the rest of the crop, are prized for their remarkable concentration of flavor.

Trader Joe’s Limited Edition Peaberry from Kauai hails from a single origin coffee estate on this lush Hawaiian island.   Like most peaberry coffees, it boasts that remarkable flavor concentration.  We’ve given it a medium roast – in the cup, it’s medium-bodied and aromatic, with balanced acidity, floral notes and its smooth finish.

Now some Pics for the Ladies – and yes the Dudes too.


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Trader Joe’s – Italian Roast


Um, yeah.  This is pretty delicious.  This Dark Roast coffee contains Costa Rican Tarrazu, Colombian Excelso and New Guinea Koban Grade A beans.  This unique blend with such a complex roast as an Italian Roast makes for one of the best cups of coffee.  I would still say that their Ethiopian blend is still the best but this is right there with it.  First the aroma of the brew is rich like when someone just mows their grass.  The taste is very complex.  Take one sip.  It will first be heavy on your tongue giving you the proper reaction of a Dark Roast bean.  Then it begins to lighten and leaves you with a sweet aftertaste.  This aftertaste is what makes this coffee unique and worth it to buy.

Here is the Can has to say:

We think Pisa’s leaning tower might just stand up straight after a cup of Trader Joe’s Italian Roast Coffee.  Cost Rican Tarrazu, Colombian Excelso and New Guinea Koban Grade A beans are treated to a dark, rich roast that gives you a cup of guiseppe (it’s Italian, remember?) with intense, full body and enticing aromas.

If you like your coffee strong and well-balanced with bold flavor, Trader Joe’s Italian Roast lives up to the challenge.  We can see the tower leaning toward the coffee maker already.


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Posted by on August 16, 2012 in Trader Joe's, Whole Bean Coffee


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Trader Joe’s – Dark French Roast


Trader Joe’s Ultra Dark Roast Blends: Dark French Roast.  For a coffee it’s not bad.  For a french roast, it’s not great.  I have had better French Roasts and didn’t think this was smoky enough.  This Central American blend had a good flavor but the roast was not oily enough.  I like dark roasts and think this kind of roast works particular well with Indonesian beans.  Flavor is the most important aspect of a “ultra” dark roast.  Without flavor it’s just burnt.   Flavor comes from the soil, yes, but it also comes from the oils that coat the bean during the roasting process.  Just compare a light roast to a dark roast.  You can see the difference.

It’s a good bean but it’s not my favorite French Roast.  Hopefully I can get a blog up to prove this but until then, stay tired my friends.

The NoteCan:

Trader Joe’s Ultra Dark French Roast Coffee is a phenomenal blend of coffees selected from the rich, high mountain soils of Central America’s fertile rain forests.  Like a fine wine, this exceptional dark roast coffee reflects the care of its cultivation – in both body and flavor this is a coffee unmatched by the masses.  Bold, highly acidic and full-bodied with a smooth finish, Trader Joe’s Ultra Dark French Roast Coffee is an unbeatable way to start your day.


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Posted by on August 16, 2012 in Trader Joe's, Whole Bean Coffee


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Trader Joe’s – Colombia Supremo

I debated on this one.  This was an internal struggle for me.  Do I give it a two or a three?  Why the debate?  I’m glad you asked.  Not enough nuttiness.  That’s right.  It wasn’t crazy enough for me.  But I couldn’t decide if I liked it or not.  Come to find out, I actually do.  Everything seems to be in place here, Colombian, Supremo (larger bean than your common bean), Medium Roast.  Can’t quite put my finger on why it tastes differently.  Trader Joe’s call it “Sweet and Rich”.  Not sure how.  Colombian should be “Nutty and Smooth”.

I remember at Starbucks when I applied to be a manager and part of my interview was to hold a coffee tasting with the interview panel.  I chose Colombian but I needed a tasting to go with it.  The night before I held a taste testing with some customers and the food selected was a Nutter Butter.  The nutty sweetness of the Nutter Butter enhanced the Nutty and Smooth taste of the Colombia Supremo.  Plus Nutter Butters are delicious.

Trader Joe’s Colombia Supremo has characteristics of Smooth but the nutty part was hidden, hidden deep in the back of my tongue.  It’s there you just have to be patient.  Once I found it I knew it was a three and not a two.

From the Can itself:

From its tropical climate to its mountainous topography, it’s easy to understand why Colombia is one of the world’s largest coffee producers.  Its’ famed Popayan region is home to the Supremo Arabica beans within this can.  Supremo beans are larger and more flavorful than other Colombian-grown beans, and are considered the most prized of this country’s considerable coffee crop.  In other words, these are some seriously satisfying  beans.

Trader Joe’s Colombian Supremo coffee beans are roasted to a medium level, offering a medium body and beautifully balanced blend of mild acidity and distinctive , caramel-like flavor.  With its classic coffee aromas and the hint of cocoa in the finish, this is a terrific coffee for all day, every day.


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Posted by on August 16, 2012 in Trader Joe's, Whole Bean Coffee


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Trader Joe’s – Bali Blue Moon

The package is reminiscent of the opening sequence of “Bewitched“.  Not much else I want to say on that so I’m not sure why I started this blog off with it.  I was kind of hoping in the time I was typing this I would think of something else.  So I guess I’ll get to the coffee.

An Indonesian blend this coffee is.  A medium roasted Indonesian bean.  I will stand by my better judgement that a bean of this longitude/latitude shows it true colors in a dark roast.  But I am open minded.  So I brew it and I am mildly surprised – or medium roasted (coffee joke – sorry if I excluded anyone).  Trader Joe’s Bali Blue Moon is a good coffee to brew at night with desert because of its Mild like nature.  It had a “soft” body with a clean aftertaste – no Jay and Silent Bob loitering around.  Just drink and go.

This is a great entertaining coffee so if you are planning a party that consists of good friend or friends that overheard you speaking to your good friends and you couldn’t think quick on your feet so you had to invite them, this is the coffee you should get.

Words from the can:

From the exotic Indonesian island of beautiful Bali, we have discovered a rare and exceptional coffee: Bali Blue Moon.  The beans are grown on rich volcanic soil under the shade of tropical and exotic trees in the heart of Bali’s Kintamani region where altitudes reach up to 5000 feet.

This sophisticated coffee is a true gem.  The medium roast creates a clean and smooth cup of coffee along with a sweet, chocolaty finish, very full body and low acidity.  Bali Blue Moon has the richness and robustness of its Indonesian counterparts, but a creamier, less earthy flavor.  It’s a unique coffee profile achieved only once in a blue moon.


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Posted by on August 16, 2012 in Trader Joe's, Whole Bean Coffee


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Trader Joe’s – Organic Bolivian Blend


I have grown accustomed to one coffee blend on the shelf – Ethopian.  In fact, each time my wife goes to Trader Joes with my daughter, she (my daughter) will go and pick out that coffee and put it in the cart.  So on one fateful day when all three of us were walking down these tightly lined aisles I thought to myself, “Why don’t I try something else?”.  But when we got to the sacred section I stood with a complete stark motionless stare.  I had no idea what to get.  Once I came out of my realized coma I looked at my daughter who had no idea what to do.  She wanted to get me the coffee she has always gotten me.  So I said, “Sweetie, which coffee should papa try?”.  She looked at me and then at the shelves and quite simply said, “The orange one with the horses”.  I looked and sure enough was an orange tin with what appeared to be camels, but I dare not correct the one choosing my blend.  So I pick it up, read the label to make sure of two things:

1.  It’s caffeinated

2. It’s not flavored.

Once it has passed this inspection I went to the grinder and prepared my daughters recommendation.  This has revolutionized the way I will purchase coffee.

The orange one with the horses was the Organic Bolivian Blend that was a very desired taste.  It was smooth with a finish of sweet caramely tones.  I would recommend a simple dessert/pastry with this brew like a butter croissant or vanilla biscotti.

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Posted by on August 16, 2012 in Trader Joe's, Whole Bean Coffee


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Trader Joe’s – House Blend

This seems to be a common theme where my daughter will pick out the coffee based on the pictures on the container.

I buy my coffee at Trader Joe’s because it is across the street and I tend to find better blends there.  Recently I have put my fate into my daughters hands and allow her to pick my coffee for the week.  Last week it was “The Orange one with the Horses” and this week it was the Red one with the Elephant. This is referring to Trader Joe’s House Blend.  It’s a blend of Colombian and Sumatran coffee.

Typically when I encounter a House Blend it is a mild to medium blend and while Colombian is usually roasted to a mild to medium roast, the Sumatran kicks it up to a darker roast.  The smell of the roast seems pretty complex with the nutty hints compelling against the earthy notes.  A battle I fear is not won by any party.

I brew all my coffees in a french press, even at work, to get the maximum flavor from the beans without cu pping some grounds.  I go home and brew this blend and sip the coffee from my favorite cup.  I’m not going to lie, it wasn’t my favorite blend.  I felt the natural darkness of the Ind onesian bean was hidden by the burnt taste of the Latin American bean.  I then made a piece of toast with peanut butter to try to enhance the nuttiness of the Colombian but apparently it was not ready to come out.

Not an impressive blend and not one that I would buy again.  Until the next cup.

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Posted by on August 16, 2012 in Trader Joe's, Whole Bean Coffee


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Trader Joe’s – Organic Fair Trade Wake Up Blend {Coffee}


A big can.  A lot of coffee.  Now that I finished this blend it acts as a drum set for my daughter.  The container is a monster 28 oz. and I would be lying if I said I bought it because the blend sounding good.  I bought it because it was a good price for the amount you were getting.  Overall the coffee was interactive enough to keep my attention but not for long.  I would say this is a great coffee for guests of whom you are not too sure are that adventurous in taste but do enjoy a cup of coffee with dessert – or for that person you wake up next to and don’t really know them entirely but think they might like coffee.

Either way, if you like to host events, parties, people this is a good brew.  If you want more of a diverse taste there are more coffees TJ’s offers that I would suggest.

Here’s what the can has to say:

Wake up and smell the aroma of these glorious beans brewing in your morning cup of joe.  Organic Fair Trade Wake Up Blend Coffee will transport you to some of the finest coffee growing regions in the world.  Our beans are sourced from small-scale farms in Mexico, El Salvador, Honduras and Peru, where farmers are committed to organic and sustainable practices.

We’ve skillfully blended these 100% organic Arabica beans and had them medium roasted to our specifications.  It’s an easy drinking, well balanced brew with smooth body.  This rich coffee has a bright acidity and just a touch of natural sweetness, and with its lively flavor, we think it’s the perfect blend to jump start your day.

ROAST: Medium

NOTES: Nutty – Smooth and Well Balanced


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Posted by on August 15, 2012 in Trader Joe's, Whole Bean Coffee


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