Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Lexicon of terms for the Trader Joe’s newbie
Two-Buck Chuck and the irresistible Peppermint Joe-Joe.
To help clarify, we've put together a lexicon of some of Trader Joe's signature items and cultural touchstones:
Two-Buck Chuck. Probably the one thing for which Trader Joe's is most famous is its "Charles Shaw" wine, aka Two-Buck Chuck. Costing $1.99 in some states, $3 in others, it's the cheapest bottle of wine out there, and is exclusive to Trader Joe's. Wine snobs don't view this wine, or many of the wines at Trader Joe's, as anything special, but for $3, Two-Buck Chuck is more than drinkable.
Frequent Flyer. Trader Joe's newsletter, highlighting new products and store locations. It used to be that you could get it mailed to you, but the mailing list got too big. They have copies of it in the store, and you can sign up for it online.
Crew members. What they call employees; you can spot them by their colorful (frequently Hawaiian shirt) uniforms. It's part of Trader Joe's "island" theme, with murals and products with names like "Pirate's Booty" popcorn. Designed to make shopping there fun.
Bells. In place of the traditional overhead P.A. system at a typical grocery, Trader Joe's instituted a bell system, with two bells indicating that a customer has a question and three bells calling for a manager.
Private labels. More than 80% of the products at Trader Joe's are sold under their private label. Some (though not all) have clever names that indicate cuisines:
Trader Giotto -- nickname for Trader Joe's Italian products including marinara sauce, pizza, bruschetta, and so on.
Trader Ming's -- nickname for Trader Joe's Chinese goods including their top-selling orange chicken
Trader Joe-San -- Japanese items such as soy sauce and sake
Trader Jose's -- Mexican items such as their tortillas or chicken in mole
Trader Jacques -- French delicacies like croissant sandwiches and salted caramel butter cookies
Trader Darwin's -- vitamins
Frozen Joe's -- Frozen
Why Trader Joe's coming to Dallas-Fort Worth is not another In-N-Out
Grocery smackdown: Trader Joe’s vs. other markets in Dallas-Fort Worth
Joe-Joes. "Joe-Joes" are the extremely popular Oreo's knockoff, available in regular/vanilla bean and in a limited-edition only-at-Christmas version called peppermint Joe-Joe's, which has bits of crushed peppermint candy mixed into the white filling.
Aldi. The discount grocer with select, quality items which entered the DFW market in 2009, is Trader Joe's corporate cousin. They're both owned by Albrecht Discount of Germany.
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