Okay, so...I went a little overboard doing my "homework" for our Trader Joe's themed Candyology 101 podcast. I just could't help myself! I wanted to give Trader Joe's a fair chance, so I got all kinds of different confections to review. I even bought a few I thought I would hate so that I'd have something interesting to talk about, but that backfired. The closest thing to a disappointing product from Trader Joe's has been the jelly beans, and even they weren't really bad. I still have a few items from that haul left over to review, but thankfully we're nearing the end.
Alright, let's go bite the heads off some gummy bears!
Similar to Haribo and Trolli, these Trader Joe's bears are stored inside a heat-sealed plastic bag, which is nothing fancy, but it gets the job done. As far as the bag's layout and design, this is really simple, almost like a children's coloring book page, and the colors are vibrant, but flat. At a glance, the design looks sloppy, but the longer I look at it, the more these blobby little bears grown on me. The background and text choices feel really lazy, but whoever doodled these colorful blob-bears, you're okay in my book.
Inside the bag we have six flavors of bears.
Strawberry (pink) - This one is very lightly flavored and it comes off as being cotton candy like in the beginning, but as you chew the flavor gets stronger. The overall taste is not as good as a Kasugai strawberry gummy, but it's slightly more authentic than Haribo's version. Strawberry is usually my favorite gummy bear in the bag, but this time I wasn't a huge fan.
Apple (translucent-light-green) - These are VERY lightly colored, at a glance you might mix these up with the pineapple/clear bears. The flavoring of this one is surprisingly good! It's sweet, slightly tangy, and even a green-apple hater like me can appreciate it. It's kind of like apple juice, but there's a tiny bit of a bite to it.
Orange (orange) - Wonderfully authentic! It's sweet and juicy with some zesty notes towards the end. Very orange-juice-like.
Lemon (yellow) - Sweet with a hint of zest, it ends up tasting very lemonade-like and it's nearly identical to the Kasugai lemonade gummies, but the chew is stiff like Haribo.
Pineapple (clear/translucent) - Typical clear-pineapple-gummy bear flavoring. It's sweet, a little tangy, and recognizable. It doesn't have the authenticity I was hoping for, but it's good, just nothing special. You can get the same flavoring from Haribo or any other gummy bear brand out there.
Cherry (deep redish-purple) - This is one has some lovely deeper black-cherry notes to it which I really like, but the flavoring isn't all that strong. I wish it were a bit more intense, but it was still really enjoyable.
Overall, these were better than I expected. The chew is stiff, like Haribo, which gives you time to savor each flavor, and the fruity variety works really well. Even though I found certain flavors more enjoyable than others, I wasn't picking around them and seeking out one over another. Out of all the gummy candies I've ever had, Kasugai are still my #1, but these are dangerously close to Haribo for my second favorite gummy brand. All of you gummy bear lovers out there should give these a try!
(Worth mentioning: My sister was a HUGE fan of these, so I'll be buying her a bag of her own during my next trip to TJ's.)
© Maria Smith http://poison-and-antidote.netLike me on facebook to keep up with all my adventures!