Trader Joe's is a different kind of grocery chain. These stores are smaller than conventional grocery stores and carry items you will not find at a larger chain mostly because Trader Joe's brands their own food with their own name (with some alterations depending on the region, such as Trader Jose for cheese enchiladas or Trader Giotto for Rigatoni alla Siciliana). They also carry many foods not seen at other grocery stores such as Falafel Chips, Potato Cheddar Pierogies, Blue Corn Tortilla Chips, Dolmas, or Edamame Hummus. All for $3.99 or less. There are labels on the Trader Joes brands to inform the customer that the product you are about to purchase is gluten free, vegan, vegetarian, fat free, or sodium filled.
They have frozen prepackaged meals like Mandarin Frozen Chicken Morsels or frozen fish such as Wild Sockeye Salmon. The refrigerated section has fresh soups, every kind of cheese you can think of: feta, ricotta, asiago, Cambozola, and more. The beverage section contains some of the healthiest combinations ever thought of: Beet & Purple Carrot Juice, Apple Grape Juice, Pomegranate Lemonade. The produce section has a nice selection of fresh fruits and vegetables available. The bakery products have great choices for multigrain and artisan breads.
The stores are smaller and more intimate than most grocery chains. The staff is friendly and helpful if you need information about the products that they sell. It is pretty casual there as evidenced by the Hawaiian shirt clad employees. There are no speakers in the store calling for employees to open another register, but rather a simple, delightful bell that is rung when it gets a little busy and help is needed. The stores are located mostly in California, but there are locations on the East Coast as well.
If you live near Trader Joe's, you may notice that you get the Fearless Flyer in your mailbox which tells you about new products and specials. A great way of keeping up to date with what is happening locally at your Trader Joe's.