On Friday I ventured to Cary to stop at the new Trader Joe's located in the Shoppes of Kildare (who spells "shops" like that?) at Cary Pkwy and Kildare Rd.
Trader Joe's is a privately held company with a business model that allows them to sell fantastic products --organic, international and gourmet items -- at low prices. They sell most of their products under their own label and they buy direct from the grower, dairy, producer, etc.
I bought French brie for $3.65 and mousse truffle pate for $5.69. These would cost $6.00 and $8.00 respectively at Whole Foods or A Southern Season. My favorite deal was on an 8oz log of goat cheese for 3.49! Even at Harris Teeter a 4oz log costs nearer to $5.oo. The nuts and coffee are also a steal and are great! A pound of fantastic coffee was $6.99 as opposed to the usually $9.99 I pay at either Foster's or A Southern Season. I bought the Moka Java which is a blend of Ethiopian and Javanese coffee beans. It is strong but wonderfully smooth. It is great with milk and not at all acidic. I bought some great tea too: pomegranite white tea that is great iced with a bit of sugar and some San Pellegrino poured over it.
I bought a couple of bottles of wine but I've not tasted them yet so I cannot vouch for those yet. One bottle is the Charles Shaw cab sauv for $2.99 (aka Two Buck Chuck)and the other is a St. Emilion for $7.99.
Trader Joe's also has an interesting frozen food section. I was riveted. I bought some HUGE sea scallops and a piece of salmon stuffed with crab. They look great but I've not yet fixed them. I cannot decide what to do w/ the scallops: either grill them wrapped in bacon or pan fry them w/ a sherry vinaigrette. Both sound pretty good!
The very good news is that Trader Joe's is opening a store in Chapel Hill where A Southern Season used to be. They have already purchased the building and they hope to have the store opened before Thanksgiving! I cannot wait!