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Fresh Finds Crunchy Cheese Curls (Big Lots)

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Fresh Finds strikes again! We’re back with some Big Lots reviews, and let me just say: it feels like I’ve just been reunited with an old friend. Granted, that old friend has changed a lot, and mostly for the worst, over the intervening years, but if you look hard enough, you’ll find some good qualities that remind you of the old times. One thing that I have kind of missed is their Fresh Finds products, which is their own in-house food brand. Toward the end of my shopping tenure there, I had grown to really like some of the chips they offered, and was happy to see that their selections have expanded throughout the food department, with lots of trail mixes and dried fruits to choose from.  In a fit of hunger after a workout with my wife, I was determined to buy something to try, if for no other reason than to see if the brand was still as good as I remember it. After spending way too much time browsing their mostly familiar inventory - the same chips they had when I stopped going there -

Simply Nature Freeze Dried Fuji Apples (ALDI)

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Almost like healthy candy. I’ve mentioned before in a previous post that one of the (many) joys of being married is how you inevitably end up trying different things that you typically wouldn’t try. Think about it: she buys something (or vice versa), it sits around for a while, or somehow piques your curiosity, and then you have to give it a shot. In fact, I singlehandedly credit my wife for turning me on to blue cheese, something I hereditarily hated for years; my mom still can't stand it. And while that's the biggest example that jumps out at me, I know there are dozens of other foods that she has turned me on to. And the latest example of that are Simply Nature Freeze Dried Fuji Apples.  I have to say that the texture is a little weird to me, but that’s probably because I don’t really eat freeze dried anything. I kind of expected it to almost be like that astronaut food - you know, the ones that come in silver packages and that are basically bricks of hard, crunchy powder th

Sundae Shoppe Vanilla and Caramel Crunch Milk Chocolate Fusion Ice Cream Bars (Aldi)

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The food equivalent of me: a hard exterior shell gives way to a soft, delicious interior. It’s kind of weird that there’s a popular ice cream bar that seemed to take the world by storm out of nowhere a few years back, and that it shares the same brand name as a popular brand of condoms, but maybe that’s just me. At any rate, Aldi has carried the name brand before, and now offer up their own take on the mass-produced gourmet treat in the form of these vanilla/caramel/chocolate bars, which can be had for $2.99 per 3-count box. First impressions: why the hell are there only three bars per package? I thought the first rule of any product was to have an equal number of items in a box, so that couples could share; I guess the new rule is to have an odd number, which would force people to buy 2 in order to get a shareable, even number. We’re on to you, Psychological Marketing Guy. Another first impression: why aren’t these released under the Specially Selected label? The packaging looks premi

Nature's Nectar 100% Juice Mango Passion Fruit Juice (Aldi)

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A nice, tangy break from your typical juices. I’m not a healthy person. I don’t think it really takes a rocket scientist to figure that out; just take a look at all of the things I’ve reviewed. That means I don’t typically “splurge” on healthier versions of things, i.e. I don’t buy organic stuff (unless it’s the same or similarly priced to the non-organic version), I don’t care if items are “all-natural”, etc. Basically, if it’s cheap and looks like something I’d like, I’ll get it. But we all have our weird “rules”, and one thing I virtually refuse to buy are juice “cocktails”, which are juice drinks that aren’t 100% juice. I don’t know why this is, but the thought of getting mostly sugar and/or syrups mixed with water doesn’t do much for me. I doubt that 100% juice drinks are all that much healthier, but for some reason I’ve just gotten it in my head to only get the “real thing”, and so that’s all I get. Aldi has quite a few 100% juice drinks, but I go through phases where certain ju

Sherwood Premium Milk Chocolate Truffles (Dollar Tree)

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Let's be real here: I think "premium" might be a bit of a stretch... My wife actually got these as a gift from someone, and promptly forgot about them...that’s where I swooped in (with her permission, of course). I knew these were from Dollar Tree, and I’m a huge fan of the name brand spherical truffles, so I was a little excited, but mostly nervous, to see what Dollar Tree could do with them. The presentation is nice for a dollar store product, but not something that would be considered premium anywhere else: It’s in a cardboard container with a foldable top that can close back up, assuming you’re not like me and rip it first thing. The colors and design on the package are okay, maybe a step or two above similar products, but again, not really something that stands out all that much, with some rather muted, dark colors.  Each truffle is individually wrapped in its own foil wrapper bearing the “Sherwood” name...because, as we all know, “Sherwood” stands for dignity, and c