I love watching the Olympics. But more than that, I LOVE watching Olympic figure skating, probably because it's one of those things I wish I could do but probably would never be able to do in a million years. This is the first year where I've been rather invested in all of the events, not just the ladies' competition (which is probably the least interesting competition IMO this year. Barring something catastrophic, it's going to be Russia #1 and #2 and everyone else fighting for a piece of the bronze). What I find fascinating is how these athletes deliver (or not!) given all the media hype leading up to the Games. Case in point - Nathan Chen. What a bittersweet journey of so so so much King Quad hype, two just awful performances, and a 6 quad redemption (yeah I know technically only landed five of them nicely..but you have to give him credit for going for it). Of course, you can't blame his performance ENTIRELY on media hype, but it definitely played a big part.
Which brings me to this - social media hype. What a crazy effective marketing tool, especially given the potential for highlighting only all the good things and masking or downplaying the rest. Now there are some things that are clearly more objective while others are more subjective - like Trader Joe's stuff. I confess that I've allowed social media hype of TJ's things to cloud my judgment at times. I end up wasting money on things I KNOW I won't like just because I saw it on Instagram and it looked interesting. Sometimes the risk pays off and I discover amazing things like 3 seed beet crackers, but a lot of time, that's how I find very meh earl grey tea, which probably benefits y'all but not me. :P
Anyhoo, this green goddess dressing has been all the rage on Insta (because I really like seeing what other people buy at TJ's...don't you? :P) and it's frequently sold out at my TJ's. I finally caved and picked it up.
Note that there are two other flavors in this dressing series - carrot miso ginger and almond butter turmeric, which I didn't bother picking up just yet because I couldn't justify $10 on salad dressing when my fridge still has too many half-used bottled dressings. (A doesn't usually eat salad because "it isn't a food" and when he does have salad he takes it without dressing because "why make an attempt to make non-food taste better?" :P)
This bottle is quite small and contains less than 1.5cups of dressing. No anchovies here, which probably means relief for many people. I'm surprised that this dressing doesn't have more fat considering that it uses both avocado and olive oil. The ingredients are wonderful - no added preservatives or anything funky, which means this is perishable and meant to be consumed within a reasonable amount of time.
Two tablespoons sounds like a lot but it's really not. I used exactly two tablespoons in this picture and ended up pouring a bit more afterward because I couldn't taste the dressing as well for the amount of salad I was eating. Nothing fancy here - just arugula and spinach with random things in my fridge - cucumbers, avocado, leftover quinoa, dried cranberries, and a soft-boiled egg.
I subconsciously set really high expectations for this, because everything that I had been researching about green goddess dressing made it seem so delicious, bright, herby, and creamy. So I was a bit perplexed to have a mixed first impression. On one hand, it was tasty but it missed a bunch of areas that I thought would deliver.
2) The lack of creaminess probably explains the low fat content. Yay if you're watching your diet but mehh..missing the delightful flavor that fat brings to the table.
3) I'm team anchovy. That pungent, saltiness is what makes a good Caesar dressing delicious, and I think that's exactly what is lacking here.
4) Maybe sour sits too high on my palate, but I would have liked more acidity. Or maybe lime instead of lemon.
5) It's super garlicky and onion-y, which I don't mind. The chives and basil are there but barely detectable. BUT you probably will want AT LEAST a breath mint after this baby, unless you want to breath fire on everyone after lunch.
6) I don't think it's salty enough, which may have something to do with the lack of anchovy or the low sodium here (probably good for low salt diets and those trying to stave off hypertension..heh). Granted, you could make up for this by having some salty ingredient in your salad, like olives or feta or something, which I didn't have. I ended up sprinkling Everything But the Bagel Seasoning to compensate. :P
After having had this several more times - I still like this dressing. No, it doesn't have the transcendent power or pizzazz of a Yuzuru Hanyu (THAT SHORT PROGRAM THO. HE'S BACK Y'ALL. What injury? Have you ever seen an arena rain Winnie-The-Pooh Bears?) or a Nathan Chen at max potential. It definitely has an herby aroma, a middle consistency that clings to salad greens nicely, and a pleasant taste that can offset whatever heavy food you're eating, not to mention, enough garlic to fight off every vampire within a mile radius. At $3.69 per bottle, I'm not clamoring to buy it every TJ's trip but I can't deny its potential. So if we're doing figure skating comparisons, Ima say this dressing is like Vincent Zhou (not a perfect analogy because Vincent will probably improve and this dressing...might not). Burst on the scene, made a splash by landing a big quad lutz, lots of potential, interesting personality, and lots of homework to do before the next Olympics.
Sorry. That was a bit much. :D
TL;DR: Trader Joe's Green Goddess Salad Dressing. A healthier green goddess INSPIRED dressing. 7 out of 10.