Monthly Archives: January 2014

Barney Butter Almond Butter (Crunchy)

DSC_1140

I saw this almond butter at Whole Foods and decided to try it out. I’m a big fan of Justin’s almond butter and was curious to see how this product would differ. (I reviewed Justin’s maple almond butter here.)

Flavor

Though the ingredients are exactly the same, this almond butter is very different from Justin’s almond butters. First of all, it’s crunchy which large chunks of almond strewn throughout. Not only does this give if a very different texture, but it reminds me of white chocolate chip cookies which is a big plus.

The base itself is a single light brown color, whereas Justin’s products are a mix of various shades, giving them a sandy appearance. Barney Butter is also much less oilier, which can be a positive or negative depending on how you look at it: spreadability vs over-greasiness.

Even though the sugar amount is exactly the same as Justin’s maple butter, I felt Barney Butter’s almond butter to be significantly sweeter.

All in all a great taste!

Nutrition/Ingredients

Each serving is 2 tablespoons (32 grams) and there are about 9 in the jar. There are 180 calories per serving, with 140 of those from fat.

In a serving there is also 80 mg sodium (3% of DV), 3 grams of sugars, and 6g of protein.

With no artificial flavors or colors, no preservatives, and no mysterious “natural” flavors, it can’t get much more natural than this. To top it off, evaporated cane juice and sea salt are used instead of their common counterparts. Yes, whether these are actually healthier is in debate, but if I had a choice I would pick these over their more common variants.

Full ingredient list: Dry roasted almonds, evaporated cane juice, palm fruit oil, sea salt.

Price/Availability

I bought a 10 ounce (284 g) jar of this at Whole Foods Market for around $4.99.

Ratings:   Flavor: 9.0    Nutrition/Ingredients: 9.0   Price:  8.0  Overall: 8.66

Summary

A great way to get natural protein and all the other nutrients that come packed in almonds, along with a wonderful taste. Highly recommended for those looking for an upgrade for their plain-jane peanut butter.

References

http://www.barneybutter.com/products/category/barney-butter-crunchy/

Arbor Mist: White Zinfandel (Exotic Fruits)

I was looking for something sweet, fruity, and alcoholic, and the colorful frosty bottle of Arbor Mist White Zinfandel caught my eye so I decide to pick it up.

Flavor

I’m no wine expert so I cannot tell you if this is a true ‘Zinfandel’ or not, but judging from the cheap price I doubt it is on any wine connoisseur’s top ten list.

This wine’s flavor is what I call very… moderate. It’s moderately sweet, moderately fruity (both smell and taste), and tastes moderately like wine (this is probably because there is only 6% alcohol).

It goes down smoothly and it’s quite easy to drink down a whole bottle in a matter of minutes. However if you had other alcohol products available its hard to say if you would choose this one.

Nutrition/Ingredients

There are 3 servings per bottle, with each containing 15 grams of sugars and 170 calories.

In my rush to pick up something at the grocery store I was fooled by the “Exotic Fruits” labeling and led to believe there is actual fruit inside. That is not the case – there is exactly 0% fruit juice present. The fruit-like flavor comes from various natural sources, which is nice, but not likely to be any real “exotic fruits”.

The sweetener is HFCS which is something I try to avoid, but frankly I haven’t yet seen any evidence that proves for certain this is any better or worse than other sweeteners (including non-calorie sweeteners and natural fruit juices). Still, I consider this a minor weak point and plan on looking for a sweet wine that uses real fruit juices in it. If you know of one, please let me know.

There is a trio of preservatives I’ve seen used in other wines before, obvious not ideal but probably a necessary evil for most wines.

Ingredients: white zinfandel, water, high fructose corn syrup, natural flavors, carbon dioxide, citric acid, potassium sorbate, potassium benzoate, and potassium metabisulfite (to preserve freshness).

Price/Availability

I purchased this 750ml bottle for $14.99 at Winn Dixie supermarket.

Ratings:   Flavor:   7.0 Nutrition/Ingredients: 6.0    Price:  8.0   Overall: 7.0

Summary

This is an OK sweet, fruit-flavored wine if you are buying on a budget, but there is nothing great about it worth going out of your way to pick it up.

References

http://www.arbormist.com/exotic_fruits_white_zinfandel.asp