3.19.2008

Roundy's Review Roundup!


HOLY SHIT!

Have you seen the price of groceries these days?

In these uncertain economic times (Wait, I mean “Robust Economy,” isn’t that right, George W. Bush? Wow, what we will do when that motherfucking genius isn't around?), you might cast an eye toward those store brands. I know, it’s a risky proposition. Is generic ring bologna really going to meet your family’s high, high standards? Will they judge you harshly if you bring home some no-name Thousand Island dressing?

Here at Summary Judgments, we always have the public’s good in mind, so we’ve compiled a review of Roundy’s store brand products.

For those of you outside of the Wisconsin/Illinois area, the Roundy’s corporation owns the Pick N Save, Copps and Rainbow chains of grocery stores.

A few overall notes:

1) First of all, the “Chairman Bob Approved” campaign? (Bob Mariano is the Chairman of the Roundy’s corporation.) Might need some re-tooling. The primary in-store feature of this campaign are little “thumbs-up” cardboard cut-outs that stick out from the shelves, alerting you to featured Roundy’s brand products.

Cute, right?

It took us about 2.4 seconds to realize that the thumbs could be easily flipped over, thus creating the unintentional “Thumbs down from Chairman Bob” campaign and scaring shoppers away from that reasonably-priced can of jumbo pitted olives.

And trust me, we weren’t the only ones flipping the thumbs, not by a long shot. It’s pretty much the primary form of entertainment at the 16th and National Pick N Save. Well, it’s a close second behind loudly airing your marital grievances via cell phone.

2) I realize it’s probably some family legacy thing, but I think the products might go down easier with a more appealing name. Roundy’s. Meh. It’s not exactly unappetizing, but it’s not doing anything to draw me in, either.

Aldi’s does it right when it comes to store-brand names. In the market for some generic canned veggies? Why, look, it’s “Happy Harvest” brand! Need an industrial size bag of noodles? Well you’re in luck sir, for you’re about to purchase “Chef’s Choice” dried elbow macaroni. Ooooooo, fancy. Better hurry before the chef’s snatch it up!

(Please note. Summary Judgments does not recommend Aldi’s products, particularly “Happy Harvest” canned goods. If you really want to know why, send me an email.)

3) The design values on the Roundy’s packaging is poor. Weak fonts, muddy colors – the overall design just screams, “I am so fucking cheap.” Could the good folks in the Roundy’s creative department step it up a little? We’re already shopping generic – give us just a little bit of our dignity back.

Despite their creative flaws, I would wholeheartedly recommend most Roundy’s, Roundy’s Select or Roundy’s Organics products…

But, let’s face it; it’s hard to fuck up applesauce.

Most of the Roundy’s stuff is of the processed, smashed, blended or otherwise smooshed variety. How can you assess the true quality of ingredients rendered into a liquid, paste, spread or sauce?

Know what I’d be impressed with? Roundy’s brand Filet Mignon. Roundy’s Select brand Beluga caviar. Roundy’s Organics stripped sea bass on sautéed jicama matchsticks.

Ok, moving on. Here are the ratings for some specific Roundy’s brand products:

Roundy’s Organics Pure Maple Syrup: I give this two thumbs up (WAAAAAY up). Tastes exactly like the $8 pure maple syrup and it’s seriously cheaper. Like many whole dollars cheaper. The kids like it, we’re saving whole dollars, everyone’s happy.

Roundy’s Organics Fruit Spread: Also two thumbs up. Keep in mind, though, this product is smooshed up fruit. Not real hard to fuck up. It’s definitely cheaper than the national brands, with no discernible difference in taste or texture. Go for it.

Roundy’s Select Premium Mint Chocolate Chip Ice Cream: One thumb up. It’s okay, but it’s not that much cheaper than Breyer’s and it has a weird, slightly foamy consistency. It tastes a lot more processed than other premium ice cream brands. However, it does go on sale a lot, and, hence, the thumb.

Roundy’s All Natural and Roundy’s Organics All Natural Apple Sauce: Two, thumbs, but please see my comments above re: degree of difficultly in fucking up applesauce.

Roundy’s Select European Sodas (Lemonade, Raspberry Lemonade, Blueberry something, and I forget the rest): I guess one thumb up. These are really expensive, like $3 for a 1.5-liter bottle. Not available in individual serving sizes (which means serious loss of carbonation if you don’t drink the whole thing right away), the bottles are too tall and take up valuable tall-item space in the fridge. Taste is not memorable. That’s it, I’m taking the thumb away. These things blow. No thumbs.

Roundy’s Organics Crunchy Peanut Butter: Two thumbs up. Comparable to any national brand “natural” peanut butter. People, it’s smashed peanuts and salt, no need to pay more.

Roundy’s Citrus Breeze (or something like that) Anti-Bacterial Dish Detergent: One thumb. As dish detergent, it’s on the low end of the scale -- not as bubbly as Joy, without the grease-mitigating properties of Dawn, and lacking the historical presence of Ajax. Still, the price is easily half that of national brands, and sometimes, that’s good enough for us.

Roundy’s Eggs and Milk: Two thumbs. All eggs and all milk come from the orifice of a barnyard animal. There’s really no need to pay for a name-brand orifice.

So, in conclusion, there’s absolutely nothing wrong with Roundy’s store brand products, especially when it comes to things consisting primarily of smashed fruit or nuts or products that come from an orifice. Also, George W. Bush is a fucking idiot.

Help us help you – if you have something to say about Roundy’s, or any other store brands, let’s hear it in the comments!

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Roundy's bar soap is great for washing out the foul mouths of gutter speak adults. Do you live in the hood? Is this the way you were raise to speak (write)?

Zach W. said...

"Roundy's bar soap is great for washing out the foul mouths of gutter speak adults. Do you live in the hood? Is this the way you were raise to speak (write)?"

And what praytell does the use of colorful language have to do with living in the "hood?" Is there a connection between the use of foul language and where someone grew up?

Further, for someone who's so quick to criticize the way someone else speaks - or in this case writes - you sure do have a tenuous grasp on the English languages yourself. First of all anyone who knows anything knows gutterspeak is one word, not two, and it's not "raise to speak;" it's "raised to speak." Learn the language before you start criticizing someone else, jackass.

Anne Quimby Mathias said...

Excellent questions, Zach. For example, I graduated from high school in Kohler, WI -- and more upper-middle-class-white-bread you can not get. My parents never use/d profanity. Pretty much sinks Anony's theory now, doesn't it?

Mr./Mrs. Anonymous Wanker:

Why do you keep returning? For someone clearly offended by profanity, this is clearly not the site for you. Seems stupid to keep coming back -- I'm going to continue dropping the F bombs, you're going to continue to find offense, the circle will be unbroken. My advise is to find another review site more in touch with your "values." OK? Thanks.

On the other hand, if don't come back, you're never going to know how my Adli's beef ragout turned out. Too bad.

Anne Quimby Mathias said...

Sorry, I meant my "advice" to you...

christianmom said...

The idea of this blog is so valuable - I appreciate the information. I'll have to find it somewhere else though, because I'm at a loss as to why so many expletives are used. Not sure how dropping the f-bomb enhances the site, but that's my opinion that everyone else is free to disagree with. Again, thanks for the information and I wish you the best.

Anonymous said...

Although I think Rounds milk is better than conventional milk, I dont think Rounds organic milk is superior to any other factory farm milk. Here is why I think so.

These private labels like Roundys are not transparent when it comes to letting consumers know were they source their milk from, Iam sorry , I am big proponent of organic dairy and meat but totally shun labels like Roundys, Horizon milk e.t.c. due to their practices. Not all organic products are created equal.

There is a reason why Roundys is cheaper than for example lets say Organic valley. Because Roundys is a private label where in they dont disclose their milk suppliers unlike other transparent organic dairy brands. Dont take my word just look at this

http://www.cornucopia.org/organic-egg-scorecard/egg_profiles/FarmID_72.html

Also, look at this http://www.cornucopia.org/organic-egg-scorecard/ and make your own call.


We have been using organic dairy and meat products for a long time now and I realized that not ALL organic products are created equal, its up to the consumers to educate themselves and the above website is a good place to start.

best in health
'Jay

Cat Mistal said...

It's funny how people who are offended by the use of expletives have no problem offending people in general, so long as their language is clean... Insulting language and verbal threats? No problem! It's not like I swore or anything.

halcyon said...

Roundy's fake Oreo's are fantastic! I've been disappointed trying cheaper knockoffs that never taste like the real thing, but theirs come the closest.