The following are uncovered hacked e-mails from Trader Joe’s headquarters. The correspondence is between CEO Trader Joe and powerful cheesecake agent Graham K. Racker.
On Jun 14, 2014, at 2:19 PM, “NEW CHEESECAKE?” < [EMAIL REDACTED]>, “Graham K. Racker”> wrote:
Had a chance to check out the samples yet? Want to get these cheesecakes on the shelves stat.
On Jun 14, 2014, at 6:31 PM, “RE: NEW CHEESECAKE?” < [EMAIL REDACTED]>, “Trader Joe”> wrote:
Yes, I have. Although I appreciate the time and effort in sending me all of these cheesecake samples, there is just no way that we will be able to accommodate them all at our stores. Some of the flavors also seem strange. “Brussel Sprout?” “Toro Sashimi?” “Little Caesar’s $5 Pizza Cheesecake?” That’s not even legally possible, Graham.
Though, I will say, one particular cheesecake caught my taste buds. The Speculoos Cookie Butter Cheesecake. I think this is perfect for our stores, as it’s very good and will continue the extremely popular Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie Butter tradition.
Here’s what I think: I was at first taken aback with the fact that it wasn’t an entire cheesecake with cookie butter cream cheese or something like that, maybe a swirl. It’s more like a plain cheesecake wearing a cookie butter hat. Actually, if you consider the crumbled speculoos cookie crust, the cheesecake is wearing a cookie hat and cookie pants. Might have to save that saying for one of our sign artists!
And it’s a delightful slice. The plain cheesecake is not too sweet, allowing the cookie butter to shine. The two flavors of cheesecake and topping are relatively muted and elevate each other, allowing the consumer to mindlessly zombie-eat it, like Oreos or Doritos dust. (Ironically, I couldn’t eat more than two bites of the Oreo-Doritos Dust Cheesecake you sent)
The cookie butter top is a little denser than the cake filling itself and biting into it releases a waft of cinnamon that triggers pumpkin pie memories. Following that, the cream cheese exhibits a mild tang typical of a cheesecake. It’s almost until the aftertaste that I am walloped in the mouth by ground up shortbread dancing around my mouth. It’s not trying to reinvent cheesecake, it’s delivering what it says on the box: It’s a cheesecake with cookie butter on it. I like it.
If there is a downside, it is that it is frozen. Of course there is no way around this, as per transportation and storage necessities, but the instructions on defrosting ranges from “4-6 hours or overnight.” So people’s mileage may vary. I know myself, I sleep 3 hours a night, being the CEO of a successful company. So overnight for me is less than the recommended time. Now I’m bragging.
The speculoos cookie crust does a decent job of serving up the rest of the goods, but the cookie butter top and cheesecake are definitely the stars. Also, because it is frozen, the crust absorbs a good deal of moisture, which is not a deal breaker but not the best situation for crusts. Also to consider because of it being a frozen product—how long a consumer puts it out to be room temperature will affect the softness of the cheese in the cheesecake.
But most of all it sucks that we have to wait to eat it! This item seems great for our shelves and a good supplement or replacement for the apple pie and pumpkin pies during the holidays. Thanks Graham.
On Jun 15, 2014, at 8:35 AM, “RE: NEW CHEESECAKE?” < [EMAIL REDACTED]>, “Graham K. Racker”> wrote:
You can’t just pick and choose, Joe. If you want the Speculoos Cheesecake you have to take the Dragonfruit Salvia flavored one too. Don’t mess with me. We’re on the verge of getting Obama to pardon a cheesecake this Christmas and it will put us on the map and you will be sorry. I’m going to make it a [redacted] flavored one. You think he’ll love that?
The cheesecake industry is coming up and your Hawaiian shirt wearing pathetic losers can’t stop me. You aren’t even in control of your own brand, Joe. Not saying you’re a whore, but you’re a whore.
You can have the cookie butter cheesecake but you have to take the Cardamom Parsley Squid one too. This is not up to debate. I am not destroying my career over a minimally talented spoiled brat, Joe. I’m talking about you, Joe.
On Jun 15, 2014, at 9:06 AM, “RE: NEW CHEESECAKE?” < [EMAIL REDACTED]>, “Trader Joe”> wrote:
Good thing I have a mouth like an elephant’s brain — it can replicate tastes with amazing recall. It also feels large but actually is proportional for my body size. We don’t need you, crazy man. Putting this stuff out by December.
(Nutrition Facts – 1/6th of a cheesecake – 410 calories, 220 calories from fat, 25 grams of fat, 14 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 80 milligrams of cholesterol, 220 milligrams of sodium, 43 grams of carbohydrates, 29 grams of sugar, and 4 grams of protein.)
Item: Trader Joe’s Speculoos Cookie Butter Cheesecake
Purchased Price: $6.99
Size: 22.5 oz.
Purchased at: Trader Joe’s
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Tastes like cookie butter. Fans of cookie butter can enjoy it in cheesecake form. Not too sweet.
Cons: Thawing process unpredictable. Soggy-ish crust.