Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Stocking up on Starbucks Christmas Blend coffee

A 1-pound bag of Starbucks Christmas Blend of whole coffee beans is $14.95, left, but you get a $5 gift card through Wednesday.

Editor's note: Today, I discuss good buys in Starbucks coffee beans, red wine and sweet potatoes; Japanese beef for $109.99 a pound, and the search for an item that has been discontinued at Costco Wholesale.


Holiday promotions have made stocking up on Starbucks Christmas Blend affordable, reducing the price for a pound of the whole coffee beans to $9.95 from $14.95.

I picked up 2 pounds at a Starbucks on Eighth Avenue in Manhattan, where the beans were 30% off.

And on Monday, I bought a third bag at the Starbucks on Essex Street in Hackensack, where I got a $5 gift card with my purchase.

I asked for a Turkish grind for use in my drip coffee maker at home.

The Christmas Blend is described as "spice and sweetness" on the red bags, which I have stored in the freezer.

Wine at Whole Foods

I've been trying some of the $3.99 bottles of red wine from Whole Foods Market in Paramus, and like the Don Simon Shiraz from Spain best.

Today, my wife picked up a case of 12 bottles for $47.88, with an additional discount of $9.58 or 20%. That works out to about $3.19 a bottle.

The bottles have a screw top, which is a lot better than a cork or stopper for storing the wine between meals.


I haven't been too happy with the clementines I've bought at ShopRite, H Mart and Costco Wholesale, especially the ones from Morocco.

On Sunday, I picked up a 5-pound box of Bagu Clementines from Spain on sale for $4.99 at the H Mart in Little Ferry.

They are perfect: sweet and easy to peel. 

At Costco on Monday, I saw clementines for $6.99, and kept on walking.

I roast sweet potatoes in a 375-degree oven until they begin oozing their sugar, and ignore recipes on the bag that call for adding butter to them. They are perfect just as they are, skin and all.

Sweet potatoes

I did buy a 10-pound bag of sweet potatoes for only $4.99 at my Hackensack Costco, and roasted five of them on Monday.

The big packages at Costco don't seem to cut down on the number of trips I make to the warehouse store, because there are simply too many great food items available there.

When I tire of schlepping them into the house, I just say to myself that it's good exercise.

$109-a-pound beef

Costco.com is selling an 11-pound piece of "authentic Japanese Wagyu Kobe Beef" for $109.99 a pound or $1,199.99 after a $300 discount.

Costco.com says the ribeye is the top grade of Japanese beef available. 

The price includes overnight shipping of the fresh meat.

We haven't been able to find Clorox Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner at Costco Wholesale for weeks. They are too expensive online, but I found them at Target in Hackensack, where they are on sale until Dec. 28.

Bowling for dollars

Even on sale, Clorox Automatic Toilet Bowl Cleaner is no bargain.

We have been buying large packages of the product at Costco Wholesale for a few years, but haven't seen it on the shelves for many weeks.

At Target on Monday, two-tablet packages of Bleach and Bleach & Blue were on sale for $4.49, a discount of 80 cents.

I got another 5% off by using my Target credit card.

Clorox Bleach & Blue "cleans up to 4 months," according to the package, but nowhere does it tell you whether that is for two tablets or one.

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