Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Canada Dry Black Cherry Wishniak

Wishniak is a black cherry soda that is named after real wishniak, which is actually an Eastern European vodka-based black cherry liqueur. (If you like reading about liquor, check out my other site here.) Legend has it that this genre of soda was conceived and named in the Eastern European disaporae of Philadelphia.  A brand called Frank's was probably the original version, and it call still be bought today.

Some of the larger soft drink companies have issued their own versions of Wishniak, and Canada Dry is among them, which denotes it as a limited availablity(specifically, probably regional) varietal.

Full disclosure: I'm not a big fan of black cherry flavored foods.  I find that I prefer sweeter cherry flavors like found in Coca-Cola Cherry or Cheerwine.

The flavor of this stuff is pretty good.  It's a tad more bitter and sour than more traditional cherry sodas, but it maintains a sweetness that keeps it more on the crowd-pleaser side.  This may be a bit tame for true black cherry enthusiasts.  The flavor is indeed "dark" with a character that will remind you of other dark berries, such as raspberry or grape.  There's also a bit of black pepper that bites you near the end.  On the swallow, this soda manages to leave a short crisp finish with almost no aftertaste.

Canada Dry Black Cherry Wishniak: (Good)

Acquired: privately-owned convenience store

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Triple Double Oreo

As I've said before, Oreo isn't known to issue many new flavors.  Besides chocolate and vanilla, and the occasional mint and peanut butter, Oreo generally sticks to its small stable of flavor varieties.

What Oreo has no problem with, however, is changing the morphology of their products.  They've been known to change the color of their vanilla creme for almost every holiday or seasonal occasion, but they've also been known get a little crazy with their cookie-to-creme ratios and combinations.

Well, Oreo is beginning to explore the extremes of this doctrine with Triple Double Oreo, an unholy combination of 3 Oreo cookies sandwiching 2 layers of both vanilla and chocolate creme.

My opinion is that this variety is more geared for novelty or shock value.  It's hard for me to believe that any Oreo fan would reach for these more than once instead of their favorite variety.

The glut of chocolate cookie in every bite drowns out whatever flavor the cremes would offer, especially the chocolate creme.  In the end, these taste like eating 2 original Oreos at one time.

Admittedly, I prefer balance in my Oreo snacks; too much creme or cookie (or both) can really throw me off.  I would rather have an single Oreo or a Chocolate Creme Oreo than this muddled monstrosity.

Triple Double Oreo: (Good)

Original Oreo(for comparison): (Great)

Acquired: supermarket

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Utz Wavy Pit BBQ

 Note: This is a Presumptive Ephemeral Nom.

Utz is a regional brand, with their headquarters in Pennsylvania and their distribution network somewhat between Maine and Georgia.  You may be able to find their stuff as far south as Florida and or far west as the Mississippi River, but not much farther than that.

It's a shame, too.  Utz's snacks are top-notch and, better, they are known to offer Ephemeral Noms!

Their vintage packaging isn't flashy at all, so you have to take your time in order to catch their less common iterations.  This here is Utz Wavy Pit BBQ potato chips, which is different from various other barbecue flavors that they offer.

These are strangely pleasant.  It took me a few chips to realize what was going on here.  The barbecue flavor is quite faint, which led me to question if that is all the chips offered.  But I soon realized that perhaps even stronger than barbecue is the flavor of garlic and onion.  It's an odd combination, not really thematic, but damn if I don't enjoy the hell out of these in a strange, unsettling way.  The flavors don't harmonize at all, but it still works, as if I stirred some backyard barbecue meal items on a paper plate all together and started taking bites of the mangled goop.

Utz Wavy Pit BBQ: Good

Original Utz Bar-B-Q(for comparison): Good

Acquired: supermarket

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Doritos Jacked Enchilada Supreme

Note: This is a Presumptive Ephemeral Nom.

New Doritos flavors tend to be among the most exciting snacks, and so I nabbed this bag greedily when I saw it.

I was taken aback by their texture, and then I was informed by the back of the bag that this new line, Doritos Jacked, contains new extra thick chips to go along with the new flavors.  I'm not sure how I feel about this.  Back near the turn of the millennium Tostitos had their thicker Tostitos Gold variety, which I loved, but these Doritos Jacked are even thicker and crunchier.

The flavor of Enchilada Supreme Doritos seems like a redundant and half-hearted attempt.  The base of the seasoning feels like a duller version of the company's Nacho Cheese flavor.  On top of this base I can detect a few additions - chiles, bell pepper, a bit of cumin.  The flavor is overall enjoyable but not assertive enough, almost like the dull lovechild of Doritos Nacho Cheese and Doritos Taco.

As for the Jacked line's textural signature, I don't feel like it adds anything.  Then again, I always tend to enjoy more tender snacks like Tostitos Multigrain over normal tortilla chips and regular potato chips over their kettle-cooked counterparts.

Doritos Jacked Enchilada Supreme: (Good)

Doritos Nacho Cheese(for comparison): (Great)

Acquired: supermarket

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Pop-Tarts Festival Fun Frosted Vanilla I-Scream Cone

Pop-Tarts has rolled out their Ice Cream Shoppe flavors, if I'm being honest, so far so good!

I'm filled with delight as I pull the pastries out of the wrapper and am greeted with sprinkles on the Pop-Tart's frosting!  Yay!  This vanilla ice cream-flavored treat is topped with chocolate frosting, which is an interesting choice.

The smell of them instantly bring me back to when I was a kid, because these smell just like the Pop-Tarts S'mores flavor, which I ate every morning for years.

On the first taste, it's quite sweet.  I then detect a doughy note, almost like a cake flavor.  I'm not sure why it's there (perhaps to mimic the flavor of the cone?), but it's definitely welcome.  The next flavor is an easy vanilla that borders on a marshmallow-like sweetness, with perhaps even a bit of coconut in there!  Last is chocolate-- this might be the first time I've ever detected the flavor of the frosting on a Pop-Tart.  It works amazingly well.  Everything works together here.

When toasted, I find that this product doesn't taste quite as good.  The flavor is deadened a bit, and I daresay that the texture is less satisfyingly chewy.

However, notice that the front of this Pop-Tarts' box says loudly "TRY 'EM FROZEN".  Well ok, then!  I put one in the freezer and came back to it the next morning.  While I see what they're doing there with the frozen "ice cream" motif, I think the strategy is misplaced.  The texture took on a even-more-pleasant chewiness, but the flavor of the pastry was almost undetectable, and the frozen frosting snapped unsettlingly when bitten.  No thanks.

In all, the snack was best at room temperature, but make no mistake, this is one of the best Pop-Tarts flavors I've ever had.

Pop-Tarts Festival Fun Frosted Vanilla I-Scream Cone: (Great)
Original Pop-Tarts(Strawberry, for comparison): (Good)

Acquired: supermarket