Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Product Review: Salt and Vinegar Chips III

A few weeks ago we went to a nearby dollar store, called HonK's (mouseover for IPA [1]), to get some things for our new apartment.[2] While we were wandering around I spotted two different bags of salt and vinegar chips. (You've probably guessed by now that I have a thing for them.) A little later we went to Smiths and I spotted a third. So today you get three reviews in one.

My verdict: This is the first one I spotted at HonK's. The bag looks kind of boring and that insipidness extended to the chips themselves. They weren't very crunchy and the flavor was quite muted compared to other chips I've had. They were also really greasy. I'll be sticking to superior options in the future. Like…

My verdict: This is the other one I spotted at HonK's. These are easily the most intense of the salt and vinegar chips I've tried so far.[3] In fact, Leann said it made her mouth go numb. They definitely weren't shy about putting vinegar on these chips. This was doubly surprising given the performance of the other bag of chips purchased from HonK's. When we went to HonK's again a little later, I bought two more bags. These were awesome. The only downside was that the bag tears very easily.[4] Now all that's left to review is…

My verdict: This is the one I spotted at Smith's. The bag claims that these are "never fried. never baked." What does that leave? According to them, "we start with wholesome potatoes, add a little heat and pressure, and pop! it's a chip." The ingredient list may give you an additional clue. The first item in the list is "natural potato ingredients", which it then goes on to define as "potato flakes, potato starch". So in other words, they took instant potatoes and pressure-cooked them. The final product has a weird, airy mouthfeel that just can't compare to crunchy potato chips. The flavor of the "popchips" was okay except that they all tasted slightly burnt.


[1] You may be tempted to pronounce the name of this store as HAHNKS (/hɒŋks/), but the capitalization scheme clearly indicates that it should be pronounced EYCH ON KAYZ (/eɪtʃ ɒn keɪz/).

[2] See my post entitled Out of the Old and Into the New.

[3] The quickest way to see my reviews of other salt and vinegar chips is to select the Reviews tab at the top of this page. Then scroll down to where it says Products and hit the button that says Show/Hide.

[4] See my posts The Woes of Packaging Part I and Part II.

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