Chip Review’s Honorable Mentions – 2014

25 Chips to Christmas Honorable Mentions

25 Chips to Christmas 2014

These chips nearly made our Top 25 of the Year, and deserve some recognition too!!

(honorable mentions, in no particular order)

Archer Farms - Habanero Ranch

Archer Farms – Habanero Ranch Homestyle Kettle-Cooked Potato Chips

“First wave of flavors includes an impressively rich and creamy, sour, buttermilk flavor.   Then a wave of powerful garlic and onion!  And we do mean POWER. FULL!”

Jay's - Nacho Rings

Jay’s – Nacho Rings

“After popping one Nacho Ring into our mouths we immediately knew what we were really dealing with there.  You can’t fool us, Jay’s Nacho Rings are the amazing hybrid offspring of a Bugle and a cheese puff!”

De-lish-us - Ripple Potato Chips

De-lish-us – Ripple Potato Chips

De-lish-us just seems to consistently put out products that we are impressed with.  Simple, and straightforward.  Nothing flashy or over the top.  Simply good old, quality products!”

chipz Happen - Spice-z Garlic Parmesanchipz Happen - Cinnful Sweet Treat

chipz Happen – Spice-Z Parmesan Garlic Gourmet Tortilla Chipz

chipz Happen – Cinnful Sweet Heat Gourmet Tortilla Chipz

“First and foremost, is that these gourmet tortilla chips taste real.  They taste homemade.  In fact, they trigger tasty memories of those delicious, freshly fried, mom and pop’s Mexican restaurant tortilla chips that find their way to the table as soon as you are seated.”

Deano's Jalapenos - Ranch Jalapeno Chips

Deano’s Jalapenos – Ranch Jalapeno Chips

“These chips are not for spicy food amateurs, so don’t say we didn’t warn you!!  In fact, if we are being honest here, Deano’s Jalapeno Chips are very close to being too spicy for even us to enjoy!”

Dirty - Sour Cream & Onion

“Dirty” – Sour Cream & Onion Potato Chips

“Apparently, we are not the only ones who have wondered why these chips are called “Dirty”?  According to “Dirty’s” website: “The name “Dirty” comes from the process we used to prepare our chips. The potato slices are not washed, leaving more of the potato flavor….”

Pop! Gourmet Popcorn - Huy Fong's Sriracha

Pop! Gourmet Popcorn & Huy Fong Foods – The Original Sriracha Hot Chili Sauce Popcorn

“This popcorn is really delicious!  D-e-l-i-c-i-o-u-s, delicious; but with a surprisingly subtle seasoning when compared directly against the real hot sauce.”

The Better Chip - Chipotle

The Better Chip – Chipotle & Sea Salt Tortilla Chips

“A fine textbook definition of the saying: less is more.  The Better Chip keeps it simple, and merely conveys chipotle essence to the smoky chile maximus!”

Cosmos - Crushed Sea Salt Vinegar & Black Pepper Puff Corn

Cosmos Creations – Crushed Sea Salt Vinegar with Pepper Premium Puffed Corn

“We’ve tried a lot of different types of puffed corn in our time.  We’ve crunched our way through corn puffs, puffers, crunchies, kurls, doodles, dittos, and nuggets; and in the end, they are all sort of the same corn-y snacks.”

Pringles - Sriracha Asian Chili Sauce

Pringles – Sriracha Asian Chili Sauce

“Zippy and spicy, tongue tingling, Thai chili flavor, combined with a very generous dosage of powerful garlic, and rounded out with a heavy splash of nose burning vinegar!  These are tasty, tasty potato crisps.”

**Chip Review’s Top 25 list of the Year consists of chips that we tasted and reviewed during the 2014 calendar year for the first time.  The chips are not necessarily new to the industry, but they were new to Chip Review in 2014!

REVIEW: Pringles Tortillas Limited Time Only! – Cinnamon Sugar

Rating: ©©©©-1/2 chips  (lip-smacking)

Pringles Tortillas - Cinnamon SugarHear-ye! Hear-ye!! Pringles holiday pandemonium has arrived!  That’s right, time to put up those Christmas lights, get those shovels out, start brining those turkeys, and of course trying out the limited edition weird Pringles seasonal flavors!!

Lucky for all of us – these are fantastic!!  Really, really lip-smackingly tasty!  We didn’t expect as much, but these are so good we want to write Pringles a letter and tell them to remove that Limited Time Only! label from the canister and keep these beauties around all years long!!

Initially, these Tortillas evoked thoughts of churros.  You know, those long, tubular shaped, fried “doughnuts” from Spain that are often dusted with cinnamon and sugar, and can be eaten while walking the streets of Madrid?  However, by pairing the cinnamon and sugar with a crunchy corn tortilla base, we would classify these as Mexican churros!  Either which way we call it, we still end up with delicious Pringles!

The classic combination of cinnamon and sugar always evokes our inner most childhood memories.  Seriously, our memories associated with the joy of devouring slice upon slice of buttery, cinnamon and sugar toast is so strong, we wonder if that is all we ate growing up?!  The near perfect harmony of the sweet, salty and earthy aromatic notes come together with an explosion in our mouths!  Luckily for all of us, Pringles has hit that combo right on the crisp!!  What really helps these Tortillas to solidify their near perfect harmony is the right amount of salt to help counter and compliment the cinnamon and sugar.  Throw the three ingredients onto a delicious corn tortilla crisp and you’ve got some lip-smacking seasonal crisps!

If you have not yet introduced yourself to Pringles Tortillas line of crisps, we wonder why you are reading this?!?  You’re reading a review of chips, you must be a fan of salty (sometimes sweet) and crunchy snacks, and we’ve been trying to tell you that Pringles Tortillas are among the really good ones for a while now.  So, what are you waiting for, get out there and give them a crunch!!

Let’s try to understand the intricacies of Pringles corn Tortillas crisps themselves.  The Tortillas are a heartier, denser, crunchier, and can we just call them a more “rustic” corn variation of Pringles traditional potato crisps.  Their mouth-feel is similar to the potato-based Pringles, only less brittle on the bite, with a grainier texture.  The crisps do still inhabit Pringles’ classically curved, oval, uniform design, allowing them to stack perfectly in their canister.  And the corn flavor is definitely front and center within these crisps, and like we’ve already said, it pairs very well with this seasoning.  If we had to pinpoint what we actually don’t love about these crisps, it would most likely be that due to the crisps strong, lingering sweet presence, we cannot crunch as many of them as we would like to.  Downing an entire canister of these would most likely result in some form of diabetic shock to any of us!!

Great job Pringles!  Thanks for continuing to push the flavor combo boundaries, and dabbling in flavors that most other chip companies wouldn’t ever think of trying!  As long as you keep coming up with these unique flavors, we’ll keep trying them out!

As always, these are our thoughts, we would love to hear what you think.  Agree or disagree, let us know.

Discovered at Walmart; Darien, Illinois

Pringles Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© return to sender

©© tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

©©©©©“A” list

REVIEW: Pringles Limited Time Only! – Milk Chocolate

Rating: ©©© chips  (notable)

Pringles - Milk ChocolateFor the 2014 holiday chip eating season Pringles has released two new “sweet-holiday-ish” inspired flavors, of course piggy backing off of the success of their other unique limited edition seasonal crisps the past couple of years.  In addition to the milk chocolate flavor, they have also added a Cinnamon & Sugar flavor to their Tortillas line of crisps – churros anyone?! (review coming soon).

For the 2013 holiday season Pringles released a limited edition White Chocolate flavor of crisps, and for one reason or another we never got around to reviewing them until this past JULY!!  So, in other words we were very late to the party on those ones, but this also means that we can still taste those lip-smacking, sweet cream and salty combined Pringles on the backs of our tongues.  Which, in turn, gives us an advantage when reviewing the milk chocolate flavor.  Henceforth, giving Chip Review the upper edge, and surely securing our victory….

We’ve asked before, but we’ll ask again, how much further can Pringles possibly push their flavor boundaries?!?  They have already brought us the likes of Pumpkin Pie, Cinnamon & Sugar, White Chocolate Peppermint, Pecan Pie, and even Mint Chocolate Chip, which we didn’t even get to try out here in the states!  We were sort of hoping that they would try their hand at some of the more savory holiday flavors this season.  Something like cranberry, mashed potatoes, turkey, stuffing, but alas it seems as though Pringles likes to stick with what has been working up to this point.

Overall, Chip Review enjoyed last year’s white chocolate flavored Pringles quite a bit.  They weren’t revolutionary, or spot on accurate, or anything, they were just a decently, subtly sweet and salty potato crisp.  So, based on the success of those crisps, maybe we came in with too high of hopes for the milk chocolate flavor?  But, similar to the way that Junk Food Guy felt about last year’s white chocolate flavor, we pretty much feel about this year’s milk chocolate.  They just fall flat, and sort of tasted eerily similar to the white chocolate flavor.

Initially, we did smell some strong notes of cocoa as we opened the canister, and the potato crisps were sparsely coated with a light brown dusting of seasoning.  Truth be told, we had envisioned that the crisps themselves would actually be brown, but it looks like Pringles has stuck with their traditional potato crisps, simply dusted with the milk chocolate seasoning.  As for their flavor, we do not taste chocolate of any sort.  We had two reviewers taste them without knowing what they were trying, and neither one of them made any mention of chocolate.  Both nailed the fact that they were eating Pringles, but one referred to them as sweet cream, and the other called them simply sweet and salty.  These Pringles aren’t bad in any way, in fact they taste pretty great, but we just cannot find any real signs of chocolate flavor hidden anywhere among them!  We wanted chocolate!!  We feel cheated!!  This is a missed opportunity by Pringles’, and we still expect a delicious holiday crisp this year!!  That’s right, Cinnamon & Sugar Tortillas Pringles we’re looking and relying on you!!

As always, these are our thoughts, we would love to hear what you think.  Agree or disagree, let us know.

Crisps discovered at Walmart; Darien, Illinois

Pringles Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© return to sender

©© tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

©©©©©“A” list

REVIEW: Pringles – Exclusive Flavor Sweet Chili Tango

Rating: ©©©-3/4 chips  (notable)

Pringles - Sweet Chili TangoWe’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, we simply can’t seem to keep up with Pringles and their many, many flavor variations.

Sweet Chili Tango huh?  We probably understand what Pringles is trying to do here with this new flavor name, but it’s a little silly don’t you think?  What’s next –  Sour Cream & Onion Waltz?  Fiery Habanero Foxtrot?  Mac’n Cheese Macarena?  And then, correct us if we are wrong, but does it not look like there are actually potato crisp judges beneath the chandelier in the background of the dancing duo on the bright pink canister.  That’s just plain old silly!!

Apparently these are not new – Junk Food Guy review them months back.  Which can only mean one thing, we do not shop at Walgreen’s very often, which is true.  However, this eye catching canister was not hard to spot once we did finally make a voyage to the popular drug store, and we made sure to snatch the ‘Exclusive Flavor’ up quicker than Psy’s dance moves in his Gangnam Style video.

Alright, time to try these – let’s tango!  First and foremost, lots and lots of sweet.  Probably verging on overly sweet for some people’s pallets.  Luckily that sweetness is combated and complimented by a good amount of tangy notes probably from some vinegar, and the inclusion of tomato.  Also prominent in the flavor mix was garlic, and of course some chili, each adding a nice bold, background essence.  However, funnily enough, we couldn’t find more than the slightest hint of heat anywhere amongst the light scattering of orange-ish-red seasoning!

Overall, the dancing potato crisps were a very eatable flavor, and blended well with the salty potato crisps.  No real big complaints were had by anyone, but then again at the same time, no one was lauding their amazingness either.  Let’s put it this way, if we found ourselves on the far side of the gym, standing alone, watching all of the other couples move to some classic Boys to Men, and Sweet Chili Tango came up to us and asked us to dance.  Then we’d definitely tango with these crisps again.

As always, these are our thoughts, we would love to hear what you think.  Agree or disagree, let us know.

Discovered exclusively at Walgreens; Hillside, Illinois

Pringles Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© return to sender

©© tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

©©©©©“A” list