BIJOU-REVIEW: Perri – Thai Rings (Oriental Spice Flavor)

Rating: ©©-3/4 chips  (tolerable)

perri-thai-ringsYep, that’s right, these unusual Thai Rings are another unusual snack from the box full of different chips, and chip like snacks, that we were sent from our new friends at MunchPak.

And wouldn’t you know it, they of course hail from none other than…..that’s right….

Ireland!?!  Really?

Well, that may just explain why they did not really taste anything reminiscent of actual Thai flavors.

Not that the snack rings were bad necessarily, they just did not taste anything like the best Thai food, or Thai chips, that we have tried over the years.

The rings sort of reminded us of a smaller, and denser, version of Funyuns.  Easy to pop a few in and crunch’em down.

The seasoning though, was just pretty generic.  A lot of sweet, mingling with a bit of indistinguishable chili heat.

Thai Rings provided to Chip Review by MunchPak for review

MunchPak Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© – return to sender

©© – tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

©©©©© – “A” list

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REVIEW: Cheetos Sweetos Limited Edition! – Cinnamon Sugar Puffs

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

cheetos-sweetos-cinnaon-sugar-puffsAnytime we see a new sweet variation from one of our typically savory snack companies, we are hesitant to give them a shot.  Which is why last year around this time, when Cheetos first released these Sweetos, we simply refrained from trying them…  Now that we have gone and bitten the bullet….

WHAT WERE WE THINKING!?!?!

Seriously, these are really quite delicious!

That’s right, every once in a while the chip companies can completely surprise us here at Chip Review, and create a fantastically sweet, and in this case, ever so slightly savory snack.  We would place Cheetos Sweetos smack dab along side other notable savory-gone-sweet successful snacks such as: Pretzel Crisps Cinnamon Toast, Snyder’s of Hanover’s S’mores Pretzel Pieces, and Pringles Tortillas Cinnamon Sugar (which in our books is some fine company to be included among).

Cheetos Sweetos Cinnamon Sugar Puffs are shaped like, we’re going to go with, sledding inner tubes – despite the fact that Chester has opted for the more classical racer sled.  The puffs are approximately half the size of a Funyun ring, but their texture is eerily similar.  The Cheetos do not exhibit their usual melt-y cheese puff texture, but more of a light and crispy, layered ring puff.

The ultra classic Cinnamon and Sugar combination works wonders with the puffs.  Delivering all at once an aromatically sweet treat, as well as, a savory richness.  A quick glance at the ingredients list shows that this savory layer has to come from the inclusion of buttermilk.  Everyone who was chomping on these agreed – they are delicious, and hard to stop eating.

Probably the best way that we can describe them to you is that they are like savory Cheetos ring puffs that have been crossed with the greatest of all sweet cereals – Waffle Crisp.  A marriage of rich, savory, butter notes dancing with sweet maple like syrup, and spicy, aromatic cinnamon.  Beautiful.

If you are fans of Cheetos (and we’re guessing that you are – who isn’t?), and you also like some sweet treats every now and again, then we suggest you give these a try.

Cheetos discovered at Walmart, Pontiac, Illinois

Cheetos Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© return to sender

©© tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

©©©©©“A” list

BIJOU-REVIEW: Ten Acre – The Day Sweet and Sour Became Friends Hand Cooked Crisps

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

ten-acre-the-day-sweet-and-sour-became-friendsIt started out just like any other day for Sweet, and for Sour.  Each going about their usual business, checking their emails, grabbing an iced latte, and probably a scone.  But, this day was different.  Both tastes had, by sheer chance, run out of salt at the same time, and as fate would have it, they were destined to bump into each other at the local grocery store.  As they say, the rest is history.  That’s the day Sweet and Sour became friends.

Down to business – what the heck are these chips supposed to taste like?!?

Well, let’s just start out by saying that this unique sweet and sour flavor combo is really, really delicious.  Apparently, salt, sugar, paprika, garlic, onion, black pepper, tomato, rice flour and yeast extract make for a surprisingly tasty recipe.  We can say with utmost certainty that we have never tasted a seasoning blend quite like this one.

Probably the best way that we can describe this seasoning to you would be picture a salt & vinegar chip crossed paths with a ranch flavored chip who had brushed up next to a BBQ flavored chip.  In other words, we tasted a lot of garlic, a touch of tomato and onion, a dash of pepper, a subtle splash of sour cream.  The chips have a lot going on but all of it works!

To top it off, the seasoning is delivered on some tasty, extra crispy, thinner cut, potato-FUL flavored potato chips.  Truly, these are some very well prepared hand cooked crisps.  In fact we can even taste those delicious, slightly nutty, slightly “burnt” tasting potato sugars.  The potato crisps are certainly smaller than average, which probably just means that they are more natural than others we’ve tried.

We’re really glad that both Sweet and Sour met and became friends!  Here’s hoping that we can find a way to get our – chip lovin’ lips – on some more flavors of these Ten Acre Hand Cooked Crisps!!

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

Chips discovered at Marshall & Home Goods; Lombard, Illinois

Ten Acre Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© return to sender

©© tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

©©©©©“A” list

BIJOU-REVIEW: Kernel Season’s – Kettle Corn Crunchin’ Kernels

Rating: ©©©-1/4 chips  (notable)

Kernel Season's - Kettle Corn Crunchin' KernelsFirst, there was Gladcorn.  The original corn trail blazer!

Next, came Pop’d Kerns with “a corn crunch like no other!”

Heck, even Trader Joe’s tried their hand at a couple of ‘Partially Popped Popcorns’.

And now, Kernel Season’s Crunchin’ Kernels are joining the “half-popped popcorn” club!

For more on Kernel Season’s Crunchin’ Kernels see our review for their Original Corn Flavor.

Usually we are a sucker for any type of sweet & salty Kettle Corn product, but for one reason or another Kernel Season’s offering does not really suit our fancy.

Both the sweet & salty are there, but when combined with the half-popped kernels, there are just no fireworks.

Maybe it has to do with the fact that with this flavor, more than any of Kernel Season’s others, the half-popped kernels far more broken down into tiny kernel bits.  In other words, a LOT more of those pesky – stuck in your gums – kernels.

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

Crunchin’ Kernels provided to Chip Review by Kernel Season’s for review

Kernel Season’s Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© return to sender

©© tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

©©©©©“A” list

BIJOU-REVIEW: Simply Balanced – Sweet Chile Organic Rolled Tortilla Chips with brown rice, sesame seeds and flaxseeds

Rating: ©©-1/2 chips  (tolerable)

Simply Balanced - Sweet Chile Rolled Tortilla ChipsSweet Chili flavor, as far as chip flavors go, has forever been one of those flavors we do not get excited for.  If we were picking our own flavor team, we’re more than certain that sweet chili would be one of the last picked, if picked at all.  Sorry Sweet Chili, you and Sweet BBQ are going to have to try again next year!

Another thing we noticed regarding sweet chili flavored chips is that here at Chip Review we tend to enjoy the sweet chili seasoning much more on a potato chip, than we do on a corn tortilla, or some other style chip.  We’re not going to try and determine why that is, we just wanted to let you know.

All that being said, here we have Simply Balanced (Target) Sweet Chile Organic Rolled Tortilla Chips with brown rice, sesame seeds and flaxseeds, and wouldn’t you know it, we don’t really like them for any reason.

The best part of these chips by a long side is the inclusion of the seeds strewn throughout.  The seeds add just enough textural difference to entice the pallet but not quite enough to distract us from the seasoning like we wish they would.

The sweet chili seasoning is exactly like so many others we have tried before.  Of course sweet, very sweet in fact, followed by a strong presence of garlic, and finished with a touch of flavorless heat.

The rolled tortilla chips are fine.  We could certainly crunch on them if someone had set them out at a party or something, but nothing about them has us screaming for more.

Well, there you have it.  Anyone else out there tried them yet?  Thoughts?  As always we would love to hear what you think.  Agree or disagree.  Let us know.

Chips discovered at Target; Hillside, Illinois

Simply Balanced Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© return to sender

©© tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

©©©©©“A” list

BIJOU-REVIEW: Go Lite! – Sweet Maui Onion Popped Chips

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

Go Lite! - Sweet Maui Onion Popped ChipsWe’re going to be honest here, these Go Lite! chips surprised the heck out of us!!  Seriously, we did not expect to like them, let alone, love them as much as we do.

First of all, “Lite!” is definitely “Right!”  These chips are light as air.  Crispy, and yet delivering that rich, melt-y, mouth texture we love from great cheese puffs.

Only 100 calories, wow! Cassava – we a-love-ya!!

The Sweet Maui Onion seasoning not only compliments the popped Cassava chips flawlessly, but it also tingles the taste buds with an intriguingly sweet, and salty, and sort of sour onion essence.  The flavor is simple, and rich, and surprisingly, DELICIOUSLY LITE!

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

Chips provided to Chip Review by Herr’s Foods for review

Herr’s Foods Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© return to sender

©© tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

©©©©©“A” list

BIJOU-REVIEW: Maya Kaimal – Sweet Chili Chickpea Chips

Rating: ©©© chips  (notable)

Maya Kaimal - Sweet Chili Chickpea ChipsChickpea Chips?!?  Huh….why not!  First time for everything.

So, what is a Maya Kaimal?  Apparently, Maya Kaimal is not a what, but a who (we should have known that….).  And Maya Kaimal is (according to her website): “an award-winning cookbook author and a leading authority on Indian cooking.”

The chickpea and rice chips deliver an extremely rigid crunch. We would certainly not describe the chips’ dense texture as something our mouths actually enjoyed crunching on.  Compared to other chips, these felt more like a workout then an enjoyable snack.

The combination of chickpea, rice and some sesame seeds randomly strewn throughout the chips, delivers a pleasantly nutty and sort of mildly savor-earthy notes.

The sweet chili seasoning was ok.  Heavy on the garlic and sweet, and light on the chili.

These are our thoughts, agree or disagree, make sure to let us know!

Chips discovered at Mariano’s; Westchester, Illinois

Maya Kaimal Official Website

Chip Ratings Scale:

(1/4 increments)

© return to sender

©© tolerable

©©© – notable

©©©© – lip-smacking

©©©©©“A” list