Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Kotas Reviews Lay's West Coast Truffle Fries Chips

So, last year, Lay's had a promotion where "America" (or at least, anyone who logged into this website) got to vote on what new flavor would become part of their regular rotation. I reviewed their Cappuccino Chips at the time, though that did not end up being the winner (that honor goes to Wasabi Ginger). Seems like Lay's is at it again! This time I will try to obtain and eat all the different flavors, so today's entry is the West Coast Truffle Fries Chips.

So, what the hell are Truffle Fries anyway?
So, a casual Internet search reveals that Truffle Fries are simply steak fries with Parmesan cheese, parsley, and truffle oil thrown on them. Actually, that sounds pretty good, but I can't seem to find a place that serves them in my town (clearly a West Coast Conspiracy). Still, I do love potato chips, and I have a fondness for the Wavy ones from Lays. Let's see how these babies look!

Look at all that...uh...well, they do resemble flavored chips.
These chips look a LOT like a sour cream and chive flavored chip, and their aroma is definitely different, with and earthy, mushroomy scent. I suppose that is the truffle oil component of the flavor coming through. Still, they didn't much look like they had any cheese flavoring on them. Let's take a closer look!

Yep. Green specks. EXCITEMENT!
Still nothing that screams "Truffle fries" or anything resembling the packaging, which I kind of like. But, who cares about packaging (besides me, of course), how do they taste? In short, they taste a lot like more mellow sour cream and onion chips. They are actually pretty good, because I normally find sour cream and onion chips from Lay's to be a bit too strong, and the earthy components nicely offset that while allowing some of the potato flavor to shine through. But I do not taste any Parmesan cheese, nor much of any truffle flavor beyond "earthiness". They are pretty good, but nothing particularly special.

On the FACE Rating System, these get 0 Faces. They are not bad, and since they cost the same as regular old chips, give them a whirl. I wouldn't turn them down at a party or anything. They simply did not wow me, nor did they stand out much from other, better Sour Cream and Onion flavors (though they are certainly better than the Lay's version). I mean, good try, but why are these called "West Coast Truffle Fries"? I would call them "Sour Cream and Onion XP" or something.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Kotas Reviews Cookies and Cream Oreos

Sometimes a product is released that is ridiculous in its conception and it comes out terrible. Sometimes you get something ridiculous that is pretty good.Then there are the products that say "What the hell were you thinking?" because they make absolutely no sense at all. Ladies and gentlemen, today we take a look at Cookies and Cream Oreos.

Yo dawg, I heard you like Oreos...
Cookies and Cream is one of my favorite flavor combinations. The very essence of Cookies and Cream is vanilla ice cream with crushed up Oreo cookies (or other chocolate sandwich cookies, I suppose) mixed in. Best enjoyed fresh made with soft serve, perhaps in the form of a winter storm, it has become a staple ice cream flavor up there with Rocky Road and Mint Chip. So I have to say "What the HELL Nabisco?" In the past, you haven't really involved ice cream flavors, so much as "flavors that are also used in ice cream" but really? This one takes the sundae. Did you even stop to think about the redundancy of this product? 

The package is standard Limited Edition Oreo packaging, with a picture of a nice serving of cookies and cream ice cream...that has an OREO IN IT. Is this some sort of joke? Are you THIS contemptuous of your audience that you thought we wouldn't notice? Eh, fuck it, let's open this up and take a look.

Well, you know what this looks like? A FUCKING OREO. With rejected creme filling, no less! Seriously folks, as I've noted before, grey is NOT an appetizing color. Sure, it kind of looks like "cookies and cream filling", but you know what that is? OREO CREME AND CHOCOLATE COOKIES! This is making a hamburger by grinding up ground beef. YOU STILL HAVE GROUND BEEF, JUST SLIGHTLY MORE GROUND. So, how does it taste? Can you guess? 

The taste is AN OREO. I know you all are as shocked as I am, but the flavor is the exact same flavor as a regular Oreo. Now, that flavor is a good flavor. One of my favorites even. But this is not a LIMITED EDITION flavor, when you've just put the same old flavor into a slightly worse looking package. Did you think we were idiots Nabsico? Apparently we are, because this bastard costs the same as a standard package of Oreos, but with 4 ounces LESS product. And I bought it, so help me I BOUGHT IT.

On the FACE Rating System, this gets 3 Frownie Faces. It is the height of laziness, arrogance, or both to just barf out a worse looking Oreo that tastes exactly like an Oreo and have the FUCKING GALL to charge a premium for the privilege. The actual taste is fine, it's just EXACTLY WHAT WE ALREADY HAD, in a smaller, shittier package that costs more. Ya done fucked it up Nabisco! I liked the Thins version because it was a fairly interesting texture change...but THIS...Ya done me wrong, Nabisco. That hurts. If you get a chance to taste these without buying them, they taste just fine. Oreo deliciousness. Just don't get suckered into actually paying for them, because there is nothing of value to be had.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Kotas Reviews Oreo Thins

Ah, Oreos, my old friends. If ever there was a mass market cookie that totally capture my stomach, it is you. There is just something incredibly delectable about your sandwich cookie goodness, and other brands just aren't the same, no matter how hard they try. Standard Oreos are one of my favorite things ever, you may have guessed. Today,we look at a variation on them, the Oreo Thins

Don't let the name fool you...they are still Oreos.
Everyone is into dieting these days, even Oreos it seems. These are "thin and crispy" sandwich cookies and boy do they look it. It is, in fact, a marvel of food engineering. They have taken every single aspect of a standard Oreo and divided by two, lengthwise. Each of these things is basically half an Oreo. 

Seriously, look at these things!
Other then that? Yeah, they are Oreos. The packaging is a little different, but...Oreos. They smell like Oreos too. But, how do they taste?

It's the suspense that gets me, every time.
Prepare to be shocked...they taste like Oreos! Well, not exactly. They are certainly crispier than a standard Oreo, but the flavor is Oreo. The creme/cookie ratio is exactly the same so other than the initial crunch, the taste is pure Oreo goodness. That said, that extra bit of crispiness greatly increases their...munchability? Is that a word? It is now I guess. Anyway, because they are thin, they have almost no heft and you can just gobble them down like delicious dessert chips made of Oreo. You say "Well, they are half a cookie, so I can have a couple extra..." and before you know it, the package is half gone and you feel bad about your life decisions. Bravo, Nabisco. Bravo.

Of course, it's not all creme filling and happiness. These suckers cost exactly the same as regular Oreos, but you get approximately 28% less by weight (14oz to 10oz packages). So not only do I eat them faster, there aren't as many of them. What the hell are you trying to push on me? Shame on you Nabisco. Shhhaaaaammmmme.

On the FACE Rating System, these get 2 Smiley Faces. My goodness are the delicious, perhaps even preferred above regular Oreos (blasphemy I know), but DAT PRICE just hurts too much to make them more than an occasional treat. Still, definitely worth trying!

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Kotas Reviews Star Wars Cereal

A long time ago, in a breakfast far, far away...

Oh happy was the day that Disney decided to further consolidate our childhoods by snapping up the rights to Star Wars. It is my sincerest wish that they will end the Lucas tradition of reworking  mangling ruining revising the original trilogy and will release a digitally remastered version of the original theatrical releases...but I get ahead of myself. We're here to talk about breakfast cereal. Ladies and gentlemen, I give you Star Wars the Cereal.

The Force is strong with this one...well, maybe. I mean, come on, those marshmallows can't be that heavy.
This is actually the fourth incarnation of Star Wars related cereal products. The first was the much beloved C3POs from 1984, after which was a long, long drought of Star Wars related breakfast options. In 2002, Episode II cereal was launched. Presumably, Episode I cereal was just "bran flake sweepin's" from the floor of the factory and was not released. 2005 brought us Episode III cereal, and now, we have...well, today's offering. The packaging is a "Limited Edition Box", though I'm guessing the cereal isn't maybe? This is the Darth Vader box, though there is a Yoda themed one. All of this is mildly amusing, given neither of those characters could POSSIBLY appear in Episode VII, am I right? Hey-ooooooh! Er, um, spoilers I guess? Let's see how it looks.

Your taste buds can't repeal flavor of that magnitude!
Well, those certainly are cereal pieces. I think the cereal bits are supposed to be the Millennium Falcon, an X-Wing, and a TIE Fighter, but it could also be a bear, a cow head, and a bow tie. Cereal piece art is often left to interpretation by the consumer, after all. The marbits are, in theory, two different lightsabers, R2D2, Yoda's head, a Stormtrooper helmet, and a "Jedi Starfighter", which might just be a recolored "Blue Diamond" from Lucky Charms. But how does it look in the bowl?

You ate from that thing? You're braver than I thought.
The cereal piece to marbit ratio is not my preferred "all the marbits ever, and maybe some cereal", but most cereals aren't like that so, you know, it's fine. The flavor is purported to be "fruity" and the scent is vaguely fruity, to be sure. The taste? Well, let's see. Have you ever eaten Trix? It's a lot like Trix that stopped trying halfway through its audition and said "Fuck it, have some marbits, I can't be bothered to flavor today." There is a vague artificial "fruit" flavoring, but it is not very strong and does not mesh very well with the cereal's underlying corn flavor. The marbits are simple marbits. Dry, this cereal is meh. With milk, this cereal is meh. The milk isn't even flavored much when you drink it afterward. Seems to me like this cereal was recycled from 2005, and it tastes like it too. 

On the FACE Rating System, this gets One Frowning Grand Moff Tarkin face. This is a rather below average cereal, though I don't know why I expected more from it. Perhaps the box art cheered me? I don't have high expectations from media tie in cereals, but this one just seems so half hearted. Don't bother, even if you are a fan of Star Wars. Disappointment only, you will find.