Thursday, December 10, 2015

Kotas Reviews Peppermint Oreos

I absolutely love this time of year. You know that scene in National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation with the lights? That isn't comedy, that's a GOAL, son! It's the time of year to jingle your bells, stuff your stocking and deck those halls up good! You know, that sounded less dirty before I typed it all up. Anyway, today we (of COURSE) look at one of TWO different holiday flavored Oreos out this year: Peppermint Oreos! Man there are a lot of Oreos these days.

Truth in advertising.
That right there is the essence of a seasonal flavor. No cutesy artwork, no hiding the actual product on the package, just Peppermint Oreos and a picture of Peppermints, in case you forgot what they looked like. Like all Limited Edition Oreos, this comes in a smaller container than regular Oreos, but costs the exact same. Hrm. Maybe that's how you know you've "made it" as a flavor. They put you in the big package. Lookin' at you Lemon Oreos

I am a little miffed about their choice to remove the "easy open seal" thing from the packages of limited edition cookies. It was just so convenient! Also, looking back it seems the weight of the limited edition packages has gone down a couple of ounces in the past year. Maybe it cost too much? What's that Nabisco? You needed to squeeze every possible cent out of these things to make your Quarterly Numbers? Augh, screwed again by Big Cookie. And at Christmas Time! Now, where was I?

Oh, right., the cookies. I made a mutant snowman picture with them!
The scent on these is exactly what I thought a peppermint Oreo should smell like: Oreo cookie, and peppermint. I know you are all bewildered by that staggeringly astute observation, but hey, I'm a simple man with simple needs and desires. I'll tell you this: The cookie part makes this work. Without it, the creme by itself is vaguely toothpaste-ish and kind of off putting, but with the cookie to offset that, it tastes like a minty chocolate cookie. Pretty tasty, really! I think this may work better in the Thin configuration, since there would be less creme to interfere with the cookie crunch. I think they would go splendidly with hot chocolate by the fire, though they aren't really so good with milk, probably because of the whole toothpaste comparison. Also because mint and milk are not flavors that should ever really be together.

On the FACE Rating System, these get 2 smiley faces. A simple, straightforward, snack sensation succinctly summarizing seasonal...uh...well, it falls apart there, but you get the idea. I think these would be great at any holiday gathering, or simply snuggling with loved ones in front of the fireplace. I wouldn't want these every day though, so it is best if they remain an annual treat. I do think these could be confused with the Winter Oreos, which are just Oreos with red coloring and "winter" designs on the cookie. Put these side by side for some delightful Christmas Hilarity! 

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Kotas Reviews Cranberry and Sage Triscuits

Happy Holidays everyone! There are a ton of holidays packed into this month (Hanukkah, Christmas, Return Terrible Presents Boxing Day, New Year's Eve, etc.) but I'm going to attempt to review some things in the holiday spirit. You know what 'tis the season for? Holiday Parties! Yes, whether you are embarrassing yourself with the eggnog fountain at your office party, or simply gorging on food at your in-laws' annual get together, December means holiday parties, which means Holiday Snacks! Today we have...wait, what? Cranberry and Sage Triscuits? Oh man, it's gonna be one of THOSE years...

That's somewhat festive, I'll give it that.
Triscuits are an odd beast, even without any holiday trappings. First developed in 1900 and taken to market in 1903 by Nabisco, the Triscuit is one of the oldest branded snack foods that we still consume today. Of the popular snack crackers they are the most durable and the single best vehicle for toppings you can have, given their inherent sturdiness as a cracker. They also have a relatively unique texture, and come in all sorts of flavors...such as the one we look at today. I can say, I've never THOUGHT to include cranberry as a flavor on my wheat based snack cracker, particularly paired with SAGE of all the herbs, but hey, how bad could it be? It's a Triscuit! I generally like Triscuits, though not as a go to snack food. They require me to be in a mood for them. are these gonna stack up?

Why am I allowed to speak? No good can come of it.
Well, that's a Triscuit for you. I've always loved the look of Triscuits because nothing else looks like them. These have the usual "colored dust" that many savory flavored snacks have, with flecks of green to indicate the sage, I'm guessing. The scent is definitely some cranberry and sage, with the wheatiness of the Triscuit strongly present, but not completely dominant. The cranberry is sort of muted, yet obvious. It's weird.

The flavor is...mostly sage actually. There seems to be little to no direct cranberry taste, though in the aftertaste and in the nose it is very present. I keep smelling cranberry, but while I'm actually eating the cracker cranberry vanishes, only to return after the cracker is gone as a lingering presence. It is interesting, but I don't think I like it. It's not horrible, at least. Just very weird. Probably would work better with some toppings, but it is fairly unpleasant for snacking on. Sage is not what I would choose for a primary flavor on anything, let along a cracker, especially when the supposed cranberry compliment is absent for the critical portion of the taste journey.

On the FACE Rating System, these get 1 frowny face. The cranberry is like an elusive entity that comes and goes when it wants to, rather than when you want it to be there. The sage is absolutely the strongest flavor continuum that this cracker has since it is present for the whole experience. I don't think either of those features are very good. Real herbed Triscuit aficionados might find something here to like, but I advise not bothering with this one. Not completely awful, but poor execution of a mediocre idea does not an tasty treat make.