Monday, April 30, 2018

Kotas Reviews Mozzarella N' Marinara Ruffles

Well, it's quickly approaching the nightmarish hellscape known as "summer" around these parts. Pity we didn't actually have a spring to go with it, eh? Still, these times call for backyard fare to feast upon as we pay tribute to the glorious excesses of the year. What better way to do that than with a new and totally different potato chip flavor! Ladies and gentlemen, today we crunch into Mozzarella and Marinara Ruffles.

Sure, let's go with that.
I can honestly say I've never been eating potato chips and gone "You know what this needs? Marinara sauce!" Seriously, who approved this? I mean, I get it. Mozzarella sticks and marinara sauce are delicious, but do we really need them in chip form? Wouldn't that ease of access simply reduce the delight in eating a good mozzarella stick? No? Fine. The artwork on this is pretty good, with a solid picture of what they were going for, along with the actual product. I haven't harped on this too much but kudos to you food manufacturers for actually putting representative pictures of your product on the bag. Let's rip it open!

Not exactly the most exciting picture, is it?
Well, they smell kind of like tomato sauce I guess. They certainly have some sort of flavor dust, but it's not particularly stand out now is it? The little green flecks I guess are a nod to oregano or other herbs that separate tomato sauce from marinara maybe? Whatever, let's eat. 

Okay, these taste alright. Definitely some tomato sauce from a jar type flavors here, but nothing too significant. Some mild cheese flavors that I associate with mozzarella, but not definitively mozzarella flavor. It's not bad, but it's not particularly good. I guess if you dumped a jar of Prego over some regular Ruffles, scraped a few shavings of mozzarella on it, and then baked it, you might approximate the taste. I think I'm pretty whelmed by this.

On the FACE Rating System, these get 0 Faces. They aren't bad, but they are nothing special. If you just need something different yet unlikely to anger you, these fit the bill, but so do a number of other chip flavors. I'd probably pass these by.

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Kotas Reviews Crunchy Espresso M&Ms

Man what a crazy month. So many things have come out to talk about, right as I'm completely swamped with work and other stuff. Alas, right? Anyway, all this work has made me very sleepy, and as we all know the best caffeine jolt you can buy is straight up coffee...or IS IT? Ladies and Gentlemen, today we look at Crunchy Espresso M&Ms.

Here we go, lads and lasses!
So, in my college days I was quite the addict of chocolate covered espresso beans. They had a lovely chocolate flavor, a good solid crunch, and a burst of coffee flavor. However, they also had an excessive bitterness which is okay, but was more something I endured rather than enjoyed greatly. It wasn't bad, but it was often too much. It always seemed to be that these things should taste better then they actually did. As I got older, I stopped eating them for a variety of reasons and they safely moved into the nostalgic part of my flavor memory. 

Briefly jogged by a remarkably whelming version of these a couple of years ago, it was with only a bit of trepidation that I picked up the package. This package is pretty solid. Overwhelmingly brown, but hey, who can't love an M&M sipping coffee, eh? EH? Maybe it's just me. Let's open it up and see what Mars hath wrought.

Yeah, that's the color palette of a latte all right.
The color scheme is on theme, which is the nicest thing I can say about it. Still, a candy doesn't have to be visually spectacular to be delicious, does it? Nope! Let me tell you, these are good. Astoundingly good. They are a nice mix of chocolate and coffee flavors, and the crunchy bit adds some texture without being annoying or chemical tasting. As I said to my spouse, these things taste like I remember chocolate covered espresso beans tasting. I may have devoured an entire bag in one sitting. Maybe.

On the FACE Rating System, these get a caffeine buzzed 3 Smiley Faces, taking the crown as my new favorite M&M. If I weren't trying to not eat everything in sight, I would buy a huge bag of these to munch on all the time. If you like coffee and chocolate, go get some and eat up! You won't regret it!

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Kotas Reviews Raspberry Crispy M&Ms

Novelty in confection is a continual churn of ideas, that really only got out of hand recently. There was a time, dear readers, when the addition of Mint M&Ms was heralded as both a good thing and as a sign of the decline of our stolid values and traditions. After all, it was only over decades of time did the variations of Peanut and Almond were added, along with the concept of holiday variants. These were, however, just as simple redecoration of the same familiar candy. Boy, what a long way we've come since then. Ladies and Gentlemen, let's dig into Raspberry Crispy M&Ms.

Yeah Red, we're just as baffled as you.
So, I do occasionally get requests to review things, and even rarer, I actually get to review them. Luckily, someone got this out in front of me early on and I was able to get my hands on some that didn't come in "Shame Size". Ah, the Crispy M&M. First introduced in 1999, discontinued in 2005, and then brought back 10 years later, I've never much cared for the Crispy version of these delectable little fat pills. For whatever reason, the crispy part always had a weird ass chemical flavor to it, as I've stated before. So, I wasn't terribly enthused to be giving these a shot. Oh well, I owe it to [REDACTED] to eat these things. Let's Do It!

Tasteful muted colors is not exactly what I was expecting.
Well, they look pretty good. I think they might be a little bigger than regular M&Ms, but that's to be expected given they have a crispy bit inside. The color scheme is...less radical than I anticipated, as the red is much less bright than I thought it would be based on the packaging. It's more wine colored than anything. There's definitely a hint of raspberry in the scent. But no one really cares if it's a tasteful display, only that it displays excellent taste. Let's eat!

You know, I think they finally got the recipe right this time. Good chocolate flavor, a nice bit of crisp texture from the crispy, and good, but not overwhelming raspberry taste. There's also a distinct lack of "chemical" flavor that usually accompanies the Crispy variety. Now, this could simply be a side effect of the raspberry flavoring covering it up, but damn if it don't work well. These are pretty darn good!

On the FACE Rating System, these get 2 Smiley Faces. I rather like these, and could see myself picking up some when I wanted M&Ms, but not standard M&Ms. Definitely a better flavor outing than the freakin' Chili Nut M&Ms. If you like raspberry and chocolate, definitely give these a try!