Sunday, January 6, 2013

Ikea Food

 IKEA Food

I'd never actually sampled anything from the Ikea post-checkout foodish area before, mostly because when I walk by it I'm too busy trying not to collapse under a giant pile of random boards and screws that will never be compatible with any hardware I will ever own. But, INCREDIBLY, last week I was finally able to get out of the local modernist KMart with a manageable pile of crap, so I was able to finally check out the food section.

First of all, I think it's important you know that they sell caviar in toothpaste tubes. Alright, on to the things I personally ate:



 Elderflower Drinkbox
Is this what little Swedish kids have to take to school? That makes me so sad. No child should have to be without Ecto Cooler. I'd give Sally Struthers 20 cents a day to fund that. Jokes aside, it's actually not too bad. It's more grape juice than flower, and it's got the same insanity sweetness that Hi-C had such good luck with, sooooo, that's alright then.






(No photo, b/c fuck these guys)
Kex Crackers
I would just like to mention these because of the disappointing fact that they aren't shaped like the entire alphabet, just the letters that spell 'Ikea'. What kid of shitty alphabet crackers can't be used to leave obscene messages on your coworkers' desks? Seriously now. Although, to be fair, leaving 'IKEA' spelled out in crackers on someone's desk is pretty confusing, and that's almost as good.


Daim 3 Pack
I just love to think that this is pronounced DAY-UM, and the spokesperson is this woman:













Rhubarb and Vanilla Tea
I have a soft spot for Rhubarb, the plant that clearly does not want you to eat it. The leaves are toxic, and the stems, though edible, are an aggressive laxative. Basically, there is no way you can eat this plant and not shit yourself. Also, when I was a kid, there was a big patch of it growing in the alley behind our house, next to the garbage cans. We didn't know how it got there, we never watered it, and somehow it managed to thrive in brutal ND weather. Personally, I think that is a sign that your plant has been channeling unholy forces, but my mom mostly just made pies out of it.

So back to the tea, which was actually a pile of pleasant surprises. First off, it was actual tea made from actual leaves, that appeared to have been harvested from an actual plant. So already a step way up from the usual 'tea' you get, which is a fine powder made from sucrose and lies. Secondly, it was proper black tea, not some weak green herbal bullshit thing. And thirdly, it was actually tasty! Really! Honestly, the worst thing I have to say about it is 'little heavy on the vanilla'.


Jelly Rats
The randomness of the gummy shapes is what got me. Rats? Really? Why? When Haribo makes some ridiculous shaped gummi, they at least give you a cute little drawing and backstory about how this dude is an Italian chef who just happens to work in gummi media only or something. This makes me feel like they'd run out of ideas at the IKEA gummy factory and did what I do when it's 2 hours before deadline and I haven't started the project: stare blankly around the room and go with the first thing I see.Also, they're grainy. And disgusting. Altho, according to Google Translate, their slogan is "good from aromatherapy" which is a pretty bold claim for both rats and gummies.


Cloudberry Jam
Which you spread on your sandwich made of dreams!!!










Bilar Chewy Candy Cars
Why are these cars? Why are they marshmallows? Why are they pastel? And most importantly, why am I eating them?


Sunday, June 21, 2009

Reese's Peanut Butter Whoppers

I wasn't aware Whoppers were actually intended for consumption. I'd assumed they were produced and sold solely for the purpose of covertly flinging at people in movie theaters. I'm pretty sure you couldn't even purchase them outside of movie theaters until the last couple of years.

So, while I will admit to a slight anti-Whopper bias, I think we can all take my word for it when I say that these are a terrible, pointless waste of everyone's time. If I needed a malted peanut butter ball, I would wad up a slice of toast and dip it in Skippy. Also, if peanut butter milk balls was in any way a good idea, they wouldn't need to co-brand with Reese's, because that is a brand name that conjures up waxy brown flakes, at best.

Staring into a box full of off-tan circles is enough to convince the few stubborn minded folks. And you know that It doesn't taste like peanut butter, exactly. I guess it's a cheap imitation or maybe Mexican bootleg peanut butter or something.

Also, my feeling is, when the box art can't even make a product look appealing, there is pretty much no chance of the food inside being tasty. And the balls themselves are a grody tan, with inexplicable brown specs. Not exactly inspiring. They have this weird flavor curve too. The 1st is revolting, then the next 5 or so are kind of addicting, then they abruptly go back to being nauseating, but somehow not disgusting enough to make you stop eating them. Weird.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

The Taste of Costa Rica

The Taste of Costa Rica
A couple of my friends honeymooned at various points of interest across Costa Rica recently, and were kind enough to share with me some of the local flavor. I'd been expecting something of a banana-based flavor setup, maybe with some notes of spider monkey, but it turns out many of their snacks have what I'd call a 'dollar store-y' sort of flavor.

Cuba Libre Ron & Cola
When I imagine the phrase 'Ron & Cola' I like to think that a dude with a bad 70's pornostache and OldStyle t-shirt with the sleeves ripped off just shows up at your house with a can of Coke that's 80% cigarette butts.

Unfortunately, this is just pre-made Rum & Coke, but it is notable for being less soul-crushingly wretched than its American counterpart, the Club Cocktail. It's also somehow less alcoholic than a Club Cocktail, despite being twice the size. Proving once again that you can't beat American quality when it comes to quickly getting trashed on your lunch break.


Tronaditas
The quality control of snack vacuum packing in Costa Rica kind of concerns me. I'm pretty sure the Tosty factory is actually just one old lady with a FoodSaver sitting in a garage in San Vincente. The name 'Tronaditas' is definitely the best part of these. I was half hoping that when I opened the bag I would be greeted with sweet synthesizer music and Bruce Boxleitner.

As for taste, these are surprisingly not bad. They seem to be composed entirely from compressed salt, because they posses no chip flavor whatsoever. Luckily, the lime flavor makes this bearable, and even tasty, in the same way they make Coronas and tequila shots seem like delicious ideas.
Based on their +10 powers of Additional Tastiness, you'd think a straight up lime would be heaven itself, instead of a quick trip to the intersection of acid, bile, and pain.

Meneitos
It mentions on the package that these are made with corn, and it turns out that's not a great vegetable to be putting in your faux Cheetos. They're not bad, exactly, just kind of weird. It's like eating a fluffy Frito. Not horrible, just...unnerving.







Sponch!
Screw the snack, Sponch is the best word I've ever heard. It's the sound of a wet sponge impacting with your face at 40mph and breaking all your bones. It's what happens when you crossbreed a spaniel and a conch snail. It's the weird bloated paunchy area creepy old ladies have right above their vag.It's Costa Rica's #1 contribution to US culture, and I thank them for it.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Pringles Restaurant Cravers

I like it, this flavor laziness. It's one step closer to food in Jetson's-style capsules. Hey, fatass! Want the great taste of a hamburger, but you're too lazy to drag your ass all the way down the street to the BK? Well have we got the chip for you! Just like a juicy thick burger, but hard and flat and sad. Enjoy!

Cheeseburger
This is my favorite, because it's at once the most ambitious and most retarded. If there is anyone out there who honestly believes that a stack of pringles are truly going to taste like a thick cut of beef with all the fixin's, then I do not want to meet them. Or have them in any way involved in preparing my food.

Pringles pretty much got away with repackaging dill pickle chips here, because really, how the fuck else are you gonna play this one? Add to that the dearth of dill flavored crap in the U.S. (outside of actual pickles) and who the hell is going to dispute you on this. Personally, I think they could have been cheesier, which is always a good plan for your chips. Instead they unfortunately went with a weird somehow wet-tasting ketchup flavor that especially does not belong on anything crunchy.


Mozzarella Sticks & Marinara
Unnerving. They do kind of have a weird watery marinara flavor, and they are surprisingly fried-tasting , but again not very cheesy. Which really, there's no excuse for here.

Even though they're not bad, I couldn't eat more than a few of these, just because a food item calling itself 'Mozzarella Sticks' really shouldn't be allowed to not be cheesy. It'd be like Duran Duran only having one Duran. I guess they'd probably be ok with some sort of cheese dip, but what kind of sad, misguided person dips a Pringle?




Onion BlossomThese Pringles had only one job, to be onion-y, and they fucked it up. They have a dash of onion, an unnecessary amount of horseradish, and that's it. This is not what I need from a chip. Horseradish is appropriate on Arby's food only. And there's really no excuse for not making something oniony enough, considering onion flakes cost roughly twelve and a half cents per silo. After maybe six of these things, I totally forgot what flavor I was even eating. Thanks for wasting my time, Pringles.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Skittles Crazy Cores


Skittles are the latest in the long line of formerly delicious candies gone completely batshit insane. Well, probably not the latest, but definitely one of the most enthusiastic. I think I see a new kind of Skittle every other month or so, and always flavors that I would have never ever thought of, nor asked for. In no universe do Skittles need to be mint or choclatey. The ones I'm looking at today, however, are unique in that they are shockingly non-disgusting.

This is doubly impressive considering what a terrible idea they are on paper. Approximating any one flavor in candy form is difficult enough-combining two is just asking for disaster. Plus, the two-in-one thing is only cool when doled out sparingly. Take watermelon Jelly Bellies, for example. They're an enjoyable little bit of visual spice in an otherwise normal assortment of beans. But try buying a bag of just the watermelon ones sometime and see how long it takes for you to stop marveling at the cute little red centers and start stuffing them in your face by the handful. Novelty wears off, is the point these Skittles seem to be missing. But on to the flavors:

STRAWBERRY WATERMELON
These sucessfully recreate the flavor of strawberry Runts. I know I shouldn't even count that, since it's a single flavor, but in the special ed class that candy's become lately, I say congrats.

BLUE RASPBERRY LEMON
Very Curaco Lemonade, served in a glass that was washed, but not rinsed. Or maybe the secret ingredient is Lemon Dawn. Hard to say.

CHERRY LEMONADE
Little cough dropy, but definitely cherry. Actually, I think they just stole a vat of the Luden's Cherry Throat Drop syrup and called it a flavor. I'm not sure what sets the lemonade flavor of this apart from the lemon in the blue raspberry Skittle, but I didn't taste soap on this one, so maybe it's that.

MANGO PEACH
Look, I know mangoes are very exotic and decadant and all but can we just stop? Actual mangoes are disgusting and the recent onslaught of mango flavored shit is ruining things I would otherwise eat. None of it tastes like actual mango, anyway. It's always the same vaguely tropical, little bit coconutty/little bit dollar store perfumey melange, and nobody needs that in their cereal.

MELON BERRY
Yes, very good, but which melon? There is a big difference between honeydew, watermelon, and cantaloupe, for openers. And that's to say nothing of all the weird melon subspecies floating around Green River, Utah, which is apparently the Melon Capitol of the World. Although not the fun kind. I imagine that would be somewhere in Brazil. Not that any of this matters, anyway, because this Skittle is just fruity and nondescript. In case you're interested, Green River holds an annual Melon Festival, where they crown a Melon Queen, although again, not the fun kind.

Despite my earlier praise, when eaten individually, these aren't any great treat. But when scarfed down in big fruity handfuls, they're actually pretty enjoyable. In a plastic-y sort of way. Basically, they taste more or less like a regular bag of Skittles, so I don't know that that's actually anything for the marketing team break out the champagne over.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Willy Wonka's Tinglerz

Once again Willy Wonka brings to us creepy candy that no one has ever, or would ever ask for. What I don't understand is how someone who is essentially the personification of innovative and wonderful candy has somehow failed to come up with an edible candy in like, 15 years.

I enjoy a good Gobstopper as much as anyone. Runts are great too; little candies that're fresh from the Barbie farmers' market Mmm-mmm. In fact, most of the old Wonka candy is solid. SweeTarts, Nerds, Bottlecaps, this is all classic shit. In fact, even some of the things that seem like bad ideas are actually good, such as Fun Dip. Bags of colored sugar and weird medicine-flavored sticks doesn't sound like a winning combo, but in my grade school days that was the equivalent of high grade cocaine. Anyone on the playground could get trailer trash Pixie Stix, but if you rolled in with a bag of Fun Dip, it was a going to be a special day.

So, that bit of history out of the way, back around to my original candy. The major problem with the Tinglerz is that in our universe, ol' Wonka has somehow never been able to make chocolate happen. Yes, the candy that defined his empire, propelled him to the heights of candydom, and was supposedly his magnum opus is also the last thing you ever want to take home a lifetime supply of. It's absurdly sweet, and barely tastes chocolatey at all.

This has actually been bothering me for years, come to think of it. Why is it that even third world Easter bunny manufacturers can produce a more convincing chocolate flavor than this? Not to mention that Wonka is owned by Nestle, and I would imagine there's gotta be somebody on that factory floor who can explain to the suits why everything they makes tastes like it came out of a My Little Pony's ass. Chocolate is a confection that has been around for centuries, it shouldn't be that hard. I'm not asking you to figure out the secret ingredients of Coke after all, the Mayans were sipping hot chocolate in 460 A.D., using nothing but cacao seeds and virgin sacrifice.

Also, and most important of all, it looks like a bag of chocolate coated herpes. Really. I imagine this is what turns up on Wonka's dick after banging the Oompa Loompa Paris Hilton. Maybe that's why the name sounds like something that would make more sense on a vibrator package.

So chocolate-coated pop rocks is not an appealing idea visually. But this candy has other problems, too. Firstly, one does not chew Pop Rocks. They all explode at once, totally negating the entire point, which is to enjoy finding them hiding in your teeth hours later when you're going down on your significant other and she runs screaming from the room, trailing little popping noises from her nether regions. No, Pop Rocks must be savored, like a fine, tingly wine.

But you can't keep the Tinglerz in your mouth for more than 30 seconds, because no one needs to taste cheap chocolatish failure for that long, and you end up with a mouthful of brown goo. Individually, these texture issues wouldn't be a problem, but when you combine foods that aren't meant to coexist, guess what, it is. I don't know what the hell to do with these. I ended up kind of keeping them in my mouth for a few seconds before chewing, thereby giving me the worst of both worlds: crappy chocolate coated teeth, and unpleasantly poppy food.

Honestly, I see these candies as a cry to let the chocolate go from the Wonka empire once and for all. They're the confectioner's equivalent of the senile ramblings from the old guy who's always wandering around the park in slippers and a plaid vest. It's time we put this franchise out of its misery, because god only knows what STD based candy they'll make next.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Tire Tread

Well. It appears I have discovered the solid cousin to the diet Moxie soda. MORE'S THE PITY.

These are impressively horrible. I mean it. I can only imagine that these remain on store shelves solely to please old folks, and that worries me terribly, as this shit is clearly not meant for human consumption.

THEY ARE STRONG. This licorice does not fuck around. It really does taste exactly like the Moxie, right down to the painful burning sensation after you take your first bite. They're really not that bad until a few seconds after you swallow, which means there's really nothing you can do to save yourself from the horrible experience that is the Tire Tread. But then again, when the first ingredient is 'beet syrup', you can pretty safely assume you're not in for a taste treat.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Great Japanese KitKatastrophy part III


White

Although I'd sworn off albino chocolates after the yogurt horror, I gave these a chance anyway. They're the officially 'white' flavored Kit Kats, altho for some reason they have a picture of a maple leaf on the box. So, suspecting maple but fearing something less pleasantly Canadian, like beaver or Mike Myers, I forged ahead. Adding to my disturbing-flavor concerns was the texture of the things. They were lumpy. Clumps of unidentifiable crap clung to the bottom of the bars, not entirely disguised by the milky coating.

My concern now shifted from unidentified Canadian flavors to chunks of actual Canadians. It could be some sort of soylent green for modern times, like a really shitty remake that's been 'hipped up' for today's audience.

Turns out, however, they are maple, really REALLY maple, on top of the painful sweetness of the white chocolate. The flavoring was STRONG, much like the Maple Prez. In Japan the men are real men, women real women, and the maple is mind-blowing.

Interestingly enough, the chunks weren't related to the maple flavor, but were little bits of wafer that got stuck on the bottom, which I suppose does make them somewhat cannibalistic, which is pretty cool.


Strawberry

Jesus god these are revolting. While this does make me feel better about the American version of strawberry candy failure, I am frankly NOT happy I had to go through that taste experience again.

These may actually be worse because, in a moment of misguided realism-related fervor, the coating has little strawberry bits ensconced in it. Which sounds reasonable, but looks like a scale model of a highly communicable skin disease (which btw, is a phrase you should never ever
Image Google). I don't know that rosacea KitKat would've necessarily tasted worse, but it's never-the-less not a parallel I need to be drawing while the damn thing is in my mouth.


Sakura

This is one of those flavors which you immediately recognize as being disgusting, but carry right on eating it anyway. I can't say for sure what it actually tastes like, there's definitely sweet waxy undertones, but they're lighter than usual, and accompanied by something that tastes like chocolate covered feet.

While the flavors are all fairly unpleasant individually, the whole effect is not bad. Everytime I ate one, I knew that it was bad, but I kept wanting more of them. It's a destructive behavior microcosm Kat! Just like a Lifetime special, only with less Patty Duke.

Wine

These are really interesting. They start innocently enough with that bland waxy flavor that has become synonymous with KitKat in my mind, and then move on to an actual wine flavor. Seriously. Not a fine vintage, granted, more like the solid cousin of wine in a box, but still. They're neither hideously sweet nor terrifyingly strong. Amazingly, they're an entirely acceptable, if somewhat baffling flavor of Kit Kat.

I keep trying to picture the setting in which a wine KitKat would be the sophisticated choice. The only situation that springs to my mind is 'trying to get laid in Candyland'. Presumably you smoke candy cigarettes afterwards.

Thanksgiving Soda

Sam's Club Cider Apple Burst & 7-Eleven Apple Ginger Snap

Extreme Cider Apple! It's totally the experience of a crisp fall evening in front of the fire X100! Give it to your Grandma and BLOW HER MIND!! WHOOOOO!

Who the fuck is this drink for? Does anyone want extreme sparkling apple cider? On top of which, it's caffeine free, which I'm pretty sure automatically revokes your standing as an extreme beverage. Also it looks like cloudy urine. But what pisses me off most about this drink is that it actually DOES taste just like apple cider. Only carbonated, which is vile and the exact thing I do not look for in apple cider.

Where is this amazing flavor accuracy when they're dealing with flavors I actually am interested in tasting? There's 9 million different permutations of berry flavored drinks on the market, and not one of them can reasonably approximate the flavor of even one given berry, let alone several put together. But somehow WalMart's crack team of popologists can pull off cider apple.

And what's really incredible is that the Thanksgiving flavor line of soda gets even worse, in the form of a 7-Eleven Apple Ginger Snap Big Gulp. None of the words in that flavor have any business on a bottle of pop. They all appear to have escaped from the cookie isle, and I do not like it. As far as taste goes, it's much less impressively disturbing than the Apple Cider, inasmuch as it doesn't really taste like anything. It has a very watery apple juice base, with a hint of something that says to me 'mistook a vat of industrial cleaner for the Ginger Snap flavoring', and to top it off, there's no carbonation to speak of. If there's anything that bothers me more than cookie flavored pop, it's cookie flavored pop that doesn't even try. I pronounce Cider Apple Burst to be the superior crime against beveragekind and we move on.

All the Jell-O in My Life

In which we discover the point at which there ceases to be room for Jell-O

There is something intrinsically hilarious about Jell-O. I don't know if it's because it used to come in such disturbing flavors as Celery and Tomato, or because housewives dutifully ensconced everything from salad to tuna in the aforementioned and called it dinner.

And while I, personally, have never enjoyed actually eating it, I do get a great deal of amusement out of making it, or at least, attempting to make it. Lacking an amusingly flavored gelitan this time around, I instead decided to go for sheer volume. That's right. I was going to combine one box each of every flavor of Jell-O I could find, and thus create Super Jell-O.

First thing's first:procuring the Jell-O. I went to every grocery store in a 400-mile radius (which actually only totalled 6 stores. Hey, I live on the fucking prairie.) and came up with 18 separate flavors of Jell-O. It's important to note here that I only bought actual Jell-O brand gelitan, because if I got into store brands it would never end. Also, I wanted this to be a quality gelitan monstrosity, thankyouverymuch.

Here's the full list of flavors I ended up with:

Apricot
Berry Blue
Black Cherry
Cherry
Cranberry
Cran-Raspberry
Grape
Island Pineapple
Lemon
Lime
Mixed Fruit
Orange
Peach
Strawberry Banana
Strawberry Kiwi
Wild Strawberry
Xtreme Sour Apple
Xtreme Watermelon

I have always wondered about this...Who can really tell the difference between Apricot and Peach? Do we need both these flavors? I know they've both been around for at least the last 20 years, meanwhile fifty other flavors have come and gone. Honestly. Perhaps we could just settle for one of those, and invest some of that flavor-specificity in extricating an actual fruit or two from the mess that is Berry Blue. I really hate Berry Blue. There are no blue berries. Even actual blueberries are purple. The fuckers.

As far as the actual construction of the super Jell-O goes, I decided to just multiply the basic instructions by 18 and go from there. This was the first indication I had that this would be maybe more to deal with than I'd had in mind. 18 packages of Jell-O yielded more than a liter of powder, and one hell of a sand scupture.


And to this I was to add 4 LITERS of water. Rather more than I had been expecting, and certainly more than would fit in any of my standard issue kitchen containers. Clearly, this called for something special. Something big. This called for... the crisper drawer. Figuring if I ended up with more than that there was no possible way I'd get it in the fridge, I just went ahead and poured the whole mess into one of the refrigerator drawers.

Fortunately for both me and the fridge, that turned out to be just perfect. Full of the satisfaction that only comes with a completely pointless job well done, I left it to set up overnight. Surprisingly, it did actually set, more or less. Well...mostly less. It never did achieve the solidity of normal Jell-O, instead preferring to hover somewhere between lumpy juice and runny salad. (Sorry, running out of metaphors here.)

The unexpected problem arising from this the next day was that it was nearly impossible to dispose of. It was too solid to pour down the drain, but not solid enough to lift out of the drawer and throw away. I spent a good half hour trying to scoop it up and throw it in the trash before I gave up in disgust. By this time, the kitchen counter looked as if I had been disassembling a mob hit, and the Jell-O was starting to melt into nastily viscous little piles of sticky shit that I knew would never, ever entirely wash off.

And that is to say nothing of the smell. It was disgustingly sweet, and permeated every inch of the fridge, including much of the food therein. The bread sitting on the shelf above the Jell-O tasted like the aftermath of a Care Bear circle jerk. It took a week before I could eat something out of the fridge without sniffing it in fear first.

And what did I learn from the experience? Not a goddamn thing. I did discover that every flavor of Jell-O together tastes pretty much like any one flavor of Jell-O by itself, but I don't know how useful that information will be to me in later life, so eh. It was however, an amusing experience, and a good waste of an evening, which really is all I ever ask for in life.


Moxie


This particular beverage hails from the days when sodas were called phosphates, and they had to carbonate molasses cause they didn't have anything else. The intimidating duotone man on the label claims the beverage has been in existence since 1884, which means that it was probably the Ingalls girls' treat on those long sleigh rides to the nearest town's general store. Seriously, check the dates. I personally would've gone with the candied squirrel intestines or something, but pioneers can't be choosers. Actually, if I'd lived on the American frontier, I would've contracted smallpox and died at my first opportunity. In the womb, if possible.

If you've ever actually tried Moxie you'll have no trouble believing it was created in the 1800's. It tastes like something your local midwestern museum would serve as part of their annual ' In the Days Before Electric Lightsavaganza' festival. It smells like something you'd find in a 20's drugstore. Something with 'Bromide' in the name. Something that doubles as a cure-all for everything from cholera to losing all your oxen in an attempt to ford the Green River.

The taste itself is hard to explain in terms of actual flavor. It's more of an experience. A horrible, painful experience, comparable to drinking molten tar. This stuff was so strong I couldn't even drink a full swig of it. I had to sip it like it was a tea party. My mouth tasted like burning shoes days after trying this crap. I actually forgot about the bottle in my backpack for a couple weeks, and then tried it again, thinking once it'd had some time to calm down and think about why pop shouldn't taste like getting kicked in the face, it'd maybe be palatable. Wrong. It was just as vile without carbonation. Maybe worse, because there were no bubbles to numb my poor taste buds. And this was just the diet Moxie. Woe betide the fool what takes on the full-strength Moxie.

Maizena


I see this at every grocery store, in a cheerful assortment of flavors, but I've never seen anyone buy it. I now know why.

It's sort of the low budget equivalent of Qwik. It's made with milk, comes in the same basic flavor assortment, and ever has a cheerful little mascot. The difference is, this is made with corn starch. Now, doesn't that just sound like a bad idea to you? I don't think I've ever used corn starch in my life, and definitely not in a beverage.

According to the instructions, one little packet of this whips up to a full five servings of piping hot corn drink. I opted to just make half the package, which was way more than enough for your average 2.5 kids, I feel. Especially considering no kid in their right mind would drink any of this.

It was barely even a beverage, honestly. I ended up with violently strawberry scented Pepto-Bismo colored water on top of the cup, and a good half inch of corn starch silt at the bottom. The powder got this weird skin over it as soon as it touched water, and flatly refused to dissolve, no matter how much I stirred. So I eventually I gave up on that and just tried to drink around the clumps.

What was kind of cool about this, is that even though it smelled insanely strawberry-y, it had no strawberry flavor whatsoever. Really. It tasted like nothing in particular. Kind of corn starchy, really, but no surprise there. It was definitely unpleasant, but I say if you're purchasing corn starch beverages, you probably know what you're getting into, so hey. No harm no foul, Maizena.



Candy Racism and Process at Work

You may've noticed that I generally avoid using American candy for these reviews. This is not because I'm a terrible candy racist. The reason I don't bother with my own country's confections is because in recent years the major US candy companies have lost their fucking minds, and cranking out dozens of completely retarded candies that are on the market for all of two weeks before slinking off in shame.

And rather than being entertainingly bad, these flavors are simply not worth bothering with, either in print or as edibles. I don't need to write a review telling you that eating a Limited Edition Giant M&M is the modern equivalent of the experience of eating a handful of M&Ms. You can figure that out on your own, I hope. If not, for godsake, I don't want to know about it.



Raspberries 'n' Creme / Strawberries 'n' Creme Hersheys

This could have been so much better, or at least less awful. Raspberries are delicious and underrepresented in the world of confectionery outside of Blue Razzberry shit, which we shall not speak of.

Even so, I don't want to see them getting their moment in the sun in bad candy. It tastes like cheap white chocolate, no surprise there, with grainy little bits of generic sweetness. In fact, I'd be hard pressed to tell the difference between the two flavors. They're both unimpressively unpleasant, and I have to wonder why Hershey's even bothered with both. Did they honestly think people's candy bar palette is refined enough to distinguish the between the two? Everything about these bars says 'slapped together the night before launch'. They even reused drawing of the splash on the packaging. You'll have to do better than Image>Adjust>Hue/Saturation, to fool me, Milton Hershey!


Junior Mints Inside Outs

I just hate to see this. One of the best things about being one of the less popular, non-flashy candies is that you're generally pretty safe from the various revamps and marketing gimmicks that plague the more popular candies. But for some reason, Junior Mints have now been dragged into the jaws of progress, and shat out as Junior Mints Inside Outs.

Despite the amusingly suggestive name, I can't even enjoy the absurdity of these. They don't taste like much of anything-bad chocolate goop coated in crusty sugar, and they certainly aren't much to look at, appearing, as they do, to be giant wads of bird shit. Junior Mints are tasty and should be left alone. For fuck's sake, nobody messes with Skor bars, or Mary Janes. Leave the classics alone!


Milky Way Slammer

To me, that sounds like a porno move, not a beverage. And not a particularly appealing move, either. Actually, I've been sitting here thinking about it so long that I've kind of grossed myself out, so I'm going to drop the porn metaphors, and just say that this is a very bad drink.

Not so much because it tastes bad, but because it actually does taste like a Milky Way bar. But it's a liquid. I felt unpleasantly like I was partaking in a candy bar that had, in fact, already been digested. This is not fun at all, and, in retrospect, even less appealing than the porn idea.

Dominade

Crystal Light for the S&M set, I guess. It was only 99 cents for two gallons worth of mix, making it the beverage of choice in the cost-conscious dungeons. My only hope is that they marketed it like Sunny D.

"Let's see, we got a glass of my cum, your own urine, brown stuff...Hey! Dominade!



Congelli - Rompope flavor


Every once in awhile a food will catch my eye with its mild wackiness, but then turn out to be a festival of complete and utter what-the-fuckery. The Congelli is one of those magical foods.

It's hard to see in the picture, because of the eye rending yellow-on-white color scheme, (which, in retrospect was a sign I probably should have paid more attention to) but both the English and Spanish flavor for this gelatin dessert is 'Rompope'. On the rare occasions these naturally enemy languages agree, you know you're in for a treat. Whatever this stuff was, there was no room for doubt-it would taste like fresh squeezed/picked and or/congealed rompope. Who the hell could resist a treat like that?

Personally, I prefer to be surprised by my scary foreign foods, but my roomate, (who has actually learned from my experiences), checked into what exactly a 'rompope' was while we waited for it to clot. I mean set. As it turns out, rompope is the unspiced, Spanish version of eggnog.

I was a little disappointed on hearing this, because I am frankly not a fan of any type of nog, much less de-spiced nog. In fact, I refuse to drink even the seasonally mandatory American egg nog because I do not believe in alcoholic beverages that are thick, creamy, or in any way bear resemblance to cum. Unfortunately for me, I'd already bought the Congelli, so there was no help for it. I was duty-bound to fully experience the rompope.

My first indication that maybe this was not a great idea came as soon as I started mixing, inasmuch as, it looked exactly like dog vomit. But as I'd already wasted four cups of milk on this shit, there was no turning back.

After mixing, the directions said to 'pour in molds and chill for 4-6 hours, or overnight,' but since I have nowhere near the patience nor the attention span that would require, I stuck it in the freezer. It set up a couple hours later, no worse for the wear, if you don't count its intensified semblance to Lassie's last meal.

I don't know what those brown spots in it are, but I once saw some vanilla ice cream that listed 'bean specks' as one of its accomplishments, so I'm going to go ahead and say that's what the mystery spots in this are. Bean specks. Yes.

So, now for the true test-what exactly does rompope taste like? Will it be the vaugely spiced pancake batter flavor of American eggnog, or would it be a less spicy version, more along the lines of taupe house paint? Or even some here-to-fore unimagined permutation of bland, cream colored food? Only the taste test would tell...

Now, even as I write this, there is something about the rompope that nauseates me. Honestly, I have a hard time looking at the pictures. It's not that it was even that disgusting. There's just something about it that really makes me want to throw up. Not necessarily even in an unpleasant way. It could be like when you're sick, and the only thing you've eaten in the last 72 hours is lukewarm 7-up, which tastes exactly the same coming up as it did going down. It might even be a little better on the return trip, because then it's like a visit from an old friend you didn't think you'd get to see again. At least, not in that part of town. But my point is, that while I don't like to think about it now, it really didn't taste all that disgusting.

The problem was its texture. It was rather..rubbery. In fact, when I tried to stick my spoon in it, it just bounced off the skin of the pudding. Having never been deflected by my dessert, I tried dropping the spoon onto it, which resulted in some pretty decent airtime.

I tried bouncing other small objects off it for awhile, including a pen, coins, and a statue of a boy's first communion.

I tried a little surfer guy too, but he didn't work too well. Eventually the top of the rompope was so covered in lint and dirt from all the crap I was throwing at it that I had to tip it onto a plate and eat off the bottom.

It tasted more or less how you'd expect eggnog Jell-O to taste, bland, christmassy, and fairly unpleasant. All in all, I'd say Spanish eggnog is basically the same as its US counterpart, insofar as, it's not worth bothering with. The springy squid-like texture pretty much ruined any chance it had at being eaten, but I bet you could make some awesome molds with this stuff. I don't know if it was made out of a higher quality of horse hooves or what, but this crap really holds its shape. You could probably construct the most elaborate gelatin structures ever with this. Hell, you could just carve it into whatever shape you want. For that, I declare the rompope the most amusing non-edible foodstuff on the market. Gracias, Congelli!

The Great Japanese KitKatastrophy part II

Orange & Creme

As promising as the image of an Orange slice coming all over a KitKat bar was, these were a tragically less than orgasmic experience.

They were actually like a sort of opposite orgasm, where instead of getting more and more enjoyable, these started off bad and built to a hideous crescendo of unpleasantness, culminating with my convulsively spitting the whole revolting affair into the garbage.


Milkshake

You ever had Whoppers? Great, this is that, only shaped like a stick. You can put it between two Whoppers and have a little milkshake flavored sex-ed set up. You may as well, there's no other excuse for having these things around.


Matcha with Azuki Beans

Ok, this one I know:matcha is green tea, and azuki beans are sweet red beans which are famous for not making you gassy. Which I suppose is a nice feature, although what candy is known for its gas producing prowress? Not even novelty fart candy, really. I fed a bunch to our dog once, and got nothing. And if you can't even make a dog farty, you have no business allying your self with the internal gas industry.

Anyway. I was pretty excited about these, because there was a little drawing of green KitKats on the back of the box, which pretty much guaranteed that the actual bars themselves would be green. Imagine! Little green KitKats! You can play that you're eating miniature uranium bars that make you mutate and destroy the city, or that they're martian candy, and use them to lend credibility to your abduction story, or leave them in the living room and claim the dog ate a birthday cake. The possibilities are endless!

As you can see, they did not disappoint. And while it's hardly worth mentioning in light of the how amazing these things look, I will say that they do taste a little like green tea. In that strange watery way that green tea flavored things have. It's not something you can really eat much of, but it doesn't matter, because what they lack in snackability, they make up for tenfold in comedic possibility.


Watermelon

It is long past time we as a species stop trying to make things watermelon flavored. Watermelons DO NOT HAVE A FLAVOR. THEY DON'T. And attempting to assign them one via red dye #40 and industrial food flavoring is not going to change that.

Personally, I move that we start using 'watermelon' as a texture. Think about it: really wet, but still structured, and rather grainy. What word describes that? Nothing! Think of all the good watermelon could do for the English language. We'd have the perfect one-word description for all sorts of things like....well, like...Watermelon. I guess there's not a lot of call for that specific texture. I still think it would do less harm as a texture than a flavor, though. Especially where KitKat flavoring is concerned.

Yeo's White Gourd Drink

I can still taste the horror of this one. Actually, it sat in the back of my refrigerator for a couple of months before I could even work up the courage to open it. This is because I've never tasted a gourd in any form, much less as a beverage, which seemed like the worst possible medium for my first gourd-related experience.

And even though I was expecting the worst, I was still taken aback at the pure unmitigated wrongness of this drink. There are no currently-existing flavors to describe it. It had kind of a peanutty-old sock flavor, a little bit like soy nuts, only gamier. Gordish, I guess. I don't know. Not helping was their decision not to carbonate the damn stuff, so you could experience the gourd flavor in full effect, without any tangy bubbles to distract the taste buds. The harnessing of CO2 for beverage purposes is one of man's greater triumphs, and makes even the most retarded store brand pop not just drinkable, but enjoyable. Thank you, Carbon, Oxygen.

The can proudly proclaims itself an 'Authentic Asian Drink' which I feel is pretty obvious, considering that if it was an American pop, the can would have something along the lines of 'XXXTREME ALPINE MIST POWER GOURDO CODE BLANCO BLASTOFF!!!!' spalshed across it in fonts of varying color and extremeness.

But even after all the aforementioned, the thing that really amazes me about the White Gourd Drink is that I didn't get it at an Asian grocery store. I found it in a major chain market, which means that of all the canned beverages floating around the entire continent, this was one of the most mainstream ones available, and therefore chosen to be stocked as a regular item at a major US grocery store. What the hell else is over there that didn't make the cut? The mind boggles.


Bella Vita Pasta


Why is the pasta brown? Actually, it had more of an unsettling reddish cast, sort of a russet. The only colored pasta I've ever seen has been that way because of flavoring, or novelty reasons. Which are both perfectly acceptable circumstances for colored noodles, so I wasn't too worried about trying these. I figured since they weren't shaped like penises, they had to fall under the heading of 'flavored' and further surmised that the reddish cast meant 'tomato' and gave not another thought to the possibly sinister nature of these noodles.


God was I wrong. These were unbelievably bad. They weren't flavored, at least, not any flavor that I know of. They tasted dirty. That's the only way I can describe it. And they were dry. Rather than being bendy, as regular noodles generally are, these all but disintigrated when I tried to scoop them into a bowl. To top it all off, cooking frankly did not improve their color. If anything, the sickly orangeish-red color they became was worse than the original color. I say this is God's punishment for trying to remove the delicious carbs from pasta. Shame on you, Bella Vita.

Vimto

This is much less exciting than it sounds. The foreign entry into the 'red' flavored soda category, this tastes much like Big Red, Faygo RedPop, Barq's Red Creme soda, and every other red flavored pop you can get at the finer gas stations and aged hotel vending machines. The sickly sweetness of corn syrup and red dye No 40 are present throughout, with notes of that indefinable but distinct flavor of cheapness and failure. No one ever actually has a thirst that only a red soda will quench, they just drink it because it's the only thing that's never sold out at 3am in Akron.