With this in mind, it seemed like full-on serendipity [Tangent: happenstance...not the John Cusack vehicle.] that I should stumble upon all 4 Lays limited edition flavors at Target the same day this blog showed up in my time hop and the same day that my Hello Giggles article about having shitty skin issues got published. [Tangent: OK, so the last one about my greasy t-zone is not exactly a ringing endorsement for my occasional fat kid diet, but it seemed disturbingly apropo. Also, many apologies if that just made you puke everywhere, you will hopefully regain your composure/appetite by the end of this blog.] Regardless of these factors, I was excited! FLAVORS OF THE WORLD... NO LESS! 4 tickets to paradise, coming right up.
Tasting potato chips encrusted with flavor profiles from the four corners of the globe is the perfect pre-cursor to my falling head over b-hole into my Olympic euphoria [Tangent: I give a damn about sports for 2 weeks every couple years. My uninhibited fervor can only take it that often.] Given my penchant for ethnic food, to say my hopes were high would be an understatement; there wasn't one I wasn't strangely intrigued by. Who will come out the Wasabi Soy Kettle Chips and who will be the Cappaucino of 2016? [Spoiler Alert: There were no big losers this year I was pretty happy with all of the contenders. It's not like the year I nearly gagged in that bag of mango salsa potato crisps.]
First Place: Indian Tikka Masala Kettle chips
[Warning: This big win comes with extreme bias because I submitted this exact chip flavor to the contest last year. Although I haven't been notified of some huge cash prize, I rest easy in the fact that it exists and I can eat it. That's prize enough for me. This fight was also unfair because I happen to think kettle chips are better than any other chip regardless of flavor. Texture is key. When I read Gulp by Mary Roach, she explained that we generally base our enjoyment of potato chips largely on crunch-ability. That's just science, ya'll! ] These chips are intense and not unlike their inspiration, they will stay with you. Aftertaste for days. Luckily I love Indian spices like tumeric, so I have no problem that they linger in my mouth longer than anticipated. Whoever applied spice did so with a heavy hand, though, so refrain from putting in contact lenses for a while after eating, unless you scrub down with surgical precision or want to know what it feels like to have your retina get flavor blasted. I'm definitely a fan because it's like eating my favorite takeout dish without getting super terrible gas afterwards [Tangent: TMI? Probably, but we all know Indian food is notorious for butt burps. This is not new info ] I like that shortcut to delicious.
Second Place: Greek Tzatziki Wavy Chips
Again, I am a huge fan of the source material as I could easily drink tzatziki sauce straight from the ladle at my favorite Greek restaurant [Tangent: The one where the meat slicer looks like Oscar Issac, which is completely inconsequential but begs to be mentioned.] I doubted that a sauce that is cucumber and yogurt based would really blow my skirt up because I suspected it would be too mild. However, as soon as I opened the bag, I immediately smelled that familiar smell and was on board. I will admit I tried this one first in the rotation and I liked it more when my tongue wasn't muddied with 3rd world spice [Tangent: Probably the least effective of the Spice Girls.] They would be a good option when you wanted a less intense Sour Cream and Onion.
Tied for Third: Brazilian Picanha and Chinese Szechuan Chicken chips
I couldn't pick a clear loser because both of these had heavy pros and cons. One was delightful at first and then awful aftertaste-wise and the other was underwhelming while I was eating them, but had a pleasant kick in the pants at the end.
Having never had Brazilian food and hearing nothing but unsavory things about Rio in prep for the Olympics, [Tangent: Raw sewage poop water, dead bodies washing up on shore on the beach volleyball court...etc. None of these make we want to take a bite of their delicacies. That's not xenophobic...it's just honesty. ] my expectations were not insanely high. Because I'm guessing the fine folks at Lay's assumed there were others out there like me that may be dubious, they were also the only chips of the bunch that had a little subtitle : steak and chimichurri. That changed my expectation slightly and damned if they really didnt taste like actual steak. Some would find a meaty chip offputting, but I dug it. The trouble with this snack food resided in the problematic aftertaste, which made me feel like I had been gnawing on cardboard. Where did that peppercorny magic go? Not awful...just not great.
The Chinese contingent had the opposite issue. I was completely bored with them when I first started eating them, which was surprising because I consider Chinese (or Asian food in general) to never be lacking in the flavor department. The after burn seconds later was intense and made up for the lack luster initial meeting. If you don't mind something slightly hot, then I think you will enjoy it. I only wish I didn't have to wait for it. I'm hella impatient.
So that's my 2 cents on how I spent 10 dollars.
Which have you tried?
Which are you most excited about? I gotta know.
Tell me I am not fat kidding out alone!