Friday, March 15, 2013

Product Review: Lay's Sriracha Chips

  Lay's is currently running this contest to push wacky flavors into the permanent snacking slots of chip eaters. It's a toss up between the finalists--Sriracha, Cheesy Garlic, and Chicken and Waffle. I can't say that I'm exactly thrilled these are the finalists. However, we've already got the token flavors and the Limon flavors and er...spicy ketchup.

  I tried to make a flavor I thought would be great when the Facebook competition started months ago. I suppose that Chicago Southside BBQ just isn't that much of a breakthrough flavor. So, months pass. An announcement is made, and we've got the three flavors. I'm thinking to myself "I GOTTA try one of these flavors." I planned on trying all three, but it seems incredibly hard to locate a bag of these things in Chicago. I had my family looking everywhere so I could churn out this product review! (Please pardon my spelling of the product in question. I keep looking at and away from the bag. XD)

  I'm not quite sure why the smaller bag I first purchased was sooooo smelly. I mean, it was one of those "whooooeee" kind of smells. It was strong, vinegary, and made me second guess about puttin' chip one into my mouth. For the first bag, I split it with another member of the house. I had to squeeze her like an orange to get a straight answer to "how do they taste?", because she couldn't quite understand the flavor. When she took the first taste, her jaw dropped and her eyes squinted a little bit. Through a process of elimination, she decided they were:

  • Tangy
  • A little spicy
  • Kinda smelly
  • "garlicky and peppery"
  Bless her little heart. Maybe it was too funky and strange. She's used to Flamin' Hot snacks and spicy popcorn. Methinks Sriracha 'twas a curveball. Once I trotted to my room to sample what was left, I was on the fence. There's something about this flavor that's somewhere between "not so bad" and "hmmm, let me have another chip and think about this." This is really an interesting flavor. Since I've never actually had Sriracha, I can't testify as to whether or not it tastes as authentic. Funny comic creator The Oatmeal, however, could probably talk your head off about his love for the stuff. From quizzes to merchandising and love letters, I'm shocked he hasn't thrown together a funny comic about this snack finalist with the sauce flavoring originating Eastern Thailand.....yet.

  Anyway, I wanted to try again. So I searched, I asked, and I fished around. Today, I took a chance and went to Target. (I hate Target, so you know I was determined to find these dang chips if I'm willing to enter the red walls of that icky establishment....) Again, they only had one flavor out of the three, which irritated me but pretty much threw me into "make do" mode.

  This bag wasn't nearly as smelly. Matter of fact, I didn't even smell that super vinegary odor until I put a chip into my mouth. If I had to describe the taste, I would say it's a mash up of garlic, vinegar, and a hint of spicy pepper. Not so much in taste , but rather the spicy sensation on the tongue. Not too spicy, but you'll know it's there once it touches your tongue.

  Again, this is not really an amazing flavor. I'm still on the fence. It's "different" in the sense that it's not like Lay's spicy chips. It's got a bit more of a vinegar taste than their Salt and Vinegar bag. The garlic taste and pepper sensation give it a bit of a savory tang. I could be wrong, but I think this is more of a novelty flavor than it is a flavor with staying power. Maybe the Sriracha lovers will rise up and vote it into a "forever" spot on the Lay's roster. I, however, kinda want to try those other flavors before I cast my vote.

  Final verdict--Not bad. Might purchase again. The words "acquired taste" come to mind. The flavoring isn't overwhelming, but rather an interesting blend. If you've never had the original sauce, it's a possible toss up. There is a 50/50 chance you might or might not like it. But then again, lovers of the sauce might be nitpicky and say it doesn't taste the same either. I suggest just trying a smaller bag, if you can find one.

  Hopefully at a later date, I will be able to get my mitts on the other flavors. I kinda can't believe the local stores in my area don't have them. For frack's sake, I found a Walgreen's that sold SUSHI. COME ON! o_O Give a poor blogger a break.

  Have you tried the chips? How did they taste to you? Have you voted yet? Give ol' Miss Williams the details. If you know where I can get the other two flavors in Chicago, let me know!


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