Monday, September 23, 2013

Lay's Thailand Hot Chili Squid

This bag had me so scared, I mean, it's called "Hot Chili Squid"; that's pretty intimidating. When I opened this bag the scent was VERY strong; a pungent Thai spiced seafood aroma. But, thankfully, the scent was much stronger than the seasoning. First off, this is a Ruffle-cut chip, you can see it on the front of the bag because Thailand markets both cuts of chips under the Lay's label. The Ruffle cut gave the chip a nice thickness and full potato flavor. The seasoning itself was a very sweet shrimp-like taste, very similar to Prawn Cocktail. That flavor is followed by a really low chili heat. The first chip out of the bag is basically not spicy at all. But as you eat more and more, that spice builds up on the back of your palette. For me, the spice never got too crazy, it was very subtle, even after it built up. The spice cuts through the rich potato and sweet seafood flavor very nicely, making this a complex and exciting taste on the tongue. All in all, I was VERY surprised by how much I enjoyed this bag. My only recommendation is you skip the initial smelling when you open the bag. Go straight to the snacking. This is a great bag for fans of "Prawn Cocktail", "Thai Sweet Chili", and most of the other bags from Thailand. (Actually, now that I think of it, its kind of like "Prawn Cocktail" and "Thai Sweet Chili" had a baby). It's SUPER easy to find on Amazon and Ebay here in the States, so if it sounds like something you'd like to snack on, it shouldn't be too hard to find.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Contest: Lay's Belgium Maak Je Smaak 2013 Finalists Announced!

Lay's Belgium has put forth the finalists in their "Maak Je Smaak" or "Make The Taste" contest. This year the contest borrowed "The Battle" theme from Netherland's 2012 contest to highlight how these flavors were going to duke it out for supremacy. The 3 flavors stepping into the ring now will be "Cocktail Andaluz", "New York Hotdog", and "Honey Glazed BBQ Ribs". 

"Cocktail Andaluz" may be the wackiest of the bunch and if I were placing bets, I would look at this bag to win it all. It is the brain-child of Sander, who while in the chip shop, could not decide between Andalusian sauce and Cocktail sauce for dipping his French Fries... he decided to mix the two and called it Cocktail Andaluz. Andalusian Sauce, for those who don't know, is a popular Mayo-based sauce in Belgium with tomato paste, chopped onion, chopped peppers, and lemon or lime. The Cocktail Sauce referred to here is a pink colored Mayo-based sauce similar to Thousand Island, it consists of Mayonnaise and Ketchup. I think this has a really good shot and winning, because Belgium tends to gravitate to the home grown flavors. Last year's winner was "Bicky Crisp" a local hamburger, and Netherland's Battle Champion 2 years ago was "Patatje Joppie", a bag flavored like a popular local dipping sauce called Joppiesaus. If "Cocktail Andaluz" strikes a cord with the locals, it could take home the gold.

"New York Hotdog" is pretty straight forward... and yet as obvious as it seems, I can't believe no one has sold this flavor before (at least not in recent memory). The Hotdog lover here is Pierre, who found these in NYC during his world travels and loved them enough to ask Lay's to make them into a chip. This bag will have a bit of complexity to it, as it isn't JUST the Smoky Meat flavor being recreated, but the Ketchup, Mustard, and Caramalized Onions as well. This may also pull at the stomachs of "Bicky Crisp" lovers from last year... "Bicky Crisp" offered the flavor of a fully dressed up Burger, and that could cross over to Hotdog love.

Lastly we have Tim's "Honey Glazed BBQ Ribs", which are described as having the sweetness of Honey, the smokyness of Meat, and the char of the Grill; evoking Summer BBQ in a bag. I am always a BBQ hater. I just don't get excited about BBQ flavors.  But, Tim's got a good shot at winning this too. Exhibit A. Belgium loves Barbeque. The standard range not only comes with a "Barbeque" flavor, but also a "Barbeque Ham" flavor. Barbeque can also be found in their 'Deep Ridged', 'Super Chips', and 'The Oven' collections.  Exhibit B. Netherlands crowned "Spicy Reggae Chicken" as their latest champion; this was another sauced-up meat flavor. So it is possible Honey Glazed BBQ Ribs can win this year. (On the other hand, who needs 3 BBQ flavors in a range? But I'm trying to be nice)

So who are you voting for? These bags are available now, so let the hunt begin!
(And speaking of hunting, is it just me, or are all of the finalists really good looking? Sheesh, is this what all the men in Belgium look like?... Who needs a Green Card?!)


Thursday, September 5, 2013

Gotta Get At This: Lay's Thailand รสพริกเผาปรุงรส and รสเมี่ยงคำครบรส

 Lay's Thailand has just released 2 new flavors... "รสพริกเผาปรุงรส" aka "Spicy Chili Paste" and "รสเมี่ยงคำครบรส" aka "Miang". The Chili Paste is pretty straight forward... in Thailand Chili paste is made with Garlic, Shallots, Dried Red Chili flakes, Lime, Tamarind, and a hint of Fish or Shrimp Paste. Thai Chili Paste is used in Thai cuisine to spice up things like soups and noodles. The other new flavor is "Miang"; a little bundle of joy wrapped in a Wild Pepper Leaf. The leaf fillings include Roasted Coconut, Roasted Peanuts, Lime, Ginger, Shallots, Garlic, Thai Chilis, and Shrimp. YUMMO! 
As with most of Thailand's flavors, both of these seem well suited to the region.  So what do you think about these? Are you gonna hunt them down? Let us know in the comments section below :)

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Gotta Get At This: Lay's Spain Xtra Onduladas Sour Cream & Onion

New flavor added to the Lay's Spain Xtra Onduladas line... "Sour Cream & Onion". These are glorified Wavy chips. The flavor is pretty common here in the states, so it's not super thrilling for us. But yay for Spain lol!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Contest: Lay's Perú Un Sabor Para Ganar Finalists

 Lay's Peru has announced the 3 finalists in their current Create-a-Flavor contest; Un Sabor Para Ganar.
The 3 Flavors announced are "Con Toques De Oregano Y Queso", "Aji Peruano", and "A La Parrilla". Peruvians can go on Lay's Website in Peru and vote for their favorite starting today, and the winner will be available on shelves for a year. The finalists chosen were able to go online earlier this year and create their flavor and also had the fun opportunity to choose the bag color too.

 Alexander came up with "A La Parilla". "A La Parrilla" means 'On The Grill' or 'Grilled' or 'Barbecue', and I'm guessing by the picture we are talking about Beef. This bag is made a bit more unique by being "Ondas" which is Peru's version of "Ruffles".
 Maria's creation is "Con Toques De Oregano Y Queso" which means "Touch of Oregano and Cheese". That sounds tremendous! Yum! I love Oregano! Maria says she thought of it because her kids love the smell of melted cheese and oregano on Pizza night. Listen, I don't know a single person on earth who doesn't love that smell. I hope, for the sake of Peru that this tastes as good as it sounds. MMM.
Lastly we have Cesar's concoction "Aji Peruano". Peruvian Aji are Peppers native to Peru. Lay's Peru does actually already make this flavor in their "Peruanísimas" line, a line of chips made with native potatoes, in this case yellow, but sometimes blue, etc. That line is devoted to native Peruvian flavors and ingredients. But it looks like Cesar's flavor will bring that inspiration to the standard Lay's line.