24 May, 2012

Review: So Long Potato Crisps

When Americans think of "potato crisps" - dehydrated potatoes in chip-like form - most think of Pringles or Munchos, which are the category leaders. But recently, I found some very different potato crisps in Ocean State Job Lot: So Long Potato Crisps. Their marketing tagline is "So Unique, So Fun, So Snacky."

Although the flavors available are fairly standard for potato snacks (Sea Salt, Sour Cream and Chive, Cheddar, and BBQ) the form is certainly unique. Instead emulating a potato chip, So Long decided to just extrude long sheets of potato substrate and sell them just like that.

So what you get is a long, thin package of seven-inch-long tater crisp rectangles as shown in the photo at right. The package says that they're made in Latvia, so we had a good time speculating that perhaps these might be made with some clanky Soviet technology left over from the Cold War.

Okay, so they look funny. How do they taste?

Sea Salt: Pretty standard, lightly salted dehydrated potato taste. Not nearly as starchy-tasting as Pringles, and not as salty as Munchos, they have a flavor profile remarkably similar to cheap instant mashed potatoes.

BBQ: Most barbecue-flavored potato chips and crisps go pretty heavy on the tomato powder and add lots of sugar and smoke flavoring. I don't like BBQ chips very much.  So Long BBQ chips, in contrast, are much more subtle and very, very light on the tomato. There is a light aroma and taste of smoke, but they're much less aggressive than the usual product.

Sour Cream and Onion: Here again, the flavor is exceptionally subtle, almost to the point where it isn't very noticeable. The sour tang is a mere hint, and there's hardly any onion flavor at all.

Cheddar Cheese: And once again, the flavor here is more of a suggestion than a demand. You can tell they're supposed to be cheese, though, because they have a faint orange hue to them.

Each packet is about 2.6 ounces and is enough for two or three people to share. The regular retail price at Ocean State is a dollar a package (too high, IMO) but the sale price I bought them at was 3 for $1.00 (great for buying some for review.) They were okay, but so unexceptional that I won't go out of my way to purchase them again.

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