29 February, 2008

Jones Cane Soda - Gingerbread Man

Part of Jones' traditionally offbeat holiday soda flavors, Jones Cane Soda Gingerbread Man almost perfectly captures the flavor of gingerbread man cookies. It is similar to a very good ginger beer, but with the added notes of spices and molasses. Tasty but not really refreshing, it was a good accompaniment to roast pork, but not a quaffing soda to quench a thirst.

Relevant link: Jones Soda webpage.

Java Pop - Caramel Flavor

Java Pop Caramel Soda has a light coffee taste completely dominated by a rich and delicious butterscotch caramel flavor. Absolutely mouthwatering - although I found it to be a little too sweet for my taste, it is probably one of the most wonderful beverage flavors I have ever had.

The JavaPop Inc. website lists five flavors in their lineup; however, I've only been able to find the Caramel variety, and that has only been in local job lot stores (where it is a phenomenal bargain at just 25 cents for a 12-ounce bottle.)

Relevant link: JavaPop's site. Warning: it's all done in Flash, and you'll want to dive your mouse cursor to the bottom right hand corner of your screen, where you can turn off the obnoxious repeating music loop.

28 February, 2008


I discovered Julmust at IKEA, where the signs described it as "Swedish Root Beer." I'm pretty sure that they only said that because the unique flavor defies easy explanation.

A non-alcoholic fizzy drink made from hops and malt but otherwise without much beery character, Julmust is a dark beverage with a faintly bitter, herbal element that makes it flavorful and refreshing in a way that sweeter pops don't quite manage. The bitterness that the hops lent to the drink make Julmust somewhat comparable to Moxie, the New England soft drink flavored with gentian root.

Julmust syrup is produced exclusively by Roberts AB in Örebro, Sweden. According to Roberts company history, must was invented in 1910 by Harry and Robert Roberts as a non-alcoholic alternative to beer. Although several companies bottle it (including Coca-Cola) all of the bottlers obtain the syrup from Roberts. The formula is as carefully guarded a trade secret as the formula for Coke.

I'm told that Julmust far outsells even marketing giant Coca-Cola during the December holiday season in Sweden, accounting for more than 50% of all soft drinks sold during that timeframe.

I found Julmust to be quite enjoyable, and I was glad that I bought as many bottles as I did when I was at IKEA. When the current stock is gone there won't be any more until next Christmas.

Relevant link: Roberts AB website (English Language version)

26 February, 2008

Fishy Delights 11: Brunswick Holmes Sardines

Sometimes when I buy a product, my expectations and the actual experience are so widely at odds with one another that it's like I've been the victim of a "bait and switch" scam. These Brunswick sardines are a pretty good example.

Normally, when I buy canned sardines, I expect the tins to contain several small fish. Expensive "premium" brands might pack twenty delicate little fish (in two layers) into the tin, while some of the deep-discount cheap brands will use bigger and coarser fish (maybe four or five) to fill the tin. On occasion, I've had a few really unpleasant surprises, where there might be two or three fish packed with the scales still intact. Bleeurgh.

But even finding three or four really big sardines in the can would have been less startling than what I actually found when I pulled the ring on these tins, each of which contained two gigantic segments of pilchard.

That picture on the left shows what was in the can labeled as packed in "Louisiana Hot Sauce." The "sardines" are sitting on the plate - two massive cuts from the body of a good-sized fish.

Now, as disconcerting as that photo may be, I have to say that the fish itself was of very good quality, mild-flavored and tender, with no scales or nasty "intestinal surprises" lurking within the body cavities. Unfortunately for those who enjoy a spicy lunch, the "Louisiana Hot Sauce" wasn't much of anything - kind of a mildly-paprika-flavored thin sauce without much body or kick that certainly didn't have much in common with any hot sauce I've ever tasted.

Still, I couldn't complain. At 65 cents per can at the local Big Lots! job lot store, the Brunswick sardines were a bargain, and there are plenty of fishy recipes calling for sardines as a "mix in" ingredient where they'd be perfectly adequate.


24 February, 2008

Kraft Easy Cheese - Cream Cheese

Behold Kraft Easy Cheese Original Cream Cheese flavor: introduced in 2007 and already relegated to clearance bins and job lot stores, this curiosity may well have come and gone from your local supermarket without ever attracting your attention.

The flavor is okay; not quite as mild and milky as cream cheese, with a slight but distinct sour note. The texture is typical of all the Easy Cheese flavors, soft without being runny.

It's not hard to understand why Original Cream Cheese was a failure. There isn't anything about it that stands out as a unique or "must-have" feature. Cream cheese is already a pretty friendly product to use, easy to spread right out of the package, and the spreadability improves when it comes up to room temperature. Thinning the cheese out to help it ride through a narrow nozzle isn't a big improvement.

I tried a long time to come up with a use for this stuff that would be unique to a self-dispensing, no-spreading-required product. It wasn't easy, but here you go:

No-Bake Ghetto-Ass Cheesecake Treats

1 box Honey Maid Graham Crackers
1 container Betty Crocker ready-to-use vanilla frosting
1 can Easy Cheese Original Cream Cheese
1 box of Strawberry Fruit Snacks

For each Cheesecake Treat use one graham cracker square and spread it generously with vanilla frosting. Dispense a decorative layer of Easy Cheese Cream Cheese on top of the frosting, Garnish with a strawberry fruit snack. Repeat these steps until you run out of one of the ingredients. You can make this dessert elegant enough for guests if you substitute a spoonful of strawberry jam for the Fruit Snack.

20 February, 2008

Pop Tarts Splitz

I was born in 1960, and I can not remember a time without Pop-Tarts. When I was a kid, my mom always seemed to have a box on hand in the cupboard. They were an occasional treat, usually served up with a glass of milk for an after-school snack; Mom used to buy the ones filled with strawberry or blueberry jam though I'm pretty sure that more kinds of fruit-preserve filling were available.

When I was in high school, I discovered that Kelloggs was making a "Brown Sugar/Cinnamon" flavor, and it soon became my favorite. There was a layer of moist, cinnamon-adulterated brown sugar filling sandwiched between two layers of short pastry crust, topped with a hard shell of brown-colored confectioner's glaze. They were delicious, and completely devoid of any kind of nutritional value whatsoever - Brown Sugar/Cinnamon Pop-Tarts defined the phrase "empty calories" even better than alcohol.

I have the feeling that over the years, the hypersweet junkfood Pop-Tarts have been better sellers than the [not really] healthy fruit-filled ones. I never seem to see new fruity varieties get introduced, but I've noticed plenty of the "empty calorie" variety ones come and go. Like, for example, this one: Pop-Tarts Splitz, with chocolate filling and frosting on one side, and vanilla frosting and filling on the inside.

Now, if you don't like Pop-Tarts to begin with, nothing I write here is going to change your mind about them. The basic flavors in Pop-Tarts haven't changed all that much since I was a kid, and with the exception of the fillings, there isn't anything different about these. The pastry crust is still pretty industrial, kind of flaky/crumbly, with a quite pleasant shortbread note to it. The frosting is still that hardened confectioner's-glaze style stuff that reminds me of hardened royal icing.

There aren't any real surprises inside, either. The chocolate side tastes like sweetened cocoa and the vanilla side like artificially-flavored vanilla cake frosting. There's no fruit, no "healthy bits," nothing at all here to redeem them to parents concerned about their childrens' intake of lowest-common-denominator crap. They're just like the Brown-Sugar/Cinnamon Pop-Tarts of my youth, updated with fresh new carbohydrate overload, and with a frosting pattern on top that resembles tire tracks on a snowy road. Pretty awesome all the way around, I think.

Pop-Tarts has their own website at www.poptarts.com. Be advised if you go there, it's kind of clunky and top-heavy with animations and stuff, and they also tell you that you can't access some of the content without shutting off your pop-up blocker. Pretty funny, huh?

19 February, 2008

Ramen Review 2 - Nissin Cup Noodles Souper Meal, Chicken

Nissin Cup Noodles Souper Meal, Chicken Flavor with Vegetable Medley

Ease of Preparation: 8/10
Add water, contents of vegetable packet, and soup flavoring; cover and microwave for five minutes; stir in flavor enhancer packet; allow to stand two minutes before serving. Roomy and sturdy paper bowl required no extra support to remove from microwave.

Vegetable Packet: 8/10
Fairly standard packet with cabbage, carrot, corn, onion, mushroom, parsley, and little chunks of TVP. There was a generous amount, though, and the mushroom and onion pieces were nice and big.

Taste: 8/10
Rich and enjoyable chicken flavor broth is tasty and satisfying, though not quite as good as Lipton Cup-A-Soup (which is the gold standard for powdered chicken broths in my opinion.) This Souper Meal also includes an envelope labeled "Flavor Enhancer" which is meant to be stirred in just before serving. In the past, I've found that I don't really enjoy the soup as much with this oil packet stirred in (it tastes like slightly rancid sesame oil and I found that it didn't do much "enhancing.")

Spiciness: 0/10
This is not marketed as a spicy ramen, so no points will be deducted for this zero score.

Overall rating: 8/10 when prepared without Flavor Enhancer. Recommended.

Relevant links:
Nissin Home Page
Nissin Souper Meal Nutrition Facts (from www.thedailyplate.com)

18 February, 2008

Ramen Review 1 - Nissin Chow Mein, Teriyaki Beef Flavor

This blog entry introduces a new semi-regular feature to Dave's Cupboard: Ramen Reviews. I've loved ramen noodles ever since I was a kid. They're cheap, flavorful, and filling, and they're available in a huge number of varieties! Although I'm starting off with a relatively common Nissin Chow Mein bowl today, expect to find some more unusual flavors and noodle styles as I rustle through the ramen aisle of my local Asian groceries in search of less familiar fare.

Nissen Chow Mein, Teriyaki Beef Flavor.

Ease of Preparation: 6/10.
Add water and contents of vegetable packets to the bowl; cover and microwave for six minutes; stir in contents of seasoning packet and oil packet; let stand 1 minute before serving. Easy, I know, but points off for the six-minute microwaving time and a very flimsy bowl that needed the support of a plate underneath it in order to be removed from the microwave after heating.

Vegetable packet: 8/10
Onions, green onions, carrot, shiitake mushrooms, small bits of meat-like TVP.

Taste: 9/10
The delicious "teriyaki flavor" was more like a combination of teriyaki and hoisin sauce and reminded me of Moo Shu. The shiitake mushrooms, besides being a rare treat, added a richer depth of flavor, and the bits of TVP scattered here and there were tasty and added some textural variety as well (though you'd never in a million years mistake them for beef!) Although a touch on the sweet side despite the addition of vinegar powder, it should be noted that the flavoring packet now has sucralose as a sweetener rather than the glucose it once contained.

Spiciness: 0/10
This was not a spicy ramen, but because it isn't marketed as spicy, no points will be deducted from the final score.

Overall rating: 8/10 - Recommended.

Relevant links:
Nissin Home Page
Nissin Chow Mein Teriyaki Beef Flavor Nutrition Facts (at www.thedailyplate.com)

Miss Vickie's Potato Chips

Miss Vickie's, a Canadian potato chip brand now owned by Frito-Lay, Inc., is a kettle-style chip that claims to be cooked in small batches.

Like most kettle-style chips, they're thick cut, very crunchy, and somewhat more greasy than their standard counterparts. And like other Frito-Lay chips they have a mysteriously "sweet" taste to them (mysterious because sweeteners are never listed on the ingredients, yet one bite of a Lays potato chip and you know it's a Lays because of that sugary aftertaste.)

As chips go, Miss Vickie's are decidedly ordinary. They're no better than Cape Cod chips or Grandma Utz's Old Fashioned chips, both of which are also "kettle" brands, and they may even be at a disadvantage, since Utz chips are very fresh-tasting and "potato-y" and Miss Vickie's are kind of, you know, run-of-the-mill.

Though I've never yet seen a bag of Miss Vickie's chips in a supermarket, the single-serving sized bags are sold in vending machines, convenience stores, and at Subway sandwich shops around here and they do pretty well. Part of that might be due to the number of flavors they come in (there are eleven in all) and part might be the distribution muscle of Frito-Lay. But the quietly elegant packaging probably catches more than a few eyes. The matte-finish screen-printed mylar and bilingual labelling is admittedly attractive, and then there's that "farm-fresh" nonsense (as though anyone believes a mass-market chip is made anywhere but in a factory these days.)

Here's a listing of the flavors available; any of them that I've tried have short reviews, the others are ones I haven't yet tasted:
  • Original Recipe - Thick, greasy, salty, mostly taste like potato-flavored oil; very crunchy.
  • Jalapeno - Exactly what one would expect, medium-level heat mostly from addition of cayenne pepper with green jalapenos adding a good deal of grassy taste and little extra fire. Got these at Subway to accompany a sandwich, and I have to admit they went well with my sub.
  • Sea Salt and Malt Vinegar - Good vinegar tang, but too much salt; potato flavor heavily masked.
  • Mesquite BBQ - Completely unexceptional, this was a dead-average chip with fake BBQ flavoring. I hate "BBQ flavored" anything. Including these crappy chips.
  • Sweet Chili & Sour Cream - Pronounced sweet-paprika flavor with undertones of sour milk. Not that impressive, but different enough to be interesting.
  • Lime & Black Pepper - Good, fruity black pepper taste; lime was a lot like the vinegar but with a hint of citrus; would have been better as a simple "Black Pepper" chip.
  • Honey & Roasted Garlic
  • Roasted Red Pepper Grill
  • Vintage Cheddar & Red Onion
  • Roasted Garlic & Herb
  • Harvest Onion
Final verdict: Miss Vickie's chips aren't special enough for me to actively seek them out. But the flavors are, for the most part, unique and if they are on the rack alongside another standard chip, I'll buy a Miss Vickie's flavor that I haven't yet tried just for the sake of variety.

17 February, 2008

Dill Wholes.

vlasic dill.jpg

Heh heh hehheh heh m heh...dillholes.

15 February, 2008

Fishy Delights 10: Abba brand Matjes Herring

Matjes herring (or "soused herring" as it is often known in English-speaking countries) is another interesting tinned fish product; the container pictured is from Abba Seafoods of Sweden.

The fish is filleted and brined with herbs and spices. In the case of the tin I purchased, it's cold-packed and sealed, and then kept refrigerated because matjes herring is an uncooked product.

Although similar to the refrigerated "herring in wine sauce" or "pickled herring" available in nearly every supermarket around here, matjes is a distinctly different product in flavor as well as texture.

I opened a can and poured off some of the dark lavender-colored brine. The herring bits were translucent and pink with their silver skin still clinging to one side. There was a distinct aroma of dill, but it was overpowered by the strong smell of cloves, which I reckon was the "spice" listed on the label.

The taste was very different from other herring products I've had in the past. Slightly sweet, heavily cloved, with just a hint of dill in the background (from the amount of dill weed that had been in the brine, I thought it would be a more prominent flavor, but no.) The fish was very tender, almost meltingly so, with a rich fishy deliciousness. I thought that the clove taste was a bit strong, so I decided to try the matjes with other things.

Some thinly-sliced red onion and a bit of sour cream made for a good combination, with the sour cream smoothing out the rough clovey edges and the flavor and crunch of the onion contrasting nicely with the fish.

But putting the matjes on a slice of good, toasted pumpernickle bread with a sliced egg and some paper-thin onion slices was best of all. A fine and worthy combination. I wish I had some caraway-flavord schnapps to go with it.

14 February, 2008

Friendly's Ice Cream

Spotted this while in the grocery store today. What marketing genius thought it a good idea to name an ice cream flavor "Fudge Tracks?" Did they find inspiration while sorting underwear for the laundry?

13 February, 2008

Mac's Chicharrones

I'd never seen Mac's fired pork skins before, so when they appeared in a local store lately, I couldn't resist picking up a couple of bags. I really like chicharrones, but the quality of them is kind of uneven between brands, so when I see a new label I try to check it out.

Mac's Snacks Inc., based in Arlington Texas, has been in business since 1932, so it should come as no surprise that their pigskins are among the best I've ever had.

The store carried four varieties: Original, Salt & Vinegar, Spicy Hot, and Barbecue. I bought Original and Salt & Vinegar.

The Original variety is everything a chicharrone should be: light and airy, deliciously crunchy, not a bit greasy, with a fresh pork taste that is almost bacony. They're seasoned with just the right hint of salt to enhance the flavor. They're an amazing, premium product.

But the Salt & Vinegar chicharrones were even better. In fact, they are quite possibly the best fried pork skin I have ever tasted in my life. Like the Original variety, they are kissed with a touch of salt. But Mac's also uses a touch of additional seasoning that includes vinegar, onion powder, and garlic powder. The result is incredible: they're irresistable. It's as if they've been coated with pure deliciousness.

Mac's Snacks webpage is here. They don't seem to be a very big company, so the website is pretty barebones, but check them out for the hell of it anyway.

Country Of Origin Labels

Thanks to the 2002 Farm Bill, the USDA requires Country Of Origin Labeling (COOL) on food. But when our grocery store clerks suck at geography, how effective is this program going to be?

12 February, 2008

Fishy Delights 9: Kalles Smoked Roe Spread

The Swedish Food Market at IKEA always has a few surprises lurking within. On a recent trip, I picked up two varieties of Kalles Kaviar (a smoked fish roe spread.) In Sweden, it's one of the most popular snacks/sandwich spreads on the market and it's available straight, with cream cheese, with dill, and a "light" version. IKEA carried English-language-labeled product in two of the flavors: straight Creamed Smoked Roe, and Striped (cream cheese accompanies the roe but is not blended with it, so the product comes from the tube in an attractive pink-and-white-striped extrusion.) I sampled each variety on plain saltine crackers.

Creamed Smoked Roe - soft pinky brown, flecked with little bits of herbs and seasoning. Aggressively fishy flavor, just as you'd expect from a poduct made with roe, but with a richer tone I couldn't quite identify and very sweet. Checking the label, I found that tomatoes and sugar are both important ingredients. Not bad as a snack spread, but the sweetness kind of put me off a little. I think this would be great served on toasted rye rounds with sliced stuffed Manzanilla olives and egg salad, or as a stuffing for salty green olives where the tart/bitter flavors of the olive could balance the sweetness in the spread.

Striped Smoked Roe - Packed with soft cream cheese alongside the roe, this spread is much lighter than the straight roe, with a distinctive salmony-orange color and a milder, more delicate taste. The gentler flavor makes it more suitable for a general snack spread or sandwich filler. Still, the smoked roe itself is heavily laced with tomato and sugar, and I found it to be just as disconcertingly sweet as the other.

Overall, I don't regret buying either of the Kalles spreads, but I don't anticipate them becoming the next breakout product that joins the mainstream American market.

Some trivia about the spread:
  • In Sweden, the product is known as Kalles Kaviar.
  • It's made by Abba Seafood AB, which was originally established in 1838. The famous Swedish pop band requested (and was granted) permission from the company to share the name in 1974.
  • Kalle is the name of the blonde boy depicted on the tubes. He is the son of the managing director of the company in 1954, the year Kalles Kaviar was first introduced.

11 February, 2008

The Banana Timeline

Bananas for Tomorrow.

Bananas for Today.

Bananas for Yesterday.

Who Goes To IKEA To Eat?

IKEA is well known for their well-designed, affordable home furnishings (many of which need to be assembled by the consumer.) But their stores also have small cafeteria-style restaurants where you can take a break and buy some lunch or a snack after winding through the cavernous showroom and marketplace.

On a recent Saturday, we took a drive to the IKEA store in New Haven, Connecticut. Although the purpose of the visit was to pick up a few small necessities for the house and to check out kitchen cabinet design for an eventual remodeling, we happened to be there at lunchtime, so we stopped at the cafe.

The cafeteria is just about the only part of the building with windows, and the combination of light colors, bright metallics, and simple furniture design gives it a bright, airy, relaxing atmosphere that adds to the "refreshment factor." The selection is limited - I think there were five or six main selections along with a single soup choice and a variety of desserts - but that's to be expected at a retail store's lunch counter.

Although the store was busy the day we were there, the cafe was relatively quiet. One of the service islands was closed and there was only a single cashier. But the help was quick, efficient, and polite and lines were short and fast-moving as customers made their selections and brought the cafeteria trays to the register for payment.

Selections included Atlantic Salmon with dill, Swedish Meatballs, and fried chicken fingers; my wife and daughter both opted for the Swedish Meatballs and I decided to have the Garden Vegetable Soup with a dinner roll and butter.

The Swedish Meatball platter was pretty much as expected - about a dozen small and quite delicious Swedish meatballs, nice balance of meat and filler, pleasantly seasoned. They were topped with a light brown gravy that most certainly from a packet and which had a distinctive soy-like flavor to it (quite like Maggi sauce bottled for the American market.) Sides included roughly mashed red potatoes (creamy and delicious with chunks of unmashed potatoes and potato skins mixed throughout) and lingonberry preserves (sweet and tart, loaded with whole berries, quite a bit like cranberry sauce.) For dessert, the ladies also selected a wonderful apple cake: a two-inch-deep graham cracker crumb crust filled with big chunks of stewed apples, topped with a buttercrumb crust and vanilla custard sauce. It was much more like a deep-dish pie or apple tart than a "cake."

The Garden Vegetable Soup was also very pleasant, although once again it was obviously an "envelope" soup; the broth had the distinctive flavor of reconstituted soup mixes, and the potatoes had been quite obviously dehydrated. But it had been enriched with frozen lima beans and corn, as well as slices of fresh zucchini and yellow summer squash. The weather outside was cold and rainy, and the hot soup was particularly welcome.

The dinner roll was nothing special, pretty standard stuff.

That bottle of Kristian Regale was interesting, though. It was a lightly sparkling lingonberry/apple drink, light and quenching, with a delicious tart taste that once again reminded me of cranberries. Interestingly enough, the bottle said it was a product of Spain.

Extremely reasonably priced, lunch for the three of us, including drinks, came to about $20.

10 February, 2008

Dave's Taco Bell'd Wing Sauce

It doesn't matter what you might think about the food at Taco Bell, their Fire "Border Sauce" is pretty respectable medium-level hot sauce. It's full-bodied and flavorful, with a good but not overpowering kick.

Chances are, if you go to Taco Bell now and then, you've got a few packets of this stuff kicking around. Did you know it's a valued ingredient in an excellent Buffalo-style wing sauce?

Dave's Taco Bell'd Wing Sauce

4 tablespoons butter
12 packets of Taco Bell Fire Sauce
1 bottle (6 ounces) Louisiana Hot Sauce
4 tablespoons brown sugar

Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat until foamy; add Fire Sauce and Louisiana Hot Sauce. Stir in brown sugar and simmer, stirring frequently, until sauce thickens a bit and coats a spoon dipped into the pan.

Tip cooked wings into the pan, stir and toss to coat them well, and serve.

Makes enough to coat a little more than 2 dozen wings.

09 February, 2008

Garlic Man

I found Garlic Man here on a cellophane package of garlic imported from China. It was pretty good garlic, I admit, but not as good as the stuff grown closer to home (which doesn't have as far to travel.)

US-grown garlic needs a cool mascot like Garlic Man, though.

08 February, 2008

Hot Tub Chickens

I wish I had taken this picture, but it's ganked from here.

Beer + Clamato = WTF

I was at the package store, buying vodka for Jello Shots, and they had these "Cheladas" on the counter by the cash register. I guess they were hoping for someone to pick them up on an impulse buy. I asked the guy at the register about them, and he just laughed. "I put them there hoping someone would want them out of curiosity," he said, "They taste really bad. Plus everyone sees Clamato on the label and they're like 'Man that shit's nasty.'"

Rumor has it that "Cheladas" are popular with Latinos, but we have a pretty sizeable Hispanic population around here and none of my Latino friends has ever tasted a Bud Chelada. I wonder who the hell ever thought that this would be such a popular product that it had to be produced commercially. There are two main things wrong with it:
  • Budweiser (and Bud Light) are not, despite all the money they pour into marketing, "premium" beers. They're lowest-common-denominator suds which, by virtue of brand identity, are able to command a slightly higher price for quality and taste that is not all that much better than Pabst Blue Ribbon.
  • Clamato is, all by itself, fairly disgusting. Originally made by Mott's, it was once upon a time a decent drink - tomato juice, clam broth, a touch of seaoning - that made a killer Bloody Mary (called a "Clammy Mary" around here, or a "Caesar" in Canada, eh.) But those days are gone forever. Mott's was bought out by Cadbury-Schweppes in 1982, and now Clamato is made with tomato juice, "clam powder," and high-fructose corn syrup. It's not the same drink, and it doesn't taste the same.
The actual Budweiser Chelata Experience far exceeded my horrific expectations. For starters, the color is a bloody-phlegm pinky/amber. Kind of translucent, with tiny suspended reddish particulate (Bud says the can should be gently spun between your palms before opening to mix the sediment with the beverage.) There's no head. In fact, there's very little carbonation; it's a lot like soda pop that's been left in an open cup overnight. I have to admit that the smell is a little enticing: a bit briny, a bit tomatoey, a bit yeasty. So I took a sip.

Big mistake. The mouthfeel is thin and watery. The flavor is vomitous: reminiscent of rotted tomatoes in a salt flat at low tide. Gah. Horrid. I'd almost be willing to eat a bite of dogshit just to get the flavor of Chelada out of my mouth.

'Man that shit's nasty.' Yes, that sums it up quite tidily, I'd say.