Heretic dares suggest there are too many snack flavors

Illustration for article titled Heretic dares suggest there are too many snack flavors
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This morning, a troubling article ominously titled There Are Too Many Flavors and It Has Turned the Snack Industry Into a Vicious Hellscape appeared in my RSS reader. I clicked. Before I began reading, the URL alone presented a fallible premise: Too many snacks bad? Never.


I was all set to dismiss writer Dayna Evans’ argument on principle: There is no such thing as too many snack flavors. (As Cady Heron put it, the limit does not exist.) But whether or not you agree that the opportunity to live in a paradise of bacon-mac-and-cheese pretzel bites and flavor-blasted yogurts are what the Founding Fathers intended for us, her piece is worth a read.

“It has become tedious and overwhelming to just swing by the grocery store late-night when you need to satisfy a few cravings—the shelves are too clogged with dusty clambake-flavored tortilla chips,” she argues. I can almost concede this point. On St. Patrick’s Day, I stopped at a convenience store en route to a friend’s party and was paralyzed by the number of available snack options and beer flavors—to say nothing of how to pair the two—that I almost gave up and just brought Diet Coke to the party.

It can be a fraught mission, trying to taste through the onslaught of Xtreme and Double Stuf options on shelves these days, but one in a million—like a shooting star or the Northern Lights—there emerges a true winner from among the morass. That’s why The Takeout is here to do the hard but necessary taste-testing work for you. Flavor haters and chip extremists alike should give Evans’ piece a read over at GQ today, then ask yourself why Taco Bell Diablo sauce tortilla chips are as yet an unrealized dream.

Kate Bernot is a freelance writer and a certified beer judge. She was previously managing editor at The Takeout.


PotbellyJoe and 42 others

I forget why, but I watched this live in 2003. I’m still perplexed by it. His articles always match his spoken bit at the end of 60 minutes.

Andy Rooney... enough said.

Obviously, I like to eat but I have some rules. I don’t mix flavors. I like vanilla ice cream and I like chocolate ice cream but I don’t put them in a dish together.

When I was a kid, I liked peanut butter and I liked jelly but I didn’t like peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

Friday, I went to the deli across the street and took a sandwich and a Coke back here to the office. I opened the Coke, took a gulp and almost spewed it over the papers on my desk. I looked at the label and it said Vanilla Coke. Well, I like Coke and I like vanilla but I hated Vanilla Coke.

Everything’s got something else in it.

Raspberry Ginger Crisp, Cranberry Almond Crunch.

Cherry Vanilla Dream with Pecans and Cashews. How about a Cherry Vanilla Nightmare?

Orange cappuccino. They have hazelnut-flavored coffee. What’s wrong with coffee-flavored coffee?

Fat-Free Hazelnut Coffeemate. The only thing I can figure is, hazelnuts are cheaper than coffee beans so that’s what they’re putting in with the coffee to stretch it out.

They take perfectly good water and louse it up with kiwi and strawberry. This one says Tangerine-Pineapple-Guava. I’d have to be dying of thirst on a desert island.

Sour cream and onion potato chips. I guess the sour cream and onions aren’t even real. It says it’s “artificially flavored.”

A can of raspberry-flavored tea says “More tea taste.” So what’s the raspberry all about, if they want it to taste like tea?

There’s a salt-free rice cake that’s also fat-free. A fat-free topping. I’ve always been interested in the fact that when they don’t put something in a product, it costs more. If it doesn’t have fat, salt, sugar or any calories, it’s more expensive.

Fat-free poppyseed dressing. I always wonder what they do with all the fat they take out of these things. Do they just throw it away?

Honey is very big in everything, now. Honey Nut Cheerios, Planters Honey Roasted Peanuts, Honey Mustard Pretzel Dip. Honey doesn’t go with either peanuts or mustard. But I have an idea that honey is cheap because bees are making it faster than we’re eating it.

You know, maybe I’ll retire and go into business. I’d make an artificially flavored, fat-free, honey-coated hazelnut hot dog. You could have it with no-cal French vanilla or chocolate-flavored mustard.

Written By Andy Rooney