Thursday, June 3, 2010

Better Living through Chemistry

What better way to marry the enthusiasm of the impending World Cup with brash commercialism (and maybe start an international food fight) than to dream up irresistible / disgusting snacks?

Thankfully, (and just in time for the June 11 kick off), Walkers has engineered an entire line of potato chips (crisps) to get your taste buds hopping. The Walkers Flavour Cup introduces 15 national food themed chips from Italian Spaghetti Bolognese to Japanese Teriyaki Chicken. There’s something for everyone: two chicken dishes, several beef flavors, and a couple of vegetarian options.

Just imagine the marketing team meeting where Walkers’ executives debated what the national food was for each country. And when, exactly, in the product development cycle do you think they brought in the chemists or food scientists or whoever was responsible for turning the bland potato into a party in your mouth? Who was the brave soul who piped up and asked, “What exactly does Australian BBQ Kangaroo taste like?”

To celebrate our last night at Kiplin, I hosted an international crisp blind taste test. The crisps were placed out in individual bowls. Everyone very thoughtfully had to try to match the taste with the list of flavors, plus voted for their favorite and least favorite.

“The more I eat, the harder this becomes. The flavor is just chemical-ly,” moaned Anjuli.

“It’s awful to have to redo the ones you really don’t like,” grimaced Katharine.

“Mmm. Underneath it all, they all taste like potato chips.”

Congratulations to Haley and Lynn, who correctly identified the most (7) crisps in the blind taste test. German Bratwurst Sausage won as the most distinctive, with 80% of taste-testers correctly identifying it. Argentinean Flame Grilled Steak was the fans’ favorite, while poor American Cheeseburger was voted least palatable.

I have now placed all the remaining chips in one giant bowl. Who knows what flavor you will draw.

1 comment:

  1. I still can't believe the BBQ Kangaroo flavor wasn't the worst.