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Korean Snack Foods

by L. Fitzgerald Sjoberg

Fried Chicken Snack

What a monumentally good idea! A cracker that tastes like fried chicken! As a fan of both Kentucky "For God's Sake Don't Say Fried" Chicken and Chicken in a Bisket, I was really looking forward to sampling these drumstick-shaped snack units. Too bad they don't actually taste a damn thing like chicken. The flavor is, if I had to come up with an analogy, like two-day-old mustard-covered funnel cake. I never really acquired a taste for two-day-old mustard-covered funnel cake. D


Apparently Disney lawyers haven't quite got their animated tentacles into every nook and cranny of world commerce, because the pixie mascot of Pinkbell is shall we say familiar to anyone who ever watched "The Wonderful World of Disney." They claim to only have four ingredients, none of which contain word fragments like "hydroxyl," so I can only congratulate the Korean food industry on their ability to make more-or-less natural ingredients taste like the polymer-based snacks I know and love. B+

Tako Chips

I appreciate the makers of Tako Chips not subjecting me to a photorealistic rendering of an octopus on the package. Instead, we have a cap-wearing cartoon octopus expelling the words "LIGHT & CRISPY" from what appear to be his nasal passages. Anyhow, avoid these. I've eaten a lot of seafood-based snacks--too many in fact--in the line of duty, and these aren't bad until you actually swallow them. Then the aftertaste assaults your senses like the gustatory equivalent of the dream sequence in Rosemary's Baby. D-

Roasted Rice Candy

I have a love-hate-love-dislike-hate-appreciate-like-love-hate relationship with these candies. They taste like roasted rice, all righty. And yes, that's revolting. But once you get past the revoltingness, they're actually pretty good. My brain is going "These taste hideous, and I'm going to have a craving for them again in a few days." Weird. Eerie. Wait, no, just weird. C+

Wrinkled Strawberry Tubes

I opened these up and said to myself "Hey! Pink Chee-tos!" And indeed, they look just like strawberry Chee-tos. Also, they taste like strawberry Chee-tos, in the sense of having sort of a cheesy flavor to them, in spite of their not containing any actual cheese. Most of you have probably gotten through life without ever having considered that light pink Chee-tos would look a lot like fat maggots. But not anymore. C

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