Pumpkin Spice Oreo Review!

 Food, Review  Comments Off on Pumpkin Spice Oreo Review!
Sep 272016
 

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Hey there horror hounds and disco cats!

It’s that time of year again, when night prevails over day, when the most ordinary of folk transform into the macabre and morbid weirdos that we, here at Gothober, embody all year long. Autumn has descended, bringing with it the bountiful harvest of autumnal flavors and variations on the orange hue that food scientists can manage.

Today’s autumnal treat: Nabisco’s “Limited Edition” Pumpkin Spice crème Oreos

Once inside it’s noisy yellow packaging I’m confronted with 3 rows of tawny blonde cookies on either side of deep orange filling, whose hue have echoes of both butterscotch and rust. Wafting upward is a scent that equal parts vanilla Yankee Candle and Pillsbury frosting can, along with a note of sickly sweet; not unlike that new rubber ball.

I quickly, and greedily, lift the treat to my mouth!  I bite down to feel a familiar Oreo texture sensation: the cookie crisp but not brittle, it’s filling yielding and unctuous. Then something new, a rush of holiday flavor! It’s flavor seems more apple cider spice than pumpkin spice. Crunching away, the flavor remains the same. There are notes of vanilla, warm and orange-y like autumnal centerpieces of nostalgia pressed into play-doh and sprinkled with golden spiced hay.

The residual flavimg_2237or of it lingers….lingers….lingering for much longer than one anticipates. Its feeling is of a warm gingery glow whose welcome has been thoroughly worn. All things considered. Nabisco’s holiday offering, while succeeding at the flavor of an ephemeral autumn night, loses points when it hangs around for too damn long.

Something good that stays for too long.

I think I feel a holiday allegory coming on.

Overall: 5 disco blood bags out of 7.

Review by Ordinary Oliver

Crawling Out of the Crypt!

 Film, Review  Comments Off on Crawling Out of the Crypt!
Jul 232015
 

It’s officially midsummer, which is when Gothtober’s cobwebs are cleared and it is time to re-animate the dead.

Hankering for something that would start to put me in the pumpkin mood, I was introduced to a wonderful documentary called American Scream. It’a about “House Haunters”: everyday people like you and I who turn their houses and their lives upside down in the quest to build the craziest, scariest, most memorable Halloween experience on the block.

While it is definitely about devising all things needed to transform one’s yard into the creepiest it can possibly be, it turns out to be about so many other things. It’s about dreams, and families, and connection, and making stuff, and stressing out, and feeling simultaneously put out and rewarded by all of it. These people don’t make money off of their creations, they simply want to give their neighborhood a good time, and be remembered for it.

Before watching it, I thought it was going to be more “reality-TV” based with quick shots of residential kooks obsessed with Halloween and their varying levels of technical prowess. But the camera work takes the time to really sit with these people, and make you care about them immensely. They ARE Halloween obsessed, and they all have different Halloween house decor styles/philosophies. Each one of the film’s “heroes” have roped their families and friends into helping them with their colossal vision.

I suppose it got be a bit verklempt because Gothtober is sort of a “technical” version of something made that is a labour of love for the community. It’s made for the world. It’s a virtual haunted house that is both welcoming and terrifying. Launching Gothtober at midnight always gives me a huge thrill, it’s been my annual ritual every September 31st.

Anyway, watch this film, it’ll really make you love Halloween all over again!

Sep 162013
 

mms-pumpkin-spice-candies Gonna admit something: Pumpkin-flavored things usually make me want to skip in the opposite direction. It’s not because pumpkin isn’t awesome, it’s because all those cheap imitations of pumpkin flavor are usually so disappointing in a myriad of ways!

Pumpkin “flavor” tends to be cloying and overpowering, unlike the personality of most pumpkins. It’s either pumpkin FEVER where you can’t taste anything else, or it’s dusty pumpkin or it’s non-starter pumpkin, where you’re not sure what it is… but it isn’t pumpkin.

Thus, when I brought the product to CraftNight and spilled its contents into a bowl, I was ready for the outrage. But funnily enough, there was no outrage, but there were raised eyebrows. Here are some of the reactions I got:

  • Layers of flavors!
  • I feel like I’ve arrived at Fall!
  • Not bad.
  • Can I have a few more? Mmmmm!

If you’re looking for “pumpkin in your face” you’re not going to find it here. It’s like they somehow knew that last year’s white chocolate candy corn M&Ms were too far into the stratosphere to really be understood. Somehow we have a candy that shows restraint. When you try it, there are multiple avenues for your mind to visit as they melt in your mouth. There’s pumpkin… but there’s also cinnamon, obscure hints of other spices, and mostly chocolate. And I think it’s a good idea that they are chocolate, and that M&Ms stayed away from the white chocolate for this one. Not every new flavor has to make you do a backflip and a fist pump, some flavors can just be mellow and complex. In the world of artificial flavors, it seems like they never know when to ease up on the throttle, and this time somebody decided to mellow out.

Anyone who grew up eating Flamin’ Hot Cheetos will not understand or be able to comprehend the subtleties of Pumpkin Spice M&Ms. They will think that Pumpkin Spice M&Ms are a penultimate experience, because their taste buds are dead. They will shrug their shoulders and walk away. They will feel like the illustration of the bewildered pumpkin M&M on the bag.

People are all up in arms arguing that these things taste more like red hots than pumpkins… and as a person who dislikes red hots pretty vehemently, they don’t taste like red hots. But they don’t overwhelm you with orange squash flavor either. There are three colors in the bag: Dark Brown, Orange and Dark Green, a hilariously awful set of colors, it’s like they’re trying to convince children to stay away from them. Even sports teams don’t go near this trio of colors! I’m sure that ©Mars had 19,000 focus groups before they developed these, I’m thinking it’s a small miracle this product ended up on the shelves.

This pumpkin idea is trying to get distinguished, it wants to be respected and well-received. It’s reaching out to people who like potpourri and crisp air and scented candles. It’s for square metal candy bowls in offices,  and houses with a lot of square footage and reflective surfaces. Kids will think they are boring. Eating these and liking them might mean you are over 30. It might even mean that you are retired.  If you have just ONE, and wait for it to melt in your mouth for 10 seconds, you might be pleasantly surprised.