REVIEW: Bud Light Lime Limited Winter Edition Cran-Brrr-Rita

Bud Light Lime Limited Winter Edition Cran-Brrr-Rita Case

I have very strong opinions about booze. My bourbon should be neat, my martini should have gin, and for the love all that is holy and 86 proof in this world, stop making flavored liquor.

I have watched and seethed as Absolut developed 700 different vodka flavors, then watched as this phenomenon spread like a virus to other liquors, to the point where there’s cinnamon whiskey and watermelon tequila.

Furthermore, every time I see a bottle of Pinnacle Vodka, whether it be whipped cream or cheesecake or confetti or whatever the hell their newest abomination is, I want to go insane and trash the entire booze aisle, sending glass bottles of infused bullshit crashing to the floor.

In other words, I think Ron Swanson and I would get along nicely in a bar situation.

These vehement opinions extend to beer, also. I’m not talking about things like Sam Adams seasonal beers; I’m talking about…well, a fine example would would be Bud Light Lime Limited Winter Edition Cran-Brrr-Rita.

You’d think this would not make me the best choice to review this product, but I disagree. I enjoy challenging my worldview and my objectivity, and I think this is the perfect opportunity to do so.

I also drank my fair share of Boone’s Farm and Bartles & James in college; then again, I also got a degree in Fine Arts, so I can’t really say I had the best judgment back then.

In my defense, I have actually tried Bud Light Lime before, and it wasn’t so bad. See? I’m not a total snob.

Bud Light Lime Limited Winter Edition Cran-Brrr-Rita Can

When I first poured my Bud Light Lime Limited Winter Edition Cran-Brrr-Rita from its petite eight-ounce can into a glass, it looked and smelled rather similar to cranberry soda. With the holidays just around the corner, it looked like a cheery refreshment that would look right at home at a party.

I tried it straight from the can first, and my first thought was, oh, hey, this isn’t so bad; it tastes a lot like cranberry sod…oh god what is happening.

What was happening was three worlds colliding – cranberry, Bud Light, and lime. I realize that this is a duh statement, but just think about that for a second. Bud Light and lime are acceptable together – while not quite like shoving a real lim e wedge into a light beer, it comes close enough.

Bud Light Lime Limited Winter Edition Cran-Brrr-Rita

But somehow, the addition of cranberry and the substitution of higher-proof malt liquor instead of light beer ruined everything. That one second of cranberry was quickly overpowered by the taste of beer. Let me amend that – it was overpowered by the taste of cheap, stale, incredibly skunky malt liquor, like a half-empty 40 of Mickey’s that had been left on your dad’s work table in the garage for three days.

As that taste sensation lingers, add some artificial lime. The aftertaste is a combination of sticky sweetness, tartness and stale malt liquor put together, which is just has appealing as it sounds.

I’m not sure where the Rita comes into play here, as a margarita contains tequila and I couldn’t detect any taste of that nectar of agave.

Bud Light Lime Limited Winter Edition Cran-Brrr-Rita actually tastes better if you drink it ice cold and out of a glass. The packaging ordered me several times to try it over ice, but I had no ice cubes handy, so I just put a can in the freezer for a little while (keeping a very close eye on it, because the last thing I wanted was a skunky, sticky cranberry malt liquor explosion all over my Stouffer’s lasagnas) and the cranberry seemed to overtake the stale 40 taste. I suppose it’s not a ringing endorsement when a high point of your beer product is that you can’t taste the beer (or, in this case, malt liquor) as much.

I really did go into this objectively, and unfortunately, I came out of it hating Bud Light Lime Limited Winter Edition Cran-Brrr-Rita and the fact that I still have 11 cans of it.

I think it’s cute that Bud Light tried to make a Limited Winter Edition…thing (what else can you call something named “Cran-Brrr-Rita”?), but combining sweet cranberry soda flavor with stale-tasting beer and artificial lime was a bad idea. Brrr-utally bad. I’m sorry, I use puns to cope.

On the plus side, if you leave this out during your holiday party, a child might mistake this for soda, take a drink, and instantly hate malt liquor forever, which means you’ll never have to worry about them passing around a brown paper bag containing a 40 of Colt 45. Then again, it might drive them straight into the arms of whipped cream-flavored vodka.*

*This author in no way endorses leaving booze out where children can accidentally ingest it. Or adults, in the case of Bud Light Lime Limited Winter Edition Cran-Brrr-Rita.

(Nutrition Facts – 8 ounces – 197 calories, 0 grams of fat, 23 grams of carbohydrates, and less than 1 gram of protein.)

Item: Bud Light Lime Limited Winter Edition Cran-Brrr-Rita
Purchased Price: $10.99 (on sale)
Size: 12-pack/8 fl oz. cans
Purchased at: Fry’s Foods
Rating: 3 out of 10
Pros: Festive color. The idea of having a drink with Ron Swanson. Tastes better when very cold. I guess Cran-Brrr-Rita is kind of a cute name for a limited winter edition alcohol. At least it was on sale.
Cons: Malt liquor tastes skunky as balls. Reminding me of the uselessness of my Fine Arts degree. Too sweet. The trend of infusing flavor into every liquor on the market. Cranberry, malt liquor and lime should never come together again. Having to buy 12 cans.

QUICK REVIEW: Market Pantry Chocolate Truffle Muffin Caps

Market Pantry Chocolate Truffle Muffin Caps

Purchased Price: $3.79
Size: 4 count
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 3 out of 10
Pros: They look good. You can stick them in the microwave or let them thaw at room temperature for 45 minutes. Contains live and active cultures. Only 100 calories. 5 grams of fiber per muffin cap.
Cons: Weird slightly bitter flavor. Looks more chocolatey than they really are. Melted chocolate chips have a grainy texture. They look like VitaTops, but don’t provide the same amount of vitamins and minerals. Odd chewy texture. Makes me want my money back. There are tastier ways to get fiber. Calling these muffin caps instead of muffin tops.

Market Pantry Chocolate Truffle Muffin Caps Closeup

Nutrition Facts: 1 muffin top – 100 calories, 15 calories from fat, 1.5 grams of fat, 1 gram of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 105 milligrams of sodium, 24 grams of carbohydrates, 5 grams of fiber, 11 grams of sugar, 4 grams of protein, 4% calcium, and 10% iron.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Donuts Angus Steak Big N’ Toasted Sandwich

Dunkin’ Donuts Angus Steak Big N’ Toasted Sandwich

Every few months or so, some poor “high-end” food product makes the jump from pretentious to a diluted all-audience nature. It gets filtered through a wood chipper and then a toilet so in the end it no longer resembles the actual item. All this for the sake of mass consumption. Therefore, not only does it lose its pompous aura (which is fine by me), but its unique characteristics as well (which is not okay at all).

Remember Wendy’s bragging about its fries being sprinkled with sea salt? Give me a break if you’re expecting it to be the actual harvested finishing salts chefs preen about.

Kobe beef, with its already dubious nature in what can actually be called Kobe, is another victim. Kobe hot dogs? Kobe hamburgers? My eyes rolled so much that you would swear I had two lazy eyes or was the inspiration for the guy that graces each Mad Libs cover.

Another example is Kobe beef’s less-complicated, but just as maligned, American cousin, the Angus. This poor bastard is being passed around faster than a cotton towel at an orgy. I’m guessing the “certification” for Angus beef is low enough that even Stephen Hawking can jump over it. Okay, that’s a tasteless cheap shot that’s just as tasteless as the Dunkin’ Donuts Angus Steak Big N’ Toasted.

I commend Dunkin’ Donuts for attempting to separate itself from the pack by using Texas Toast for its sandwiches. The thick bread borders on overindulgence, but is perfect for capturing runny eggs and butter. Some people prefer wheat or pumpernickel, I lust after Texas Toast.

I mean c’mon!!! It’s Texas Toast, steak, eggs and cheese. You know what’s better than sliced bread? Sliced bread with beef, cheese and egg in between it. So what can go wrong? Apparently, if you make a living primarily selling donuts, then a hell of a lot.

Look, I’m a big fan of their Texas Toast Grilled Cheese. Its buttery and flaky toast and melted cheese makes me act like those monkeys in the beginning of 2001: A Space Odyssey.

Dunkin’ Donuts Angus Steak Big N’ Toasted Sandwich Angus

But stupid me because I was expecting the same from this new sandwich. I opened it immediately to look at this “Angus” steak and it had the natural color of a cadaver stuffed under a house because he didn’t pay his bets on time. It was charmingly grayish and resembled an unsauced Salisbury meatloaf concoction served at all the finest detention centers.

The steak also had an overwhelming artificial smokey taste. The texture itself was flaccid and rubbery, two things I don’t want my meat to feel like. The worst part? The beef was chewy. Not Mentos candy-chewy, but chewy like the bits resting on the bottom of a beef jerky pouch.

Dunkin’ Donuts Angus Steak Big N’ Toasted Sandwich Split

Dunkin’ Donuts Angus Steak Big N’ Toasted Sandwich Egg

The toast had the dampness of a basement, but it was sufficiently buttered. The two eggs only helped in taking your hopes, smashing them, and then pissing on the remains. The eggs were laughably fake looking, like a Fisher Price plastic fried egg toy. Another thing, it had an unnatural powdery texture and lacked any of the richness an egg normally has. It was also mealy and it disintegrated in my mouth into a sandy mush.

Most things can be saved by melted cheese since it provides an extra boost of flavor and texture, which was sorely missing in this sandwich. Unfortunately, there was so little cheese, all I could taste was fake smoke and a bland egg that broke apart into grainy beads in my mouth. It was like a bad French kiss between bread.

I’ve eaten the McDonald’s Angus burgers, so I know fast food “Angus” can be achieved with some success. But it’s as if Dunkin’ Donuts is the fat kid in gym class looking at the rope their meathead teacher is telling them to climb.

Finally, what really kicked me in the balls was the price — $4.29. I haven’t felt this ripped off since I was conned into buying Viagra from Mexico.

(Nutrition Facts – 620 calories, 34 grams of fat, 14 grams of saturated fat, 1 gram of trans fat, 180 milligrams of cholesterol, 1290 milligrams of sodium, 43 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of dietary fiber, 4 grams of sugar, and 34 grams of protein)

Item: Dunkin’ Donuts Angus Steak Big N’ Toasted Sandwich
Purchased Price: $4.29
Size: N/A
Purchased at: Dunkin’ Donuts
Rating: 3 out of 10
Pros: Texas Toast. Having the option to buy a donut instead. 2001: A Space Odyssey. Sufficiently buttered toast. Soft drinks from Mexico.
Cons: Texas Toast. Artificial smoke flavor. Rubbery grey beef. 2010: The Year We Make Contact. The powdery egg that looks fake. Small amount of cheese. Pharmaceuticals from Mexico.

QUICK REVIEW: Lay’s Fun Wasabi Shrimp Flavor Potato Chips (China)

Lay's Fun Wasabi Shrimp Flavor Potato Chips

Purchased Price: FREE
Size: 75 grams
Purchased at: Received from a friend
Rating: 3 out of 10
Pros: Enjoyable mild wasabi flavor; very little wasabi heat. Kind of smells like McDonald’s Hot Mustard Sauce. Whatever I eat to get the flavor of these chips out of my mouth.
Cons: Not fun after the wasabi flavor goes away. Do I taste cheese? Shrimp isn’t noticeable until the aftertaste. Smells fishy. I can’t eat much of it. Gagged twice while eating my way through the bag. Dollop of wasabi on the bag looks as sad as I do while eating these chips.

Lay's Fun Wasabi Shrimp Flavor Potato Chips Closeup

Nutrition Facts: 30 grams – 656 kcal, 9.2 grams of fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 144 milligrams of sodium, 16.2 grams of carbohydrates, 1.7 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Nabisco Rice Thins (Original and Sea Salt & Pepper)

Nabisco Rice Thins (Original and Sea Salt & Pepper)

My wife has celiac and although it sounds exotic and scary, simply put, she’s allergic to wheat. Basically, she’s on an involuntary gluten-free diet. Although gluten free became a new fad diet for a time with celebrities extolling the virtues of no wheat, there was a positive effect in that it raised the awareness of those with gluten intolerance. So many manufacturers, if not expressly making gluten-free alternatives of their best selling products, are at least listing “contains wheat” on their packaging.

Eating out while having this allergy ranges from amusing to borderline murderous. McDonald’s is pretty understanding, no weird looks when we order a Quarter Pounder without a bun. Maggiano’s Little Italy and Bonefish Grill are really good about it. Having celiac means no Chinese food because most soy sauce has wheat but P.F. Chang’s has a whole separate gluten-free menu. In fact, most chains will have a gluten-free menu if you request it, just like most Chinese restaurants have a “real” menu if you ask for it.

The worst experience was during our anniversary, we ate at a Daddy Warbucks kinda place. The type of restaurant where there’s a mixologist and artesian waters are served. We were excited and I was ready to tear into their small batch whiskeys and ryes. My wife wanted something as simple as to not be poisoned at dinner.

After explaining in detail to the server and being assured gluten would not be an issue. This jackass assured us a second time that the crackers were gluten free. Halfway through eating their artisan crackers with small farm cheeses, the server tells us the crackers were actually only half-gluten so we should be fine. I’ll spare you with what my wife endured for a few days. And I’ll spare you with what immediately happened after the server stopped talking, but I will tell you it involved some hazmat suits, an axe, and a ditch.

I remember the days when we would have to shop at treehuggery supermarkets (I’m looking at you Whole Foods) that smelled like an Asian grandma (I’m looking at you Grandma), filled with skinny leathery old women wearing either mom pleated pants or Juicy Couture (I’m looking at 80 percent of old ladies here in the area I live and used to live in). We would have to shove through Birkenstock wearing jerkbags to grab Kinnikinnick Oreo-like cookies or Glutino’s Tastelikeassbutwe’llcallitMexicanBeanSurprise frozen dinners.

Remembering when my wife was first diagnosed, I had to pretend the tapioca bread tasted just as good as Wonder bread when in reality it had the flavor of blue construction paper. Now there’s Udi’s that makes bread as close to the real thing. Even our supermarket chain, Publix, has been placing the GF labels on its aisles and has a list of their own foodstuffs to let you know “It ain’t got no wheats, homies!”

I normally seethe at whatever pop culture embraces but I’m okay with the gluten-free “craze” because my wife, and others with celiac or lesser forms of gluten allergies, need as many choices available.

Amongst the goodies we take for granted, Wheat Thins is one of them. My wife was ecstatic when she ran across Nabisco’s Gluten Free Rice Thins. I was more interested in the Brach’s candies in those plastic bins like an old timey candy shoppe, if they had plastic bins. Who doesn’t love those boxy nougat candies filled with gummy fruit jellies?

Nabisco Rice Thins Sea Salt & Pepper

The first thing we opened was the Rice Thins Sea Salt and Pepper made of brown rice. The crackers were light but not airy as I’m used to with ordinary rice crackers. The black pepper was faint but the peppery-ness lingered long after you ate one, which was nice. The saltiness was perfectly balanced and there was a slight mild toasted flavor. Maybe it’s the brown rice but there was a good amount of flavor.

My wife thought there should be more of a prevalent black pepper taste like in a steak au poivre. I agree, however she enjoyed the pepper flavor that would linger like a guest who should go home soon. She also felt that of all the gluten-free crackers available, this had the crunchiest texture. It was also missing the normally gross “earthy-soil” taste most g-free crackers have. Surprisingly, there was a hint of sweetness we both could taste. Maybe it was the thin coating on the crackers, but that was a pleasant touch.

We both also felt that this cracker would go extremely well with a mild cheese like a Jarlsburg (essentially it’s Gouda but awesomer) or a cream cheese based dip. She expressed that she would buy these again. I too, found these to be damn tasty and while I eat pizzas and sandwiches in front of her, I can be persuaded to actually eat these “outta” the box.

Nabisco Rice Thins Original

On the other hand, the Original Rice Thins was everything you think gluten free would taste like. Dull. Flavorless. Depressing. Instills an urge for you to choke those people who are a bit too damned chipper in the morning. Maybe urinate on your neighbor’s car just because you can.

The strongest characteristic this cracker had was a whisper of bitter burnt toast. It’s like inhaling the wafts from a just used toaster. The cracker had no weight like a rice cake and it was mealy. Every time you eat one, I’m sure a Native American turns to the camera with a tear rolling down his cheek.

My wife’s face expressed disgust when she ate one. She felt they were as bland as me getting it on. She expressed it had a repulsive texture as well. To her, they were boring and awful, like the “Under the Dome” series. She further felt they were similar to the other easily accessible and just as flavorless gluten-free crackers, Blue Diamond Nut-Thins (which really suck on a scale that paper cuts would rank as orgasmic).

There’s also a White Cheddar flavor but we passed because my wife hates Cheez-Its and cheese baked crackers.

Although these are no Wheat Thins, the sea salt and pepper is as close as there is for those with a gluten intolerance. And by close, I mean if I threw a ball to the moon and it landed on my roof instead.

As for the Original Rice Thins, they fail on such a spectacular level, it has convinced a certain someone to still eat pizza and Italian submarines in front of a certain wife (looking at me looking at you that’s also looking at me looking at you, that’s now looking at me… wait it’s like two mirrors facing each other!).

(Nutritional Facts – Sea Salt & Pepper – 13 crackers – 120 calories, 2 grams of fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 115 milligrams of sodium, 60 milligrams of potassium, 25 milligrams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, less than 1 gram of sugars, and 2 grams of protein. Original – 18 crackers – 1.5 grams of fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 85 milligrams of sodium, 45 milligrams of potassium, 26 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of dietary fiber, o grams of sugars, and 2 grams of protein).

Other Nabisco Rice Thins reviews:
Junk Food Guy

Item: Nabisco Rice Thins (Original and Sea Salt & Pepper)
Purchased Price: $2.50 (on sale)
Size: 3.5 oz box
Purchased at: Publix
Rating: 3 out of 10 (Original)
Rating: 8 out of 10 (Sea Salt & Pepper)
Pros: The Sea Salt and Pepper’s texture and flavor are excellent. The fact that there are now more choices for gluten-free items. Using made up words like awesomer. The salt and pepper are perfectly balanced. Nabisco entering the gluten-free market. My wife.
Cons: The Original Rice Thins are depressingly bland. The Sea Salt and Pepper is not as close to a Wheat Thins flavor yet. Old, leathery wrinkly dinkly ladies. The Original Rice Thins are mealy. My wife’s celiac.