REVIEW: Cap’n Crunch’s Chocolatey Crunch

Cap'n Crunch's Chocolatey Crunch

After tasting Cap’n Crunch’s Chocolatey Crunch cereal, I decided I want to become the captain of a pirate ship so that I can hunt down Cap’n Crunch’s ship and send him and his crew to Davy Jones’ Locker using a barrage of cannonballs painted to look like Crunch Berries.

Despite it being made with real cocoa and being naturally and artificially flavored, Chocolatey Crunch’s flavor is extremely disappointing. I think they put the wrong suffix in this cereal’s name. Instead of it being called Chocolatey Crunch, it should’ve been called Chocolateish Crunch.

It’s such a let down that if I can’t become the captain of a pirate ship, I’ll try to become an admiral in whatever navy Horatio Magellan Crunch belongs to and demote the Cap’n to a ship’s bird poop remover.

The cereal itself looks like regular Cap’n Crunch that either spent a week sunbathing in Brazil or is into Japanese Ganguro fashion. It looks like it’s going to be chocolatey, but my tongue says it’s not. This tricking of my senses makes me want to put Cap’n Crunch in a cage match with Captain Hook who is armed with Captain Caveman’s club and Captain America’s shield, and has been drinking a lot of Captain Morgan.

Cap'n Crunch's Chocolatey Crunch Closeup

On a scale from one to ten, with ten being skinny dipping in the Wonka factory’s chocolate river and one being far downwind from someone holding up a spoonful of hot cocoa mix, the chocolate level of Cap’n Crunch’s Chocolatey Crunch cereal would be a three. It’s a step above Kellogg’s Cocoa Krispies, but many steps below Cocoa Puffs and Cocoa Pebbles. There’s a sweetness to the cereal, but I wouldn’t consider it chocolatey. So it appears the real cocoa doesn’t do a good job of giving this cereal or the aftermilk a nice chocolate flavor. Dammit. I never thought I’d say these words: I wish this cereal was more artificially flavored.

Cap’n Crunch’s Chocolatey Crunch cereal is lighter and crisper than regular Cap’n Crunch, so eating it won’t shred your upper palate raw. But that’s the only real positive I can think of.

I’m just extremely disappointed with Cap’n Crunch’s Chocolatey Crunch cereal. The combination of Cap’n Crunch and chocolate had the potential to be one of the greatest chocolatey cereals ever, but it instead ended up being one of the least chocolatey cereals I’ve ever had. Cap’n Crunch should be forced to walk the plank because of this cereal.

(Nutrition Facts – 3/4 cup (cereal only) – 110 calories, 10 calories from fat, 1 gram of fat, 0.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 125 milligrams of sodium, 60 milligrams of potassium, 23 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 11 grams of sugar, 11 grams of other carbohydrates, 1 gram of protein, and a load of vitamins and minerals.)

Item: Cap’n Crunch’s Chocolatey Crunch
Price: $3.00 (on sale)
Size: 14 ounces
Purchased at: Don Quijote
Rating: 3 out of 10
Pros: Doesn’t make your upper palate raw. A serving provides 100 percent of your daily value of folic acid. Sending Cap’n Crunch to Davy Jones’ Locker.
Cons: Real cocoa doesn’t make this cereal taste real good. Weak chocolate flavor. Had the potential to be a great cereal. Doesn’t turn the aftermilk chocolatey. Japanese women into Ganguro fashion

NEWS: Taco Bell Launching The ‘First Meal’ This Week In 10 Lucky States

Taco Bell in Morro Bay, CA 13 Dec 2011

At first, I didn’t understand why Taco Bell would call their new breakfast the “First Meal.” Why don’t they just call it “breakfast” like any normal fast food joint would? But then I began to see their logic. Taco Bell has their Fourth Meal, which tends to be eaten late at night by drunk people. Of course, Taco Bell can’t call it Late Night Drunken Meal, so the name Fourth Meal was born.

So perhaps the First Meal is meant for hungover people trying to recuperate from a night of booze. Of course, Taco Bell can’t call it Hangover Recovery Meal, so they came up with the name First Meal. Sounds logical to me.

Taco Bell’s First Meal will be available, starting this week, at 750 locations in 10 states. Yes, just 10 out of the 50 states in this great country, which doesn’t seem so great anymore because not every one of them is getting the First Meal this week.

Taco Bell’s First Meal menu is made up of 11 new products, which includes coffee, orange juice, breakfast burritos, sausage and egg wraps, and Cinnabon Delights (fried dough balls with cream filling). Our friends over at Grub Grade have more information about the menu and pricing.

Some of the states that will offer the First Meal menu include California, Arizona, Colorado, and Texas. But not every location in these states will offer the breakfast menu.

By 2014, Taco Bell hopes to have 5,800 locations serving breakfast. Wow. That’s a lot of time and a lot of missed hungover people Taco Bell could’ve sold their Hangover Recovery Meal…I mean, First Meal to.

REVIEW: Dulce de Leche Cheerios and Multi Grain Cheerios Peanut Butter

Dulce de Leche Cheerios and Multi Grain Cheerios Peanut Butter

[When my oldest daughter started talking, we transitioned her from Cheerios to Alpha-Bits, and as a side effect wondered if they’d boost her language skills.  They just stopped selling Alpha-Bits at our grocery store, so I guess my youngest will have to make do with just the one letter.]
Ah, Cheerios… dullest of all breakfast cereals.  There’s a measure of respect in that — you don’t become an institution by pandering to the latest fads like “marshmallows” or “sugar,” or by changing your shape or packaging every six months like some hussy — but the fact remains, Cheerios are boring.  Rice Krispies at least crackle and pop (that “snap” stuff is BS), and if nothing else Total and Bran Flakes come in irregular shapes.  (Shredded Wheat doesn’t count, no one under 65 has ever eaten any.)  Honey Nut Cheerios are essentially the “kids” version of Cheerios, and when that wasn’t enough, they started frosting the sumbitches.  But the reinvention bug is hard to shake once it digs into your scalp and lays eggs, and recent years have brought a slew of new Cheerios varieties from General “Bills” Mills.  The latest?  Dulce de Leche Cheerios and Multi Grain Cheerios Peanut Butter.

Dulce de Leche Cheerios Closeup

You have to think it’d be hard to screw up caramel-flavored Cheerios, and you would be right.  Actually, I’m surprised it’s not a more common flavor — offhand I can’t think of any other caramel cereals I’ve ever heard of, though I’m sure there must have been some.  Seems like a pretty obvious taste to partner with milk, but I guess that€™s why I€™m not one of those high-powered cereal fat cats.  Regardless, it€™s been implemented to good effect here.  Wikipedia tells me that “dulce de leche” means “sweet of milk” and is technically caramel-like, but much like a good Romex watch, you won€™t be able to tell the difference.  Akin to its honey nut brethren, the taste is distinct but not overwhelming, so you enjoy each spoonful but don€™t feel like you€™re actually eating candy.  As you can tell, I€™m a big fan, both for the taste and the probably misplaced belief that this qualifies as “eating healthy.”  And not that it really matters, but the O’s come in two different colors: as tan as my parents and sister in the summer, and as white as me in the always.

Multi Grain Cheerios Peanut Butter Closeup

And in column B we have Multi Grain Cheerios Peanut Butter.  If you pay any attention to the news (don’t worry, me neither), you may have heard about all the parents up in arms about this cereal.  In brief, lots of young kids these days have nut allergies because we stopped sacrificing virgins to Mr. Peanut last century, and he is a jealous and angry legume.  Since the peanut butter variety looks pretty much identical in color to regular Multi Grain Cheerios, there’s a fear that oblivious parents might send some to school for their own kid, a child with allergies could grab some, and BAM! — peanutality.  Personally, my kid’s worst experience with peanuts was jamming one up her nose and needing to have it removed by a specialist (to the tune of $900 if we didn’t have insurance, because apparently science has not yet invented the peanut magnet), but I understand the concern.  I’m as disdainful of overprotective parents as anyone, but just a whiff of these things sends a wave of peanut butter flooding into your sinuses.
That carries over to the flavor, too — if the dulce de leche variety flirted with a caramel taste, these grab peanut butter, drive it home, and rip off its shirt.  Not to say that’s a bad thing, though, depending on your feelings about peanut butter.  As I’ve mentioned before, I can take it or leave it if chocolate isn’t part of the equation (mental note: try adding Cocoa Puffs later), but I still thought they were decent; a true peanut butter lover will probably be in heaven.  As you’d expect, the longer you let them sit in milk, the more the taste dilutes, with the compensatory fact that you’re setting yourself up for some tasty milk.  (That goes double for the dulce de leche variety.  Mmmm!)
It’s always nice when you can try two new cereals and come out with two winners, and that’s the case here.  As a caramel fan I’ll be sticking with the Dulce de Leche Cheerios going forward, but those who worship at the altar of the great god C’shewlu are welcome to the peanut butter variety.  They may never topple Buzz and his honey nut version, but they’re way better than making do with boring ol’ regular Cheerios.
(Nutrition Facts – 3/4 cup – Multi Grain Cheerios Peanut Butter – 110 calories, 15 calories from fat, 1.5 grams of total fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0.5 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 0.5 grams of monounsaturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 130 milligrams of sodium, 65 milligrams of potassium, 23 grams of total carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 9 grams of sugars, 12 grams of other carbohydrates, and 2 grams of protein.  Dulce de Leche Cheerios – 100 calories, 15 calories from fat, 1.5 grams of total fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0.5 grams of polyunsaturated fat, 0.5 grams of monounsaturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 135 milligrams of sodium, 75 milligrams of potassium, 22 grams of total carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 6 grams of sugars, 14 grams of other carbohydrates, and 2 grams of protein.)

Items: Dulce de Leche Cheerios and Multi Grain Cheerios Peanut Butter
Price: $2.39 each
Size: 12 oz (Dulce de Leche)
Size: 11.3 oz (Peanut Butter)
Purchased at: Wegman’s
Rating: 8 out of 10 (Dulce de Leche);
Rating: 7 out of 10 (Peanut Butter)
Pros: Appealing to a new demographic without betraying who you are.  Multicolored Cheerios promote diversity.  Delicious but not overpowering caramel flavor.  Can’t beat a good Romex.  Strong peanut butter scent and flavor, if that’s your thing.  Both varieties give the leftover milk a great taste.  Reasonably healthy breakfast choice.
Cons: Cereals that only teach 1/26th of the alphabet.  Peanut butter taste a little strong for my taste.  Possibly killing some kids.  The continued non-existence of the peanut magnet.  Crazy obscure Lovecraft jokes that like 5 people will get.  Peanut butter variety would probably be better if combined with Chocolate Cheerios.

PRIZE DRAWING: Because I Want One of You To Eat Fresh

Subway Buffalo Chicken

In February, Subway will bring back their “any regular footlong for $5” promotion. So I think this month would be a good time to give away a $25 Subway gift card.

If my math is correct, you can get five $5 Subway footlongs with a $25 gift card. Unless you live on this rock in the middle of the Pacific Ocean, where you can only get four footlongs because we pay six dollars.

To enter The Impulsive Buy’s Subway gift card drawing, leave a comment with THIS post. I don’t care what you say in your comment, but it would be nice if you described completely your go-to Subway sandwich (i.e. type of bread, what veggies and sauce you put on, whether you get it toasted).

Please don’t forget to fill out the email field because I’ll be emailing the winner for his or her mailing address. The Impulsive Buy will stop accepting entries on Tuesday, January 31, 2012 11:59 p.m. Hawaii Standard Time. Only one comment allowed per person, and it’s only open to U.S. residents who are at least 18 years old.

For those of you who have a Twitter account, you can get an additional entry by tweeting the following by Tuesday, January 31, 2012 11:59 p.m. Hawaii Standard Time:

@theimpulsivebuy If Subway is where winners eat, I need to win a Subway gift card so I can eat there.

So just copy, paste, and tweet. Only one tweet per Twitter account.

Good luck!

Fine Print: Subway is not affiliated with this prize drawing. The Impulsive Buy promises your email address will not be used to send you emails about how you can save money on TurboTax. The Impulsive Buy also promises your mailing address will not be used to send you ValPak coupons or Valtrex coupons. Bribes will not be accepted. The Impulsive Buy will not be responsible for lost mail, damaged mail, or you getting lost in Jared Fogel’s old pair of pants.

REVIEW: Frosted Toast Crunch Cereal

Frosted Toast Crunch Cereal

Frosted toast sounds like something Paula Deen created with her greasy, butter coated hands, but I Googled “frosted toast paula deen” and it didn’t show me any results that link the two together. However, Google did show me text ads for Weight Watchers, diet pills, and butter churns.

Frosted Toast Crunch is a cereal General Mills describes as, “baked with the delightful taste of frosted vanilla, then dusted with a delicious dash of cinnamon for a taste that’s pure delight.” So frosted toast is toast with vanilla frosting on top with a little cinnamon? That sounds lower middle class fabulous.

All the previous Toast Crunch cereals have made sense, like Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Peanut Butter Toast Crunch, and French Toast Crunch. But Frosted Toast sounds like something General Mills made up. I don’t know of any human being who has put cake frosting on toast. Putting two tubs of it on my body to make a French-cut frosting Speedo…yes. But, toast…that just sounds really weird.

With its white powdered coating, Frosted Toast Crunch cereal looks like it partied with Tony Montana. Sadly, the sugary layer easily gets washed away when eaten with milk and settles to the bottom of the bowl.

Frosted Toast Crunch Cereal Closeup

Of course, this process causes the cereal to lose a lot of its sweet vanilla flavor and whatever little cinnamon flavor it has, but it makes the milk that’s left in the bowl taste awesome. I’m talking upset Jamie Oliver awesome.

If you happen to buy a box of Frosted Toast Crunch cereal, I suggest you eat it dry. Because when you eat it dry, your tongue will make your brain think it’s eating Cinnamon Toast Crunch, albeit a light version. Vanilla is the dominate flavor, but the cinnamon is a bit more noticeable without the cow/soy/almond/goat milk cockblocking it from your tongue. You should also eat it dry because of the way the sugary coating will melt on your tongue when you drop a few pieces in your mouth.

Frosted Toast Crunch cereal is good, but it’s not that impressive. When eaten with milk it doesn’t have much flavor and when eaten dry it almost tastes like Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Maybe General Mills should grab a stick of butter and Deen-ify it.

(Nutrition Facts – 3/4 cup (cereal only) – 120 calories, 30 calories from fat, 3 grams of fat, 0.5 grams of saturated fat, 1 gram of polyunsaturated fat, 1.5 grams of monounsaturated fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 170 milligrams of sodium, 50 milligrams of potassium, 24 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 9 grams of sugar, 14 grams of other carbohydrates, 1 gram of protein, and a clump of vitamin and minerals.)

Item: Frosted Toast Crunch Cereal
Price: $2.99
Size: 13.2 ounces
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 6 out of 10
Pros: Eating the cereal dry. When eaten dry, it kind of tastes like Cinnamon Toast Crunch. Sugary coating makes the after milk taste awesome. Google ads looking out for me.
Cons: Eating the cereal wet. Sugary coating gets easily washed away with milk. Sogginess happens quicker than I’d like. Cockblocking flavors. Putting sticks of butter in everything. Frosting Speedos.