When I read that M&M’s were making a Neapolitan variety, my first thought was “Is that still a thing?” I haven’t had Neapolitan ice cream since I was a kid in the 80s. My mother would bring home tubs of the cheapest store-brand tri-colored treat and daintily shave off layers from all flavors equally. Then I would excavate every molecule of strawberry ice cream until it looked like David Copperfield made it disappear with jazz hands and a hypnotic stare.
Never mind that chocolate was actually my favorite ice cream; I had to take the strawberry. This irritated my mother to no end. But she kept buying Neapolitan and I kept eating a neat one-third of it.
Now it’s 2018 and I don’t think I’ve heard Neapolitan referred to as a flavor in more than 20 years. I wanted to try the M&M’s, but wondered if I could resist the urge to only eat the pink ones.
The aroma inside the bag was mostly chocolate. The visual was a bit of a surprise – the vanilla pieces were a rich cream color instead of white. Yes, I know, the bag clearly depicts them as cream-colored, but I was taken by the overall packaging color scheme – which was WHITE. Just sayin’.
Despite there being three colors, the flavors of the pieces are the same. Yes, I know, the bag clearly says all three flavors in every piece, but I thought the pink ones might be strawberry-dominant, cream more vanilla, etc. This disconnect didn’t affect my feelings about them overall, but again – just sayin’.
My first taste impression was a strong strawberry and chocolate flavor. But instead of taking me back to the freezer with an ice cream scoop, Neapolitan M&M’s brought me back to the breakfast table. They are the solid orb version of a bowl of Frankenberry and Count Chocula cereals combined. The strawberry was a pretty spot-on facsimile of Frank, my personal strawberry flavor touchstone. My memory of Neapolitan strawberry is a much more subtle flavor than Frank. The chocolate was close enough to The Count to make the comparison, although hardcore Chocula fans might disagree. I’d expected a real ice cream experience, but my love of monster cereals made it still a successful combo in my opinion.
I couldn’t immediately find the vanilla. But as I plowed through the bag and thought about the cereal comparison, the case of the missing vanilla was solved. It’s the milk in the cereal bowl. It made total sense because most M&M’s vanillas taste like milk to me. It took a bit to find because it’s a supporting actor here – Frank and The Count are center stage, which was alright by me.
Overall, I thought these were fun and tasty. Kids will love them because of the child-friendly flavors, as will nostalgic adults. I think M&M’s are most successful when they’re tinkering with fillings/textures (nuts, caramel, crispy), but these are on the higher end of the flavor-only M&M’s varieties. Bella Napoli!
(Nutrition Facts – 1 oz./16 pieces – 140 calories, 7 grams of fat, 4 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, less than 5 milligrams of cholesterol, 15 milligrams of sodium, 20 grams of carbohydrates, less than 1 gram of dietary fiber, 18 grams of total sugars, 17 grams of added sugars, and 1 grams of protein.)
Purchased Price: $3.19
Size: 8 oz. bag
Purchased at: Target
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Nostalgic flavor combination that smacks of Monster Cereal goodness. All three flavors in every piece kept me from eating only the pink ones
Cons: Not really ice cream-ish (if that’s a deal breaker for you). Showing/telling me things on the packaging that I ignore and am later surprised by.