Mystery flavor Doritos in plain silver bags marked only with test numbers. Mystery flavor Mtn Dew VooDEW that creeps around for Halloween. That one time Oreo made a mystery flavor that turned out to be Fruity Pebbles with a chocolate cookie. These are some of the many notable mysteries in junk food history, and to kick off the new year, we have a game-changing mystery on our hands — mystery ice cream.
Never, in all my years of scooping, have I heard of a mystery flavor ice cream. For 2022, Turkey Hill invites customers to grab this 48-ounce container of its finest frozen dairy dessert, scan the QR code (or visit www.turkeyhill.com/mysteryflavor), and try their hand at solving the creamy puzzle for a chance to win free Turkey Hill ice cream for life. If you want to go down this rabbit hole yourself, it’s time to turn away because detective Sean has arrived, and it’s spoiler season.
Technically this isn’t ice cream. Due to its lower milk fat content, it’s considered frozen dairy dessert, but I’ll refer to it as ice cream in this review because that’s how most people view it. Since it’s lower fat and far lighter than anything with any premium tag attached, the texture is a bit airy and fluffy. Although fluffed out, it has a decently lush mouthfeel, with a smooth creaminess that intensifies the more it tempers. Sometimes frozen dairy desserts have a wateriness and lack any depth of flavor, but that’s not the case here, and I’m pleasantly surprised.
So what IS the flavor?
It’s a bit of a letdown. It’s a white base with a blueberry swirl, and that’s it. When I say “white base,” I mean that it’s kind of hard to nail down because it’s not jumping out with anything notable. Again, it has a pretty decent mouthfeel that reminds me of something richer than it is, like cream cheese or even cheesecake, but it isn’t too tangy. It’s also not floral like a proper vanilla bean, so the base flavor lacks character beyond its surprising texture.
The swirl is just okay. Slightly tart with a fruit-meets-candy blueberry taste that reminds me a bit of Pop-Tarts without going fully processed. My issue with the swirl isn’t in the taste though, it’s in the quantity and texture. There isn’t nearly enough of it, both in terms of density and actual thickness, to bring any real textural character to the decent but un-exciting base. There are some denser pockets towards the middle of the container, but in those thicker slabs, a more noticeable iciness comes through, a common problem with fruity swirls that take away from the smoothness.
So the answer to the mystery is — blueberry? Maybe blueberry cheesecake? Blueberries and cream? Having only one swirl is a massive missed opportunity from Turkey Hill to make something more complex and fun. Add in a graham cracker swirl and a slightly more complex base and this could be a fantastic low cal Blueberry Cheesecake. Amplify the vanilla and add in a regular crust or streusel swirl and it’s an excellent Blueberry Pie a La Mode. But as it stands? It’s a really fun idea that falls flat to deliver on the excitement it promised via the cool and mysterious magnifying glass on the carton.
Update 3/16/22: The mystery has been revealed. Turkey Hill announced that the mystery flavor is…Blueberry Pancake.
DISCLOSURE: I received a free product sample from Turkey Hill. Doing so did not influence my review.
Purchased Price: FREE
Size: 48 ounces
Purchased at: Received from Turkey Hill
Rating: 5 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (2/3 cup, 90g) 150 calories, 3.5 grams of fat, 2 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 10 milligrams of cholesterol, 95 milligrams of sodium, 29 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of fiber, 21 grams of total sugars, and 3 grams of protein.