REVIEW: Bigelow Eggnogg’n Tea

When I saw this tea, I had a vision that was as horrifying as it was freaky. I envisioned Bam Bam Bigelow was behind this tea company. I imagined him at board meetings in his flaming leotard with a striped blue tie and sipping tea from a dainty ceramic cup with a silver teapot. And God help you if you give Bam Bam any lip or a TPS report missing the new cover. Alas, he’s not the founder of the company.

Eggnog and tea. Oh, dear God. Are we out of possible fruit tea combinations already? Last time I checked, there was lemon, raspberry, and orange zinger. No one has done durian or starfruit or kiwi tea, yet. There’s probably a gold mine in those flavors. Or how about a refreshing garlic tea? But seriously, what were the people behind this tea thinking, bringing together an egg-based beverage and tea?

Here’s an idea, Bigelow Tea.

Roasty Chestnut Tea. It’s as wintery as eggnog and you can have a picture of two chestnuts roasting over the fire on the box. “It’ll warm your chestnuts up in no time at all!” could be its slogan.

All kidding and insanity aside, this tea is actually pretty good. The tea bag pre-teabagging, smells very much like cinnamon oatmeal, but nothing like eggnog. It’s actually quite homely and uplifting. The tea itself, after the steeping process, has a color somewhere between black and green tea which isn’t a surprise since it is made with those two teas. It retains the oatmeal smell, which is quite pleasant since most teas tend to smell musky like, say, Bam Bam Bigelow’s armpit.

The taste of this tea, well, doesn’t exactly live up to its name. There’s nothing rich or custardy about this tea, but it does sort of taste creamy-ish if you consider instant oatmeal creamy. It tastes like tea with a mild cinnamon spice and notes of instant oatmeal. I liked it, but it may not be for everyone. It’s also heavier to most other teas, which definitely makes it a winter tea, but that’s like saying a dog-shaped balloon is heavier than a helium balloon. They’re both still light.

The tea is a little more expensive compared to other teas available on the market, but still a decent product. All in all, it’s a good tea that suffers from a terrible name. Now if only there was a Bam Bam Bigelow Tea that came in a black box covered in flames.

Nutrition Facts – 1 tea bag – 0 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 0 milligrams of sodium, 0 grams of carbs, 0 gram of fiber, 0 grams of sugar, 0 gram of protein, and testicle-free.)

Item: Bigelow Eggnoggin’ Tea
Price: $3.49
Size: 8 ounces
Purchased at: Holiday Market
Rating: 8 out of 10
Pros: Instant Cinnamon Oatmeal smell and flavor. Decent bargain. Bam Bam Bigelow Tea. Bam Bam Bigelow the Executive
Cons: Nothing eggnogg-y about this tea. Bam Bam Bigelow’s armpit. Heavier tea. Stupid name. Garlic tea.

REVIEW: Hot Pockets Sausage, Egg & Cheese Hearty Sized Biscuits

Hot Pockets.

I can hear some of you silently cheering and some of you cringing. Those of you who are saying “meh,” I shake the back of my fist wildly in the air at you. But this isn’t about how much I hate the word “meh,” it’s about the new variation of Hot Pockets that was released upon us — the Hot Pockets Hearty Sized Biscuits.

*gasp*

Actually, it’s a variation of a variation, truth be told. The “new” Hot Pocket is actually just the standard breakfast Hot Pocket recycled in a “new” crust — a biscuit crust.

Now, let me be clear here. I have no experience when it comes to a true fresh homemade biscuits. The only things that come to mind when I think biscuits are the crappy kind that comes with a fast food chicken dinner (KFC and Popeye’s) or the very misplaced cheesy biscuits at Red Lobster.

(Writer’s Note: Speaking of Red Lobster, what the hell? Biscuits do NOT go with surf and turf, no matter how buttery their shrimps are.)

Having said that, there was nothing remotely biscuit-y about these particular Hot Pockets. The taste and texture of the crust envelope was more akin to the standard Hot Pocket crust, although I will say there is a little biscuit-y-ness to it. The crust was slightly crispy and crunchy on some of the edges like so many of my Hot Pockets have turned out, but my impression upon biting into this was, “Where the hell’s the biscuit? And why is it so dry?”

It’s painfully clear that none of the men and women involved in making this Hot Pocket have a trace of the South in their blood. Otherwise, their nanas would rise from the grave and spank them to death with a cast iron pan.

Although, there is actually one way this Hot Pocket does live up to its name; just let it thaw. I know it doesn’t sound appetizing, but I did like some of my Hot Pockets this way. Ok, that’s a lie. But it was the only way to get your Hot Pocket fix if your parents were being dictators on the subject of snacking. And some of them do respond well to the thawing process, but that’s a different story. The thawed version of this sandwich is much more like a biscuit, albeit a cold and dry one.

The filling is pretty much the same as you’d find in the regular version of this Hot Pocket. A sweet mild sausage that permeates throughout the whole filling, a cheese sausage that’s far too creamy, and blocks of eggs that don’t do squat. The flavor is actually, come to think of it, much more akin to sausage and gravy. It’s not a bad thing, but it’s not what I bought. At least this thing’s big enough for a decent mouthful and it’s done in less than three minutes from package to the plate.

I guess I only have one thing to say to this Hot Pocket. Meh. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have to shake my fist at the mirror.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 pocket – 290 calories, 11 grams of fat, 5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 50 milligrams of cholesterol, 680 milligrams of sodium, 36 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 5 grams of sugar, and 10 grams of protein.)

Item: Hot Pockets Sausage, Egg & Cheese Hearty Sized Biscuits
Price: $3.19
Size: 2 pack
Purchased at: Holiday Market
Rating: 5 out of 10
Pros: Fast to warm up. Filling tastes all right. Decent-sized. Red Lobster biscuit. Zombie Nana.
Cons: Dry and crunchy. Little biscuit-y-ness. doesn’t taste as advertised. The word “meh.” Yet another Hot Pockets product.

REVIEW: Nice Look Drink

They did it. I can’t fucking believe it. Someone is selling a canned beverage that has bird spit in it. Is demand really that high? Or was there a choice between a drink based on bird spit or bird balls soup? I guess the Nice Look Drink is a Chinese energy drink or something like it, judging by its cheesy name and the can is the size of a Red Bull. The avian saliva comes from the bird’s nest soup in the beverage, which according to Wikipedia is believed to, “aid digestion, raise libido, improve the voice, alleviate asthma, improve focus, and boost the immune system.”

So basically, it’s a fuck drink. Oh, and the ingredient list is mercifully short too: water, white fungus, bird’s nest, rock sugar, and vanilla. So it’s an organic fuck drink, I stand corrected.

I popped the top open to find myself inhaling a rather unusual smell for a beverage. It smells like a Chinese bakery, a really good one that has fresh baked buns, cakes, and tarts. It’s actually one of my favorite kinds of smells when I was a kid, visiting bakeries in Toronto on the way to see my relatives. Although, it is a bit strange to smell baked goods just before you fuck; nothing like a freshly baked pie before you get your pie!

It gets worse. Although, I’ll admit, how good can a drink based on a soup loaded with bird hock really be? Especially if it looks like the toilet bowl at my work, loaded with piss and toilet paper? Nice Look Drink, my ass. I should have bought the Ass Am Milk Tea instead. At least you get what you pay for, literally.

It feels thicker than water, like sugar syrup, and the fungus/bird’s nest feels pretty gelatinous on the tongue. It’s kind of like a thin egg drop soup, so to speak.

How does it taste? It almost tastes like Yeo’s White Gourd drink (similar smell, too), with a sweet bread/cookie-ish taste to it. That’s not to say it’s good. It’s not. There’s also this floweriness to it that peaks in the aftertaste. And I’ve never been much of a fan of flowers in food. I think it feminizes the food somehow. It’s sort of like dressing Batman up with pink or Scottish plaid external underwear instead of the black underwear. It just doesn’t work.

I wish I was in California, cause then I could recycle this crap and get 5 cents back, which I’d use for a cheap tranny hooker.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 godawful can – 72 calories, 0 grams of fat, 0 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 12 milligrams of sodium, 18 grams of carbohydrates, 1 grams of dietary fiber, 17 grams of sugar, 0 grams of protein, and 400% DV of bird hawk.)

Item: Nice Look Drink
Price:$1.29
Size: 250 ml
Purchased at: China Mart
Rating: 1 out of 10
Pros: Chinese bakery smell. Fuck drink. Probably organic. Short list of ingredients. Recyclable in California for $0.05. Cheap tranny hookers.
Cons: Sweet bread taste. Flowery-ness. Thin texture. Piss and TP appearance. Bird hawk. Misleading name. Batman without black undies.

REVIEW: Furuta Sequoia Strawberry Chocolate

There’s a saying: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.

I usually thought of it as a bullshit saying because where’s the fun in that? Evil geniuses like me couldn’t fail to take over the world if we lived by those stupid sayings. Batman wouldn’t have had the rubber nipples suit and my neighbor in college wouldn’t have come up with novel ways to flash his hairy balls at me. Okay, I don’t exactly have a infallible worldwide domination plot, but I have my evil laugh down, so I’m halfway there! It’s essentially a bastardized version of Dr. Evil’s laugh, but it’s MY bastardized version.

I’ve always loved the original Kit Kat bars, and they were my favorite candy as a kid, so when I saw this at the checkout counter, I admit I was a bit eager to see a Japanese company’s take on this classic. I soon learned that I had made a horrible mistake.

It looks like a stick of strawberry gum, complete with white specks and streaks. Definitely not appealing despite its strawberry yogurt smell, which was actually kind of nice. My first thought after biting into this was, “Sweet Evil Jesus!” Seriously, where’s the strawberry? And my god, what is up with this artificial chemical taste that just bursts out with the first bite? I could barely taste the strawberry over the very artificial vanilla cream, “strawberry” coating and the stale wafer inside. It actually almost tastes like how paint smells.

I guess the target audience is for people with children…people who want to mindfuck with their children. This would actually make a decent punishment, sort of like when I was expecting a Super Nintendo on a Christmas morning and I got my hopes up so high that I cried when I tore the wrapping to find out it was just a lousy 3D Empire State Building puzzle. But the worst part? It was missing 3 pieces.

I’d like to say that one of the good things about it is that it comes in a pack of five, but unfortunately, it means there are five pieces. The only redeeming thing about this candy is the hexagonal box it comes in. If I hold it just right, I can cover up the name of the candy and tell others that it’s a smaller version of a Toblerone. Well, that, and it makes a dandy place to hide my blueprints for an underground cave lair complete with a cage for my evil guinea pig, Fuck Nut.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 and a quarter sticks – 158 calories, 8.7 grams of fat, 1 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 50 milligrams of sodium, 19 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of dietary fiber, 9 grams of sugar, 1.6 grams of protein, and the tears of children.)

Item: Furuta Sequoia Strawberry Chocolate

Price: $2.69

Size: 30 grams

Purchased at: China Mart

Rating: 1 out of 10 

Pros: Hairy balls. Strawberry yogurt smell. Mindfucking children. Container makes a dandy hiding place. Evil guinea pig named Fuck Nut.

Cons: Bubblegum appearance. Artificial and chemical tastes. Paint smell taste. Overpowering vanilla crème. Stale Wafer. Lousy 3D puzzle. 5 pieces.

REVIEW: Panera Bread Breakfast Sandwiches (Sausage and Bacon)

I’ll admit it: I enjoyed the original Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers when I was a little brat. All those “teenagers” working together to kick some ass was just awesome, even if Lord Zedd was just a Shredder/Krang rip-off. And come on, who doesn’t like giant fucking robots, even if it looked like it was colored by a blind toddler? Now let’s all enjoy a flashback to a time when the Easy Bake Oven still used a pansy-assed light bulb to cook batter.

(Author’s Note: For some reason, the people who own the rights to the series are being tightwads and have prohibited YouTube from allowing embedded videos of Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers. Therefore, you’ll have to relive a cherished childhood memory you promised yourself you’d stay the hell away from. Go ahead. I’ll wait until the sobbing stops.)

What exactly does a cheesy live-action martial arts TV show have to do with the Panera Bread Breakfast Sandwiches? Did I lose my mind after watching Aphex Twin’s video for “Windowlicker” one too many times? Did I ironically skip my breakfast when I wrote this review?

(Author’s Note: No, I did not lose my mind; you can’t lose it if you’ve already lost it by getting your Mr. Bean bobble-head get to 3rd base with your sister’s Barbie!)

It’s the concept of the team, of course. The best teams have what is clearly the cream of the crop…or those who carry the team. In this case, it’s the Red and Green/White ranger. I’ll be honest, when me and my friends played Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers, all three of us wanted to be the Red Ranger. The problem wasn’t that there were three Red Rangers (we were clones or triplets, or some equally ridiculous soap-opera explanation), it was that we only had two Red Ranger belt buckles and a Pink Ranger one. I always ended up with the Pink Ranger belt buckle. Speaking of the Pink Ranger, the best teams always had their weak links — people who were utterly useless (I’m looking at you too, Yellow Ranger!), through no fault of their own. Eh, who am I kidding? It’s their damn fault. Then there’s everyone else; neither leader nor loser nor awesome. They just manage not to suck as bad as the weak links.

That’s basically what the Panera’s breakfast sandwich is to me. It’s a pretty good sandwich that manages to stay above the crowd despite a mismatch of ingredients. The obvious star of this team is the ciabatta bread itself, which is not exactly a surprise since it’s sold by Panera Bread. It tastes great and is pretty soft inside with a relatively crusty exterior. It’s so good that I can overlook the fact that the rest of the ingredients aren’t large enough to match the size of the bread pieces, making it seem like a gyp. The weak link of the sandwich would have to be the egg; it’s almost as if it’s not even there. The whites are almost watery in taste and the yolks are fairly dry.

If you get the applewood-smoked bacon version of this sandwich, it’s also disappointing. You get three shriveled pieces that make you think, “What the fuck, I paid $3.50 for this? Fuck you and your mysterious smell-blocking glass sneeze guard.”

The white Vermont cheddar cheese is an average addition to the sandwich; sharp and overwhelms almost everything in the sandwich, but it’s a nice addition to the bread. The sausage patty version is not bad. It’s certainly a little thin for the price, but I don’t feel as ripped off as I do when I buy the bacon version and it’s not greasy.

The sandwich, as a whole, manages to work well and goes down pretty light. It’s the perfect breakfast for getting the energy to do some Kung Fu fighting or playing Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers with your friends.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 sandwich – Bacon – 510 calories, 24 grams of fat, 10 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 215 milligrams of cholesterol, 1060 milligrams of sodium, 44 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 2 grams of sugar, and 28 grams of protein. Sausage – 540 calories, 27 grams of fat, 11 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 220 milligrams of cholesterol, 980 milligrams of sodium, 44 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 1 grams of sugar, and 26 grams of protein.)

Item: Panera Bread Breakfast Sandwiches (Sausage and Bacon)

Price: $3.49 (with meat)
Size: 7.5 ounces
Purchased at: Panera Bread
Rating: 8 out of 10 (sausage)
Rating: 6 out of 10 (bacon)
Pros: Awesome bread. Overall good sandwich. Light. Giant fucking robots. Aphex Twin’s “Windowlicker.” Mr. Bean getting some love. Red/White/Green Ranger.
Cons: Non-existent egg. Pricey. Lord Zedd. Terrible color scheme for giant fucking robot. Pansy assed light bulb. Yellow/Pink Ranger. Kung Fu doesn’t work.

REVIEW: Cheese Omelet with Vegetables Power Performance MRE (Meals Ready to Eat)

Don’t get me wrong. I may be a passive pacifist, but I’m not one of those beatniks who believe that everything can be solved without violence. Somebody has to be the bully or the badass with the poo on the stick once in awhile, but Jack Bauer’s chewing Doublemint gum right now, so he’s a bit too busy to kick ass, and Chuck Norris is retired from Delta Force…which is why we have military forces to take their place, armed with state-of-the-art weapons and MREs (Meals Ready to Eat).

Cheese Omelet with Vegetables Power Performance MRE is fairly low in calories and quite nutritious for something its size, but that comes with a caveat. It’s got the longest list of ingredients for an omelet I’ve ever seen. Here’s a quick rundown of what it contains (which is only a wee fraction of the entire list): liquid eggs, cottage cheese, green chilies, mozzarella, water, cream, modified starch, and about seven or eight preservatives. It’s just like dear old grandma’s secret recipe for a prize-winning omelet (incidentally, I’m still waiting for her to pass on her coveted buck cake recipe)! It’s supposedly designed to last for at least 14 years, which explains the caveat, I guess. It’s also packed so full of cholesterol that the plaque-y goodness must aid the preservation process.

I tore open this bag to find myself utterly devoid of patriotism. I knew that MREs had a bad reputation, but this was completely uncalled for. It belongs on a stick…a very long stick. It tastes like crap and quite frankly it reminds me of really terrible and rancid coffee, which dominates the palate, both on and off the tongue. The texture is basically what you’d expect; extra congealed and crumbly, with the dryness of extra hard boiled egg yolks despite an eerie moistness, which is the only thing remotely egg-y about this thing. The veggies were a lost cause as well, since their flavors were completely dominated and their texture was soggier than wet toilet paper. It smelled like really bad tin can food.

I tried to play with it and build little mounds of crap for my green soldiers to march over, but my wee plastic commandos mutinied and started an underground bordello for G.I. Joes and Mr. Potato Heads. This thing is completely irredeemable and worthless like Switzerland’s military might. It’s a giant fuck you to our soldiers, who deserve better like laser ray guns that go pew pew or robot butlers/maids.

At least it comes with a sah-weet brown spoon. Let me tell you, this spoon is truly badass compared to all the other wimpy plastic spoons out there. It’s frickin’ Schwarzenegger from Commando or Terminator 2. This spoon is bigger, stronger, thicker, and heavier than your average plastic spoon. It’s brown so you can eat this crap without breaking your camouflage cover, if the smell didn’t give you away first. It’s also strong enough that it can be used as a weapon of minor destruction if one finds themselves without anything else after killing too many sissy minions. Now that’s American justice: death by plastic spoon. Too bad it’s not a spork.

(Nutrition Facts – 1 mysterious package – 300 calories, 16 grams of fat, 4.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 530 milligrams of cholesterol, 680 milligrams of sodium, 14 grams of carbohydrates, 1 grams of dietary fiber, 6 grams of sugar, and 23 grams of protein.)

Item: MRE – Cheese Omelet with Vegetables

Price: $4.45
Size: 8 ounces
Purchased at: eBay
Rating: 0 out of 10 (8/10 for the badass spoon)
Pros: Nutritious. Shelf-stable. Badass brown spoon. Grandma’s buck cake recipe. Bordellos. A badass with poo on a stick. Death by spoon.
Cons: Rancid coffee-taste. Terrible tin can food smell. Crumbly texture. Long list of ingredients. A number of preservatives. Jack Bauer chewing gum. Plaque-y goodness of cholesterol. No badass spork.