REVIEW: Coca-Cola Cinnamon

Coca Cola Cinnamon

What is Coca-Cola Cinnamon?

Like every other brand, it’s Spice Season over at the Coca-Cola Company. Thankfully for us, it’s opted to add cinnamon to its classic recipe instead of pumpkin.

How is it?

Coca-Cola Cinnamon smells and tastes like someone added about a teaspoon of cinnamon powder to a bottle of Coke. I wouldn’t say it’s subtle, but it’s also not overwhelming. The cinnamon flavor rides the line nicely.

Coca Cola Cinnamon Closup

After the quick, overwhelming bursts of effervescence in each sip fade, you get a little hint of the warm spice. I think I prefer this to regular Cola, which is usually only a drink of choice for me when mixed with something harder, but this isn’t too big of a departure from the classic you’re used to.

Honestly, they probably could have gone a little further with the cinnamon flavor, but I’m not complaining.

Is there anything else you need to know?

The best part of the said flavor is the fact that the usual dryness does not follow it. No matter what I have with cinnamon, I always feel like I ate a handful of the Sahara and need to chug a bottle of water immediately.

Coca Cola Cinnamon Label

Oh, and cinnamon is not in the ingredients. This is a “cinnamon flavored” soda. It seems odd to me, but maybe it’s an allergen thing or something. Why not use the real thing?

Conclusion:

Coke has a winner here. This is gonna go over well with the masses as there is enough cinnamon to separate it from regular Coke, but not enough to make people feel like they’re taking the Cinnamon Challenge.

I’m probably gonna pick up another bottle to try as a mixer. I also kinda want to try using a cinnamon stick as a straw the next time because I am a child.

I hope it does well, and it pushes Coca-Cola to get more creative because a Cinnamon Vanilla Coke would be a God-tier soda.

Purchased Price: $2.12
Size: 20 fl. oz. bottle
Purchased at: Quick Check
Rating: 7 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (1 Bottle) 240 calories, 0 grams of fat, 55 milligrams of sodium, 65 grams of carbohydrates, 65 grams of sugar, and 0 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Limited Edition 2019 Mystery Oreo Cookies

Limited Edition 2019 Mystery Oreo Cookies

Who doesn’t love a good mystery?

Well, after Oreo’s previous lame mystery flavor, I’m sure plenty of people don’t.

Despite already releasing a flavor called “Fruity Crisp,” the big reveal ended up being Fruity Pebbles. They were barely different, and it all felt like a publicity stunt slash brand partnership.

In fairness to Oreo, many people suspected that flavor but didn’t pick it because, well, it’s been done already.

I guessed Froot Loops, so I found the reveal to be disappointing and lazy, which is why I was excited to see Nabisco give the “Mystery Oreo” another go-round.

I believe it was the legendary mystery author, Agatha Christie, who once said:

“The less you think, the more you’ll know. Whilst solving Mystery Oreo.”

While I respect old Aggie’s knowledge on the matter, I knew damn well I was gonna overanalyze the so-called mystery that sat before me.

I went into the review blind, avoiding all online chatter.

First, I checked the ingredients. Nothing. Just a list of stuff that translates to “don’t worry about what you’re eating.” Nabisco wouldn’t be so sloppy as to give it away there anyway.

The package had a hint that read:

“History is divided on how this came to exist. A shepherd? A sailor? There’s no easy fix.”

Using my Holmesian intellect, I deduced this riddle was clearly alluding to some kind of spice? Perhaps an ancient edible adhesive of some sort? Molasses?

The crème is the mystery, so I theorized it would most likely be a flavor that goes well with a chocolate cookie. Then I remembered many Oreo flavors before – including Fruity Pebbles – really didn’t, so I quickly tossed that out.

Limited Edition 2019 Mystery Oreo Cookies Tray

It was time to tear open the package and push all preconceived notions to the back burner. Like Toucan Sam, I had to first follow my nose.

I was hit with an immediate waft of cinnamon bun – a flavor Oreo has already tackled. Could this be a rebranding like the Fruity Pebbles fiasco? Are these Pillsbury Cinnamon Bun Oreos? Cinnabon?

It was time to chow. I separated the cookie, scraped the crème off with my teeth and yeah, it tasted like it smelled. Did a Shepherd or Sailor discover cinnamon? Invent the cinnamon bun?

Limited Edition 2019 Mystery Oreo Cookies Halves

With $50,000 riding on this guess, I have to imagine Oreo would try a little harder than to reuse an old flavor. Did it stick with the cereal theme of the last one? Is this Cinnamon Toast Crunch Cereal Milk Oreo? Hmmm. That ain’t bad.

Before I tell you my final guess, I have to say; these are damn good. The alleged cinnamon and chocolate are an excellent pairing. If nothing else, these crush the previous Mystery Oreo.

Ok, back to the mystery. The cinnamon flavor is prominent, but it doesn’t punch you in the face, so I’m suspecting it’s a cinnamon based dessert with a co-star. There hasn’t been a Churro Oreo, but there’s more to it than that. Is Cinnamon Pie a thing? Shoofly Pie?

Limited Edition 2019 Mystery Oreo Cookies What

I kept thinking there must be some kind of dessert that’s made with cinnamon and possibly tea (?) that I wasn’t aware of, but in the end – and this pains me to say – I had to lock in on an answer I’m pretty positive is wrong – Cinnabon. Yes, Oreo is pulling another one over on us, and re-releasing an old flavor with a brand partnership. Good cookie, boring outcome.

Proceed to tell me how wrong I am, and enjoy.

Purchased Price: $3.49
Size: 12.2 oz. package
Purchased at: ShopRite
Rating: 8 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (2 Cookies) 140 calories, 7 grams of fat, 2 grams of saturated fat, 0 gram of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 85 milligrams of sodium, 21 grams of carbohydrates, 0 grams of fiber, 13 grams of sugar, and less than 1 gram of protein.

REVIEW: McDonald’s Chicken McGriddles and McChicken Biscuit

McDonald s Chicken McGriddles and McChicken Biscuit

While everyone sits around twiddling their thumbs waiting for Popeyes to announce the return of its chicken sandwich, Ronald and the gang have quietly dropped a couple of intriguing chicken sammies of their own.

I’ve never understood chicken for breakfast, but guess what? I don’t have to understand it. We live in the golden age of fast food, so I could roll up to the drive-thru and get a Chicken McGriddles and a McChicken Biscuit at three in the afternoon – and that’s exactly what I did.

I’m pretty sure these sandwiches aren’t “new,” but this was the first time they hit the menu in my neck of the woods. “Secret Menu” aficionados probably scoff at the idea of a McChicken on a biscuit or griddle cake, but these were revolutionary to a sheltered sap such as myself.

Do you like the McChicken? Do you like McDonald’s biscuits and McGriddle cakes? Well then, I think you can imagine what you’re getting here. Personally, I can live without the McChicken, but those McGriddle cakes, ohhhh baby, do I love me some McGriddle cake.

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I’ll start with the biscuit because it was the less successful of the two. The McChicken is not exactly a moist (he said “moist,” oh the horror!) piece of meat, so pairing it with a dry, crumbly biscuit only works if you also slather it in some kind of sauce. It doesn’t come with one.

McDonald s McChicken Biscuit

In hindsight, some honey or maple syrup would have improved this significantly. If you’re not in the mood for breakfast, some BBQ sauce will work as well. That’s the beauty of chicken on a biscuit. So, the McChicken Biscuit is decent, but make sure you ask for sauce.

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The McGriddles version is a McChicken patty between the two cakes, no eggs or cheese, and that was fine with me. The grease and maple syrup pockets of the McGriddle cakes provided the lubricant (a word more gross than “moist”) that the biscuit lacked.

McDonald s Chicken McGriddles

Anyone who enjoys the sweet and savory combo of chicken and waffles should be all-in on the Chicken McGriddles. I’m of the opinion that the McGriddles are the best McDonald’s menu addition in the past 20 years, and this isn’t changing my mind. I might go back and see if I can try them with eggs added. I’m sure it’s legit.

McDonald s Chicken McGriddles 2

I have to reiterate the McChicken is a middle of the road fast food sandwich at best. I couldn’t help but think this would be better with someone else’s chicken. A Popeyes filet patty between two McDonald’s McGriddle cakes would be an instant 10.

These both go down easy and can be eaten at any time of day, so they’re definitely worth checking out. They should make you forget about your Popeyes fever for a spell.

I dig this expansion of the McDonald’s brand. Maybe we can try a McGriddles Burger soon without knowing someone who works there or ordering from some secret Illuminati’s menu.

Purchased Price: $5.52 (for both – 2 for $4 before 10:30 a.m.)
Size: N/A
Rating: 5 out of 10 (Biscuit), 7 out of 10 (McGriddle)
Nutrition Facts: Biscuit – 420 calories, 20 grams of fat, 9 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 35 milligrams of cholesterol, 1040 milligrams of sodium, 46 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 2 grams of sugar, and 14 grams of protein. McGriddle – 390 calories, 15 grams of fat, 4.5 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 35 milligrams of cholesterol, 1000 milligrams of sodium, 51 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of dietary fiber, 14 grams of sugar, and 14 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Dunkin’ Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Signature Latte

Dunkin Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Signature Latte

What is the Dunkin’ Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Signature Latte?

Well, if you’re not quite ready to jump Ugg first into Pumpkin Spice Season, Dunkin’ has a tweak on the old recipe that basically tastes like pumpkin spice!

How is it?

Ok, in fairness, “Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin” is probably better than that boring glory hog pumpkin spice.

I’m not positive what Dunkin’s recipe is, but a quick search indicates that cinnamon is usually the predominant spice used in pumpkin spice. I don’t think that’s new information to anyone with taste buds, but this latte seems like someone screwed up the pumpkin spice recipe and a happy accident occurred.

Test Kitchen chef, Ralph (I’m naming him Ralph), accidentally threw double the cinnamon in a pumpkin spice batch and Dunkin’ decided it tasted good enough to make the menu.

Cinnamon sugar is delicious, so why wouldn’t you want more of that in your coffee?

Is there anything else you need to know?

Despite an abundance of cinnamon sugar, it wasn’t as sweet as expected. Maybe I lucked out with a good batch, but I expected this to be cloying and over the top. The inclusion of more cinnamon helped mellow out the pumpkin flavor that Dunkin’ sometimes ramps up to ten.

Dunkin Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Signature Latte Topping

The whipped cream sprinkled with cinnamon was a nice touch, but eat it first, or it will sink to the ice cubes. Whipped topping is definitely better suited for blended drinks.

I’m an iced coffee guy, but I have no doubt this will be a perfect hot coffee flavor too. I’m gonna try that on the first truly cold September morning.

Conclusion:

Dunkin Cinnamon Sugar Pumpkin Signature Latte Fun in the Sun

Despite the “fun in the sun” cup, this was the first moment I really felt like fall – or “autumn” for you pretentious readers – was about to smack me in the face.

If this drink proves anything, it’s that pumpkin and cinnamon are a winning combo. We might not even need all those other spices. Thanks, Ralph!

Purchased Price: $3.29
Size: Small
Rating: 8 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: 310 calories, 100 calories from fat, 11 grams of fat, 7 grams of sat fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 35 mg of cholesterol, 115 milligrams of sodium, 42 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 36 grams of sugar, and 7 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Burger King Maple Waffle Sandwich

Burger King Maple Waffle Sandwich

What is the Burger King Maple Waffle Sandwich?

Burger King’s latest answer to the McGriddle – a breakfast sandwich with maple laced waffle cakes as buns.

How is it?

It’s almost there. I wanted this to be great, but it’s ultimately just good. Good is good, though, right? Good.

Here’s the thing about fast food breakfast – the bread element is the most crucial part. I’m sure you’re familiar with BK’s eggs and meat. I’ve always liked BK’s fluffy folded egg, and its sausage patties are fine if not indistinguishable from anyone else’s. They do their part.

Burger King Maple Waffle Sandwich Top

The waffles are the big-ticket item here, but I think that might turn some people off of this sandwich.

I liked them, but they’re not without its flaws.

The waffles were a little too fried for my tastes, giving them an almost “funnel cakey” texture. I love that, but not sure I want it on a breakfast sandwich.

There are little maple spots speckled on the waffles, but they weren’t sweet enough. Again, it was alllllmost there. Getting subtle hints of sweetness was nice, but I was hoping for more.

Is there anything else you need to know?

I got the savory sausage because it’s the best option. Let’s be real. The thing is, Burger King probably should’ve gone with a maple sausage patty. This could have benefitted from more maple, and that would’ve been a good place to inject it.

Oh, and skip the cheese. It could just be me, but these savory/sweet breakfast sandwiches absolutely do not need a slice of cheese. In fact, I’d argue it knocks the sandwich down a peg as a whole.

Conclusion:

It ain’t great for ya, but you probably won’t be mad you ate this. It’s about 75% as good as a McGriddle. With a little tinkering, it could be a real star in the fast food breakfast world.

Purchased Price: $3.69
Size: N/A
Rating: 6 out of 10
Nutrition Facts: (Sausage) 680 calories, 45 grams of fat, 15 grams of saturated fat, 0.5 grams of trans fat, 205 milligrams of cholesterol, 1140 milligrams of sodium, 46 grams of carbohydrates, 2 grams of fiber, 12 grams of sugar, and 23 grams of protein.

REVIEW: Chex Mix MAX’D

Chex Mix MAX D

Hi, my name is Vin, and I was a recovering Chex Mix addict.

I don’t mean to make light, but that’s actually true. I’ve been trying to cut back on my sodium intake lately, and one of the main staples of my prior diet was Chex Mix – always Chex Mix. I never left the supermarket without a bag in my cart.

To me, every Chex Mix variety (besides Bold Party) has fallen on a scale between “damn good” and “ambrosia.” No hyperbole here, I love this stuff. They’re my favorite snack, and I was slowly kicking the habit.

That is until Chex Mix kicked back by releasing new MAX’D flavors. You didn’t think I’d skip out on these MAX’D flavors now did ya?

Of course not, you have no idea who I am. You don’t think about me at all.

Chex Mix MAX’D come in two exciting flavors – Buffalo Ranch and Spicy Dill.

There’s no “E” in MAX’D, so to remember that, I made up this lame mnemonic for ya:

“When it comes to MAX’D the ‘E’ gets axed!”

Chex Mix MAX D Back of Bag

The thing that sets MAX’D apart are the “flavor blasted” pieces, which are interesting, to say the least.

Buffalo is hit or miss for me, but ranch never fails. I went into these literally and figuratively thinking it was a mixed bag.

Chex Mix MAX D Buffalo Ranch

The mix consists of amazing Ranch Chex pieces that reminded me of the Sour Cream and Onion Chex, which are “ambrosia” tier. You also get standard pumpernickel chips, pretzels, and baffling “Flavor Blasted” Buffalo Chex pieces.

It’s a milder Buffalo flavor than you’d probably expect, and it packs some nice heat. They blend in perfectly with the Ranch pieces, but these blasted Chex are such a strange textural experience.

Chex Mix MAX D Buffalo Ranch Closeup

They are exactly like Muddy Buddies, except savory. For some reason, my brain had a hard time with this concept. The powder-caked pieces hit my tongue and I wanted a sugar rush every time, not the exact opposite.

Chex Mix MAX D Spicy Dill

The Spicy Dill blasted Chex also threw me for that same loop. They smelled and tasted like pickles, but that was perhaps a bit short-lived, as the dill got overtaken by the corresponding “Spicy” Chex pieces. This mix is hotter than Buffalo Ranch. They’re a bit too hot – not quite the Ghost Pepper I reviewed, but almost there.

Chex Mix MAX D Spicy Dill Closeup

You also get pretzels and cheese crackers, which I prefer to the bagel chips. These ingredients help to neutralize the burn a bit, but I wish the dill pieces were cooler, creamier, and maybe not flavor blasted.

I expected to prefer the pickle flavor, but the Buffalo Ranch won me over. They’re still both pretty “damn good,” but I don’t think I’ll be safe from a Chex Mix relapse for a while. Also, keep in mind my dumb brain couldn’t comprehend the spicy Muddy Buddy MAX’D pieces, and that’s probably clouding my judgment. I’m still confused.

I need more opinions, so give em a try.

Purchased Price: $2.50 each
Size: 8.75 oz. bag
Purchased at: 7-Eleven
Rating: 7 out of 10 (Buffalo Ranch), 6 out of 10 (Spicy Dill)
Nutrition Facts: (1/2 cup) Buffalo Ranch – 140 calories, 4.5 grams of fat, 2 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 280 milligrams of sodium, 22 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 3 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein. Spicy Dill – 140 calories, 4 grams of fat, 2 grams of saturated fat, 0 grams of trans fat, 0 milligrams of cholesterol, 320 milligrams of sodium, 23 grams of carbohydrates, 1 gram of fiber, 3 grams of sugar, and 2 grams of protein.