The Pop Tart Brigade


Three individuals (Charlotte, Caroline and Jon) set out to discover the best of the best Pop Tarts created by Kelloggs.

Sunday, July 24, 2005

Darth Tarts

After receiving some of the Pop Tart reviews, I inquired as to whether any of you have tried the Star Wars Darth Vader Lavaberry Pop Tarts I had previously seen at the supermarket. Charlotte said no and suggested I review these.

Since I was driving to NY today, I figured what better entertainment could I have besides That 70’s Show and a box of lava cakes at the hotel tonight. On my way home, I stopped to see if these interesting specimens were still on clearance at my local supermarket. When I previously noticed these bright red pop tarts, I was horrified. The second time I saw them, they were on clearance.I wandered around the store to the clearance section in the back and found a goldmine. Not only were the Lava berry Tarts on clearance, they had an additional flavor. Robots Wildberry Pop Tarts. These looked a little more normal, but I picked up both boxes at the bargain price.

Ok, so I got into my hotel around 11:15pm tonight and they informed me that they were overbooked, but would be glad to put me up for free at the Crowne Plaza. Really there is nothing I wanted to do more at 11:30, then drive around to another hotel. Fortunately, I sort of knew where it was and did not get lost. Yes, I walked into the Crowne Plaza in jeans and my baseball cap with a backpack and pop tarts. I could tell they were impressed.

Summerfield has a microwave and stove, Crowne Plaza does not. Tonight, I was limited to testing the Lava berry pop tarts cold. It makes me chuckle when I look at the sleep cd, lavender linen spray, ear plugs, and eye mask all wrapped up nicely in a little gift bag. I’m about to eat Red Star Wars Pop Tarts at midnight while I watch TV.

The box has Star Wars trivia and quotes on it. As I’ve seen only 1 old Star Wars movie and Revenge of the Sith, I don’t really recognize any of the quotes or know any answers. The actual envelope is generic silver. Perhaps this is to obscure the pop tart horror that is inside and trick us into opening the package. The pop tarts themselves are not nearly as bright red as the picture on the box. It is more like a cross between a brick and creamy tomato soup. The frosting is slightly darker and there are strange circular (hole punch sized) orange and yellow swirled sprinkle things. In opinion, they look kind of like a jackolantern puked on top.

My first bite was the corner. I don’t believe there was any frosting or filling. It tasted kind of like soap with the chemical red dye taste, slightly reminiscent of those nasty pink butter cookies that are shaped like leaves with flavorless chocolate holding them together. (I realize you may not have seen these disgusting cookies before, but my mom liked to purchase them for special occasions.)

Bite #2 had frosting, sprinkles, and filling. It was slightly sweet and possibly berry like, mixed with the chalky, red dye soap taste. As I was almost done chewing it, my teeth hit one of the extra large sprinkles. They are pretty solid and sound like, when you bite into a smartie. I’m not sure they lend any special facets to this taste abomination. Though I was tempted to break into a chorus of “crunch, crunch, crunch, ohhhhhhhhh…crunch, crunch crunch”, each time I bit into one. (You may need to seek an explanation of this from Charlotte if you have not witnessed this interaction with Chouli.) Further bites tasted slightly salty along with the soap/berry flavor. I’m going to wash this down with the remainder of my complimentary bottled water.

Friday in White Plains, I will try microwaving one of the Darth Tarts to see if cooking helps to neutralize any of the odd flavors. Perhaps, nuking the lava berries will morph them into a much better tasting product. I suppose it is safe to suspect that molten lava berries would taste better than solid ones, just because. At the current time, I would only give these 1.5 light sabers out of 5. Perhaps, they should have used the force when making them.

I’m still left with 5 packs of Darth Tarts. If anyone is brave enough to try some, I could send some in the overnight. Otherwise, I will leave them in the kitchen. People in Dedham will eat anything.

Update: I microwaved it for 1 minute. This was perhaps too long, I don't know as I never cooked a pop tart before. (I prefer the raw strawberry tarts)

After one minute the darth tart exploded and began smoking. I believe some of yellow/orange sprinkles became molten sugar rocks. The molten lava berry filling oozed out of the side while smoke billowed from the top. (I'm totally serious!)

I poured water on it, to cool it down then deposited in the closest trash receptacle. I'll try again at home tonight.

Molten darth tarts smell like pancakes. - Jo (guest panelist)

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough

the Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough poptart was not a success raw. the filling was a dried out vanilla pudding dotting with jimmies. raw this tasted a lot like homemade paste. the frosting was chocolate with swirls of vanilla and was delicious. i like that it is crackly. but overall i thought the whole thing would be better toasted.i had imagined that the filling would become molten when toasted, like an undercooked cookie. but now it is just warm paste. this pop tart is not delicious. i would give it a 2 (because the frosting was so good) and never buy it again. - Caroline

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Frosted Rasperry

I was really excited about the frosted raspberry. I anticipated red filling with white frosting. I was also excited about the raspberry flavor, because the only two fruit flavors of PT I have experienced were blueberry and strawberry. Well, the frosted raspberry did indeed have a bright red filling, but it was definitely too bright, too red -- like they added too much of that carcinogenic Red No. 5. The frosting was white and I noticed that when it was toasting (after the blueberry experience I am sorry to say I have very little desire to try another untoasted tart of any flavor), the flecks of red candy imbedded in the frosting were bubbling and sizzling -- some even jumped ship and plummeted to a sizzling, fiery death in my toaster. So I was pretty excited. MUCH to my chagrin, I was sorely disappointed. The filling and those little red candies on top were WAY too sweet (so sweet my teeth hurt), too red, too much like candy. Unlike like plain strawberry (still my favorite), which retains some semblance of hearty-crisp-pastry-with-semi-real-fruit-filling, the frosted raspberry was an abomination of sugar and fake colors. I score it a 2.5. I almost didn't want to finish the box of them (but you know I did). - Charlotte

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Plain Blueberry

I have tried plain blueberry many times in the past and often cite is as one of my top two tarts (plain strawberry being the other). however, this may be due to the fact that, for a long time, those were the only two I ever tried. Anyway, I bought a box at Hannaford at lunchtime the other day. Appreciating Caroline's recommendation that raw tarts must be given due testing, I wolfed down both raw tarty blubes before I got back to the office (which is only about 2 minutes away). I found that I didn't enjoy unfrosted pastry as much untoasted. and while I usually love those crispy little corners, these corners just tasted lardy and cold. It also left a weird, chemical aftertaste in my mouth. the insides were cold but still nice and tarty and tasted vaguely of real blueberries (I have bushes and bushes of luscious blueberries at home that are currently ripe, so I now what I be sayin here).but then I ate two more packages (or was it three) that night toasted (I'm know, I'm a gluttinous pig), and they were exceptional. I rate the plain blueberry poptarts a solid 4 on the PTart scale. Untoasted, they are not even worth rating. - Charlotte

Monday, July 18, 2005

French Toast

French Toast Pop tarts are nothing like French Toast. i thought it would be a Mrs Butterworths experience but instead it was a cinnamon scented with maple. the pastry, however, is fascinating, and texturized as though to look like bread, and stamped with the shape of a piece of bread! i thought it would have a maple frosting on it but it was unfrosted and just sprinkled with cinnamon. it was far better raw than toasted. when toasted it was painfully dry and i desperately wished i had a big cold glass of milk. i would give it a three. it's name serves to remind you that you would much rather be eating real french toast and its flavor makes you think about how great cinnamon poptarts are. i might buy these again if i were desperate for cinnamon poptarts and couldn't find any. - Caroline

Sunday, July 17, 2005

Home of the Pop Tart Brigade

If you're wondering, the rules of the PT Assessment involve testing all the types of pop tarts, using a rating scale of 0-5 (0.5 incremenets are allowed) and writing a review. Testing both toasted and untoasted is highly recommended. Also, we like to predict what the tart may taste like based on the picture on the box or the name.... There are three main panelists, but we recently aquired a guest panelists who took one for the team by trying the Darth Tarts. May the tarts be with you.