THIS SNACK SUCKS: Doritos Collisions – Hot Wings & Blue Cheese
I’m going to be honest with you: Tina feeds me well. Insanely well. Unfairly well.
When I take our leftovers to work the next day as lunches, I have a small following of fellow office workers who trail me from the microwave to my desk, sniffing anxiously. At first I felt really self-conscious about it, seeing the gopher-heads pop up over desks as I passed by, wondering if perhaps I had committed yet another dress code violation. Isn’t it a jeans day on Fridays? I would wonder, or For God’s sake it’s not my fault – the roads are really slushy and I just couldn’t get all the splashes off my pants.
But eventually it became clear, and now I’m used to it. This is how it would start:
“So, wow, your lunch smells really good. What is that?”
“Uh, well, it’s Middle Eastern something. These green things here are… vine leaves? I think? I don’t know, I just know it’s really good.”
“Yeah, it smells like it. Did you make that yourself?”
“Oh! And I know this is yogurt! …what? No! No, my girlfriend– Tina, Tina made it for me. I think she’s pretty much committed to making me fat.”
“Ha! If I had lunches like that every day, I’d be fat too!”
“Ha ha ha!”
I knew these pants were too tight.
Of course, now that I’ve been at the new job for a little while, it goes more like this:
“What’s for lunch today?”
“Uh! It’s got pork in it, and this is cabbage.”
“You don’t deserve her.”
It is hard to disagree.
It’s also hard to keep up, gastronomically. I can’t really contribute with creative food, because even the attempt of that would be so pathetically sad that we would both laugh and laugh, and then cry a little, and then she’d whip up some kind of spectacular dessert spontaneously just to chase the blues away. In truth my only expeditions into the kitchen these days are either to the liquor cabinet, or else to empty the dishwasher and scrub the floor. I don’t mind, especially: Every rock star needs her roadie; every concert hall needs the guy who mops up the spit from the brass section. If I ever feel bad about myself, I just go open the fridge and grab some fabulous food I’ve only eaten once before, and it all falls into place.
But once in a while, I am able to step up in those few areas where I’m a viking. And chief among those, outside of novelty liquors, is snacks. I will buy bags of things flavored like other things, I will dance through the bulk food store like Homer Simpson in the Land of Chocolate, I will sample freely from the antipasto bar at the grocery store because I know half of it is coming home with me. It’s how I roll, it’s what I do, and it’s better to be a small cog in the machine than nothing at all.
So! You can imagine my towering fury and sense of total betrayal when one of my snack experiments goes wrong. I take a risk, I buy into an allegedly innovative junk food concept, I lay it on the line to please my woman with nutritionally-bankrupt food, and I get disappointment in return? Am I simply expected to let this stand? Is there no recourse that I can take? No, no there isn’t. I can watch my stock tank with my lady-love, and expect slightly more resistance the next time I ask her to eat ruffled chips that taste like horseradish.
But I have this website, and I have you — so at the very least I can help others avoid the mistakes I’ve made, and inflicted upon those I care about. And with that in mind, I bring you:
THIS SNACK SUCKS: Doritos Collisions Hot Wings & Blue Cheese
Imagine you’re sitting watching television one night, and you catch a glimpse of this:
Kind of funny, right? Hot wings are these obnoxious cowboys who all say, “Hyuck!” when they laugh at effete Frenchmen who think it’s a good idea to bring a poodle and a mime to a fight. Because they’re contrasting flavors, get it! Two great big bold tastes that actually do go great together, and you totally enjoy them when they’re actual chicken wings and actual blue cheese dip. How bad could it be if someone subjected those two things to incredibly high heat, reduced them to powder and then spread them on some Doritos?
I know, you’re thinking, “Actually Mike, pretty bad. Pretty bad and I don’t know why you’re asking me this question,” but bear with me. Possibly the only two flavors that Doritos has ever managed to successfully do are Spicy and Ranch, which is more or less the same as Hot Wings and Blue Cheese, if we’re being honest with each other. If they happen to make the Spicy more-so and the Ranch less onion-y, you’re basically where this bag of chips should be.
The concept of putting both in the same bag sounds gross at first, but it’s a little bit inspired. Assuming you aren’t deliberately selective, the odds of you only ever getting Spicy chips is relatively low — eventually you’ll stray across one of the ranch ones, and that will replace heat with the salty-cheesy flavor for a little bit. It’s like when you’re at a particularly low-budget party where the only thing to eat is chips, and the host just keeps pouring different flavors on top of each other until you have no idea what you’re getting into — will it be salt and vinegar, or is that just low-salt? And was it just touching a sour cream ‘n’ onion? Does this chip suffer from a terrible wound, or did it touch a ketchup one?
My point is that there’s a little enjoyable randomness to the whole affair, and when you combine that with two hefty but complementary flavors, this should be as much fun as you can get out of a bag of chips.
Well, it turns out that while I can’t actually measure how much fun you could get out of a bag of chips, I can definitely tell you this is going to fall far, far short of the goal. Despite the delightful conflict between American and European stereotypes, notwithstanding the concept of a chicken wing dinner in a bag, and beside the kind of funny ad, I cannot in any way recommend you bothering to try these out.
This is for three key reasons:
- The Hot Wing flavor is not hot.
- The Blue Cheese flavor is not cheesy.
- 95% of the bag does not taste like either of these flavors, and instead tastes like those Doritos at the bottom of the bag that never got any of the flavor dust to begin with.
It would be one thing if we opened the bag and found our eyes running from intensely over-flavored chips that caused us to question the existence of a just God. Lord knows that there have been enough of those occasions, and I have to tell you — after a while you get accustomed to intensity, and then you just wonder why all chips don’t taste like a punch in the mouth. I would go so far as to say that Salt & Vinegar enthusiasts have known this longer than anyone.
Doritos Collisions delivers almost exactly the opposite experience. Within seconds, you realize that you are ripping into nothing but yet another bag of Doritos, except that every now and again you get one that maybe tastes a little off. Not piquante, particularly; not cheesy, per se. Just not entirely like the other chips, and so you dig onwards into the bag, hoping to find some semblance of the flavor that might spur cowboys with rubber chickens and Frenchmen with lapdogs to do battle in a desert.
But it’s not there! You never find it, no matter how hard you look, and no matter how many of these stupid bland half-flavored chips you eat. You can go through an entire bag, looking vaguely disappointed and waiting for the fun flavors to happen, and all the while Bob Dorito, head of the Doritos Empire, is laughing all the way to the bank. And I don’t say that lightly, because these just happen to be a full dollar more per bag than regular Doritos — 25% more money for 95% less happiness.
Well, I hope Bob Dorito enjoys his ill-gotten gains, because they’re the last he’s getting from me for a while: You let me down, Doritos Collisions Hot Wings & Blue Cheese. You let me down and I cannot forgive it. It is only too easy to say,