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Culture Science Technology

16 Black Innovators Who Changed Food Forever

Macaroni and cheese. Ice cream. French fries. Jack Daniel’s whisky. Frozen foods in general.

We wouldn’t have any of the above foods, plus many others, were it not for Black food innovators and figureheads that have made significant contributions and altered the way we eat and make food today.

Below are just some of the stories of these incredibly talented and inspiring individuals. Some of these names came from research via the New York Times and Food and Wine, but we’ve also included historical sourcing and context for each person as well. You can click on their names to view those original pieces.

Nathan “Nearest” Green

Known as “Uncle Nearest,” Nathan Green was a skilled distiller who mastered the “Lincoln County” process. This method of distilling is thought by food historians and whiskey experts alike to have been brought in by slaves, and uses charcoal to filter and purify foods. The “Lincoln County” process, in particular, uses sugar maple charcoal to filter bourbon.

Green trained hired hand Jasper Newton Daniel (known to the world as “Jack Daniel”) while working on a priest’s distillery in Lynchburg, Tennessee. Daniel eventually made him the first master distiller of Jack Daniel’s, the famous Tennessee whisky many people drink today.

While Jack Daniel’s shares the story of Green on their website, an all minority-led whisky brand named “Uncle Nearest” continues to build upon his legacy with spirits that use the same distilling technique, but feature Green’s name on the bottle.

James Hemings

While Thomas Jefferson is sometimes credited with bringing foods like mac & cheese and ice cream to the United States, Hemings was the one who actually learned to make them. A slave in the ownership of Jefferson prior to his presidency, Hemings traveled with him to France in 1784 specifically to learn the art of French cuisine.

Hemings became the first American trained as a French chef in history as a result, bringing back several dishes to the United States. French fries, ice cream, macaroni and cheese, creme brulee, French meringues, and French whipped cream are just a few examples. These dishes and others would be incorporated in Hemings’ signature half-French, half-Virginian style of cooking he became renowned for.

Hemings would later also cook one of the most famous dinners in American history: the one between Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton that settled who would pay for the Revolutionary War and established Washington, D.C. as the United States’ capital. He eventually was freed by Jefferson in 1796.

Zephyr Wright

Zephyr Wright was the personal chef for President Lyndon B. Johnson and his family for over twenty years. It was her cooking that made the Johnson household a popular one for D.C. dinner parties.

Wright would follow Johnson to the White House during his tenure, and was in charge of the home cooking in the White House kitchen. She would also temporarily cook all meals, including VIP ones, in between the tenures of two White House Executive Chefs.

Wright is thought to have heavily influenced Johnson’s support for the Civil Rights Act of 1964,. Wright was known to have spoken up to the President during his time in Congress about the injustices she faced road tripping between Texas and D.C. during congressional recesses, saying that she was not allowed to use the bathroom in areas she was driving through, and couldn’t stop off and eat at restaurants. President Johnson reportedly used some of her stories to convince Congress to sign the bill. He would also give her a White House pen when the act was signed into law.

Leah Chase

The Queen of Creole Cuisine, Leah Chase was the heart and soul of Dooky Chase’s restaurant in New Orleans across seven decades. Known for her fried chicken, red beans and rice, gumbo, and other classics, Chase started out in the 1940s when she got a job as a server at a restaurant. She eventually took over the helm and made it a safe haven for anyone to come and eat at.

Dooky Chase’s was known as one of the few places that it was publicly okay for races to mix at, since the cops wouldn’t bother activists inside the restaurant. Thus, leaders of the Civil Rights Movement, including local leaders and national ones like Martin Luther King Jr., would often strategize while eating there.

Chase would go on to serve presidents like Barack Obama and George W. Bush, along with Associate Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall and other influential figures. Disney has even made a movie with a character inspired by her: Princess Tiana of Princess and the Frog.

Abby Fisher

Around the early 1880s, Abby Fisher was known for her award-winning pickles and the Mrs. Abby Fisher Pickle Company in San Francisco. She had at least 35 years of cooking experience, some estimates had it, and the awards she won for her food reflected that.

However, Fisher is probably best known for publishing one of the first cookbooks ever authored by an African-American woman. The book, called What Mrs. Fisher Knows About Old Southern Cooking, contains over 160 recipes and uses the dictated words of Fisher herself.

The cookbook surged in popularity in the late 20th century when a publisher began reprinting it in 1995. Today, it offers a window into these early recipes that places like museums try to recreate for guests to sample.

Edna Lewis

Edna Lewis became a legend while she cooked at Cafe Nicholson in Midtown Manhattan starting in 1949. Her fame and Southern recipes led to guests like Marlon Brando, Eleanor Roosevelt, and Salvador Dali showing up for dinner. After stepping away from the chef’s role (as an active partner) in 1952, she would lecture at the American Museum of Natural History while working as a chef and private caterer.

Lewis would later become inspired to write her first cookbook as demand for them grew in 1972. She was one of the first African-American women from the South that would publish a cookbook that did not hide her name, gender, or race. She would go on to publish more in the future, eventually becoming known as the Grand Dame and Grand Doyenne of Southern cooking.

Larry James and Jereline Bethune

The Bethune family, to this day, runs Brenda’s Bar-Be-Que Pit in Montgomery, Alabama. Open since 1942, the restaurant would become an important hub for those in the Civil Rights Movement.

After Rosa Parks infamously refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery bus, Larry James and Jereline Bethune were instrumental in using their restaurant to organize bus boycott efforts around the city. As the movement continued and literacy test laws (meant to curtail the Black vote) were introduced, Jereline would also quietly hold lessons teaching other African-Americans how to read. They were then able to pass these literacy tests and go out and vote.

Alfred L. Cralle

Ice cream today would not be the same without the work of Alfred Cralle. Born just after the Civil War, he had an affinity for mechanics as a young age, and would go study at Wayland Seminary, a school set up after the Civil War to educate newly freed African-Americans.

Cralle would go on to work as a porter at a drugstore and a hotel in Philadelphia, and developed the idea of the ice cream scoop while watching people struggle using two different spoons to get the ice cream into cones. Cralle’s mechanical inventional, which is the basis of how ice cream scoops work to this day, was invented in 1897.

Cralle would also become a successful promoter of businesses in Philly, and was the assistant manager of the Afro-American Financial, Accumulating, Merchandise, and Business Association in Pittsburgh.

George Crum

Ever heard the story of how potato chips were invented to spite a customer at a restaurant? George Crum was the chef at said restaurant, the Moon Lake Lodge resort in Saratoga Springs. A customer came in around the summer of 1853 wanting extra-thin French Fries, frustrating Crum to the point he sliced them as thin as possible, fried them in grease, and sent them out.

The chips became a big hit, eventually becoming known as “Saratoga Chips.” While Crum never patented the dish, he did open his own restaurant, “Crumbs House,” that served a basket of them at every table.

Chips wouldn’t become a grocery product until 1895, and the concept of bagged chips didn’t show up until 1926.

Joseph Lee

Joseph Lee was one of the most influential people when it came to industrializing the way we make bread.

Having worked in a bakery from a young age, Lee eventually became the owner of two restaurants in Boston, as well as a hotel and a catering company. Looking to find a way to minimize bread waste, he eventually invented a machine that would convert day-old bread into breadcrumbs. Patented in 1895, he later sold the rights and the breadcrumb maker would spread across the world.

That wasn’t Lee’s only invention, however. He would later patent the idea for an automatic bread maker that mixed and kneaded the dough, the basis to the same devices (think, stand mixers) that we still use in our kitchens today.

Lloyd Hall

Lloyd Hall is considered to be one of the pioneers in the world of food chemistry. A pharmaceutical chemist for Griffith Laboratories in Chicago who completed graduate school, Hall would be awarded over 100 patents and received multiple honorary doctorate degrees for his work.

Hall’s main area of work came around the development of techniques to preserve food. Some of his most revolutionary patents included using  “flash-dried” salt crystals that revolutionized meatpacking. He also introduced the use of antioxidants to prevent the spoilage of fats and oils in baked goods, and developed a process known as “Ethylene Oxide Vacugas,” which could control the growth of bacteria and molds in food.

John Standard

John Standard was an inventor instrumental in modernizing two pieces of kitchen equipment that virtually every household has today: stoves and refrigerators.

Refrigeration was a concept that was being researched as early as the 1830s, but mainly focused on using some sort of power. Standard’s improvement to the fridge, patented in 1891, was an unpowered design that used a manually filled ice chamber as the central cooling unit.

Standard also made significant upgrades to the oil-powered stove, patenting one with a space-saving design in 1889 that could be used in applications like buffet-style meals on trains.

Frederick McKinley Jones

If you’ve worked in the food industry or any commercial transportation that required keeping stuff cold, you’ve likely seen the Thermo King brand somewhere in your lifetime. Frederick McKinley Jones was the founder of that company, and inventor of the first automated refrigerated system for trucks.

A skilled and gifted electrician and mechanic, Jones had patents for sixty different inventions across a wide variety of fields, including the portable X-ray machine, motion picture devices, and even medical storage units.

He’s most known for the Thermo King, the refrigerated system he invented, because it allowed for fresh goods from around the world to be transported and sold in stores. Jones is essentially responsible for not just all refrigerated transport globally, but also the entire frozen food industry.

Thomas Downing

Known as the “Oyster King of New York,” Downing was most known for his 19th-century restaurant, Thomas Downing’s Oyster House. His oyster hall was legendary, with prominent figures like Queen Victoria and Charles Dickens having dined there.

Downing was born a free man, as his parents were freed by plantation owner John Downing. He grew up and was educated on Chincoteague Island in Virginia, and eventually made his way up to New York following the war of 1812. Like many other African-Americans in New York, Downing eventually went into the oyster business, opening his own oyster cellar in the 1820s.

Oyster cellars were the universal food of New York at the time (similar to hot dogs today), but many establishments weren’t as trusted as Downing’s. That’s because he specifically catering it towards the fine dining clientele, with a large dining area, carpet, and chandeliers gracing the hall. Elaborate dishes like oyster-stuffed turkeys and a pan roast made with wine and chili graced the menu.

This, at the time, meant that African-Americans couldn’t eat Downing’s restaurant, but few were aware of the double life he led. Downing’s basement was a key stop in the Underground Railroad, and as an abolitionist, he helped many that were escaping the South in search of freedom. He also led political efforts, funding schools for African-American children and leading the fight in desegregating New York’s trolley system.

Downing was so regarded in New York that when he passed away in 1866, the New York City Chamber of Commerce closed so that its members could attend his funeral.

Norbert Rillieux

The sugar industry in the United States has Norbert Rillieux to thank for allowing them to become so powerful. Were it not for his inventions, making sugar would still be a time-consuming and dangerous process.

Originally, the sugar refinement process, known as “The Jamaica Train,” was dangerous and expensive. Laborers (usually slaves) would transfer ladles of scalding hot sugar case juice between open boiling kettles, often resulting in scalding and terrible burns (anyone who’s worked with sugar knows how painful it can be). The result was a dark syrup that was molded into cones and dried before being sold.

From  1834-1843, Rillieux developed a system for refining and crystallizing sugar using a much safer and controlled method, allowing the United States to eventually dominate the sugar market. His process is still used today for freeze-drying food, pigments, and other food products.

George Washington Carver

Many people know George Washington Carver for the myriad of products he invented that utilized peanuts or sweet potatoes. As an agricultural scientist working in the South, he was also a man responsible for helping revitalize much of the economy in that region.

Working out of the Tuskegee Institute in Alabama, Carver was a teacher and a researcher from the late 1890s until his passing in 1943. An early pioneer of crop rotation, he encouraged farmers to plant peanuts in the soil after harvest to replenish lost nutrients, helping farmers improve not just their livelihoods, but their diets as well.

Carver’s research and work focused on revitalizing soil and maximizing plant production while keeping costs to a minimum. Outside of agriculture, he was a massive promoter of racial equality, and massive advocate of peanut oil as a potential treatment for polio. While never proven, the claim was widely circulated in media, and eventually turned into a “Peanuts for Polio” fundraising effort that helped raise money for medical care and benefits for children affected with the disease.

Following Carver’s passing, then-Senator Harry S. Truman sponsored legislation that would lead to the construction of the George Washington Carver National Monument. It was the first-ever national memorial to an African-American.

Illustrations in this piece provided by Sam Brosnan.

Categories
News Packaged Food

Japan Currently Suffering From Massive Potato Chip Shortage

Can you imagine a world devoid of potato chips? Terrifying, right? Well that terror is sweeping Japan now.

After last year’s summer brought a flurry of typhoons to Hokkaido, Japan’s main island for potato production, the crop was all but destroyed, according to FOX News. This has led to a nationwide shortage of the tuber and forced Calbee, Japan’s leading snack manufacturer, to halt the sale of 15 different types of potato chips altogether.

Calbee’s potato chips are apparently the most beloved snack food in the entire country, so the chip shortage has called for some desperate measures to be taken.

Shelves are being cleared in stores across the affected areas of the shortage, and a black market has begun to pop up for the snack. Some bags of potato chips are going for as much as 1500 yen, or around 14 US Dollars, on auction sites.

Calbee spokeswoman Rie Makuuchi told Bloomberg that the company was “doing everything we can to resume sales again,” but there’s some hurdles the company is having difficulty clearing. While Calbee is waiting for the summer’s potato crop to flourish and pleading potato farmers in the southern island of Kyushu to harvest early, they’re trying to import potatoes over from countries like the United States. Because Japan has a legal limit on the amount of foreign potatoes that can be used in manufacturing, however, Calbee won’t be able to use imports as a surefire solution to this problem.

If this year’s crop flourishes, then the potato chip shortage should be over soon. But until then, Japan is going to be reeling from missing out on their favorite snack unless they’re willing to pay a much higher price for their chips.

Categories
News Packaged Food Products

Potato Chip Company Sued For Filling Bags With Excessive Air

You know that depressing feeling you get when you open up a plump bag of chips, only to find that a bunch of air has deceived you as to how many chips are exactly in the bag?

While that’s normal for many chip manufacturers, one company may be filling theirs with more air than everybody else. At least, that’s what this lawsuit alleges.

The class-action lawsuit was filed in the Southern District of New York federal court. Plaintiffs Sameline Alce and Desiré Nugent allege that the chip company Wise Foods Inc. only fills their bags one third of the way with chips, with the rest being air.

Alce and Nugent claim that other chip manufacturers don’t fill their bags with nearly as much air, and even use smaller bags to fill larger volumes than what Wise Foods uses.

Technically, air can be put into chip bags thanks to FDA regulations that allow for its usage to protect the product inside. However, it appears that Wise Chips is still mislabeling its bags compared to other products by having so much air inside.

The internet has taken notice of Wise Chips as well, taking to Twitter with pictures showcasing their complaints.

It’s obvious that this isn’t just a problem that two people noticed and decided to sue for. The internet isn’t happy with this, either.

If Alce and Nugent win, Wise Foods would have to repackage their chips with much less air and face charges of up to $1,500 per violation. Considering how many chips they make, that’s a lot of money they’d have to cash out if they lose.

Categories
Hacks Packaged Food

This Is How Potato Chips Can Help Clear Your Throat

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OK, you can judge me for being a dork, but I was in school choirs for most of my life, singing my heart out like a Gleek.

Throughout my singing career, I looked for different ways to keep my throat healthy and clear before performances, and probably one of the most peculiar methods, was eating a bag of Ruffles, or classic Lay’s potato chips.

About 10 years ago, my older sister told me that she saw an interview with actor Antonio Banderas (I know, throwback) and he said when he was on Broadway, singing for the Tony-award winning musical “Nine,” he’d eat whole bags of Ruffles to clear his throat.

I initially thought it was a load of crap, but I started doing it myself, and swore it worked.

I did a quick Google search this afternoon, to see if this was actually a “thing,” and not some placebo method that I foolishly fell for thanks to Banderas’ hypnotizing good looks. Lo and behold, there’s a book called, “The Art of Voice Acting” where author James Alburger mentions this potato chip method, as the grease on the chips actually help clear out phlegm.

Sure this is great for people whose professions involve a lot of voice work, but if you’re feeling a little under the weather and want to get rid of that phlegm, now you know some potato chips might just do the job.

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Hit-Or-Miss Packaged Food Products Tastemade/Snapchat

9 Little-Known Potato Chip Facts Your Brain Can Snack On

Is there any snack more universally beloved than the potato chip? Although it comes in many different shapes, sizes, flavors and general varieties, the potato chip remains one of the most popular snacks in the world.

While we can all admit we’re potato chip lovers, how well do we really know the chip? Let’s find out.

Here are 8 bizarre facts about the potato chip to give you a little snacking perspective.

The potato chip was created by a complaining restaurant patron.

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Photo: Foodoppi

That’s right, the chip was born out of pure annoyance. In 1853, an unhappy customer at a restaurant in Saratoga Springs, New York, kept complaining to the chef that his French fries were not thin enough. After returning the fries several times to have them slimmed down, the irritated chef eventually sliced the potatoes so thin, they could not be eaten with a fork when fried.

Thus, by an act of trolling, the potato chip was born.

There are actually logical reasons for all that empty space in potato chip bags.

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Photo: Geekdom101

Ever open up what seems like a full bag of chips just to find there’s more space in the bag than chips? As annoying as that can be, chips are packaged that way for a few reasons. Most importantly, that excessive air in the bag in meant to act as a cushion so your precious chips don’t break during delivery. That empty space is also almost entirely nitrogen – the bag is pumped full it to maintain long-term freshness.

The world’s largest bag of chips weighed more than a small car.

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Photo: BBC

In 2013, Corkers Crisps set a new world record for the largest potato chip bag. The bag was 18 feet tall and contained 2,515 potato chips, all which were cooked in a single batch (as according to Guinness World Record guidelines) which was a 17-hour period.

What I want to know is where did they get an 18-foot chip bag…

There are “Cajun squirrel” flavored potato chips.

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Photo: This Blog Rules 

Wow I wish I was joking.

A British potato chip company came out with a “Cajun squirrel” flavored potato chip in 2009 as a part of a “Taste Test” contest, where consumers voted on the best new flavor. Shockingly enough, “Cajun squirrel” did have some fans. Meanwhile, I still can’t believe this happened in England of all places.

In Britain, potato chips are referred to as “crisps”.

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Photo: Amazon

So those “Cajun squirrel” chips are actually “Cajun squirrel” crisps, if you want to get technical.

In Britain, what we would call “French fries” in North America are referred to as “chips” or “chippies” in England. To avoid confusion, what we call “potato chips” are called “crisps” in the U.K. In other English-speaking parts of the world (like New Zealand and Australia) they distinguish fries and chips by calling them “hot chips” or “cold chips”.

Chips basically have an international language of their own.

Potato chips briefly went extinct during World War II.

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Photo: Pinterest

During the second World War, when food rations were common, chips were declared an “unessential food” and production was immediately stopped nationwide. Yeah, America didn’t like that so much. After many protests, chips were declared “essential” and produced again, proving once more that the U.S. has exactly the right priorities.

The earliest printed reference to the potato chip is in Charles Dickens’ novel, A Tale of Two Cities (1859).

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Photo: Quotesgram

In Dickens’ classic novel, A Tale of Two Cities, he gives the first known recorded shout-out to potato chips. He refers to the snack as, “husky chips of potatoes”, which is extremely literal and doesn’t really do our glorious chips justice. Hey, any publicity is good publicity.

William E. Lee spent six years studying the crunchiness of chips.
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Photo: Darden

Professor Lee, a chemical and biomedical engineering professor at the University of South Florida in Tampa, has a patent in chip technology… potato chip technology, that is. For six years, Lee studied the sensory attributes of salty snacks, namely the chip, and has become a leader in the field of crunchiness.

Now, when snack companies want to compare their snack’s crunch to a competitors’ snack, they call Lee. What a boss job.

A potato was bred to create the “perfect chip.” 

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Photo: Tested

The USDA and Penn State University teamed up in the late 1960s to breed a potato that would make the perfect potato chips. This potato, called the Lenape potato, was a huge success when first tested. However, it was discovered that the potato cultivar also produced an unnaturally high amount of a natural toxic substance called solanine.

While present in all potatoes in low, ineffective amounts, the Lenape potato had over TRIPLE the amount of solanine a normal potato has – enough to make anyone who initially tasted these chips nauseous. The potato was quickly discontinued afterwards, so we may never know what the “perfect potato chip” would have tasted like.

Categories
Cravings

How To Magically Make Potato Chips In The Microwave

Regular potato chips just not doing it for you lately? Give your taste buds a break from basic spuds and make your own. Even better, you can easily prepare them in a microwave!

Grab a potato (or potatoes) of any size, wash, and slice up into extremely thin slices over a cutting board–the thinner the chip, the better it will cook. After you’ve chopped up the entirety of the potato, pat down the slices with a napkin or paper towel until they’re no longer damp. Then, toss them all onto a microwave-safe dish.

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To spice things up, sprinkle seasoning, salt, or perhaps, seasoned salt, over the chips before popping the plate into the microwave for three to five minutes. You also avoid the entire frying portion typically involved with creating crunchy chips (yes, they get crunchy in the microwave!).

See? Those extra few minutes of you not being a couch potato will leave both you and tummy satisfied.

Categories
Products

Scottish Haggis and Whiskey Chips Are Real. We’re Freaking Out

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Welp, it was bound to happen. And frankly, we say it’s about time. The public of Scotland has risen up to declare that they too want to determine their chips’ flavors, a la Lay’s competition. In response, Mackies, a five year old chip company, has released two new and decidedly Scottish flavors of chips: Scotch Whisky and Haggis, and Venison & Cranberry.

The hope is that the chip flavors will extend beyond Scotland and into international markets in Canada, Singapore, Malaysia, and Indonesia, due to the global love affair with whiskey. But let’s not forget the haggis either, because that’s the important part that we are not willing to forget so easily.

For those of you unfamiliar with haggis, it’s a traditional Scottish dish of lamb lung and heart stuffed into a sheep’s stomach. Add to that good old Scottish whiskey and you have what we’re assuming is a delicious combination, to Scotts at least. For the rest of the world, getting around the flavors of offal and organs might be a little too much to take, even despite their appetizing chip-shaped container. Still, whiskey in a chip might be too tempting to not give at least one a try.

Would you give these chips a taste? What do you imagine their reception will be when they arrive in the States? Let us know below!

H/T + PicThx Grubstreet

Categories
Features

We Compare Lay’s Cappuccino Flavor & More to The Real Thing

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Lay’s recently announced four new test flavors for their Do Us a Flavor campaign appearing on shelves at the end of the month. Some may remember that they launched a similar campaign last year, between Sriracha, Chicken and Waffles and Cheesy Garlic Bread. While it’s been heavily debated, Cheese Garlic Bread came across as the winner (I was rooting for Chicken and Waffles). Now it looks like Lay’s is at it again, this time with three four new flavors: Mango Salsa, Wasabi Ginger, Bacon Mac & Cheese and Cappuccino.

The flavors were chosen through a meticulous process of elimination and popularity before making it to the development phases. So definitely not out of a hat, people. The winner will receive either $1 million or one percent of their winning flavors sales, depending on whichever is higher. Solid, right?

We were sent a bag of each to the FOODBEAST office. The staff tried each flavor and rated each of them.

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Mango Salsa

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Created by Julia Stanley-Metz who recognizes her husband Rick for the inspiration — a man who loves to cook with exotic flavors and ingredients. Julia also makes fresh mango salsa for her family straight from the garden, which brought upon the Mango Salsa chip. Mango Salsa sounded awesome awesome in my head, but I was pretty not into it. Maybe because I associate Mango’s with sweet and juicy.

Marc:

TOO WEIRD. It’s like mango juice in chip form, not about that life.

Elie:

Not a fan of the taste, but I can respect them trying it.

Charisma:

WHY.

Dominique:

It tastes like someone just squeezed mango juice over it. Doesn’t blend at all.

RATING: 4/10

NOTES: The chips tastes both like mangos and salsa. Just not as compatible as an actual salsa.

__________

Cappuccino

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Suggested by Chad Scott, currently working on his Ph.D., the Cappuccino flavor was inspired by his local barista’s concoctions. The Cappuccino chip starts off pretty sweet with a clash of saltiness to it. Really liked this. Was prepared for an over seasoned chip with tons of coffee flavor that would make me choke. Instead, I was pretty surprised with how nicely the sweet and salt balance worked. Though a little too much on the sweet side.

Marc:

More of a dessert chip, possible best with vanilla bean ice cream.

Elie:

I’m kind of down. One of those chips that works in taste, but keeps getting cock-blocked by your mind trying to figure out what’s going on.

Charisma:

Tasted like a thin churro then when the aftertaste hits, it’s all south.

Dominique:

Okay as long as you remind yourself it’s a dessert chip.

RATING: 8/10

NOTES: Cappuccino tastes pretty close. Provided you enjoy your cappuccinos a little on the sweet side.

 __________

Bacon Mac & Cheese

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Full-time Ohio firefighter matt Allen makes “family meals” at the firehouse whenever there’s training. His signature dish is bacon mac and cheese, which was a huge hit among his fellow fighters of fire. I delight in bacon as much as the next guy, maybe not Marc, but I just wasn’t into this. That being said, this will probably be America’s #1 choice. Just wait.

Marc:

I could not care less about bacon anything anymore. Sorry.

Elie:

This one was actually the most palatable of the bunch, but it’s such a drowned and uninspired flavor combo I had to put it at the bottom of the list.

Charisma:

So much potential but ended up with a lackluster flavor. I hate to say it but, “Needs more bacon.”

Dominique:

Just tastes like a cheese chip. Needs moar bacon.

RATING: 6/10

NOTES: Tastes more like cheese powder that has a bacon flavor. Not nearly as close to real bacon mac and cheese.

__________

Wasabi Ginger

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Created by Meneko Spigner McBeth, who loved sushi since she was a little girl learning how to make handmade rolls from her grandmother. Her taste for spicy foods like wasabi inspired the Wasabi Ginger flavor. I don’t throw the world “Love” around too much, but yeah. Tasted exactly how it sounded and maybe even a little better. Definitely ate a few more than I should have.

Marc:

This makes the most sense to me.

Elie:

Functionally the best chip of the four. I could eat an entire bag, surprised this hasn’t been created before.

Charisma:

Mouth Heaven.

Dominique:

If this doesn’t get chosen, I’m moving out of the US.

RATING: 10/10

NOTES: Tastes like the best parts of both wasabi and ginger. Though not too heavy on the wasabi side, but enough to give you a taste.

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So there you have it. Wasabi Ginger is the FOODBEAST staff’s #1 pick. Keep an eye out for all four Lay’s Do Us a Flavor contenders when they hit shelves July 28.