It's a battle of the brands! Korea's favorite, Pepero, versus Glico's Taiwanese Pocky! (This box came from Taiwan, not Japan, so it could differ slightly from the typical Japanese Pocky, so I wanted to be sure I pointed that out before we got started.)
Not only is this a handy way to get through two products from my stash at the same time, but it'll be interesting to see the difference between these two popular chocolate-coated snacks sticks. They look similar, and they're the same flavor, but trust me, they're very different. Which brand shall be victorious?
I'll be comparing them in three rounds, packaging, taste, and value for your money. Best out of three, wins!
Pocky is very popular and it's known for it's cute, but functional, packaging with adorable designs and appealing imagery. When you compare this box to other flavors I've reviewed it may not be as flashy or fancy, but it's still really appealing and it gets the job done.
On the other hand, the Pepero box is a bit taller, features similar, but more mature looking food imagery, and it has a gorgeous matte finish that photographs like a dream. It's a bit plain and less fun looking than the Pocky box, but I could see this layout appealing to an older audience, kind of like Lindt chocolate products compared to the more kid-friendly Hershey's. Pepero's design downfall is their typefaces. All of the text on the Pepero box looks lazy, like an afterthought, and it ultimately makes the brand looks like a Pocky knock-off, but you know what? I like the more modern layout and overall mature design, so round one goes to Pepero.
Inside each box are plastic pouches to keep the products safe and fresh, and once you open them up you can see that these two snacks are very different.
The Pepero biscuit is plain/vanilla colored and it's thicker, nearly twice the size of the Pocky. Plus the coating has large cookie crumbles. They smell Really buttery and sweet, like artificial vanilla extract but they taste...really plain? The biscuit has a satisfying snap, and it tastes like a cross between buttery Ritz crackers and movie theater popcorn, while the coating tastes sweet with a hint of chocolate cookie. This looked way more flavor-packed than it tastes. I barely taste any cream and the cookie part is easily overwhelmed by the buttery biscuit base. It's okay, but with all those cookie bits I was expecting a lot more.
By comparison, the Pocky is much thinner and it has itty bity cookie crumbs mixed into the white chocolate coating. I think the biscuit stick for this flavor is meant to be chocolate, because it's much darker than normal, but it doesn't taste very different from a normal vanilla-based Pocky biscuit. Maybe a little wheat-like if anything, but it's not a bold chocolate flavor by any means. It doesn't smell like much, but thankfully this coating is a lot more flavorful. It's a little waxy, but it tastes milky, creamy, and overall it's really reminiscent of yogurt covered raisins. Only chocolate cookie flavored. Not fruity. It's not perfect, but it's a lot more like traditional cookies and cream flavoring than what Pepero has going on, so this round goes to Pocky!
Third Round: Value
So far we're tied, one's prettier, while the other has better flavoring, so which is better for your wallet? Both boxes cost me the exact same price in the store, but as far as your bang for you buck is concerned, Pocky wins by a landslide!
The Pepero box might be bigger, but it has way less product. You only get 1.13oz in their box while Pocky gives you a hefty 2.47oz, and as a result you get more than twice as many biscuit sticks for your money, plus the Pocky tastes better.
Sorry Pepero, you may be Korea's favorite, but Pocky is the clear winner here. Have any of you tried both brands? If so, which do you prefer?