Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Sweet and Salty Cinnamon Sugar Sensation

Cinnamon Pretzel Pop-Tarts  - Shop Rite
Safe to say it has been a ROUGH couple of months. I am slowly putting my life back together and one of the pieces of that puzzle is getting back into writing reviews. Right now I am aiming for posting on Tuesdays and Thursdays with a few YouTube videos when I can. Let's see how this goes!
As always, I have a pretty decent backlog to work through, which is good because with all this COVID stuff I am trying to stay house-bound as much as possible, so let's kick things off with a Pop-Tart! 
I got these at Shop Rite, but now-a-days you can find them crazy cheap at Ollie's Bargain Outlets. These came in two flavors, cinnamon, and chocolate. I opted for the cinnamon version since that is my go-to mall-pretzel of choice. (And a hot chocolate-filled pretzel Pop-Tart didn't sound that appealing to me.)  
At first I thought Auntie Anne's teamed up with Pop-Tarts for these new releases, but upon further inspection, it looks like Pop-Tarts just ripped off the Auntie Anne's color scheme. The box art is a pretty shameless re-creation of the Auntie Anne's branding, and as far as I am aware, there are no other "mall pretzel" companies out there, are there? Part of me is a little annoyed that they went this far without striking some kind of deal, but the packaging is rather nice, and it definitely got my attention. 
Un-toasted, these are a slightly saltier take on the classic Brown Sugar Cinnamon Pop-Tart. The pretzel flavoring is best described as a "whisper," a weird term for food, but it really sums up the barely-there experience. It's as-if you left a bowl of Rold Gold pretzels out for so long that they became soft and flexible, and added them to Pop-Tart's already notoriously dry pie-crust. If you like Brown Sugar Cinnamon, these are a slightly sadder version. Let's hope toasting it changes things drastically. 

I can't remember the last time toasting a Pop-Tart caused this much of a transformation! 
The crust is actually pie-crust-like! Normally I find the edges/crust of a Pop-Tart to be flour-y and dry in both it's un-toasted and toasted forms, but this is almost like a real flakey pie crust! I'm impressed. As far as flavoring, the flavor of the crust is definitely improved, it's buttery, flakey, and damn near homemade-in quality, and once you hit the sweet filling, you do get a decent take on a buttery, sugary, Auntie Anne's cinnamon pretzel. It's not perfect, due to the crust-to-filling ratio it's still fairly dry, but it is far more accurate and delicious than I expected. 
If you're craving a mall pretzel, and don't want to brave the malls or DIY your own, this is a fairly decent alternative! If any of you do pick this up, be sure to do yourself a favor and only eat them toasted. 
While I am terribly impressed by this toaster pastry, I am not sure if I would buy this particular flavor again. In my thirties I'm just not eating Pop-Tarts as often as I used to, and if I am craving something pretzel-y, that isn't a real pretzel, I much prefer Lost Bread Co's award winning Pretzel Shortbread. (It's seriously mind blowing you guys!) Still, Kudos to Pop-Tarts for this impressive flavor, and if I could give one bit of advice, make this the default crust on ALL your flavors. It's so much more pie-like!

Fans of these would also like: Pretzel Pocket Sandwiches, American Globs, or THESE homemade Soft Pretzels 
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