Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Chocolate Strawberry Oreos!

Oreo is like the flavor nymphomaniacs of the cookie world. You went in, gave it your all, and all of a sudden, Oreo peeks her head back into the room, grabs you by the mouth genitals and demands more!

Now I'm not sure what mouth genitals are, but whatever, we're a food blog, not a nerd science blog for dweebs. Let me tell you if you should spend your money on the newest offering from the team that has brought you such cookie greats like:

(I know we've reviewed more but that's all I could lazily dig up with the tags)

First off, and I'll never, EVER, let this go. Oreo has ditched the old WAY TOO MUCH packaging, to a less full, OH THIS IS GONE IN A DAY packaging. I'll always harp on this, but after years of the new direction, I don't think we're getting the old cookie count back.

You rip open one of these tiny, tiny, TINY, cookie packages, and the room automatically fills with a strong strawberry scent. We all know what the cookie part of the Oreo tastes like, that familiar chocolate helicarrier for various creme's. This creme?

DELICIOUS! It's strong, mouth filling strawberry flavor has all the hallmarks of a great cookie. Sweet and strawberry smooth. The rich creme washes over your tongue and the cookie crunching system delivers flavor to your entire mouth with it's ingenious cookie missile delivery bombardment. 

Since we're not a science blog for dickheads, but a bastion of information and freedom for the internet, we decided to investigate into this cookie further. We took our eye genitals and smeared them across this strawberry/choco creme landscape to see what we could discover. What made these so good? I took out the middle, the seemingly "strawberry" flavor globule, and tried that on it's own. TASTELESS. I attacked the rest of the chocolate colored cream and all I could taste was that same chocolate strawberry cream that made this cookie so delicious.

It seems Oreo has decided to give us the illusion of a strawberry center, and just packed their food science into only two thirds of this cookie. Now, would filling the entire cookie with that flavor have been too much? Are we to trust Oreo and let them decide how much flavor we want? I'm not sure, but so far, Oreo has delivered unto me more happy afternoons than I've had Christmas's mornings. I'm going to give them the benefit of the doubt on this one.

I give Chocolate Strawberry Oreo's a B+
Now I know, you're asking yourself with such a glowing review, why the lower grade?
Oreo has set the bar so high, they really need to do something to give us something absolutely crazy. A lot like Apple, they need to get to innovating, and give us something that really transcends the mouth pleasure scale. I know you have it in you Oreo, we've been here many times....

Review by Josh

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The 2017 UPDATE you've been waiting for!

Hey Hey fellow fat guys and gals! I'm sure you're all wondering where it is we've been the past few eh? You'd figure running a highly successful food blog read by over a million people would be super easy to keep up with. But the truth is, the FGFB media empire is vast, and the time and dedication it takes to run a media megaconglomerate taxes even the most steadfast of food bloggery souls.

So after our brief hiatus, I wanted to inform you that Fat guy Food Blog is back, and ready to make you piss your ever tightening sweatpants in a regular manner. Thanks for your dedication, and we're looking to make 2017 be just as amazing as every other year here at FGFB HQ. As always, feel free to hit us up on our email, or any of our social media channels if you find want to share anything delicious or hilarious with your favorite muscle bound food bloggers.

-Josh & FGFB

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Thursday, October 13, 2016

Caramel Apple Oatmeal Creme Pies!

Ladies and Gentlemen, Fall has arrived! If the leaves changing colors and the horrid heat of the summer departing weren't enough to clue you in, perhaps the large amount of Pumpkin flavored items on the shelves at your local supermarket clued you in. It seems like every major brand has a pumpkin or pumpkin spice item. Along comes Little Debbie to shake things up. Do they have pumpkin flavored stuff? You bet. But the Queen of Snack Cakes knows that Fall isn't just about pumpkin. So when I saw these new Caramel Apple Oatmeal Creme Pies, I knew I had to try them. Carmel Apples bring forth memories of going to the fairs in the fall! Gorging on delicious foods and playing games of chance to win cheap prizes. Taking a spin on a ride that's been taken apart and reassembled a hundred times by any number of haggard carnies. Caramel apples are always there, like a necessary prop in the background of every fair and carnival. I'm not sure anyone after 1952 has ever liked caramel apples. They are always there but I never see anyone buy them. They are a treat from a bygone era, but the idea of them still gets me excited!

Colorful Fall Leaves on the box and everything!
Let's get one thing clear before we go any further. I'm not sure when it happened, but suddenly I realized a while back that Little Debbie is THE pastry company these days. In my younger days I would have said it was Hostess, but let's face it, they fell off and they fell off hard. While they seem like they are doing well, they will never take the crown back from Little Debbie. Name any one item you like from another snack cake company and I can name you a dozen things Little Debbie does that are better. She now rules the snack cake aisle with an Iron Fist. Like I said back in the Milky Way Brownie post, All hail the Queen of Snack Cakes. Mother of Pastries, Breaker of Diets. If you doubt it, just peer into her icy, dark blue eyes.

All hail the queen!
Why am I kissing her ass so much before starting this review? Because she deserves it! She puts out the Oatmeal Creme Pie. END OF STORY. SHUT THE DAMN BOOK! They are one of the greatest things ever thought up by a human brain. So soft and delicious. The other versions of them are pretty great too! Fudge Rounds, and even the Peanut Butter Cookie creme pies are excellent. So going into these Caramel Apple ones I was pretty excited, and I have to say, I wasn't let down.

Once freed from it's plastic film, you see that it's the same tiny size as the regular OCP. Big difference here though is that it smells like someone just cracked open a jug of fresh apple cider right under my nose. Not only that, but I spy more oats than usual in the cookie!

It was tough to pull the hood back on this hot rod due to how chewy the cookie was. Just like you'd expect. But once inside you can see that there's what appears to be some nice apple butter-esque goo, and a different shade of the classic Oatmeal Creme Pie "creme." As I suspected, this is where the Caramel flavor is coming from. Apple goo plus caramel creme between two thin, chewy oatmeal cookies. Ripped open like this, it doesn't look like much, but together? Together it's the fall treat you never knew you wanted.

In the end I have to say that these are a welcome change to the limited edition fall item. Everyone does Pumpkin Spice! Josh just reviewed THREE PUMPKIN SPICE CEREALS! I say the more apple the better.  These are a great start. I can happily say that if they pop up next year I will 100% scoop them up and enjoy them with a nice cup of mulled cider.  They are an awesome spin on a classic, fan favorite pastry item from the company currently on top, Little Debbie.

I give Caramel Apple Oatmeal Creme Pies an A-! Would have been a plus if they were just a little bit bigger!

PS- Twinkie the Kid, if I were you, I would wipe that smile off your face and make yourself scarce. Before the Queen realizes just how creepy you are and green lights your ass!

Review by Rich, resides in New Hampshire and likes to boast that he's eaten more apple cider donuts than everyone reading this review combined. Think you've got him beat? NOPE.

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Monday, October 10, 2016

Pumpkin Spice Er'Thang: Cheerios, Special K, and Frosted Mini Wheats

I walked into my local Market Basket, and out of the corner of my eye, I caught a little something new.

Now what in the good Christ is Cheerios doing messing with pumpkin spice? I wasn't sure, but I was damn sure this food blogger was going to find out. Now you'd think that'd be enough, but by the time my short little legs were carrying my bebopping, whistling face out the front door, I had discovered that not only was Cheerios not alone, they had roped in some heavy hitters to join in the pumkin spice craze.

 SO me and the GF decided to forgo a real dinner, and go through and pour a bowl of each!

First up, I decided to go with a cereal I remember liking quite a bit when I was going through that 20 something cereal phase. Hey sometimes you've got to try something other than Reeses Puffs.

These things were pretty much what you'd expect. That hint of pumpkin, wrapped up with a thin frosting taste, and depending on how long you let it sit in the cereal, a solid crunch, or a mouthful of wet wiggly wheat strands. I think what held this together so well was the "frost", that sugary cool blast of what MIGHT rest somewhere in the marshmallow family.

As a man who doesn't really like ginger anything (besides ale) I was bummed when I read that it was a main component of this cereal. Special K is never that good unless it's overloaded with freeze dried fruit!

Looks like chunks of cardboard, but in all actuality, this cereal was pretty damn good. As a dry option, it didn't really work. What was needed for this to sing, was all of the elements working together. There was that nice familiar chemical concoction that is whatever pumpkin spice is, and then within that, the little cinnamon cluster blasts really helped make the overall flavor of this cereal taste decent.

Last on the list, Cheerios.

I know most people either love or hate Cheerios.  I've always enjoyed a bowl or two of the breakfast classic, but this time, this time was very different.

Tasting these dry is like eating those packing peanuts that you get that are "edible". And you only ever eat those on a dare, or if you never have, you pop them in your mouth, waiting for them to be absolutely disgusting, and they aren't, but don't taste good either.

Now the real test, in milk, these were absolutely horrid. They taste like a blander Cheerio covered in pepper, rolled in dirt. There is only one person on the planet that would think these are good.

  These are the worst Cheerios I've ever consumed. The only time they've altered Cheerios, and it's been edible, is when they decided to make honey-nut. Every other iteration of the Cheerio is like a wretched lesson they are trying to teach children by making the most foul tasting cereal they can. A cruel joke on children around the globe.

Out of the three, I'd have to say the Pumkin Spice Frosted Mini Wheats were the star of the new line of fad cereals this fall, with a solid runner up trophy going to Special K. This year, pumpkin spice came out so hard it has effectively twisted it's chassis off the line. 

I don't know where this is going to go, but hopefully we can trim some of the fat, and let horrible things like pumpkin spice Cheerios fall down to cereal hell where Paul Walker can enjoy their bland, peppery flavor for eternity.

Pumpkin Spice Frosted Mini Wheats: B
Pumpkin Spice Special K: C
Pumpkin Spice Cheerios: a HARD F.

Review by Josh

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Wednesday, September 28, 2016

The Fat Cat Food Blog?

I've been wanting to review this place since the first time I went there. Nestled in a somewhat industrial neighborhood of Quincy, MA, I want to call this place a "hidden gem", but going during lunch or dinner times, the struggle to find a seat would say otherwise. From the outside, it looks like your typical pub/restaurant. Despite the unique sign, the inside is very downplayed, and not exactly noteworthy. That's where the food/service come in. Both times i've been, I've always chosen to sit at the bar, but I will say that the service was great, and they were very accommodating: this time around, during casual conversation I mentioned "I haven't had my coffee today..." and the bartendress put on a fresh pot and brought me a mug. It's the little things.

I had been here once before, and gotten the Mac and Cheese, (oh... we'll get to that...) so I wanted to try things I hadn't yet... everything sounded so good. I started with an order of hand-cut fries, which in itself was a struggle... they have a handful of seasoning and dip choices (curry, cajun, etc). I went with garlic parmesan. Honestly, the garlic and parmesan didn't add anything for me, but the fries were so damn good, they didn't take anything away either. So good, I always carry a few in my pocket nowadays in case I need a "toothpick" with flavor.

After asking for a recommendation, I heard the wings were good. This is where I begin to kick myself. Even for a fat slob, I'm pretty picky. I do like hot wings, but I like flavor too, so I'm not into any of those "wing challenges" where you need a gas mask and to dip your eyes in milk every 5 seconds just to eat them. The waitress offered to bring me half and half (5 "hot" wings and 5 "XXX Hot" wings). The XXX hot is made with a spicy vodka and pickled pepper base (if I remember correctly... she showed me the jar on the shelf, looking like a mad scientist's experiment) so I got a little intimidated. But you know, I don't mind the occasional wing that evokes tears and a runny nose... it's cleansing.

The darker brown wings on the left are the XXX Hot, and the orangey ones on the right are the "hot" wings. I wish I had gotten all XXX Hot. There was nothing wrong with the hot wings, but they were your typical wing sauce and didn't stand out. EXCEPT, these wings in general were great. One thing I absolutely hate is when you get wings and it's like biting into your grandma's arm flab. These wings, regardless of sauce, were crispy on the outside, to me: perfection. The XXX sauce had a good amount of heat, so I sipped my drink after each wing, but they were bursting with flavor and truly unique. They almost tasted as if they had a rub as well as a sauce. I also appreciated that these wings were obviously sauced, but not swimming in it, so I didn't feel like I needed a bath after.

Everything I've had at The Fat Cat has not only been "good" it's been special in it's own way. I'm no sucker, so after we finished our food and had a few more drinks at the bar, I put in a to-go order before we left. I mean, I'm going to need to eat again eventually, I might as well make sure it's damn good food! I got their "Philly" (which is essentially a Steak & Cheese, but you can get it with chicken or something else instead, I forget). I went traditional, sans mushrooms because well, mushrooms are gross. With the Cheesesteak, they threw in a buttload of fries (I declined any seasonings or dips). I forgot to get a picture of this when I heated it up several hours later for dinner. But take my word for it. Good meat, good bread, good flavor. Even reheated several hours later. (If you're going to do this, wrap the sub in foil, put on a pan with the fries and bake at 400 degrees for 10-15mins) it's still going to be better than any of the sub shops near you, I guarantee it.

I think this is the ultimate compliment you can give any restaurant: if their food is as good reheated the next day, you've struck gold. In the above picture, you see The Fat Cat's signature Macaroni and Cheese. A day later, and microwaved, it is still creamy and gooey and mouthwatering. I don't care how good your mama is at cooking, she can't touch this mac. I personally make a damn delicious homemade mac, spending years perfecting the creamy sauce. Even I can't deny this is different. The key to a good mac cheese sauce is variety. You have to combine cheeses. The Fat Cat uses at least 3 or 4, one of which is blue cheese. This adds a tanginess to the flavor unparalleled. They also have tomatoes in the recipe, which I didn't think I'd like, but you know what, I did... so it's basically healthy with the vegetables added. It's a creamy, gooey, cheesy salad! Oh and I almost forgot, you can get the mac and cheese with meats, such as chicken or HOT DOGS. Now I didn't do this myself, but I thought that was a pretty cool nostalgia for a place with some high end food, playing to the kid in us all.

I also can't go without mentioning the portion sizes. The mac in that picture is only HALF of the order! Supposing I can exercise a small amount of willpower, the other half will come to work with me tomorrow. I will weep when it's all gone.

Honorable Mention:
I'm not huge into seafood, but I did try some mussels that my friend ordered (look at that massive bowl for $10 bucks!). She chose the mussels in the Fat Cat tomato sauce (they have another sauce, but I forget what it is... clearly I do my research). They were pretty good if you like that sort of thing. I won't condescend to you folks as if I eat enough mussels to critique these vs others I've had (I go years in between mussels), but good flavor and I kept 'em down... so thumbs up? Also, barely pictured, Fat Cat "Haystacks" which are their onion strings, which are also divine.

Review by Dave James, who lives in Cambridge, MA and possibly died of heart disease immediately after writing this....

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Saturday, September 24, 2016

Mainely Burgers in Central Sq, Cambridge MA!

Dozens, possibly hundreds of us working in or around Cambridge’s Central Square recently bid a bittersweet farewell to a mostly unknown joint called Four Burgers. The aptly named restaurant featured four types of burgers: turkey, salmon, black bean, and grass-fed beef. While the food was of great quality, it was a bit overpriced- a typical lunch time order of rosemary chips (which were, admittedly, nothing short of fantastic), a double cheeseburger, and one soda cost a dime under $15 without tax, and they never advertised any specials to my knowledge. So with a shrug, we watched them shutter their doors.

It wasn’t long before the murmurs and whispers of a new burger joint rose above the collective din of grumbling office worker tummies. A co-worker came to me asking if I had heard of the popular food truck from Scarborough, Maine, that was going to permanently park its business a few streets over. When I learned the name, the grumble didn’t come from my stomach.

The “Mainely Whatever” thing. Can that stop and go away forever please? It might coax a chuckle from a tourist the FIRST time, but as someone who lived in Maine for five years, this bit gets old fast. Sadly, just like so maine-y things in this region of New England, it’s time for change. But hey, then again, I’m a city slicker now- maybe I just can't wrap my head around the way life should be. 

this is in central square?

At first glance, MAINELY BURGERS felt suspiciously like a rebrand of Four Burgers, but I succepted to the ruse after taking in the restaurant’s wood-panel-everything décor, which was strangely comforting- like the square womb of a Tolkien Ent. There’s also a nice mural of the food truck driving from Portland to Central. All in all, the simple and polished atmosphere is a welcome juxtaposition to the Square. 

Two items on the list quickly caught my eye. The first, THE BEAST. On a list of menu items like the MB CLASSIC, THE SHROOM & SWISS, and THE ARRIBA!, this one seemed like the only choice for a Fat Guy Food Blogger. Also, the name reminded me of my favorite autumn themed protagonist- THE BEAST from Over The Garden Wall. Look it up and thank me later! 

However, the second and plainly named item I ordered… WILL SHOCK YOU! #clickbait

First thing’s first, THE BEAST. A burger with BBQ sauce, sautéed onions, cheddar cheese, pickles… and the much needed ingredient to make it seem substantial, bacon.

The most important thing, as I learned from reading many a FGFB post before I joined in, is the preparation of the only supplemental ingredient that would justify its name. This ingredient is, of course, the bacon, which was expertly cooked in my meal on at least two different occasions. The combo of crispy and chewy is surely enough to blow any so-called connoisseur of this sweat meat treat right into the middle of Mass Ave, to be quickly run down by an indifferent bus driver.

Everything else in the Beast fulfilled its expected it role in a satisfactory manner except for the sparing use of BBQ sauce. This is the second review in a row I've had to critique lacking condiments, but if there's no sauce on the table or at least packets in the bag, it's totally justified.

Which leaves the unexpected usurper to the Mainely Burgers claim o’ fame- grab something stable- BRUSSEL SPROUTS.

That’s right haters! Leave your ill-conceived notions in the 90’s cartoons your feeble belief system was conceived in! Doug Funnie and I will look upon your helpless husks and cackle! YOUR WRAITHS ARE DOOMED TO HAUNT A CROOKED PAST FOR ALL ETENTINTY, NEVER TO SEE THE FRUITS OF TRUTH TO BE BORN PAST THE INCEPTION OF YOUR WICKEDNESS!

Much like the Loch Ness, aliens, and Bigfoot (sorry Josh), it’s time to lay this urban legend to rest because FINALLY and WE NOW HAVE IRREFUTABLE PROOF (gotcha there tho) that brussel sprouts, when prepared CORRECTLY, are A TOP TIER AND FGFB NOTEWORTHY VEGETABLE. Suck it kale! You've had your day, now go back to whatever San Francisco vegan bistro and weed dispensary you crawled out of. 

This gluten-free breadwinner (I assume? Who knows anymore) commands the delicious flavors of garlic, brown sugar, and one unseeingly yet unmistakable overpowering other. The distinct taste of soy sauce adds the necessary salinity to deem this veggie snack-worthy, and yet I feel it was too heavy-handed, and distracted too much from the distinct brussel sprout flavor that distinguishes this snack from any other lightly-fried green vegetable. That being said, these were absolutely delicious, and I look forward to having them within walking distance on a lazy-afternoon workday then I do a hundred cheeseburgers.

The Beast: B-

While this was surely a well-crafted sandwich, it didn’t do enough to satisfy the savage urges one naturally feels when indulging upon a good-sized cow-puck. Two patties are an absolute must, which takes money from my wallet and points from my grade. However, all the usual flavor superstars come together to save the day, which left me with enough satisfaction to ward off buyer’s remorse.

Brussel Sprouts: A
Baby cabbages overshadowing meat is no small feat. This one truly earned the A.

Despite the slightly underwhelming burger, I’ll be headed to Mainely again soon. There’s a few other eye-catching items on their menu I’m keen to try- the Coop burger, their “truckmade” chips (we're supposed to believe a truck is driving these down daily?), and… here's another odd one- fried cauliflower?! Hey, like I said, they nailed the sprouts. Might as well see if they can glamour up another healthy food. My doctors would be so proud of me if I told them I ate two vegetables in the same week! 

Review by sl33zy

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Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Remembering Wonka with British Candy

Discover a world of pure imagination. After the sad passing of Gene Wilder, most of us had a moment remembering our favorite scenes from Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory. I was no exception. Tim Burton can suck my EverlastingGobstopper, there was only ONE WONKA. Now it's true, I'm probably the worst of the Fat Guys for trying out new snack treats on the market. But my friends took me to an Irish store, which had two huge aisles of British candy and other treats... and I'm here to say: The Candyman Can!

Let's get the easy ones out of the way. Yorkie and the Dairymilk Bars were straight up chocolate bars. UK chocolate is just better. I love Hershey and wouldn't dare badmouth them. But even as a lad, I loved going to Grandma's house, because she had the Cadbury... and that was always special. Now the Cadbury Shorties are shortbread cookies with one side painted in chocolate. They're decent but not as good as I'd hoped. (If you're familiar with UK treats, McVittie's are better).

But the Cadbury shortcake SNACK! is exactly what I was looking for. It's somewhat similar to Keebler Fudge Grahams, without the graham flavor... ish. I mean, I know these were just "shortcake" but they had more flavor than just butter cookie with chocolate... and oh that Cadbury chocolate. Mmm...

The Double Decker is described as "milk chocolate with a soft nougat and a crispy cereal bottom" so I wasn't sure what exactly cereal they meant. It's similar to a milky way bar but with rice crispies and more chocolate. It definitely was nice, but won't be my go-to the next time I stock up.

For a palette cleanser, I had to try something fruity...

If you've ever wanted sour patch kids without the sour, then Jelly Tots are for you. Sugary and chewy, these tasty little treats can be crammed down your candy-hole by the fist full. No wonder the British are known for bad teeth... remember to brush, because these little suckers will about as far from your teeth as Mike TV is from his cowboy costume.

And last, but oh certainly not least, the star of my little shopping trip to the candy store...

Cadbury Choc Chip Cookies... lord help me.

There is nothing to say. Do you still need convincing? REALLY? They are exactly what you think they are. They are Chips Ahoy cookies with GODDAMN CADBURY CHOCOLATE CHIPS exploding through them. They are magic. No store bought cookie will stand up to these, no chocolate chip ones anyway. Pepperidge Farm? Put out to pasture. Chips Ahoy? Sunk. My only complaint? There's only 12 cookies per package. Three round bays, each with a stack of 4 cookies. So really, I just wish I had bought a few of these cookies because sadly over the course of a couple days, they left my life as whimsically as they entered it.

If you think that any chocolate treats, cookies, candies, whatever beat out the Cadbury crew... I have only one thing left to say:

RIP Gene Wilder... you will never be forgotten, you will be celebrated.

Review by David James, who died doing what he loved, drinking from a chocolate river.

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