Sunday 26 March 2023

M&S Pepperoni Pizza Ridge Cut Crisps

It should come as no surprise that I like British crisps as, uh, I set up British Crisps to discuss the world of British crisps. But it's not just crisps which I enjoy munching on, I also adore pizza. Therefore, I was cock-a-hoop to stumble across these M&S Pepperoni Pizza Ridge Cut Crisps. The combination of a crunchy fried potato snack alongside the deliciousness of a pizza dripping in calories is the kind of thing that dreams are made of. So, without hesitating, I paid the entrance fee and dove straight in.

POW! goes the packet with it's bold black and red design, punctuated by a tower of crispy delights perfectly positioned on the left. However, upon closer inspection, I realised the eye-catching backdrop is actually a series of hexagons. This has the effect of mimicking a giant football which has been unstitched, and its individual panels laid flat. What exactly does this have to do with pizza? Did it indicate the crisps would have a kick? Or, most likely, was I paying far too much attention? Whatever the reason, it's a packet which catches the attention, so it's mission accomplished by the guys and gals at M&S.

Given the long list of ingredients on the back of the packet - incidentally, the 135g bag is available for £1.70 - you would expect you're in for a flavourful experience. And you are, but it's a little muddled. The initial sniff revealed a nosebag full of savoury flavours, but nothing really stood out. What they can boast is an impressive crunch, cracking like a whip at your auditory system and echoing around your mouth. And they're an attractive set of crisps, with strong, defined furrows and seasoned evenly with a reddish tinge. But what does the flavour deliver?

Hmmm, well, there's an edge of pepperoni but it seems to drift in and out, perhaps getting itself tangled up and stuck in the cheese flavour which tends to dominate. The cheese is nearly matched by the tomato, which, in its powdered form, is restrained enough to prevent things getting too acidic and sour. At the end of each mouthful, there's also a pleasantly mild burn from the chilli and a hint of oregano hangs around in the air.

M&S' Pepperoni Pizza crisps don't quite hit the mark for me. Yes, the individual elements of a pizza are there, but they fail to hang together as harmoniously as a big bite from a pepperoni pizza does. The occasional mouthful fulfils this pledge, but most of my experience left my tongue clinging on to individual flavours. Perhaps the seasoning ratio needs further tinkering. However, in terms of crisp construction, M&S have cooked up a fine foundation here so, whilst I won't be picking up another bag of this flavour, I will be investigating the rest of their range.

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