Err, I mean, yay! Finally, a perfectly seasonal item from Trader Joe's that has nothing to do with anything even remotely resembling a pumpkin or any of its usual camaraderie of spices. It's about freakin' time.
How are Trader Joe's Ghost Pepper Potato Chips "seasonal" you ask? Well - Halloween is just a few weeks away! And these are ghost peppers we're talkin' 'bout here, Willis. Although, as grammatically improper a statement it is, I don't believe in no ghosts. But ghost peppers? Listen: Anything that has potential to melt your face off as if you just peered at the Ark of the Covenant ought to be feared and respected. Although not the most capitally capsacin-incapacitated peppers out there...those suckers are hot! Beware!
So, it was with some fear and trembling that Sandy and I ripped open our bag the other night, and with even more trepidation that I took my first waft in preparation of placing one of these potentially unholy tater wafers in my mouth. Hrmm...not picking up much here. A quick glance brought to mind sour cream and onion chips almost - a dusty cakey coating of some type with little dark specks. And I got my first good luck at the chips unique (to me, at least) structure of being lattice cut - I've seen waffle fries and ridged chips, but never some combination of those. Maybe that's just my general chip world ignorance speaking there. Anyways, I said a quick prayer, gulped, and prepared for first bite...
Not. Hot. But don't take my word for it. Take my toddler's, who's adventurous as a three year old can be when it comes to food, but shies away from most spicy stuff. She insisted on trying a chip, though, and with some hesitation, Sandy and I offered her one, milk cup and tear rags ready to go just in case. "Yummy!" she exclaimed. "I wike these." I asked if her if she thought they were spicy, and she said "No, maybe just a little bit."
another exotic sounding TJ chip which turned out to be more BBQy than truly unique. In some ways, I'm somewhat relieved of that - the munch factor was extremely high, so it was nice to not be inhibited by spice overload. But in others, I'm kinda disappointed - I wanted these pepper chips to have enough heat to scare me away a little, but be enough of a treat to keep me coming back for more.
For $2.29, they're tough to argue with, though. Sandy enjoyed them enough to give them a four, mostly for texture and crunch (seriously, try eating just one or two - not gonna happen) which seems around right to me. A little more spooky spice would send them over the top, but their overall tastiness isn't an apparition.
Bottom line: Trader Joe's Ghost Pepper Potato Chips: 7.5 out of 10 Golden Spoons