Clif Mojo Mountain Mix

Here’s an interesting take on a classic concept- trail mix. Clif Bars have made a granola bar that contains all the best of trail mix- raisins, peanuts, pretzels, chocolate chips. This wasn’t the bar I’d originally wanted. I had been inclined to try the peanut butter pretzel version, but the convenience store hadn’t had it stocked yet.

This bar, though, was a pleasant surprise to open up because it is chocked full of goodies- they don’t skimp on the toppings. The bar is kind of crumbly and loosely textured. It’s very soft, but the soy crisps are crunchy. Unfortunately, that’s the only crunch. There’s no differentiation from each topping, and the raisins, chips, and pretzels just blend together, both in texture and flavor. The bar is also very sticky.The flavor was the biggest point of contention for me with this bar. Something about it seemed off. Biting into it, I thought the liberal amount of toppings would provide a nice flavor, but there was no salty in the sweet, very little sugar, and a very bitter, stale flavor to the bar. I wonder if there was an air leak in the packages or if the entire batch tasted like that, but it was pretty gross and I wouldn’t get this one again unless I was confident that it didn’t taste entirely awful.

Tropical Nerds Rope

Since Massachusetts is essentially, a muggy tropical oasis, I figured I’d review something vaguely reminiscent of that, so behold! The Nerds tropical rope.

I don’t know, but I never really wanted to eat the Nerds on the package so much as hang out with them and maybe have a little pet Nerd of my own.
Okay, so maybe that’s the wrong idea. But they always looked like they were having a ton of fun on their own private island or wherever and here I was, the almighty fun wrecker, eating them and crunching their little sugar bodies between my teeth.
This candy is the slightly more convenient Nerds Rope, which you can use to beat your friends with, make a braid with, or just eat. It falls into the category of “candies that are superior to most others because of their unusual length, height, whatever, as opposed to taste,” like those yardsticks of bubblegum. That being said, it comes a few inches short of the packaging, clocking in at around eight or nine inches. What I also love about the packaging is how the “design as well as product shape are trademarks of Nestle,” like there’s a serious copyright and patent behind a vaguely turd shaped candy. God forbid someone chocolate coats it.It’s a very springy candy, in the chew. The little Nerds are well adhered to the gummy rope of the candy, and only a few fell off. There are four different colors of Nerds on the rope, and as far as I can tell, I can’t discern any individual flavor from them, but there’s a very strong pineapple and coconut flavor to it. The rope on the inside tastes like green apple.

The texture is pretty nice. It starts out crunchy and then gets sandy, like a gummy worm, as you chomp the inside part. It’s a little tangy, a little sour, but that could also be from the flavor. This has some serious citrus flavoring. Overall, though, I liked this snack, but I definitely prefer newer chocolate selections. I think the concept is interesting and appreciated that Nestle actually went through with a tropical flavor and stuck to their guns instead of generic “fruit.”

Local Burger, Northampton, MA

Couple of nights ago, Fleeper, Erik, and I went to Local Burger in Northampton. For a few days, I’d been craving a good burger in the worst way, so we decided to pop that cherry and get us some gourmet fast food. That’s really what Local is, anyhow. I was under the impression that it was quasi fancy, but when I got there I threw off my rental jacket because it was refreshingly casual and hip. And they were playing my childhood on the damned radio, I swear. It was like they’d popped in the “Foodette lives the 90’s” mix CD- Gin Blossoms, LFO, and Daft Punk. All stuff I used to hear all the time and left in the vaults. So, thanks.

So even though I’m back to watching Daria and Doug and living in the past, this burger is blatantly fresh in my mind. I ordered the Juicy Lucy, a burger stuffed with American cheese and grilled with maple mayonnaise. With that, we got a large order of fries, too, for sharing.The fries came out first, actually, and those were lovely to snack on while eating. I would have liked them all together, though. They were very fresh and very crispy, and soft on the inside. I liked the seasoning that they used a lot, because I don’t think it was just salt. I tasted garlic on it, too, and that was a different and tasty touch. However, the amount was average sized and was definitely not enough for three people, especially at $3.50 apiece and when most of the fries are under an inch long. Five Guys has twice the fries for that price and they’re much bigger. Still, a hand cut fry is a hand cut fry, and that’s delicious.The burgers came out a little while later, while we were still working on the fries. My burger was a beast. Being accustomed to chicken, I think I underestimated how large ten ounces really is, especially on your plate. And I now have a little more admiration for those people who finish a 60 oz. steak in an hour. The burger was nicely charred, but a little tough and dry to chew through and wasn’t seasoned enough. It was very juicy and the cheese oozed out beautifully and kept it nice and moist. I might have preferred a cheese with a higher melting point, because although I liked the goo, I would have enjoyed it more in my mouth and less on my plate. It was still very tasty and fun to eat, though. The mayonnaise was delicious and imparted more of a maple flavor than mayo, but gave the burger a nice moistness that both flavored and lubricated.Overall, I would definitely come back and try this restaurant again. They had some really interesting sandwiches on the menu and they played amazing music. Their other dishes look interesting and innovative- Captain Crunch chicken tenders? I’m there!

Nu South Strawberry Lemonade

Here’s a nice, cooling drink for the summer, sent by Nu South, a flavored lemonade beverage company. It’s a bright pink drink with lemonade and strawberries, two of the heat’s favorite things. If only they found a way to add in a pool float, it would be perfect.The drink is very cool and refreshing, and I like the fact that the company has many varieties of lemonade from different states, like Georgia to represent their peach lemonade. This lemonade represents Alabama. The color might be a little artificial for some, and it definitely imparts some of that in the taste. It’s bright pink, like the color of the terrible sunburn my face now sports, with a little eye area sectioned off in the shape of my Wayfarers. There’s a predominantly floral, tangy flavor from the combination of the tastes, and it reminded me a little of Red Robin’s freckled lemonade, but with less fruity flavor and more lemon. It tasted a lot like red gummy bears.The lemonade flavor wasn’t extraordinary, but it definitely imparted a good, sour flavor that made the drink far less saccharine than it would have been. It cut the sweetness and helped, but the overall texture of the drink is a bit syrupy. I could see myself ordering this in a restaurant and not minding that, but in a retail bottle, I want something a little less sugary.