There are a few circumstances in life which will cause me to buy a product I’ve never tried. One, obviously, is something new. I’ve jumped on more new product bandwagons than college football upstarts in my day, and just like my short-lived days as a BYU fan, so my interest on the latest Oreo or Doritos variety of the month has come and gone.
There’s another reason I may choose to buy a product without thinking twice. The dreaded “Discontinued!” sign.
We’ve all been there in the grocery store. Whether it’s the changing of the seasons or just that inevitable “time,” products marked with the vastly discounted price announcing their impending doom stand out to the curious eater like a Jeremy Lin in the NBA fan. Once more, they make us consider the merits of the item. Was it really so bad? Maybe people just didn’t give it a chance? I mean, it’s looks interesting…
These thoughts, and a sweet tooth, were foremost on my mind when I was at Weis the other day and saw two Pint containers of Turkey Hill’s Stuff’d Ice Cream. As I’ve explained before, I tend to be fairly conservative in my ice cream choices, but the allure of the Fried Ice Cream and Praline Pecan Paradise was to strong to pass up. That, or I felt like doing Paula Deen a favor by buying something laying claim to Fried and Pecans.
The Fried Ice Cream is clearly a take on the Mexican specialty, offering “cinnamon ice cream swirled with cinnamon sopilla and sweet tostada pieces.” Considering the extent of my Latino dessert experience is limited to the Churros I once bought from the elementary school snack line, I may not be the definitive authority, but I must say this was the epitome of a fiesta in my mouth. The flavor and aroma of the cinnamon is certainly strong, and the slight graininess of cinnamon-sugar specs that flavor each mouthful reminds me of a fried graham cracker. There’s a definite churro vibe, but it’s bolstered by an amazing, almost apple-pie like quality. The tostada pieces are a little tough to recognize at first, but they show up as a kind of churro-flavored cookie dough mix in. My only complaint in the mouthfeel of the base, which isn’t quite as creamy as I’d like.
If South of the Border is a fiesta in my mouth than Praline Pecan Paradise is a cross between the country music song The South Will Never Let you Down and John Milton’s epic poem Paradise Found. With the exception of the most excellent Whoopie Pie flavor, I can’t recall enjoying a Turkey Hill ice cream this much. Some ice creams don’t deliver on mix ins but as you can see from the photo the caramel swirl and pecans are aplenty, and they both show up in full force in tasting. The ice cream itself scoops easily and has an exceptionally creamy mouthfeel for a light ice cream, while the caramel swirl is thick, sweet, and slightly smokey. With an almost fudge-like quality to it the swirl gives ways to toasted flavor of pecan pieces, which themselves have a light and oily crunch supported by a sweet glaze. The best part of it all? Like the South of the Border flavor, eating a 4-serving, 120 calories per serving Pint is actually a really sensible lunch.
Frankly, eating these ice creams makes me angry. Angry that, by some overlooked aspect of American ice cream consumption, their doomed to be taken off shelves FOR-EV-ER. I understand everyone wants to run with the cool kids and buy Ben and Jerry’s, but at the risk of not clogging my arteries with super premium ice cream and not destroying my bank account, I think I’ll stick with Turkey Hill. Or at least as long as my grocery store still has these on clearance.
By the way, anyone else noticed any discontinued signs around their local grocery stores that have got you testing the waters or filling up the pantry?
Pecan Praline Paradise (Nutrition Info)
- Price: $1.25 (Weis)
- Ranking: 9/10
- Chances I’d Buy Again: 90% (until supply runs out)
South of the Border
- Price: $1.25 (Weis)
- Ranking: 8/10
- Chances I’d Buy Again: 75%