I can't very well ignore an E3 booth that's handing out free food. Gamer Grub debuted two new flavours at the show, and I went mouth-on with Smores and BBQ to see if they are worthy of our stomachs.
What is Gamer Grub? It's a series of snack mixes containing the vitamins and neurotransmitters gamers need to maintain a quick and agile mind. At least that's what the official website says.
Really what it is is trail mix, much like the kind you'll find in bags hanging around in Target's Archer Farms section. The main difference is that Gamer Grub comes in a pack that can stand up on your desk without falling over, which is very convenient, and according to creator Keith Mullin, higher quality ingredients than Target's version.
I won't pretend to have the sort of refined palate needed to tell one peanut from the other. I'm just a gamer who enjoys eating.
Keith was kind enough to supply me with a couple of bags of the new flavors at E3, so without further ado, the grub. Mind the ink-stained hands.
Gamer Grub BBQ
Official Description: A sweet & tangy blend of Smoked Almonds, BBQ Corn Nuts, Spicy Peanuts, Toffee Peanuts and Honey & BBQ Sesame Sticks.
The Smell: Yes, I smell everything before I eat it. It's just something I do. The overwhelming scent of the BBQ flavor is the sweet, slightly earthy smell of honey-roasted peanuts. I guess it's a combination of the spicy and toffee peanuts plus the honey sesame sticks. It preps your mouth for something sweet.
The Taste: Depending on the mix you get in your mouth, you might get sweet, or you might get spicy. A little too spicy for my tastes, at least where barbecue is concerned. When it's sweet it tastes pretty good. Spicy or sweet, the peanuts tend to overwhelm the other items, and peanuts don't generally scream barbecue to me. Literally a mixed bag.
The Bite: With so many different textures represented, there isn't a uniform bite. It's definitely on the crunchier side. Every once in a while you'll get a bit of extremely hard toffee between your teeth, which is not a pleasant thing.
The Aftertaste: BBQ leaves the taste of strong barbecue potato chips in your mouth. A semi-sweet burning that lingers even after several sips of water.
The Verdict: If I had to recommend one flavor of Gamer Grub, this would not be it. Every once in a while the sweet and spicy blend together in the perfect imitation of barbecue flavour, but those moments are rare.
Gamer Grub Smores
Official Description: No campfire by your console? No problemo, just bust open a pack for a sweet and rich blend of Smores Bites, Marshmallow Chips, Graham Bites, and Chocolate Gems.
The Smell: Smores Gamer Grub gives off a slightly sweet scent that at first had me baffled. I simply couldn't place it. After about half-hour of looking silly with my nose in a bag, I've realised it reminds me of Cinnamon Teddy Grahams, which I guess makes sense.
The Taste: Whoa now, that's sweet. That's really sweet. I like sweet. There's a slight hint of spice to it as well, further suggesting that those graham bites have a kick of cinnamon to them.
The Bite: Compared to the rest of the mix, the graham bits are slightly hard, especially compared to the smooth marshmallow chips and chocolate bites, which seem to be akin to M&Ms with a really light outer shell. My favourite pieces are the Smores bites, which have an outer shell of chocolate, a thin layer of marshmallow, and a graham centre. I'd eat a bag of those by themselves.
The Aftertaste: There really isn't much of one. Each piece is a contained unit, so you don't get spices lingering in your mouth as you do with the BBQ flavour.
The Verdict: Smores are delicious, and dangerous. I'd eat a truck if it tasted like Smores, and so I'd gladly eat a bag of more edible material carrying the flavour. I particularly like the inclusion of creamy marshmallow chips, where others might have used the dehydrated marshmallows found in breakfast cereals.
In closing, eat what you like. I like Smores.