I've got to say that it's not even October 1st yet and already this year looks like it's going to be something special. The grocery stores are lined with all kinds of amazing Halloween themed products. Have you seen the cereals this year? The glow in the dark packaging that's adorning everything? Most years I feel like I never run across the stuff I see other people posting online- but not this year. This year the Halloween gods are smiling down upon me.
The past few years it's seemed as though everyone just got lazy and threw pumkin spice on their existing products, maybe put them in a generically themed orange box. This year, a lot of things are looking much more sinister. Much more like Halloween.
Hostess has definitely jumped on the Halloween bandwagon as well, which is apropos for a company that was recently resurrected from the dead. So without further ado, let's do some taste testing.
First up are the limited edition chocolate cake Twinkies with "S'CREAM" filling. Lately it seems like the good folks at Hostess have taken a cue from those bastards at Oreo by introducing some pretty outlandish varieties of the iconic sponge cake, so I'm glad to see they're following suit for Halloween.
A trick-or-treating cowboy twinkie? Sign me up.
I wasn't too sure about the chocolate twinkie, but once you bite into it you realize it's the same as the cupcake. That's actually what this is, sans frosting. In that respect, Hostess is really the Taco Bell of bakeries: everything is made from the same few ingredients. But you don't care. You'll eat it just the same.
Actually, I prefer these to regular twinkies. Probably because the cupcakes are my favorite. Though the best part of the cupcake is that layer of frosting on top- the one you can peel off and eat whole, discarding the cake and crying softly. Why do I do this to myself?
And speaking of Hostess cupcakes- who's up for some Scarycakes? God this box is beautiful. The forest, the fog, full moon, bats- there's probably a swamp just below. And something sinister swimming in the swamp. Trader Joe's would just put their version of this in an orange box with a black clip-art generic jack-o-lantern on the top left corner. Then they'd come up with some witty name, which would, or course, actually be pretty clever, but get your head in the game, man. Hostess is embarrassing you here. Don't even bother trying to parse that sentence. Scarycakes. Nobody has time for grammar, it would just end up coming across as bourgeois anyway. Scarycakes. Scarycakes.
Look at how orange that frosting is.
That's not whipped cream, it's S'Cream Filling. And Hostess is so into Halloween that they use
S'Cream Filling all year long. They're one of us. Truly. These are my favorite of the Hostess lineup, which is why I never buy them. Because then the box disappears and I'm crying softly in the car, stealing myself from the concerned looks of my loving wife and kids.
Oooh, are those Sno-Balls?
I take back what I said about the Scarycakes' box art. You might chime in and say that they were trying to create a cohesive brand, but it's Halloween. It's supposed to be unique, and everyone already recognizes the Hostess brand anyways. This is just lazy. The person who made the art probably chuckled as he did this, knowing it would draw the ire of some unread blogger whose too old to be writing about this kind of stuff to begin with. I sort of respect them now that I think of it.
For me, having a Hostess treat is something of a novelty. I don't regularly buy them, and when I do, it's generally out of some sense of nostalgia. They aren't that good, but they take you back somewhere, if only for a brief instant before the image of Wilfred Brimley mysteriously flashes before my eyes. It's a uniquely american experience.
But these things? These are the Peeps of the Hostess universe. What are these even for? At least with Peeps, I always thought of them more as more of a decoration than a confection- a crafting ingredient for something your aunt with the embroidered denim vest saw in Needlework & Crafts.
I think that Hostess intends for people to eat these.
Which is suited to Halloween because the first thing you think when you bite into it is "yeah that's not really marshmallow." What is it? Something that they can call marshmallow that can be spread on top of a cupcake and sit on a room temperature shelf for a month or two. Before being eaten. And it's covered in coconut. In this case, orange coconut.
why would anyone buy this? All they did was take the cupcake and ruin it. Do people actually eat these? Like someone sees the Hostess end cap, surveys the possibilities and ends up with these? Why? Aren't they usually pink?
My kids were even wary of these, and they'll eat anything new to the house that promises a sugar fueled manic episode.
I don't understand the Hostess Sno Ball and that's ok.