Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Weird British Chips Mega-review

WAY too long ago (sure hope chips keep well), a friend of mine went to England. Being a huge fan of FATGUYFOODBLOG, he smuggled some chips back for me to try. I was weirded out by them and put their sampling off for quite awhile.

This Christmas, another superfan got me for Secret Santa. So he decided the one thing I needed was more weird chips to sample, and got me 4 big bags full of mini bags of Walker's chips (basically the British version of Lay's). SO, it's time for a "Weird British Chips Mega-review." I will be adopting a rate-chips-by-facial-expression grade scale for this post. I've come prepared with lots of faces where it looks like I'm going to throw up.

First up, the least weird one: Walker's Cheese & Onion:

These stink. They smell kind of like cardboard. They kind of taste like cardboard too, with fake onion flavor. I'm not a huge onion fan, but onion rings sure can hit the spot, or sweet onion in the right dishes can be amazing. These are not a good representative of onion. I taste zero cheese either- just faint, fake onion that leaves for a horrific aftertaste. Not starting off well.

Not barf-inducing, but not good. D-

Next, Walker's Roast Chicken.

These also stink. I can't explain the scent, but it certainly isn't chicken and it's absolutely not potato chips.

I wouldn't call these good, but they definitely taste like roast chicken. Since chicken is a kind of sponge and takes the flavor or whatever spices or sauces you use, they definitely went for the roasted chicken skin flavor over the actual chicken. They surprisingly captured it really well. But do I want to eat chicken skin chips? If you're a fat pigblob, you may think so. Bite into a bag of these and you'll immediately reconsider.

A fun idea that I was excited to try, but sorry, these are gross. F.

Next, Walker's Worcester Sauce:

I love worcester sauce. Always have. It's a unique flavor that works great on chicken or pork. I make a homemade BBQ sauce where worcester is the second most important flavor. So how did it work on chips?

Fairly well, actually. They absolutely taste like worcester sauce and the grease of the chips give the illusion that they were actually soaked in sauce. The weird thing though- these chips are either way too tangy/sour, or worcester sauce is and I've just never realized just how much. I feel like these work great in small bursts, but after awhile, interest fades. These are very interesting though, and would recommend hunting them down if you're a worcester fan looking for an interesting alternative (or addition) to BBQ chips. I imagine mixing these with some BBQ would work really well. Hmmm... I put worcester sauce on chicken, maybe these will work with the roast chicken chips...

Ew. The chicken flavor overpowered any worcester and just made me like the chicken even less.

The face of "you know what? These are pretty decent." C+

Next up, Walker's Smoky Bacon:

These smell and unfortunately taste too much like fake bacon- like bacon bits or something. I've reviewed bacon chips before, and both of those were MUCH better than these because of an odd sweetness to the chips. These substitute any of that confusing sweetness with mega bacon flavor which works, but just isn't as good. The aftertaste is horrible and the burps hours later are agony. These also seem to be much more crunchy than any of the other chips... perhaps in an odd attempt to seem even more like eating actual bacon? Maybe. These are ok, but the aftertaste and lack of anything making them special (like "smokey" in the Lay's version or the inclusion of Sour Cream in the Ruffles version) make them towards the C grade and nowhere near as good as the much easier to find Ruffles or Lay's Bacon chips. BOY IT SURE WOULD BE NICE IF THE STUPID UNITED STATES WOULD MAKE A BACON CHIP SO I WOULDN'T HAVE TO PAY 9 BUCKS FOR A BAG ON EBAY.

These are OK, but the least good of bacon chips I've tried. C-

Next, Walker's Sensations: Thai Sweet Chilli:

I'm a true American. I predominately eat pizza, chicken fingers, sandwiches, cheeseburgers, etc. I'm probably not the best person to be reviewing anything claiming to be "Thai Sweet Chilli." That being said, these were pretty forgettable. They had zero smell and not much flavor. I had to eat 4 before I even figured out what the flavor was. They're kind of bland with an odd spicy aftertaste. The spice isn't bad but the flavor is barely there and difficult to describe. I guess I'd say they're thai sweet chilli for people who want a very watered down version of that flavor.

Very blah chips. If you like thai spice, they are ok, but they just don't have enough flavor. D.

Next, "delicious... paprika flavour crinkle cut crisps:"

These were one from England and the only one with a "best before" date (October 2011), so this might be a mess.

Maybe scent is the first thing that goes when a bag of chips has sat unopened for 5 months after its prime... These once again had zero smell. These were surprisingly decent but mostly because of their blandness. These didn't punch me in the mouth with chicken skin or fake onion- these were just subpar, cheap potato chips with a slight little spice on the end of them- enough to give your mouth a little burn, but not enough for you to be able to tell what the hell you ate. I feel weird to be preferring a lacking-in-flavor chip, but it's nice to have something that isn't gross during a chip-eating party like this.

Not very flavorful, but nothing offensive. The Al Borland of weird potato chips. C.

I saved the scariest for last: Walker's Prawn Cocktail:

oh boy...

It took 4 chips for me to start gagging. I do not like seafood, and I couldn't handle these. They have a weird tangy, mayonnaise like flavor that disguises the fake shrimp flavor coming afterwards. I started to imagine eating small little monsters and couldn't last. Thank God for toothpaste and the fact that my mom gave me a bunch of candy canes for Christmas. These are AWFUL. F.

Oh no... What the hell flavor is this on my beloved potato chips?!

Oh no...

Ok, time has passed. These aren't THAT bad. They have an incredibly unique flavor, I'll give them that. I'd say they taste more like cocktail sauce and something else mayonnaise-y (maybe tartar sauce) more than shrimp. But there's definitely enough shrimp (sorry, PRAWN) taste that they fulfill their flavor promise. Maybe I just dislike seafood too much to give these a fair review.

These are definitely a polarizing flavor (half the people who dared to try them at the Christmas party hated them, half loved them), and further proof that potato chip companies have a lot of balls in other countries. Or maybe just other countries like weird flavors on their chips.

fakin prawn man

I'll say this- I don't like seafood, I don't really like Thai flavors, and I very much like chicken. But opinions aside, I don't really want any of these flavors on my potato chips.
Worcester Sauce were the clear winners of this chip fiesta, and that definitely says something- that was the only flavor where I was actually excited to try them- where it felt more like a unique, new flavor that would work as a flavor of chips rather than a gimmicky, "DUDE YOU GOTTA EAT THESE CHIPS EWWW" thing. Oh well.

Keep 'em coming friends. You buy them, I'll review them.


I'm a man who enjoys a shrimp cocktail from time to time, I found the prawn chips to be pretty tasty. They are a strange flavor though. They are mostly cocktail sauce but there is a strange aftertaste. Mike said maybe mayo, but I'm not sure that's it. It's hard to put your finger on it. But if you are a fan of shrimp, give them a try! You shouldn't eat too many though, they get to you after a while.


  1. When getting to the Prawn Cocktail chips, I literally said "oh hell no!" in my office, alone.
    You're braver than me.

  2. haahah yup. I'll try any potato chip! but yea, I pretty much said "oh hell no" when I opened the box up and saw that my "friend" had gotten me that flavor

  3. I bought the Worcester Sauce chips on Amazon because I love Worcestershire sauce, and I agree with your assessment. They remind me of salt and vinegar chips, and just like those, I can only eat a few at a time. Still good though!

  4. Prawn chips? Oh God, the horror! Just thinking about them and seeing the pink bag makes me sick!

  5. hahaha agreed. pink only makes it worse.

    Nachos, I didn't even realize that they were spelled "worcester" and not what I know them as (worcestershire) until much later.. Weird brits!

  6. I might actually have to seek out the prawn chips. I have a very strange fetish for Calbee Wasabi Shrimp chips. Guess what, pink plays into it's package as well, lol!

  7. I am from England and have grown up on these crisps. I have been in fits of laughter reading your review of them! Isn't it weird the differences in tastes in different parts of the world?!
    By the way, prawn cocktail is the best of those flavours!

    1. haha I'm glad my pain brought you laughter. It is crazy how different peoples' taste is in different countries. I don't know how anyone could eat prawn cocktail!

    2. Prawn cocktail is probably the most popular flavour. xD
      Whaaa if you don't have these flavours then what flavour crisps do you have?

  8. A very interesting take on these crisps. Thanks for sharing! We have yet to try smokey bacon but plan to for an upcoming review on our international snack blog.

    1. thanks, try to find the Lay's and Ruffles bacon chips- they rule

  9. Haha I'm from England. Now, I have been raised on this filth since 1986 so I'm used to it... But I could send or even advise you on some truly hideous shit we eat here! Also some goodies! Some British food is actually really nice. . . .but you are right, most is terrible stuff we've just "got used to" over time. Smokey Bacon. . .anyone find they taste kinda like the smell lady bugs give off when they feel threatened? Oh and you MUST try Pickled Onion Space Raiders! Those things will turn your face inside out and make you infertile! Thanks for the laugh, I'll check out your other stuff.