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On a weekend away I usually take two bags; one small, one big. The small one contains a toothbrush and a pair of knickers - the big one contains my carry-out of beer, wine (and a flask of ready-mixed Black Russian for Baron Spanielmeister) plus all the treats I usually don't allow myself, like crisps, nuts, snacks, sweeties and chocs.
I remembered seeing a review on Dooyoo of Scampi Flavoured Fries recently, so while I was buying my naughty treats in B&M Bargains for a recent break, I bought a multipack of snacks which contained 3 packs of Scampi Fries and 3 packs of sister snack, Bacon Fries. The multipack was just 99p.
It had been DECADES since I'd eaten either, so I couldn't wait to get to the Hotel, spread a huge bath towel over the bed, unpack my goodies, pour a drink and start my holiday picnic!
Scampi Fries are sold under the brand name "Smiths" - I remember Smith's Crisps from when I was little, but as the parent company is Walkers, then the crisps are no more. However the Suits in Marketing wisely kept the Smith's name for these snacks, as I imagine their main target market is the nostalgia seekers like me!
The pack is smaller than a crisp packet and weighs 27g. Each bag contains 127 calories, 5.7g of fat and as the caption boasts "Cereal Snack with a Delicious Scampi & Lemon Taste". I don't think the design has changed since back in the day, except for the addition of the nutritional details which includes the allergy advice "Contains Milk, Wheat, Gluten, Soya. Made in a factory that also handles: Barley, Celery, Mustard".
The Fries were much as I remember in taste - a very definite scampi taste, but not quite lemony - more like vinegar instead. If you imagine a hollow fish finger, drenched in vinegar then this is probably a very accurate description of the flavour.
The smell is a really strong one - a bit like the whiff off fish & chip paper - so if fish is your thing you'll like these, but if not, I could understand the smell being quite off-putting.
The texture meanwhile is somewhat different - I remembered them being light and flaky, and kind of melty in your mouth, but the ones I had were rock hard. They were crunchy, rather than crispy, but not unpleasant at all - it just meant that I had to "refresh" myself a bit more heavily to wash them down. The manufacturers seem to appreciate this as the illustration on the pack shows a pint of beer, a glass of white wine for the lady, and a soft fizzy drink which looks like cola, but Baron Spanielmeister assures me is a Black Russian.
The smell, flavour, texture and the "serving suggestion" picture on the packet all point towards the notion that these are a "grown-up" snack and although I ate them as a kid, any children I know would probably avoid these.
I'll give them 4 out of 5 - they are a nice bit of nostalgia, but just not as nice as they seemed in the past.
Few things ever are!
Thanks for reading.
Scampi Flavour Fries are probably a bit of a bar snack and I never really think to buy them when I go to the store to purchase crisps as there is so much choice. I happened to eat a packet recently though as I work a second job in a garage and we had one packet of these left on which the best before date had expired and so we could no longer sell them. They are distributed in a yellow/green packet made of foil which I am led to believe keeps the snacks fresh. On the front of the packet is a picture of a table with drinks on alluding to the fact that these are often found in pubs and complimenting a drink, alcoholic or not perfectly.
I absolutely love the taste of these and the texture of each cereal snack, very crunchy and crispy. The lemon and scampi taste is tremendous, not for someone who doesn't like fish but I think it is pretty wonderful myself. Each one really has the flavour of scampi and chips like you might buy from a cafe or restaurant and the aroma from the bag is great, really smells like a food establishment near the seaside or a little like your local fish and chip shop.
Despite being ever so tasty there is a side effect and that is because the taste and smell is so strong it can have a lasting impact on your breath and although they are fantastic to eat not everybody wants to smell it on you for a long time afterwards and I'm sure when you consume them you don't want people to notice that either. Therefore I think I would eat them on my own in private and if I was with other people I would make sure I probably used some chewing gum or a mint after although they are not the only food product that causes this, that is sometimes the way.
A 27g packet contains 5.7g of fat and 127 calories which is not a disaster, could be better, could be worse but this is alright as an occasional treat like most crisps and sweets.
I do really like these and they are something different to the endless rows of crisps on supermarket shelves, a nice change. The crunchy texture of each one in the bag is delightful and the flavour and smell for me is awesome, makes a real impact on your mouth, something to savour. Just choose the situation when you eat them carefully though, if the music in a bar or pub is loud and you are leaning in close to a woman or man trying to make yourself heard these scampi fries may taste great but the results for your breath might not leave that person with the best impression.
Smith's Scampi Flavour Fries are a delicious, but very smelly snack that have to be experienced to appreciate their drool-worthiness! They may come in a small packet (27g to be precise), but they are certainly big on flavour and my taste buds are tingling at the thought of these moreish little morsels of yumminess...
They come in an eye-catching lime green package which is not too dissimilar to a miniature crisp packet, ensuring that the fries reach you in the best condition possible. There is a vintage looking picture on the front showing a packet of said fries on a pub table with some scene setting alcoholic beverages and atmospheric fishing nets, boats and seagulls in the background. There is also an image of the fries themselves, although these look a bit nondescript and unfortunately does not properly convey the taste explosion that is about to hit your tongue. The usual nutritional information is stated and I have included this at the bottom of this review.
Upon opening the packet the delicious and tantalising scent of scampi hits you right in the nose and gets your digestive juices flowing. My packet contains 16 little scampi fries, which look like little golden brown, deep fried pillows of yumminess. Each scampi fry has a bobbled texture, which is crispy and extremely flavoursome and each fry is hollow, so don't expect any filling. As soon as one of the little rectangles is placed on your tongue you get the most amazing taste of scampi and lemon, before chewing and getting a secondary wheaty flavour (unless you crunch them immediately of course, but I prefer to suck the flavour off first before chewing and swallowing!). Being scampi flavour, they are quite smelly, so you might want to think twice about kissing someone having just devoured a pack!
Now admittedly these aren't the healthiest of snacks, but they are actually amazing and well worth the calories for a treat now and then. I have found in recent years that they are quite difficult to get hold of, so if you see them grab a packet and try them for yourself. I picked up my packet in Costcutters for 65p, but I have also seen them in corner shops and Sainsbury's petrol stations.
Calories - 127
Sugar - 1.8g
Fat - 5.7g
Saturates - 0.5g
Contains milk, wheat, gluten and soya so avoid these if you are allergic.
Smiths Scampi Fries 25g