Popcorn is my thing. My absolute favorite snack. Butter, caramel, spicy, sweet – you name it, I’ll eat it with popcorn.
Gourmet popcorn is something I was introduced to a few years ago when I had my first bite of Just Pop In, a local company that makes deliciously popped kernels of corn with more flavor combinations than you can imagine.
They blew me away with their Porkorn, a mix of bacon and caramel flavored popcorn. They partnered with Goose the Market, a butcher shop that sells so much more than beef, to bring together a snack that you may not be able to control yourself with. Trust me.
So, when Just Pop In announced they were going to ask people to rate three of their newest popcorns, I knew I needed to be first in line.
Just Pop In’s Pick Your Pop Flavor Challenge asks you to taste three of their new wild flavors and vote on which one you want to save or keep in the store. Customers can stop by their stores (the airport kiosk and Guilford Street) and vote until July 30. On July 31, they’ll announce the winning flavor. There is also an “adult” tasting on Saturday, July 27 from 6-9pm at 6406 Cornell Ave – get out and sample the flavors while enjoying an adult beverage!
Here are the flavors:
XXX Twice Baked Potato (Loaded Baked Potato) – Sour Cream and Chive, Onion, Garlic Powder and heat
Chowboy (Chili Chipotle Lime) – Ancho chile, chipotle, cayenne, lime seasonings and salts, heat
Screaming Mimi (Spicy Pepper Pickle) – Dill pickle, chile, cayenne, heat
First reactions? WOW – all three of these are spicy snacks! I like heat, but I can only handle so much (aka not as much as my Southern coworkers who ask if I want to try their ghost pepper sauce). Honestly, I kind of like the heat because this popcorn is so good, I need SOMETHING to keep me from eating it all!
Starting with the spiciest popcorn, I’d rank them:
- Screaming Mimi
- XXX Twice Baked Potato
The Screaming Mimi intrigued me because I love the combination of heat and pickles. Mac Genie Truck has a Flaming Dill entree and that’s how I first learned that the tanginess of the pickles creates a cooling sensation that helps to combat the heat of the mac and cheese. The same concept happens here with Screaming Mimi, but I think it could have used a bit more pickle flavor.
Chowboy is lighter in color and has specks of lime flavoring on every piece of popcorn. The heat was still intense but just a little less than that of the Screaming Mimi. I enjoyed the flavor but like the Screaming Mimi, I think it could have used more lime flavor.
I could taste the sour cream in the XXX Baked Potato and I really enjoyed the level of heat. Though if the title is “loaded” baked potato, should bacon be present? I know Just Pop In can put bacon in popcorn, but maybe they didn’t think to add it here. The flavors are balanced well in this snack and it does remind me of a freshly baked potato.
So, which one would I vote for?
Drumroll tap on the keyboard please…
XXX BAKED POTATO! This was by far my favorite of the three. While Screaming Mimi and Chowboy were great popcorn, I didn’t feel like they lived up to their name as much as the XXX Baked Potato did. I could taste the chive and sour cream, and the heat was at a tolerable level for me.
I love Just Pop In because every piece of popcorn is coated in flavor. You won’t stick that toothpick into the bag and be disappointed with what you catch on the other end. It’s one reason why I now buy Just Pop In when I’m looking for gifts for friends and family. If popcorn hasn’t been your favorite snack, then you haven’t been to Just Pop In.