Suka Snack Attack

Mangga't bagoong, sampalok candy with rock salt, patis and calamansi sauce–Pinoys love a salty and sour blend in food, which must explain the burgeoning prevalence of both local and imported salt and vinegar-flavored snacks in supermarket and convenience store shelves. Spot.ph spot-tested eight popular brands. Find out which bag of chips to bag to get your taste buds tingling and which ones will just sour up your day.

Rating:

5 Spots •••••- lip-smackin' good
4 Spots •••• - just right
3 Spots ••• - could be better
2 Spots ••   - corny
1 Spot    •   - totally missed the point

cracklings1. CRACKLINGS
Salt & Vinegar
PHP 9.50
Plain or ribbed: ribbed
Size of chip: medium
Thickness: Thick
Smells like: Pure cane vinegar. Get too much of a whiff and your nose is going to run.
Crispiness: True to its name, the cracking sound effect is pretty impressive.
Flavor: It's very sour but with the right mix of saltiness. You'll definitely pool in the mouth at first bite.
Oiliness: a little on the oily side
Bag quantity: 1/4 air and the rest are chips
Aftertaste*: It's like eating chips dusted with powdered vinegar and salt. Good to the last crumb.
Beer Matchness: Made for each other
Rating: 5 Spots •••••

lala2. LA LA
Salt & Vinegar Fish Crackers
PHP 15.25
Plain or ribbed: Ribbed
Size of chip: Medium
Thickness: Thick
Smells like: A hint of vinegar
Crispiness: Like Cracklings, it's noisy munching too
Flavor: Just a smattering of salt, vinegar and fish–perfect for those who like it light
Oiliness: Not so much
Bag quantity: Half air, half chips
Aftertaste*: It leaves a fishy trace on the tongue but nothing hardcore
Beer Matchness: match
Rating: 4 Spots ••••

3. MARTY'S CRACKLIN'
Vegetarian Chicharon
martysPHP 16.95
Plain or ribbed: Plain
Size of chip: Medium
Thickness: Thin
Smells like: Light smell of chicharon
Crispiness: Crispy but chewy as bits of it get annoyingly stuck to the molars
Flavor: It's chicharon without the vetsin, pork essence, and all the savory stuff you love about the real thing.
Oiliness: A little on the oily side
Bag quantity: Only 1/4 of the bag is chips. Come back, my money!
Aftertaste*: You know the fatty chicharon that you don't want to eat so much of? Yeah, it gets greasy that way.
Beer Matchness: A slight match
Rating: 2 Spots ••

4. CHIPPY
Garlic & Vinegar

chippy02PHP 19.25 (big bag)
Plain or ribbed: Plain
Size of chip: Small
Thickness: Thin
Smells like: Ordinary Chippy
Crispiness: Crispy
Flavor: It just has a hint of the garlic and vinegar flavor. It's not as tasty as the original mix.
Oiliness: Not so much
Bag quantity: Half air but reasonably packed
Aftertaste*: It's mildly hot and slightly sour.
Beer Matchness: Match
Rating: 3 Spots •••

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5. NOVA
Summer Salad Flavor
PHP 23.50 (big bag)
nova02Plain or ribbed: Ribbed
Size of chip: Medium
Thickness: Thin
Smells like: Mayonnaise
Crispiness: Very crispy
Flavor: Amazing how it tastes like a salad with the vinaigrette and crunchy leaves
Oiliness: Not so much
Bag quantity: 1/4 air and the rest are chips
Aftertaste*: Like most healthy snacks, the flavor goes bland after a while.
Beer Matchness: Does beer go with salad? I thought so.
Rating: 3 Spots •••

6. GOLDEN FISH CRACKERS
Salt & Vinegar Flavor
PHP 36.50
golden02Plain or ribbed: Ribbed
Size of chip: Small to medium
Thickness: Thick
Smells like: Fried fish
Crispiness: Crispy
Flavor: The fish flavor overpowers the salt and vinegar spices.
Oiliness: Not so much
Bag quantity: A full bag of chips
Aftertaste*: Your mouth will taste like deep-fried fish (probably smell like one, too). Also, some serious case of dry mouth.
Beer Matchness: Anything to wash down the aftertaste
Rating: 1 Spots •

7. LAYS
Salt & Vinegar

PHP 99.50
lays02Plain or ribbed: Plain
Size of chip: With careful handling, chips are huge
Thickness: Thin
Smells like: Plain Lays
Crispiness: Very crispy and brittle
Flavor: It's zesty like you sucked on a lemon with a dash of iodized salt.
Oiliness: Yes
Bag quantity: Half air, half chips
Aftertaste*: Super sour! But it's possible to finish a whole bag without sharing.
Beer Matchness: made for each other
Rating: 5 Spots •••••

8. KETTLE CHIPS
Sea Salt & Vinegar

PHP 159.00
kettle02Plain or ribbed: Plain
Size of chip: Medium to huge
Thickness: Thin
Smells like: Ordinary potato chips
Crispiness: Very crispy
Flavor: Chips with a kick! Equal parts tangy, equal parts salty. The authentic potato chip flavor neutralizes the sharp twang of the spices.
Oiliness: You bet! But it's healthy sunflower oil, if that counts.
Bag quantity: 1/4 air and the rest are chips
Aftertaste*: This is the sourest of the lot–like chugging a shot of vinegar. But the perfect combo is addictive. White lips, be damned!
Beer Matchness: made for each other
Rating: 5 Spots •••••

*after eating 10 chips without taking a drink

Photos by Lana Chan

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