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PC Poutine Flavoured Rippled Potato Chips Review

Anyone who knows me very well also knows I love poutine. I spent the better part of my life in the Montreal area, where this dish can be found on pretty much any street corner where there is a mom and pop deli or a pizzeria. A hearty plate of hot, greasy fries topped with authentic curd cheese and gravy, it's one of the must-have foods to try when you visit Quebec.

Now that we've moved to Western Canada it's tough to find even decent French fries, let alone curd cheese or a plate of authentic poutine . They serve something called poutine in certain fast food chains, but the last time I tried one of those I was very disappointed.

When k_mccormick2 offered me a taste of some poutine potato chips she bought at Extra Foods, I had some serious doubts about them. But as a true lover of the dish I figured I had to at least give them a shot.

PoutineOf course you can't expect a potato chip to offer the mouth feel of oozing, drippy cheese and gravy married with the starch and hot grease of thick-cut fries. However I wondered if President's Choice could produce a flavouring that at least approximates the taste of poutine.

The simple answer is no.

The gravy flavour came out well in the chip, but it wasn't really the same gravy I'm used to in a poutine. It seemed more heavily caramelized, and it had a tad too much salt for my liking – an observation that was borne out by the 340 mg of salt in a serving of just 20 chips. By comparison, Lay's offers a Fries & Gravy flavour that has only 270 mg of salt .

For the cheese flavour, which should be a little like melted mozzarella in a lasagna or a pizza, President's Choice opted to use a powdered cheddar cheese product. And quite frankly, I didn't even taste it.

I honestly don't know that a potato chip could ever come close to reproducing the complex flavours and textures of a dish like poutine, any more than I'd expect to taste a chip that could approximate souvlaki on a pita. But I would have at least expected to have the gravy taste right, and to recognize something that was like cheese.

Poutine Flavoured Rippled Potato Chips are part of the World of Flavours line offered by President's Choice. They are sold at Loblaws and at your local PC-affiliated grocery store, in 235g bags.

| | | | | | | | LoudMan |

Image credits:
Chips photo by Paul Hurst/Wikipedia ( CC BY-SA 2.5 )
Poutine photo by Kyla Matton Osborne, all rights reserved

Disclosure: The writer has no relationship with President's Choice and has not in any way been compensated for sampling or reviewing the product. All opinions are based on in-home sampling of a product which was purchased by the writer.

Note about links: All boldface links in this review lead to additional content on related topics, written by me

Image Credit »'s_Crisps.jpg

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Scorpie wrote on July 30, 2014, 9:17 PM

Very Interesting. I have never even seen the word poutine before.

Ruby3881 wrote on July 30, 2014, 9:26 PM

It's a Quebec French word that means a big mess. Poutine is a "big mess" of really hot fries, topped with curd cheese and gravy :D

Fractal wrote on July 30, 2014, 9:44 PM

The nearest we have around here are Cheesey Chips - Fries served with melted cheese over the top.
Adding gravy is not something that appeals to my palate, but it has its place I suppose. I understand that Glasgow is famous for its fried-in-batter Mars bar. (Chocolate bars covered in batter and deep fried.)

LoudMan wrote on July 30, 2014, 11:39 PM

I'm familiar with what I've always called garbage fries which is chili and cheese over fries. And I've had a taste for white or sausage gravy over fries from a day before I was born but I've yet to try this.

LoudMan wrote on July 30, 2014, 11:53 PM

And, thank you for your contest entry.

Ruby3881 wrote on July 31, 2014, 5:24 PM

I think I'd probably find the cheesey chips were missing something, but I guess it depends on what kind of cheese is used. Yesterday my folks took the youngest out to lunch and they bought a "poutine" at a local restaurant. They brought some back for my son to eat, and I sampled it. Besides the fact that the fries were just gross, there seemed to be little gravy and no cheese at all. I wasn't impressed!

I had always though deep fried Mars bars were an American phenomenon. I hadn't realized they were such a thing in Glasgow....

Ruby3881 wrote on July 31, 2014, 6:34 PM

I thought I'd already replied to this comment, but it seems something went wrong. So here goes again!

I've had cheesy chili fries from Dairy Queen, but found them rather unsubstantial. The combo in general sounds great, and i imagine in a proper sit-down diner you'd get a really great plate of garbage fries. There are versions of poutine that probably approximate this dish, with a sort of chili or spicy tomato sauce instead of a brown gravy.

I've never tried white gravy on fries, that I can recall. I imagine it's quite good, though :)

Ruby3881 wrote on August 1, 2014, 12:45 PM

It's amazing how the world is beginning to be aware of this dish, which used to just be served in greasy spoons in Quebec. Now there are 5-star chefs making poutine with gourmet ingredients, and you can even find the authentic dish in places like Japan and the Philippines. It's pretty cool for a poutine lover to see that kind of popularity :)

k_mccormick2 wrote on August 2, 2014, 7:28 PM

I love chips in general and will try any chip at least once. I think that I will be sticking to the sour cream and bacon chips (which are my favorite chips.) I think that I need to stay away from chips for a while for the sake of the figure that I want to obtain (although every time I say that it never ever happens) :)

AthenaGoodlight wrote on August 9, 2014, 7:47 AM

I have never known about poutine until I read your post. This is something I need to add to my bucket list. I don't know when in my lifetime will I be able to visit Montreal. I may be settling in Toronto in the next few years, but that will still be too far from the source. Now, I'm drooling for that "big mess" you described. :)

Ruby3881 wrote on August 9, 2014, 10:42 AM

I hear you, Momma! I love the sour cream and bacon entirely too much, myself :)

Ruby3881 wrote on August 9, 2014, 10:44 AM

Poutine may be available in Toronto. If you end up there, ask around! I know they have it in parts of Ontarion, including the Ottawa valley :)

k_mccormick2 wrote on August 23, 2014, 1:32 AM

Oh ya that one is a great combo. Every time that flavor is in my house the children never get any (no matter how many bags I buy.) I love that one and the smoky bacon one :)