I while back I received an e-mail that called me up to become a super-hero, and I decided that despite it needing a photo and a bit of effort I'd give it a go. I was expecting an e-mail back with a money off voucher for Pepsi (disclosure - which is my mass produced sugar water of choice) or something similar. I got nothing. Just over a month later a parcel was left for me with the elderly couple next door that I was not expecting (maybe they are my Alfred) and I opened it up in front of them to find it was Jalapeno Fire Dorritos and Citrus Freeze Pepsi Max. As this was not something they would enjoy sharing I took it all next door to my secret lair.
Also in the box was a DVD for the movie Kick Ass (which I haven't seen as it's not on LoveFilm) and a Survival book which is similar to a calendar I had a few years ago that teaches you how to wrestle crocodiles and other useful hints. Naturally this is better than a voucher. I also got a pair of invisibility glasses whose functionality seems to have been impaired during transit.
First up I had a try of the Pepsi Max (or Mepsi, which has become the affectionate truncated name for it but sounds a lot less extreme than i guess it's supposed to be). I have a long history with variations of Pepsi Max, and even had a corduroy jacket with the logo on I got from C&A back when I was young enough that parents had to pay for my clothes, but old enough to be allowed to choose them. As mentioned previously regular Pepsi is a go-to drink for me, and Pepsi Max's borderline mind-altering chemicals have frequently been mixed with the similar KFC chicken prior to music events to enhance the experience.
The citrus freeze variety has an aftertaste of Lime but is still recognisably Pepsi Max. I think it's suffered a bit during transport, and isn't as fizzy as it could be, but still tastes pretty good. I think that the flavour is designed to be pretty smooth and it's not as intense as I expected. I'll certainly try this at some point while out to see whether this is an effect of the postal nature of its arrival.
I'm not a big fan of spicy 'corn chips' - the best Dorrito flavour so far is the lime one, that starts off as a lovely tingle and by the end of a large bag can get quite powerful. These also seem to have something that promotes hyperactivity (as I found out to my cost in a lecture where I had a bag for lunch) but maybe I'm just particularly sensitive to certain additives. I opened the bag of Jalapeno Fire with some trepidation.
The first thing I noticed was the smell - it's like Hot Monster Munch! These are one of the greatest Kidult snacks on the planet (I wonder if they are just known in the UK - anyone know of international variations?) and the pickled onion and Hot flavours are both amazing. Suddenly the experience was less like the chilli-beef that I had at Shanghai 30s and more like a childhood snack and a lot less scary. So I took a bite.
Surprisingly they aren't all that similar in flavour to Monster Munch. They don't have the initial savoury (umami?) kick of the MM, but do have a nice slight chilli flavour. The heat curve builds from this up to about 20 seconds in and is very bearable, and then gently reduces afterwards. This is far less potent than I expected, but much more pleasurable for it. Also the chips seem more fragile and less like cinema nachos than I remember, which is also good as this probably means they have reduced the calorie content of the recipe. I'm surprised, but I actually like these! Naturally I’d struggle to eat these while gaming - I'd hate to get burning dust over controllers and cards, but I may take these out tonight to the theatre (the comedian Milton Jones).
Importantly for this promo though, how do the two work in tandem? Actually quite well is the shock answer! The slightly less fizzy Mepsi counteracts the burn of the Dorritos well and encourages chugging of the slightly larger than normal 600ml drink.
The main question we like to answer here is would I buy them again - and over their regular counterparts? I'd happily pick up a bag of Lime Dorritos for a party with a couple of bottles of regular Pepsi Max, but I think for a change it might be nice to get the new version. It may surprise a few elderly relatives with the spiciness and hidden Lime kick though, so this is more of a 'with friends' kind of option. I can see these being a massive hit with teenagers though, and the @_icefist and @_FireFingers twitter accounts contents suggest that this may be the target audience.
As for me - I'm 32 and sitting here in my Invisibility Glasses, and if I make it through all of the crisps & pop I may just believe that they work...