Monday, August 30, 2010
Bourbon "Chee Goo" Rice Snack
I found this at a market in a neighboring area which I rarely go to. I didn't care what was in the box. With a name like "Chee Goo", I had to review it. Of course, it is non-goo-like, as the picture on the box illustrates. This would be disappointing except that this is something I have to eat and I'm just as happy not to be eating "goo".
I paid 100 yen ($1.16) for this and had an annoying experience when I bought it. The market is divided into two floors and half of the top floor is a 100-yen-shop at which I bought some little souvenir thing to send to my sister. The other half of the top floor sells normal food which can't be paid for at the counter upstairs. You have to cart it down to the cashiers on the first floor. I wasn't using a basket and I had this and the souvenir and placed both of them on the counter to deal with my wallet. Though I knew I'd have to take the "Chee Goo" downstairs to pay, the woman manning the register told me I'd have to do it. That wasn't the problem. The problem was the condescending way in which she did it. She talked to me like I was a developmentally disabled 3-year-old.
These are made by Bourbon, who's little brownie-bite-like cakes and Petit Bit chocolates I've reviewed favorably before. I'm not sure where the name came from, but it's certainly based on "cheese" plus something else. Unlike most of these types of snacks which are based on corn or potatoes, these are based on rice. Non-sembei rice snacks are relatively uncommon.
The entire box is 50 grams (1.8 oz.) of triangular-shaped crunchy bitsand has 232 calories and half the box makes a good amount. The texture is great. They are puffy, but crispy. Each has a nice coating of cheesy powder on the outside which actually tastes like cheese. In particular, I could detect Gouda and Parmesan flavors. The ingredients include just "cheese powder" as well as coconut (which I could not taste at all), shortening, whey, "cheese", peanut butter(!), and gelatin. Though those all sound weird, these are very good and flavorful.
In the long line of cheese snacks I've eaten in Japan, these are definitely near the top of the heap. They're also "non fry" so they're not greasy. Despite the awesomely goofy name and cheap price, these are a tasty salted snack treat and I'd recommend anyone who can find them (they're not common) pick up a box.