Fast Casual Review: Einstein Bros. Double Chocolate Chip Bagel Poppers
Einstein Brothers has been on a full court press as of late, introducing a host of new menu items and promotions. Not only has the popular fast casual chain launched a facebook page, but they’ve introduced a line of limited-time only “Twisted” bagels and a Double Chocolate Chip bagel just in time for Valentines Day (read our review here). But by far and away their most seasonally appropriate item has got to be the brand spankin’ new Double Chocolate Chip Bagel Poppers:
A chocolate blast in every bite! Our latest bagel creation bursts with three kinds of chocolate for all kinds of fun!
Both Ryan and I have reviewed various flavors of the Bagel Poppers before, with my personal favorite being the fall-themed Pumpkin Cream Cheese Poppers (sadly, no longer offered.) For those of you unfamiliar with the concept of the bite-sized treats, the best way to describe them are basically as bagel ‘holes’ covered in either a corn syrup-based glaze or cream cheese. In the case of the Double Chocolate Chip Poppers, I can indeed confirm that they have three layers of chocolate, and boy did I enjoy all three of them!
My cup of Poppers came with 18 of the sweet temptations. For $2.99 it’s a pretty good value, but was made even better by the fact that I had a “Buy 1 Beverage, Get a Free Bottle of Poppers” coupon that I received as a member of the chain’s E-Club. When I first dug into the poppers, I noticed that the outer layer of chocolate glaze was still somewhat hard, and yielded an incredibly sweet chocolate glaze flavor that I slowly licked from the surface. Right beneath the thin layer of super-sweet chocolate covered goodness was another layer of icing, followed by a light and airy bagel interior that felt fresh out of the oven. Pardon the somewhat ironic pun, but this was the ‘icing on the cake’ for me. As for the chocolate glaze itself, the ingredient list on the bottom of the cup revealed it to be more or less what you’d find in a bottle of Hershey’s chocolate syrup, with maybe some extra stabilizers thrown in for good measure. Not that I’m complaining, as I happen to love the super-sweet taste of Hershey’s syrup.
As I dug into more of the Poppers, I found my fingers becoming insanely gooey from the entire process. This was both a good and a bad thing. While I enjoyed licking the sweet chocolate glaze from my fingers, I could tell that my perceived messiness was starting to draw some attention from the other patrons of the cafe. Long story short, expect to come away with some chocolate covered lips after eating these. Not that it mattered to me, as I continued to enjoy the contrast in texture between the syrupy coating and the airy, fresh-baked interior.
We’ve covered the first and most prominent layer of chocolate flavor in the Poppers (the coating), but what about the other parts? Well, the bagel itself tastes just like Einstein’s Double Chocolate Chip bagel. It doesn’t overwhelm you with the rich chocolate taste of cocoa butter (probably because it doesn’t contain any) but it has a respectable kick of cocoa powder which is accented by small chocolate chips buried within the bites themselves. It’s actually a pretty good contrast to the glaze, which might strike some people as artificial (I noticed the ingredient list was rather laboratory-esque) and overly sweet, but as a 21-year old male that kind of thing is right up my ally anyway. To sum it all up, these Poppers were quite good. Maybe not as awesomely delicious as the Pumpkin Poppers, but certainly worth the $2.99 value and intense sugar crash you’re sure to suffer soon after. Just be sure not to buy these things for your kid before church or anything, as the end result will leave their face looking somewhat akin to this memorable scene from” Matilda”.
Pros: 3 Layers of Chocolate goodness bursting with bold, sweet flavor that blows away a normal chocolate chip bagel. Warm and airy interior with bite sized chocolate chips. Basically a mini-bagel covered in Hershey's syrup.
Cons: Perhaps the world's biggest sugar bomb. May strike some as artificial, and doesn't have the buttery and decadent taste of cocoa butter associated with it. Messy as all get-out. Not every Popper had chocolate chips. Will leave your child looking like a slob and probably reflect poorly on your parenting skills. Sad to say, but probably the highlight of my Valentine's Day.
Grubbing on-the-go: 3.50/10
Overall GrubGrade: 7.50/10
More Info: EinsteinBros.com
Double Chocolate Chip Bagel Poppers
Serving Size: 1 container
Calories from Fat: 90
Total Fat: 10 g
Saturated Fat: 4 g
Trans Fat: 0g
Cholesterol: 0 mg
Sodium: 550 mg
Carbohydrates: 91 g
Sugars: 36 g
Fiber: 3 g
Protein: 11 g