Snack Review: Dirty’s Pesto and Parmesan Potato Chips
Over the years I’ve reviewed a lot of items. Fast food… Cereal… Chewing gum. The list goes on and on, but when I think of the one food item that I’m presumptuous enough to call myself an expert on, it’s potato chips.
Indeed, the list of chip reviews on this website reads like a compendium of fried potato knowledge. My favorites include UTZ, Route 11, and Cape Cod, with the list of brands I’ve yet to try having now been withered to but a few regional brands. One brand I hadn’t tried was Dirty’s. Based out of Louisiana, the chip makers with the rustic-looking bag make 12 different flavors of kettle style chips, many of which are sold in “gourmet” style markets. Being a fiend for anything involving Italian flavors and/or cheese, I paid $1.19 for a 2 oz. bag of their newest flavor, Pesto and Parmesan.
I’m told pesto is an acquired taste, and truth be told, I’m only kind of “meh” when it comes to the classic Italian condiment. Sure, I love basil and garlic, but I don’t care for strong olive oil flavors or pine nuts. As far as texture goes, the chips have a good crunch and moderate seasoning. There’s a welcomed umami taste from the Parmesan cheese, but the chips come across as a little too salty and oily, and there seems to be a buttermilk/ranch type flavor that just doesn’t belong. I’m not getting much in the way of basil flavor despite a slightly green hue, with the predominant flavors falling back on garlic and salt. There is a slight sweetness that does a little to lighten the chip and brighten the flavors, but it doesn’t quite accentuate the herb flavor to where it should be.
I can’t say if there’s a nutty taste here – which probably means there’s not – and despite a really good earthly potato sweetness, the seasoning tends to overwhelm the spud, and only intensifies as I get farther into the bag. The bottom layer of chips in the bag is a disappointment. Saturated in oil and seasoning, they’re salty and messy to eat.
Overall I thought these were good chips, although I can’t say I’d buy them again. Based off of the few thick cut chips I was able to lick the seasoning off of, I will definitely say that Dirty’s seems to have developed a great tasting pure potato flavor accentuated by peanut oil, but the Pesto and Parmesan flavor just wasn’t for me. A little too salty and oily, it’s a chip trying to do too much with a complicated criteria of flavors, although it will fascinate the longstanding inquiry into the tolerable aspects of the ubiquitous green potato chip question.
Pros: Crunchy chips have hint of sweetness and "meaty" flavor. Finger-licking quality. Taking pictures of chips in their natural environment. Crossing another chip maker off the list.
Cons: Not overly herb-y. Too much surface oil. "Dirty" fingers. Too much salt. Begs for a little more relief.
Price: $1.19 for a 2 oz. bag
Overall GrubGrade: 7.00 (Decent)
More Info: Dirtys.com
Dirt's Pesto and Parmesan Potato Chips (1 oz.)
Total Fat: 7 grams
Saturated Fat: 1.5 grams
Total Carbs: 16 grams
Fiber: 1 gram
Sugars: 1 gram
Protein: 2 grams