Here come mine and some food experts' opinion on these new products...
Hershey's Nourishing Milk Mix: Great expectations- hershey's name and all that but largely thumbs down in terms of taste- too bitter. Kids may like it bcause of the easy to squeeze into milk routine. Tastes good as a spread on biscuits or bread. Priced not so greatly at Rs 60 for 250g. Low on the value for money equation. Thumbs tending downwards.
Fantastic rice crackers: available in Niligitri's at Rs 95 a pack. Imported. Available in a range of flavours like barbecue, pizza, cheese etc. Light, crisp, 96% fat free (baked). Acquired taste. High on trip to mouth. Thumbs up. The production is a very lengthy process I am told.
Haldiram nimbu masala: definitely thumbs up. In trend with the lemon concept that is catching up in the Indian snack market- Bingo chatkila nimbu achar, Kurkure electric, and now this.
Haldiram punjabi tadka: Another thumbs up. An aaloo lacha based snack.
Amul Sugarfree chocolate- Thumbs down. Packaging looks like a DVD cover in terms of looks & size. Open it and you find 8 tiny pieces totalling to 50g packed in a tray with a cellophene shrink wrap. The cellophene taste penetrates the chocolate and the poor diabetic fellow who is anyway starved for chocolates, ends up feeling cheated all the more at the meagre offering for Rs 40. Amul, you could hav done better than this.
Kissan Amaze Brain Food- Thumbs down on taste parameters. High expectations looking at the pack quality - They have spent well on the packs using higher density material. Score very low on the looks, aesthetics and th taste parameters. A kid may pick it up for the first time but may not have repeat purchases. A 3D is definitely better in price & taste
Frito Lay's 3D- Similar to Cadbury's Bytes but better mouthfeel and experience. The bite sized snack with lots of chocolate filling. Great product for kids and adults. But poor visibility & dispensing. Hidden among the haldiram's and local bhels. Difficult to locate unless you are looking for it. Definitely thumbs up in terms of taste.
Kurkure Extreme- Risky Chilly & Electric Nimbu - Mmmmm Seriously thoda zyaada! Great with a drink. Difficult for a single person to finish the pack as the flavours and spices are too pungent in the case of chilly and too sour in the case of lemon. But an experience worth risking. Thumbs up.
5 Star Fruit n Nut- You can't get it wrong with 5 star. It can get better only. A cross between a chocolate and a cereal bar but definitely much tastier and much more sinful. Yaay Thumbs up. But some prefer the 5-star crunchy of the "arrey" fame better. But like I said, you can't go wrong with the gooey, yummy 5 star.
Taj Dessert Tea- Th first of its kind in indulgence tea in India. Available in 3 flavours- read here for a lot of details & debate on the subject. Definitely an innovation but falls short of our expectations in the taste department. Neither meets the expectations of a tea drinker nor those of a dessert connossieur. Definitely not anyone's daily cup of tea, which is very habit led. Could be taken by those who want a break from the usual or those who dabble with milk and milk add ons. May become a category on its own depending upon how they make use of this new platform. Thumbs up for the concept. Thumbs down for the taste.
Lays Stax- Salsa Swing, Cajun Beats, Cheese Jalapeno Jive, Cream n Cheese Crave, Paprika Pizzaz & Salted Solo- Fabricated potato chips in a canister. At Rs 50 a pack it is definitely expensive but worth trying. Cajun & both the cheese are the clear favourites. Check out the dance themes for the names and the party pics on the can. Not very heavily advertised. Clearly thumbs up on taste and varianting parameters.
ITC Aashirwad Khaman Dhokla Mix- Thumbs Up especially for people like me who can never get the dhokla right. Easy to make just mix, steam and garnish. The leavening agent is separately included in the pack which needs to be mixed in the dough. At about Rs 30 / pack, it costs a little more than besan (gram flour) so definitely great value for money.