Taste Test: Mountain Dew "Quest" Doritos
Due to popular demand and the fact that we love trying weird foods and candies, The A.V. Club will now regularly feature "Taste Tests." Feel free to suggest disgusting and/or delicious new edibles for future installments: E-mail us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mountain Dew "Quest" Doritos
Mountain Dew "Voltage"
Mountain Dew "Revolution"
Mountain Dew "Supernova"
It seems that snacking has become far too simple an endeavor. After all, why should we fat-asses snarf down our heavily preserved, sugar-laden snacks without a second thought, when we could be doing the same thing, except more "extreme," and with a vague goal in mind besides abating hunger/thirst? Why just eat when you could be a part of something, man?
Such is the thinking behind Doritos Quest and Mountain Dew's new "Dewmocracy" flavors. Each product invites you to get involved with your newest snack commodity beyond just chewing and digesting. Doritos' "The Quest" promotion begins with guessing the flavor of the accompanying mystery-flavored chips; after entering the flavor online at snackstrongproductions.com (ooh, snappy title, guys!), munchers embark on some sort of mysterious treasure-hunt thingamabobber that we didn't even bother to decipher. Sure, the bag instructs us that "Guessing the flavor is just the beginning," and there's a $100,000 prize involved somehow, but it seems like an awful lot of work, especially when your typing fingers are covered in Dorito dust.
There's no prize at stake with the new Mountain Dew flavors—just your freedom of choice, you democracy-hating ne'er-do-wells. The three new flavors—"created by Dew drinkers"—are competing to be the next President Of Dewmerica, or whatever, and you, yes YOU, must go online at dewmocracy.com to cast your vote for which is the Dewiest Dew of all. Dew it, or the communists win.
However, there is one more cog in the glorious marketing machine, and it clicks into place when you visit snackstrongproductions.com to enter your guess for the Doritos Quest "mystery flavor." After some random clicking, the helpful bots at Snack Strong Productions offer a "clue" to point you in the right direction: _OUNTAIN _EW. Yes, the mystery flavor is indeed (spoiler alert!) Mountain Dew, which, like Doritos, is owned by PepsiCo. And thus the snacking serpent swallows its own tail. It's called synergy, people.
Taste: We started with Doritos, keeping our minds and taste buds open even though A.V. Clubber Josh Modell had already told us what the mystery flavor was. One taste tester described the chips as having a "sickly green color," but they're actually fairly innocuous-looking yellow corn chips dusted with a coating that's almost exactly the color of Mountain Dew. On first bite, they're overwhelmingly corn-chippy, with a disorienting sweetness that's reminiscent of Fruit Loops. The dominant flavor is indistinctly citrus with an odd tang that might just be buttermilk. (We deduced this based on the buttermilk powder in the ingredients list.) Reactions ranged from "I hate it" to "I don't entirely hate it," with most tasters objecting to the chips' sweetness.
The three Mountain Dew flavors are purple, blue, and other blue, also known by the totally extreme tags "Supernova" (strawberry-melon), "Voltage" (raspberry-citrus), and "Revolution" (wild berry). All contain ginseng and taste like slight adulterations of regular Mountain Dew, in varying degrees of sickly sweet and with a little less carbonation. The general favorite, however, seemed to be Voltage. (And indeed, a quick visit to dewmocracy.com confirms that Voltage is winning 46 percent of the vote in Illinois, where Taste Test headquarters are located.) None of the "flavors" were really strong enough to be ascertained without checking the label first—the dominant flavor in all three seemed to be "whatever Mountain Dew tastes like."
— "It's like a lime-citrus flavor. A couple more rounds of product testing would've come up with a really good chip."
— "It's extreme."
— "It's not very extreme."
— "It's extremely bad."
— "Chips shouldn't be sweet, and these prove why."
— "They taste like regular Doritos—i.e., full of sharp, unnatural-tasting flavors—but with a disarmingly sweet aftertaste. Bring a toothbrush."
— "Holy fuck. Chips should not be this sugary. I should not be getting a sugar buzz from Doritos."
— "I didn't think the chips were too bad. Buttermilk-lime. Obviously no one in the world would've figured out what they were supposed to be without the __OUNTAIN __EW clue."
— "The exit flavor is kinda funky."
— "I don't think they could make a chip taste worse than this."
— "They're not that bad. I'm having another one, fuckers."
Mountain Dew Supernova
— "Oh, that's a really weird color."
— "It's like weak-carbonated grape soda."
— "It tastes like diet soda, and yet I think it's full of sugar."
— "It just tastes like sweetness, that's it."
— "It's like Kool-Aid."
— "Or a melted popsicle."
— "It's literally diabetes. In a cup."
— "Kinda generic berry drink. They could throw in a bunch more red dye and call this one Wild Cherry or Super Strawberry, and I wouldn't know the difference. It doesn't really taste like melon."
Mountain Dew Revolution
— "Did everything just taste blue for a second?"
— "Oh, that's just gross."
— "It smells like Windex. It looks like Windex."
— "It's like Hi-C Ecto Cooler flavor."
— "Do you like blue sugar or purple sugar?"
— "It's like cotton candy."
— "This has a really strong medicine smell. And it tastes like chlorine to me. It's the color of swimming-pool water, and that's about what it tastes like too. Except with a very slight berry edge."
Mountain Dew Voltage
— "It has a very faint raspberry flavor."
— "This one tastes more like a blue Icee."
— "It's almost likeable."
— "I just can't fathom drinking this shit."
— "These are all much worse than regular Mountain Dew. I've said it before and I'll say it again, Dewmocracy doesn't work."
— "It reminds me of the blue 'sugar plum' soda from this year's Christmas Pack of Jones Sodas. It's sort of generic sweet fruity blueness, without any strong specific flavors. This is actually mild and pretty pleasant."
— "These all taste like very subtle variations on the same thing. Overwhelming sweetness + slight flavor + different color = Derivative Dew. I vote for none of them!"
— "Afterward, all you want to do is brush your teeth and find some Tums, as heartburn is a-comin'."
— "It should be noted that they are all vaguely Dew flavored, like they started from the same place. Like retarded offspring."
Where to get them: Convenience stores and grocery stores. The usual.