Japanese Snack Food Review: Pumpkin Pocky

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Check these Pocky out (that Pocky? those Pockys? the Pocky?). I’m not sure if the image does them justice but they are all about orange. Not citrus orange, not orange pepper orange, that color could be nothing but pumpkin orange. I know light is faster than sound and it must be because the crinkling of me opening the pocky came after the visual assault of orange. First and foremost, pumpkin pocky is Orange with the capital ‘O’.

After all that visual lead up, we found they did not smell real pumpkin like at all. They had a nice delicate creamy smell to them, which surprised me. I was expecting some sort of spicy pumpkin smell. Weirdly, too, it doesn’t really taste like spicy pumpkin pie, like I thought it would. It tastes rather creamy and graham crackeresque, as the pocky base sticks are wont and oft to taste. Only if you exhale through your nose after chomping on the pocky can you taste pumpkin (and then in spades) and it tastes like plain, unadulterated pumpkin.

I don’t know why I thought it would taste like pumpkin pie, since the packaging did not say Pumpkin Pie pocky but my western palate saw “pumpkin” and thought “pie”. Then I got to thinking about cinnamon and nutmeg and cloves and Mmmm…piiiieeeeeee but when I chomped and did the nose thing I got Mmmmm…errr…baked squash?!??? Who flavors anything pumpkin without adding all those tasty pie spices? Well, evidently pocky because cooked squash was what flooded the sinuses after the nose exhale thing. Not so good if you don’t care for squash but I am a big fan of cooked squash so I wasn’t too bothered by the taste per se. I was a little unsettled about eating a sweety stick candy and tasting cooked squash though. That was strange and very un-pie like. To quote one of my Guinea Pigs “Disturbing, but not bad.”

My one true disappointment was the lack of Pocky in the package. There were maybe 12 sticks (one foil package) in the box where as most pocky comes in 2 or 4 pocky packages per box. Sadly, the store I bought it from didn’t seem to feel the need to price accordingly, which annoyed me enough to knock a pea off the rating. Pumpkin Pocky is not worth the enthusiastic price I paid but if you can pick it up for a reasonabe amount, I’d say try it out. Otherwise, just stick to the chocolate because Pumpkin Pocky gets a

Rating

of 3 Wasabi Peas out of a possible 5.

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