Pricewatch product reviews: Popcorn

Four brands put to the taste test

 

Tayto €1.79 for 100g
Mr Tayto is a crisp man at heart and we’re not sure he looks entirely comfortable standing at the top of this bag waving at a mound of popcorn. The bag tells us this is “new, salted perfection” and both natural and nutritious. This may well be true. It is hard to say – what is “perfection” when it comes to popcorn, after all? What is easier to say is that at 2.5g of salt per 100g, this contains more of the white stuff than any of its rivals. It also has significantly more saturated fats than any of the other brands tried. In fact, it has 23.1g of saturated fats in a bag compared with just 1.9g in the Proper Corn option. It does taste nice, mind you.
Verdict: Salty
Star rating: ***

Manhattan €1.84 for 100g
We have long had a soft spot for this brand, not least because they are home grown and make their popcorn in Finglas and they make their popcorn very well indeed. It is utterly reliable, with a nice texture and a balance of flavours that we think works. It is salty – although marginally less so than then the Tayto option – but we like that about them. It is a product that is easy to lay your hands on in supermarkets big and small, and when you buy a bag you know it won’t let you down. It won’t, however, blow you away with a range of mad flavours either but maybe that is to its credit?.
Verdict: Home-grown deliciousness
Star rating: ****

Proper Corn €2.49 for 80g
This is a great brand which makes great popcorn in a range of great flavours. The peppery popcorn has a really spicy kick to it as does the Fiery Worcester Sauce and Sun-Dried Tomato flavour. Imagine a Bloody Mary in popcorn form. It is very far from sun-dried tomato flavoured popcorn we were reared , mind you. And when Pricewatch was a lad, there would have been no way we could have afforded this class of treat – it is a good bit dearer than the competition and probably trickier to find, but if you do find it, buy it; you won’t be disappointed. It also has less salt and less fat than any of its rivals.
Verdict: Gorgeous
Star rating: *****

Kelkin €3.49 for 150g
This company sells a lot of very good microwave popcorns but we’re not entirely sure it is covering itself in glory by selling the bagged version. It is grand but certainly nothing to get excited about. At 1.6g of salt per 100g, it is a good deal less salty than either the Tayto or the Manhattan popcorns – but unlike the Proper Corn option it doesn’t make up for the reduction of that flavour enhancer with the addition of other flavours, which means it is on the bland side of the fence.
Verdict: A bit dull, maybe?
Star rating: **

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