Food Junk food

Review: Covered Bridge Smokin’ Sweet BBQ chips

Covered Bridge Smokin’ Sweet BBQ chips, wrapped in awful, ugly as sin packaging.

The Look: The packaging looks like it was designed by a creatively challenged child with a felt marker and a below-average aptitude for shading. Possible explanations?

  • 1. The common (and much sought-after) crappy-looking-restaurant-with-amazing-food fake-out trick.
  • 2. The terrible packaging design has become so linked to the brand that nobody dares change it.
  • 3. A kid won the design competition. (If that’s the case, sorry about making fun of the packaging. I’m sure Lil’ Jimmy did his best. Gold stars all around.)

The Pitch: The description on the back of the bag is in French and English, though the French description makes more sense. The chips come all the way from Hartland, New Brunswick, home of the world’s longest covered bridge (hence the name). They aim for traditional flavour and texture, and eschew any preservatives, artificial colourings or artificial flavourings. They’re gluten-free and trans-fat free. Sounds good to me.

The Taste: Yum. They’re not as thick, tough and crunchy as other kettle-style chips I’ve had, and they’re not as light and airy as standard Old Dutch or Lays chips. The sweet BBQ flavouring is good, with a salt-onion-garlic-smoke profile. Any sweetness dissipates quickly once the other flavours take over. It’s somewhere between old-school BBQ flavour and the more modern mesquite BBQ variant.

Bright orange and rustic-looking, just like a BBQ kettle chip should be.

RATINGS AND DETAILS

Cost: $3.79 for a 198 gram (7 oz.) bag at my local Sobeys.

Value for cash money: Good, good.

Availability: Across Canada and in parts of the U.S. Their website has a useful store location finder. I got mine at Sobeys. The Covered Bridge site says they’re available at Bulk Barn stores nationwide, though my local Bulk Barn didn’t have them.

Nutrition?: 240 calories per 29 chips (49 grams). In that serving size, there are 12 grams of fat, 290 mg of sodium, 3 grams of fibre and 4 grams of protein. Some vitamin C and iron, too. They’re chips, and they’re oily, so enjoy in moderation.

Horseradish powder?: It exists, and it’s on the ingredients list.

The verdict: Not the best chips in the world, but pretty tasty. Now that I know the brand exists, I’m going to have to try tracking down a bag of their cinnamon and brown sugar sweet potato chips. Those sound particularly interesting.

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