Barbecue potato chips

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 03 May, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Thursday, 03 May, 2012, 12:00am


Smoky, tangy, sour, spicy, sweet: could you pack any more flavours into a thinly sliced piece of deep-fried potato? The perfect barbecue potato chip has a balance of all five qualities. Janice Leung went in search of the ones worth their salt

Calbee BBQ Flavoured

Although Calbee is a Japanese brand, these popular chips in the distinctive yellow foil bag taste just like home to many Hongkongers. You'll find that they are made with a completely different interpretation of the word 'barbecue'. They are neither tangy nor sweet; it's all about the smokiness and inherent flavour that char-grilling imparts. Thin, light and supremely crunchy.

HK$14.90, Wellcome, citywide

Ruffles Smokehouse Style BBQ

If you want flavour, this crinkle-cut variety has it in spades. The intense taste of barbecue sauce permeates every chip and the ridges mean that compared with their smoother competitors, Ruffles have more surface area to take on the seasoning, which is sweet, sour, tangy and slightly spicy. They go down very well with a cold beer.

HK$22.90, Oliver's the Delicatessen, 2/F Prince's Building, 10 Chater Rd, Central

Kettle Country Style Barbeque

Thick and substantial, these chips are harder to bite into than the rest. Rather than being overwhelmed with barbecue flavour, you can actually taste the potato in these. The irregular shape means that some chips catch more of the seasoning than others, so the experience can be patchy. Fried in mono-unsaturated safflower oil and certified organic by the USDA.

HK$33, ThreeSixty, 3/F The Landmark, 15 Queen's Rd Central, Central

Pringles Grilled BBQ

These relatively thick, smooth and uniformly curved crisps are brittle and more akin to savoury tuilles than potato chips, which is particularly evident when you snap them. Once in the mouth they become almost creamy and paste-like. This starchiness is gratifying at first, but can become heavy and unappetising. The taste is more like roasted bell peppers cooked in Worcestershire sauce.

HK$15.90, ParknShop, citywide

Lay's Stax Barbecue

Stax are Lay's answer to Pringles, a uniform chip stacked inside an elongated plastic container reminiscent of a dumbbell. The barbecue flavour is tomato sauce-like, with a hint of acidity to counter the sweetness. They're rougher in texture than their better-selling rivals and considerably thinner. The taste is a little on the light side, and even bland in the spots that the seasoning hasn't reached.

HK$15.90, ParknShop, citywide