Wednesday, May 11, 2011

French Fry Diary 224: The Original Saratoga Chips

On a recent trip to the Cracker Barrel, I picked up a box of The Original Saratoga Chips. Reputedly these are the original potato chips. The real thing, baby.

The story goes that George Crum was a cook at Moon's Lake House, a resort in Saratoga Springs NY. One August day in 1853 a rather annoying customer complained that Crum's French fries were too thick and kept ending them back.

Crum, angered by this customer finally cut his potatoes paper-thin, over-fried them and over-salted them - then sent them out to the man. Much to Crum's surprise, the customer loved them and so did others. These Saratoga chips became so popular that Crum was able to open his own restaurant. They remained local until a man named Lay discovered them, but that's another story.

At least that's what the legend says. I was surprised to find this cardboard box at the Cracker Barrel general store. It was almost like finding the chip Holy Grail. These even had the "Moon Brand" trademark on the box, and were from Saratoga Springs NY.

The box also has wonderful sayings printed on it like "A delicious delicacy," "an excellent lunch food," "may be served with any beverage if desired." the back of the box also recounts the tale of George Crum and the Saratoga chips.

This treat is brought to us by the Saratoga Specialties Co. in Saratoga Springs and contains just potatoes, vegetable oil and sea salt. No transfats, baby.

Inside the box there was a more traditional potato chip bag, but sealed and unmarked. I carefully opened it and poured some of these babies out. I have to say I was more than a bit disappointed. The chips were pretty standard kettle chips, not bad, but not great either. The Bride liked them a lot more than me it should be noted.

What disappointed me the most was the $5.99 I paid for this little bag in a box. Well, I guess the anticipation and entertaining box were both worth the price of admission.

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2 comments:

Danny J. said...

Thanks for the review Glenn! While I understand they were not your cup of tea, we sure do get a lot of positive feedback. Please thank your "bride" for us! :-)

Also, I think if you check the weight, you will see you are actually getting a full 9oz bag of Saratoga Chips. We don't sell you a bag full of air, just the chips.

We offer hand made kettle chips in limited batches by gourmet artisans. We think the price is fair. Plus, if you look at the weight, we are the same price per ounce as the other chips you mentioned in your previous post.

Keep up the good work!

Best,

Danny J., President
Saratoga Specialties Company

Glenn Walker said...

Thank you for your kind thoughts, Danny, and although the chips weren't my thing, the package was top flight and well worth the price. I loved it!

And yes, there were a lot of chips. The Bride is still snacking on them, and she's quite the fan. I am sure we will be returning to Cracker Barrel for your Saratoga Chips soon.

Cheers!