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Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Editor's Choice-479 Popcorn

I grew up in a small town in southern West Virginia. So, when we went to the local theater, our choices in popcorn flavors were butter and plain. Therefore, when an assortment of 479°’s gourmet popcorn came to the office, I lunged at the opportunity to expand my popcorn palette. And, my education is much appreciated. The company’s Chipotle Caramel + Almonds flavor is one of the tastiest treats I’ve sampled during my tenure at Fancy Food & Culinary Products.

The company, whose name was rendered from the fact that Founder Jean Arnold believes 479°Fahrenheit is the optimal temperature for popping corn, has a variety of flavors. But, all of the popcorns contain no trans fat, are naturally gluten free and are certified kosher. The Chipotle Caramel + Almonds flavor is an ideal mixture of sweet caramel kernels delicately drizzled with traces of spicy chipotle. I was initially skeptical of the flavor combination. After all, a chipotle is a jalapeno chili ripened on the vine and then smoked for a few days. How would the company tame that spiciness? The answer is simple, a delicate hand. The popcorn isn’t overwhelmed by the various flavors, which allows them to co-exist simultaneously. This line is all about contrast in both flavor and texture. So, Arnold wisely threw in two big handfuls of almonds. The crunchiness of the nuts is a nice juxtaposition against the fluffiness of the actual popcorn.

I’m eager to try 479°’s other unusual flavor combinations. In fact, maybe I’ll smuggle a little of the Chipotle Caramel + Almond into my local theater. It will make those sappy chick-flicks I love even more enjoyable.