Salt and vinegar potato chips are one of those love 'em-or-hate 'em snack foods. Here at HuffPost Taste, we've found that if you love them, you want them strong. You want the corners of your mouth to burn from the acidity of the vinegar, and you want the salt to sting a little. We know that sounds aggressive, but we have a feeling you S+V lovers are picking up what we're throwing down. On a mission to find the best, we of course devised a taste test for the occasion.
We've tested barbecue and kettle chips before, but never salt and vinegar. We were happy bolster our panel of judges with some serious enthusiasts who crawled out of the woodwork in our newsroom. We tasted 12 different brands in a double-blind test, ranking them on crunch and balance of flavor.
How did your favorite do? Find out in the slideshow below.
As always, this taste test is in no way sponsored or influenced by the brands included.
#1: Deep River
<b>Comments:</b> "Great crunch and decent vinegar kick, but very hard." "Solid salt and vinegar. I'm into this." "Great texture, very crunchy, perfect level of vinegar. Winner!" "I LOVE these. They're so vinegary. Great crunch, real potato." "Very crispy chip, nice texture."
#2: Lay's Kettle Cooked
<b>Comments:</b> "I like this, I really like this. Good vinegar, gently sweet, perfectly crunchy." "The best balance of the bunch." "There's something off with the flavor here -- too much oil?" "Not enough flavor, but good crunch."
#3: Trader Joe's
<b>Comments:</b> "Great crunch, really bright vinegar notes." "Solid." "Mild taste, great crisp texture." "Pretty great, really perfect thickness."
<b>Comments:</b> "So vinegary, with no grease. Love these. They burn my lips so good." "I like these, but they could be stronger." "Pringles. I love you, but you will never be the best salt and vinegar chip." "Not quite strong enough."
<b>Comments:</b> "Nice burn on my lips, great crunch." "Great kettle texture, nice vinegar flavor." "Tangy vinegar, great crunchiness." "This tastes like cilantro?"
<b>Comments:</b> "SO vinegary and REALLY salty. These are serious. Actually, there's way too much salt the more of them I eat." "A little heavy on the salt, but that's a solid potato chip." "Great blend of flavors, with a light crunch." "Yuck. All salt, no vinegar."
<b>Comments:</b> "Thin and weak texture wise, with an almost chemical-strength acidity." "Is there fish oil in this? NASTY." "Not crispy enough, and too salty." "Good vinegar flavor, horrible chip texture."
<b>Comments:</b> "Almost no vinegar at all. Basically, they're regular chips." "Don't be shy with the vinegar, guys. We're buying these because that's what we want." "Very likable -- mild flavors of vinegar." "Is there sugar on these? Don't like them, but don't hate them."
<b>Comments:</b> "So pale and so thin -- not enough vinegar flavor." "Whoa. Is this salt and vinegar perfection?" "Airy, light crunch, very mild vinegar flavor." "Mostly salt. Very little vinegar."
#10: Kettle Bakes
<b>Comments:</b> "Weird, unpleasant crunch. Not good." "That's a hard chip. The vinegar tastes spoiled, if that's even possible." "Thick. Too thick." "Way too thick and kind of tastes like raw potato."
#11: Cape Cod Reduced Fat
<b>Comments:</b> "Almost like regular chips. Not strongly flavored." "Where's the vinegar?" "Not enough salt or vinegar." "Totally edible, but a little boring.""No salt OR vinegar!"
<b>Comments:</b> "Too bland, all I taste is oil." "Weak. WEAK." "Too greasy, not enough vinegar." "Ugh. These taste like cardboard and green tea?"
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