The Rooster Coop

New York City? Get a Rope.

Posted in Stuff We Like, Taste Test Thursday by rickyatrooster on March 3, 2011
The Salsa Set Up

The Salsa Set Up

I was given the honor of organizing the first Taste Test Thursday of the year. Being from Texas, I naturally thought of chips and salsa. I’ve lived in NYC for 5 years now and while there is a plethora of diverse culinary experiences, the “Tex-Mex” variety is severely lacking. And I’m not talking about Cali-style burrito joints, awesome authentic Mex in the ‘burg, or places named Happy-Friend-Tortilla. I’m talking the kind of Tex-Mex where you can get combo platters with rice and beans and you get free, bottomless chips and salsa when you sit down at your table.

But, I digress…


I always had the counter-intuitive theory that the least desirable packaging design for salsa meant the most tasty (same for wine, but that’s another TTT). The theory is based on the fact that the best tasting salsa is usually fresh, authentic and locally-made. Those kind of salsa companies tend to be small and lack the funds or the awareness for fancy design.

So, I wanted to test this theory with the other Roosters. When I went to Whole Foods, I was surprised to see so many nicely designed salsas and many from Texas (might be because WF is from Austin). Very few had the underwhelming designs I was looking for. So I grabbed 4 salsas that I’ve never tried, brought them to the group and asked them to blindly pick the best tasting and the best design.

The Lineup: A. Silver Spur  B. Green Mountain Gringo  C. The Brooklyn Salsa Co.  D. Salpica

The Lineup: A.)Silver Spur B.)Green Mountain Gringo C.)The Brooklyn Salsa Co. D.)Salpica

In the end, my theory did not hold up. Salpica won best tasting, with The Brooklyn Salsa Co. as the very close runner up. The winner based on design was The Brooklyn Salsa Co., followed closely by Silver Spur. The least favorite design: Green Mountain Gringo which was also voted the least tasty. So what does this mean? Maybe it means smaller companies are realizing the importance of good design. Maybe it means that Whole Foods only carries nice looking products. Or just maybe it’s both.

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