Mini-Review: Japaleno Peanut M&M’s

Those of you who follow Shameless Consumer Industries will likely know that there are some foods that we generally avoid reviewing, namely candies and Oreo cookies. You tend to not see those reviews here for one big reason; because these flavors are constantly coming out and at SCI’s current average of one review every two to three months, we would never have the opportunity to talk about anything else. Oh and the product would be off shelves by the time the review came out.

The jalapeno peanut M&Ms are one of three flavors that came out this year as part of a flavor voting contest, and SCI knows what flavor its area chose because the stores are literally not selling anything but the jalapeno peanut. In my usual fashion of gearing up for an M&M review, I bought a pouch and prepared to consume a few and come to the realization that it was either disgusting or not interesting enough to talk about.

But these are pretty tasty.

It shouldn’t be surprise that if you’re not onboard the spicy chocolate train, you’re not going to like anything about these M&Ms. There’s been a growing love in the general public toward spicy chocolate, unless you’re from Mexico and have been enjoying such treats for your entire life. It seems to fall into the category of love-it or hate-it, with very little moderate opinions available.

The spiciness level of these M&Ms is highly inconsistent from piece to piece, which is a good thing in my frank and uneducated opinion. Inconsistency makes snacks like this taste a little less mass produced, and it adds a little mystery on what the next bite is going to bring. That said, this is mass produced spicy, meaning you’ll never get so hot to warrant a drink of water.

I’m also not sure whether or not there is actual jalapeno in this concoction. The ingredients list does not specifically state jalapeno, but the taste is close and there is a listing of “natural flavors” which may include jalapeno oil or some pepper close to jalapenos in flavor. If it’s an artificial jalapeno flavor, I’m actually pretty impressed by how accurate it is.

The jalapeno kicks in just a few seconds after the flavor of the peanut M&M goes through, with the spiciness bringing up the rear. It’s like being run over by a station wagon hauling a small uhaul truck with a kid on a skateboard being pulled behind it all.

Ultimately the Jalapeno M&Ms are a fantastic addition to the brand and hopefully will stick around for a while. At 16g of sugar per serving (1/3rd of a sharing bag), you’ll want to find someone to share these with.

Verdict – 4/5: Spicy M&Ms are guaranteed to disappoint spicy candy lovers with how mild they ultimately are. As a divisive candy, these are quite tasty and far tastier than you might expect from an otherwise harmless brand.

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2019 Is Officially Drinkfinity Year At Shameless Consumer

Hey folks,

It’s your old violin Sha’Meless Consuman here to officially declare 2019 as the Year of Drinkfinity. What is Drinkfinity?

Drinkfinity is the latest in drinkfiying innovation, a brand that looks at thirst and says “have a drink on me.” Some might call it a social movement. Me, I call it a product you can buy off the internet.

Shameless Consumer’s Localized Beverage Outreach and Luncheon Meat Battering Facility recently came across Drinkfinity thanks to the scientific process that our Chief Researcher referred to as “seeing the ad on Facebook.” So instead of buying one flavor, he did what any sane person would do: He bought the entire inventory.

So Shameless Consumer will be dedicating our beverage reviews to Drinkfinity for the foreseeable future. This is not a sponsored post, and Drinkfinity hasn’t yet noticed Shameless Consumer enough to send us a cease and desist notice.

With twelve flavors and considering our overall productivity, the Shameless Consumer marketing engineers figure we have enough product to cover reviews for the next six years. Look forward to Drinkfinity accompanied by our good friend the Shameless Cupsumer.

Foodbait: Top 5 Burger King Alternatives Brought To You By McDonald’s

We here at Shameless Consumer Industries are always looking for new ways to boost our productivity, by which we mean having less of a reason to keep the current staff of paraplegic sloths on payroll, and getting out content faster than once every three months (how’s that working out for us?).

In that vein, last year we brought on Burger King who opened up our new line of guest articles with a top five alternatives to McDonald’s, and frankly not everyone was happy with the list. Chiefly the McDonald’s legal team. So in the name of fairness and court-ordered editorials, we gave McDonald’s its own space.

Let us know if you want your guest article on Shameless Consumer, and we might post it! Make sure to include those Peyton Manning references!

Top 5 Burger King Alternatives By McDonald’s

Hey kids, it’s your old friend Joseph McDonald’s here to spice up your life and clarify a few things you may have been reading here at the Shameless Consumer. I’d like to thank my good friend Sha’Meless Consuman for giving us space for this unbiased piece. If it wasn’t for his severe allergy to golf club beatings, we wouldn’t be here to talk to you today.

Now Burger King is one of those buildings you go to when you’ve just suffered a traumatic brain injury and your body starts thinking that room temperature lettuce is the pinnacle of fine dining. I’d like to preface this list by saying we have immense respect for our friends over at Burger King. They do what they can despite their obviously low functioning capabilities. It’s adorable, like watching a puppy try to attack its own fart.

With that in mind, I’d like to give you the top 5 Burger King alternatives brought to you by me, Johnny McDonald’s.

1. The Big Mac

Photographed: Not a Whopper

The Big Mac is so delicious and iconic that dieticians over at the University of New Haven have given the craving a catchy name: The Big Mac Attack. Scientifically speaking it’s a condition that only affects individuals with sophisticated taste in food, and gently reminds them via sensory memory that the Big Mac is not only delicious, but is currently on sale for 2 for $5 at participating locations (check the app or order via our handy in-store kiosks).

Burger King doesn’t have such a catchy phrase, nor does it have a memorable jingle. You’ll never forget the Big Mac, it is two all-beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onion, on a sesame seed bun. There is a condition called the Whopper Attack, it is where the body goes into failure because you’ve once again settled for one lukewarm patty, mayo, ketchup, soggy lettuce, rancid onions, in a bun made mostly of artificial psoriasis.

This is experienced by people who commonly eat out of the trash, but the source is because they also comprise most of Burger King’s clientele.

2. The McGriddle

Back in 2015 McDonald’s began serving breakfast all day, a decision that has gone down in the history books next to Peyton Manning’s Papa John’s sponsorship. Burger King’s response has been silence, as their head chef was too busy lighting his farts on fire to notice that he once again went another year without putting that online university degree in parasitic cooking to use.

Since McDonald’s side job is creating new dishes for Burger King to shamelessly steal; we decided to release the king of all breakfast sandwiches, and developed the McGriddle. The McGriddle is a pancake bun that delivers high quantities of delicious maple syrup and buttery goodness into the face receptacles of hungry customers all over the world. Pair it with a savory sausage patty or bacon strips and a delicious cup of McCafe coffee, and you’ll have all the energy and confidence you need to stampede into your boss’s office and demand that raise. The boss will say “I like you, [insert name], you’ve got spunk and your presence seems to be making me hungry for pancakes. Have that raise, and my side-piece!”

It is not only a work of culinary genius, it is also far above the functioning competence of anyone working at the Burger King research lab. The one located in the scenic restroom at the Boise Idaho Little Caesars. Hence, they have yet to steal it.

What does Burger King have? The Croissan’wich? A name that is both undignified and sounds like a terminal disease from Boston no matter how you pronounce it? What happened to Bill? He contracted the Croissan’wich, and now he thinks the Big King XL is better than the Big Mac. We’re going to put him to sleep this weekend. For fun.

3. Buttermilk Crispy Tenders

McDonald’s chicken tenders are so popular, we start riots over the possibility of bringing back a 20 year old sauce. When was the last time anyone lined up outside of a Burger King for their sauce? Or for any reason other than to collect their food poisoning settlementd check?

But while Burger King may source its nuggets from low grade pigeon meat rejected by Tyson Foods, McDonald’s batters and breads our all white-meat chicken strips to perfection, made only more perfectiony with the addition of one of our delicious sauces for dipping. Might I suggest the signature sauce? One taste of our spiced tender batter with the tangy signature sauce and you’ll be begging for our signature. On the marriage certificate. Sorry ladies, this clown is married to flavor.

The only thing you’ll be begging for after a Burger King nugget is a cigarette to put out on your tongue.

4. The McCafe

Next up on the list is a selection so nice we brought out the rice (note to editor: I have no clue what this means but corporate demanded I add it in). The McCafe is so popular that McDonald’s coffee is available in stores around the globe so you can drain our dark beans and also make delicious coffee without ever having to leave the house. Now that’s service. Burger King’s coffee isn’t for sale in stores, people barely tolerate it in the sanitariums they call restaurants.

The McCafe menu is a veritable smorgasbord of Mochas, cappuccinos, lattes, and all sorts of delicious drinks to get your day started, or to just keep it going. Name your flavor, we’ve got something right up your alley. Starbucks may boast up to 87,000 combinations of coffee, but one thing it lacks is a roast that doesn’t taste like it was brewed in a crematory. Maybe Starbucks should focus less on its variety of milk and more on not burning its coffee beans to ash.

But we’re here to talk about Burger King, whose cafe line consists of coffee and, uh, nothing. Incidentally Burger King’s cup of Joe gets its name from Admiral Josephus Daniels, who abolished wine on Navy ships in 1914 leading to a higher consumption of coffee by sailors. It’s fitting, since Burger King is also the best option when everything else has been removed by force. Josephus Daniels was also famous for exclaiming on his deathbed, “don’t let those cretins at Burger King name a drink after me,” and why would Burger King honor the requests of a dying military veteran?

So come on down to McDonald’s and grab yourself a delicious Americano, take a load of those hard working and obviously cultured feet, and be thankful that you don’t live in a town where Burger King is your only option.

5. The French Fries

What else do I need to say? McDonald’s French Fries are the kind of product your girlfriend will send you out at 2am to pick up, and you’ll do it too because she has access to the steak knife drawer and a woman denied her after-midnight McDonald’s fry craving is basically Vlad the Impaler.

McDonald’s fries are a delicious mixture of Shepody, Ranger Russet, Umatilla Russet, and Russet Crowe potatoes. The secret of the McDonald’s fry lies in a tasty little ingredient we add in: Beef flavor. Back in the old days, we used beef tallow in our fries. Our customers call this the Golden Arches Age of our business.

Everyone knows how delicious McDonald’s fries are, just start typing “why are McDonald’s” into Google and the first option that pops up is “why are McDonald’s fries so good?” Start searching “why are Burger King” and the first result is “why are Burger King give me gravy pants?”, a completely legitimate question despite being atrocious grammar.

But McDonald’s french fries are known for their delectable odor, the sumptuous crunch as you bite into those fresh from the fryer spuds, the salt that leaps onto your tongue and lays out the red carpet for the light and fluffy potato filling, and then the next thing you know, it’s gone. You’ve finished the large fries and you’re not even home yet to eat the sandwich.

BK’s fries on the other hand are a travesty of Titanic proportions. They aren’t the worst fries in the fast food industry, that prize goes to White Castle, but they’re bad enough that Burger King tried to go healthier with the Satisfries, and like every order that comes through Burger King; they screwed it up.

0. The  McFlurry

We know you people love the McFlurry because no one ever complained about the Burger King ice cream machine being down. In fact, are you aware the Burger King still sells ice cream? We’re not so sure ourselves; we refuse to enter a location to confirm or deny the rumors.

To clarify on the complaints, the McFlurry machine is down quite a bit because we clean the machine on a regular schedule, a deep clean that takes several hours to complete. For my friends at Burger King, I can send you highly detailed pamphlets defining cleaning and what it entails, perhaps you can use the knowledge at your locations.

 

Dollary Duesdays: Shrimp Tempura

It’s Dollary Duesday time, and that can only mean one thing: Heading back to the only store where lead paint isn’t just a condiment, it’s a way of life. But not everything in the Dollar General food bin is a rough conglomeration of compost, wood chips, and concentrated botulism sweetened with aspartame, and occasionally the Dollar Store comes out with something that’s not just safe to eat, but downright tasty.

Take for example the Bon Vivant Kitchens Shrimp Tempuras, brought to us by the culinary minds at Bon Vivant. Bon Vivant is a kitchen store that sells appliances, kitchenware, and actually offers cooking classes to the youth and adults. So they know how to make a good shrimp tempura, flash freeze it, and put it on sale for a buck. Maybe they can teach Chef’s Request how to not gutter oil to make their food.

The Shameless Consumer meant to review this product a good two years or so ago, and found it to be a rather tasty slurry of meat. I picked up a box of the shrimp on my rounds grabbing another set of review items that will never be published and found that Bon Vivant has actually changed the recipe since then. It still contains mostly shrimp.

Bon Vivant’s shrimp tempura is not a shrimp that has been tempura’d and fried, I don’t think anyone would expect such out of a dollar store product. You get six “shrimps” in a pack, each approximately the size of an adult thumb. The meat inside is a combination of shrimp, squid, fish, and other seafood edibles encased in a tasty, crispy, exterior of what appears to be knockoff Rice Krispies.

It also has no microwave instructions, so you know this product is the real deal. Protip: You should never microwave seafood. Ever. Just don’t. It’s actually a crime in the geneva conventions, you can trust me enough to not look it up yourself.

The best comparison I can give to the texture of the meat is fake crab, which makes sense since the two ingredient lists are virtually identical, except this one has fake crab. In fact, as I chowed down on the six shrimps, it dawned upon me that the filling meat is almost identical to imitation crab meat, with a little more fishy/squidy flavor. If you peel apart the shrimps, it has that same layered sort of texture.

And I should note that I’m not giving this a higher score on the grounds that it’s a decent item in a sea of sickness and Chinese poison masquerading as the food section of the Dollar General, this is a quality product that stands on its own. If Bon Vivant had sold larger packs in the regular grocery store, I’d buy them. I make it a habit to pick up a few boxes of these whenever I happen to be there.

That being said, I would never eat shrimp tempura on its own when the opportunity to pair it with a nice cocktail sauce arises. I recommend of course that you purchase a cocktail sauce with horseradish because it’s delicious.

Nutrition-wise, Bon Vivant’s shrimp are high in fat (25%, 35% saturated), have a decent amount of sodium (14%), and if you poke around deep enough you might find some iron and calcium. Otherwise this isn’t bad for a fried food.

Verdict: 4.5/5 – My only complaint is that these shrimps have a habit of unevenly cooking.

Moxie Mini-Review and the 2019 Shameless Cupsumer

I love cola.

The Shameless Consumer loves craft cola, it’s one of those things that I drink just rarely enough for it to be something of a special treat. The topic of today’s review has been sitting in my fridge for the past couple of months quietly awaiting the new year.

Moxie is an odd cola, it has been the official state beverage of Maine for years and you’re probably even less familiar with it than you are the state of Maine. You may be asking yourself, why should I care about a cola bottled and sold only in Maine? If you’re reading this, you’re either a regular Shameless Consumer viewer, or you specifically Google’d Moxie soda, so you tell me.

But to answer your question, the reason this drink came to the Shameless Consumer’s attention is because it was sent to us by our single dedicated reader. It is partially because the brewing company was recently bought up by Coca Cola, and that acquisition has dramatically increased the likelihood that this drink will see a wider release in the near future. Moxie is an odd cola, its flavor is divisive even in Maine because of the addition of a gentian root extract that has found its way into the recipe.

I’ve never seen this anywhere else.

Moxie is an oddly sweet soda given its sugar content is 37 grams per 12oz bottle compared to Pepsi which has 41 grams and doesn’t taste nearly as sugary. It is mostly natural (sans artificial flavors), uses real sugar, and it markets itself as distinctly different.

I have no clue what I think about this soda.

Honestly, this drink has me stumped, and that’s why I’m writing this as a mini-review rather and not scoring it rather than as a full spiel where I tell you about how Cola was discovered by Franklin Delano Cola, the same man who climbed Mt. Olympus in 1855 in order to milk the fabled Cola trees. Moxie was invented in 1885 and, like Coca Cola, was marketed as a healthful drink.

Most foods can generally be summed up as having a taste and an aftertaste. Moxie has this weird property where it has multiples of both, in sweet and bitter flavors. I don’t think that I’ve ever had a drink that I’ve simultaneously enjoyed and hated alternating so many times in a single sip.

It’s an honest to god unique tasting cola. It does leave a bad, medicine-like bitter taste on your tongue once you’re done drinking it, and the aftertaste seems to come and go at such a rate that when it’s gone you’re not entirely sure that it ever existed.

I don’t know what to think about Moxie, and you can find a dude on Ebay who sells 12-packs of the cans for $20, which is a ridiculous price to pay for soda but far less than you’ll be spending on, say, Amazon for the same product.

This also gives me the opportunity to introduce 2019’s official Shameless Cupsumer beverage vessel. I’m pretty sure I picked this up at the Hobby Lobby although it might have just been another Target clearance product. Unfortunately the 2018 Shameless Cupsumer was accidentally murdered while your pal Sha’Meless Consuman moved into his new house, which is partially why there were no drink reviews dating back to August or earlier.

I’m also openly inviting thoughts from people who have drunk Moxie. What did you think?

Review: Little Ceasar’s Thin Crust Pepperoni Pizza

Let’s get this over with.

The Little Caesar’s Extra Most Bestest Thin Crust Pepperoni Pizza makes the Shameless Consumer want to wash his hands, his skin, the inside of his stomach, and the lining of his colon. It’s the kind of food that after you eat it, you feel obligated to send your digestive system an apology card as if you dumped a horn full of mead all over its bedroom floor. The kind of food where you’re worried that you’re going to need some adult diapers over the next couple of days.

In case you haven’t figured it out yet, I’m not too happy about this review.

Longtime fans of Shameless Consumer, aka none of you, are likely well aware that ol’ Sha’Meless Consuman was able to negotiate a permanent moratorium on Little Caesars pizza in his contract following the heart-plaguing moment that was the Pretzel Crust Pizza review, which you may recall I referred to as the kind of product that will eventually be sold in the first commercially available suicide booth. I won’t go into too much detail about how I negotiated my contract, mostly because it’s a boring story involving kicking out the cane of an 81 year old man, a thirty grand bribe to a surgeon at the JFK hospital in Edison New Jersey, and two strains of rabies contained within a remote-activated sack that I’ve come to lovingly refer to as a CinnaBomb. I’m not willing to divulge much information until I’m sure that the statute of limitations has passed on what are assuredly high crimes.

Anywho, I’ve maintained a mostly untouchable status here at Shameless Consumer Industries for the past decade because I’m essentially blackmail proof. The Shameless Consumer doesn’t have any family to threaten, I think this job is proof enough that I put no value into my health, and most of my financial assets are invested in bulk quantities of that purple Heinz ketchup.

In fact the closest the Shameless Consumer has to a true love is Utz Cheese Balls and I know what you’re thinking: how can SCI threaten Utz Cheese Balls in a way that would force me to waive my contract and talk about Little Caesars pizza one more time? Just trust me, they’ve figured out a way. Help me.

Little Caesar’s Extra Most Bestest Pepperoni Pizza is so bad that my editor noted I have been unconsciously replacing mention of Little Caesars with Pizza Hut in the text of this review. I’m not entirely sure how bad a pizza has to be in order to be pining for the higher quality of Pizza Hut, but apparently this is it. If you happen to come across any references to Pizza Hut that I missed, please accept this as my non-apology. Reading this review was your choice, writing it wasn’t mine.

I hate skulking into Little Caesars because they’re generally decorated like a YMCA locker room and there’s an atmosphere of visible shame that you see cast over everyone who enters as if we’re shuffling into those curtained off areas of Family Video where they stocked the copies of Agent Cody Spanks and Frisky Business, but without the chance to retain some shred of dignity and claim you’re only renting the video to laugh at the bad acting. It’s customary at Little Caesars for patrons to enter and exit one at a time, most are intentionally built so you can’t fit more than maybe two people inside, making minimal eye contact because as much as you don’t want to be recognized, the mind knows that it’s really best for your sanity if you don’t find out that any longtime friends are sneaking in there during their lunch hour for a $5 hot and ready.

I’m against hyperbole as much as the next guy, but I did once see a grown man try to explain to an old college friend that he was only in that plaza for its convenient UPS dropbox and, oh, the guy holding his wife and child hostage back at his house told him not to return without some of that Little Caesars. Which is why he was carrying out the pizza. His buddy, for his part, said he was only there because he had a literal baseball lodged in his lower intestine that wouldn’t pass and his doctor prescribed Little Caesars as the only known laxative capable of pushing it out. Nobody likes taking their medicine.

This is normally the part where I’d make a comment about the employees but frankly I’m not that cruel. In the three times that I’ve been to Little Caesars for the sake of Shameless Consumer, the entire line of teenage male employees had the perpetual demeanor of someone who had just attended the funeral for online pornography. I’ve worked plenty of jobs where the only way to keep your sanity is to shut your brain off and hope your six hour shift with one ten minute break and no lunch goes by quickly, even if that means getting judged as a moron buy some 40 year old Starbucks barista who has to make a $5 pizza last a week.

I ordered the thin crust pepperoni pizza and the kid behind the counter tells me it’s going to take 10 minutes because they don’t keep those pizzas hot and ready until 4pm, but he explains this to me with the apprehension of a cashier getting ready to try and explain to an armed robber that the key just broke off in the safe and there’s only $30 in the register, $15 of it being loose quarters. I’d like to try and not imagine the horrors that this kid has seen that the thought of telling me I’d have to wait instills such fear in him. Immediately a woman walks in behind me and also orders the thin crust only to be told that it would be a wait. Then I understood the cashier’s fear.

She responds with the “I demand a parlay with your supervisor” temperament where I can only assume that had she been armed that weapon would be discharged at a moments notice over the lack of immediately available thin crust pizza. Given her glazed over eyes, I rest assured that, had she been armed, the most damage she could do was to accidentally eject the clip and then forget to breath.

Little Caesars thin crust pizza is like someone smeared Digiorno on a pita. No, actually it’s like someone smeared generic knockoff Digiorno on an even less leavened Matzo cracker. Little Caesars would be a model example of “you get what you pay for,” seeing as how this pizza was $6 and has enough substance to feed one person while having enough sustenance to satisfy nobody. They love using the phrase “extra most bestest,” and in this context they mean extra indigestion with the most stomach cramps and the bestest marathon sprint you’ll ever make to the toilet. To poop it out.

As far as taste goes, Little Caesars is difficult to offend and doesn’t really taste like anything. If you want bland, flavorless, coagulated, cheese-like substance that’s covered in grease and eventually solidifies into a dairy stone, you’ve come to the right place. Throw that on top a fresh dough made with the most nutritionally devoid processed flour and you’ve got a meal fit for a king, one who intends to die on the porcelain throne.

Little Caesars also takes home the record on the worst shelf life of any chain pizzeria that the Shameless Consumer has eaten at in the last five years. Papa John’s is generally fine the following two days and Pizza Hut is good the next morning if you order it with extra sauce. I can’t comment on Dominos as I haven’t eaten there since before the recipe change. As for Little Caesars, that pizza has roughly an hour from the time it comes out of the oven before the clock strikes twelve and it reverts back into a solid slab of plastic on top of a saltine coated with aspartame-sweetened faux ketchup.

One thing this pizza has going for it is that Little Caesars does make good on its claim of having more pepperoni per square inch than any other pizza. This achievement is far less impressive when you consider that Little Caesars has about twice as much pepperoni that are sliced so thin they’re about 1/3rd the weight you’d get on a normal pizza.

Ultimately the Shameless Consumer recognizes that I am not the target audience for Little Caesars pizza given that I’m not drunk or stoned, I’ve never been to a Kid Rock concert, I’ve never cracked open a Busch beer with the boys, nor have I ever unironically worn a King Dingdong shirt. It’s a pizza chain that doesn’t care what it’s selling to people who don’t care what they’re eating and frankly I’m fine with that.

Verdict – 0/5: You know, in nine years I don’t think I ever established rules for scoring. That being said, if you have any standards at all in your food, avoid this like the plague of diarrhea that it is. 

Review: Taco Bell Double Chalupa

We here at Shameless Consumer Industries generally don’t like to review limited time items for obvious reasons, but we had to take a look at the Double Chalupa from Taco Bell while that pending lawsuit complaint from the McDonald’s PR firm makes its way through our counsel’s small intestine. The double chalupa isn’t new at Taco Bell, it shows up once every few years.

This year it even comes with a spicy version, chock full of enough jalapeno to make you say “that wasn’t as spicy as I thought it would be” while simultaneously putting your grandmother and white friends in the hospital. Not much more to say about the marketing campaign, so let’s dive in.

In order to fully understand the double chalupa, we must go back, BACK I SAY, to the ancient days of yore, long before the age of written word, when monks passed along history from one generation to the next solely through verbal conversation, good memory, and hot iron branding. These are the ages in which we find our hero, Lupa, a fair maiden living her life in the fields of what is present day Mexico.

Lupa tended the lush and prosperous fields day in and day out, as she kept her village fed with plentiful bounties of corn, lettuce, and tomato while raising her much beloved cattle for their beef, cream, and three cheese nacho blend. Her father a mighty warrior and her mother a sitting judge for the ninth circuit court of appeals, Lupa worked the fields by day and by night she experimented with new and interesting ways to turn her produce into fanciful meals for the peasants in her village who had only known the pure horror of existence.

You see, for the village of Cuarta Comida was just a blip in the kingdom of Tacomartes who up until five years prior had been living under the horrible and tyrannical rule of the Duchess of Hamburg. The Duchess in her unending cruelty passed decree after decree, limiting how those under her rule could live their lives. The beef, she declared, shall only be ground and served in a patty-like form. The grain shall only be formed into small, hand-sized loaves to be filled and eaten as one meal.

But Lupa’s father, as the legend goes, was awoken in the night by an angel who tasked him with freeing his country. “The Duchess controls everything, so you must be cunning to defeat her,” the Angel said as it floated above his bedside. “She has nigh unlimited power, but her creativity is restrained by her breaded abomination. In order to defeat the Duchess and free your people, you must be willing to think…outside the bun.” Lupa’s father drew his sword, mounted his steed, and was away at once toward the castle in which the Duchess lived. If he was going to strike, he needed to strike now.

Taco Bell’s $5 Double Chalupa Box unlocks the chance for fans to win a custom Xbox One X Platinum Limited Edition Bundle only available at Taco Bell. (PRNewsfoto/Taco Bell Corp.)

This is the part of the story where the legends start to split in their recounting of the tale. Most historians generally agree that Lupa’s father poisoned the Duchess however his poison of choice is not entirely set in stone. What we do know is that the poison was apparently applied to her pillow, and the Duchess later died due to complications arising from a particularly aggressive form of conjunctivitis (pink eye). In his will, Lupa’s father thanked her for he could not have completed his holy mission without Lupa’s delicious sustenance.

As the years went on following the death of the Duchess of Hamburg and the disappearance of Lupa’s father, the town prospered and grew enormous in its population. Lupa gave birth to five children, two boys and three girls, all of whom she named Marion. Her five children left upon reaching adulthood at the ripe age of eight and Lupa was once again left alone to tend the fields and feed the needy people of her village.

And one day, a sick traveler came upon Lupa’s house. He had great pains in his stomach, and was afraid that he would surely die if not tended to. Lupa brought him into her house and, in a fit of ingenuity, decided to use the man as a guinea pig for her big experiment. With the precision of a master, she molded and baked her corn tortilla shell, added the seasoned beef, nacho cheese sauce, sour cream, lettuce, tomato, and the three cheese blend. The sick man now on the verge of death, writhing in pain on her cot, Lupa fed the man her concoction.

He grew still, and for a moment Lupa thought him to have passed. Seconds turned into minutes, and around a half hour later the man suddenly bolted up from his rest and ran out the door full of piss and vinegar. Lupa was shocked, she didn’t know how to react. Several minutes later the man entered back into the house looking much more energetic and lively. He thanked Lupa for her nourishment and apologized for, as he put it, painting the wall of the neighbor’s house brown.

For months he had traveled the lands looking for someone who could help him wreak revenge upon the demon that blocked up his body with a diet of beer and raw meat. He pointed to the remaining meal and said “in my village a fair maiden such as yourself created a dish very similar to this. We called it a charosa, as her name was Rosa. But you, you made something so much more. This meal is filling and invigorating, yet light enough to have for a meal after dinner. You should call it a double chalupa.”

The man could not pay her, as he did not have any money, but he promised to spread the story of her good deeds far and wide, and would make it his life’s mission to have her sanctified by the church of something (church may be a mistranslation as there was no known organized religion at this point in history). As he left, Lupa asked the man’s name. Montezuma, he replied.

Unfortunately this was also the olden days when thirty five was considered geriatric age, and giving birth five times with no hospitals and evidently no male partner had hastened Lupa to her end of life duties. She summoned her children via carrier slave, and they rushed to her side to see her off on her deathbed and to bequeath upon them her final gifts.

To her son Marion, she gifted her tortilla mould. To her daughter Marion, her three cheese nacho blend recipe. To her other son Marion, her tortilla recipe. To her daughter Marion, the family cattle. To her other daughter Marion, the family farm. And to her final daughter Marion, the writing utensil she had borrowed about ten years prior.

And as her life faded before her family’s eyes, Lupa gave her final speech. “My children, you must travel north and bring the prosperity that I have left you to all of those that you meet. Even if it takes a hundred generations, I want you to spread my message of love, of good food, and more importantly, the greatness that can come when you think outside the bun. Spread our authentic cuisine or my name isn’t Lupa Ruiz  de Juno Nepomuceno María de los Concerto Cinco Dólares por Pie de Largo Cajita Feliz y Tacobel. Now go, and live mas.”

As for the Taco Bell Double Chalupa, it’s pretty tasty. Great deal since the $5 box includes another taco, churros, and a drink.

Verdict: 5/5 – Tasty, filling, and a great deal.