Oreo Dessert Pizza and Cereal Straws

Oreo Dessert Pizza

By: Domino’s Pizza

Suggested Retail Price: $3.99

Taste: 1stars

Marketing: 3stars

After seeing the commercial for this product, a “dessert pizza” topped with crushed Oreo cookies and a white gooey substance, I suspected a sacrilegious monstrosity that would make Andres Serrano’s Piss Christ look like a Norman Rockwell painting.

I wasn’t disappointed. (For a candid glimpse of my first bite, check out the accompanying video.)

The dish is delivered hot, a strange choice considering that it may sit out, growing lukewarm, until its traditional pizza cousin is first consumed. Its thin, nonsweetened crust has all the depth of flavor and texture of cheap matzo, and the only selling point is that it doesn’t overpower the mildly chocolate Oreo cookies and disconcertingly gluey marshmallow fluff. The latter stands in for Oreo’s more frostinglike creamy middle; clearly having a pizza covered in Oreo filling would be too heavy to bear.

These things being said, the dessert pizza makes sense, at least in terms of gonzo creativity: It’s a major step forward from an older Domino’s offering, Cinna Stix, which are little more than repurposed scraps of crust with cinnamon topping and icing dip. And it will almost certainly get some play from stoners, who enjoy ordering deliveries of items like hot cookies and chunky ice cream, so they do not have to leave the house. But even within the “cannabis haze” sector of snack consumption, it seems likely that support for this product will quickly wane, and we can expect to see it disappear in three to six months.

Cereal Straws

By: Kellogg’s

Suggested Retail Price: $3.99 for a box of 24

Taste: 1stars

Marketing: 4stars

I take little pride in writing that I am probably one of the few 31-year-old men still eating Cocoa Krispies for breakfast, but I do it to give credence to the following statement: If you like Cocoa Krispies, you’ll hate Cocoa Krispies Cereal Straws. Both these and Froot Loops Cereal Straws play off the idea that the cereals flavor the milk at the bottom of your bowl. Love that taste? Well, in theory, you can suck milk through these edible straws and obtain the same experience without all the work of eating a bowl of cereal.

It’s a novel and promising concept, and when I opened the box, I liked what I saw: a substantial stack of chocolate-brown cookie tubes that looked for all the world like Pepperidge Farm Pirouettes, a very successful American adaptation of a classic European tea biscuit. But things went downhill with extreme haste from there.

The Achilles heel of the cereal straws: Milk sucked through them receives very little flavor. To their credit, they stay crispy when dipped. In fact, durability (both in transit and in milk) is one of the few positive qualities the straws boast. When eaten, they don’t taste like much of anything. They certainly don’t taste like Pirouettes; more like a cracker, minus the salt. Did the Kellogg’s industrial food engineering department promise more than it could deliver? Or did the marketing executives write an audacious check that no cook, regardless of talent, could ever cash? Either way, give these things a wide berth, and if you want flavored milk, finish your cereal.

James Norton edits the Upper Midwestern food journal Heavy Table. He's also the coauthor of a book on Wisconsin's master cheesemakers. Follow Chowhound on Twitter, and become a fan on Facebook.