Cancel all operations. My Red Velvet Oreos have arrived.
I had initially planned to spend the morning writing a ridiculous s’mores tutorial, but duty called. As the Lead Oreo Journalist of My Generation, I know that the public counts on me for the real scoop on these new flavors, and I pride myself on providing thoughtful and critical reviews of America’s Favorite Cookie. I’m obviously a fan, but if you keep up on my Oreo-related writings, you will notice that a particular type of criticism resurfaces in almost every review.
On the Pumpkin Spice Oreo cookie:
Actually, I can't help myself: I know Oreo doesn't really eff with the two standard cookie flavors (I think the cream must be easier/cheaper to manipulate), but if they had made the cookie a little less sweet and a little more buttery, it would have been reminiscent of pie crust.
On the Root Beer Float Oreo cookie:
It's the same old boring golden cookie, and I'm a little disappointed by this. I feel like they missed a real opportunity here; a little artificial vanilla flavoring — I say "artificial" because you know they're not going to pay the big bucks for the real stuff — would go a long way here. Oh well, if there's no discernible vanilla in the cookie, there had better be some in the white cream.
As you can see, while Oreo has been enthusiastically switching up creme flavors, little attention has been paid to the cookie itself. There hasn't been a new cookie flavor since the Golden Oreo was introduced in 2004; over a decade has passed us by with no real wafer innovation.
Luckily, the dark times are now behind us as the Red Velvet Oreo heralds a new age of true Oreo innovation, and it comes in a sexy red velvet bag. But enough theoretical discussion about the importance of snack-food creativity, let's see how these appeal to the senses.
These cookies have the beautiful, rusty red look of red velvet cake. In fact, I would say that the color of these Oreos is more appealing than the shockingly red incarnations of red velvet cake I have seen in grocery stores. To me, the red in red velvet should be less "fire engine" and more "cherry cola." You should still be aware that chocolate is involved, and this cookie is perfect in that regard.
They smell like cake in the way that cake-scented bath products smell like cake. You know that you are not smelling actual cake, yet you can think of nothing else. The smell is pleasant, but can be overwhelming when you first open the package. (Also overwhelming: sticking your face in there over and over to make sure you are describing the scent of Red Velvet Oreos correctly.)
The cookie portion of the Red Velvet Oreo is a bit sweeter than the original and a bit crispier. There is definite "cake flavor" here. It may sound strange, but I detect the presence of leavening agents that would be used in an actual cake. A bit of chocolate comes in at the end, but isn't the dominating flavor. (To be fair, "chocolate" isn't really the dominant flavor in original Oreos either.) Overall, I am very pleased with this cookie. It tastes like red velvet cake as replicated by a food scientist, which is exactly what it is.
For those of you who were worried that a "cream cheese flavored" creme would render your favorite sweet snack "not vegan," fear not: There is no cream nor cheese present in this product. The filling looks like your classic white Oreo creme, but tastes like the most synthetic tub of cream cheese frosting money can by. This isn't a bad thing. Texture-wise, the filling is a little grainier than its original cousin, almost like some of the sugar crystallized like it does in frosting that has fully set.
Overall, I would say this is Oreo's most successful innovative flavor to date. While original is still my favorite, this is a close second. Unlike other flavors sent to me by Oreo, I will be purchasing another package of these once they go on sale on February 2, as this package will most certainly be consumed by then.
If February seems infinitely far away, fear not, for you have a chance to win a taste of Red Velvet Oreos before the official release date. Just go here and sign up (or connect with Facebook) for a chance to win your very own package of these red velvet delights before all of your friends.
Either way, make sure you obtain a package of these beauties while they are available. Your mouth will thank you.