Snack of the Week: Baby Star Chow Mein

Snack At A Glance (SNAAG)

Product Name: Baby Star Chow Mein Flavor Crispy Noodle Snack

Manufacturer: The Oyatsu Company, Ltd.

Genre: Fried Chow Mein Noodle (flour)

Year of Introduction: 1990-1991

Nutritional Data: Unknown

Primary Seasonings: chicken flavor, soy sauce, sugar, monosodium glutamate

Having enjoyed Calbee stuff in the past, I figured I’d try venturing into some unknown Japanese snack territory this time, from a different vendor. Well, sometimes when you go down a different road, you end up shooting off a cliff, or puking your guts out — thus my experience with Baby Star.

Now, I really wanted to like Baby Star. It had a really cute picture of a baby dressed in traditional Chinese Mandarin attire with really retro color Japanese packaging, evoking classic anime from the 1960s. Plus, the actual shape of the snack was interesting, and I’m a big fan of chow mein noodles. It had all the makings of a fun snack.

That’s all well and good, but this had to be one of the most god awful tasting things I have ever put in my mouth. The MSG is absolutely overwhelming, particulary in combination with the artificial chicken flavor, which tastes like chicken boullion if you chewed on a cube before actually boiling it in water. I’ve had vurps that have tasted better, really. After two or three tastes to try to accomodate myself to the flavor, I threw the whole bag out. Nasty.

Apparently this stuff is quite popular with kids in Japan and Oyatsu is a very long established snack company. Perhaps I picked the wrong flavor, but it’s not a good sign.

3 Responses to Snack of the Week: Baby Star Chow Mein

  1. ThomasTT says:

    Oh, Baby Star was my favorite in my childhood. I agree with your comment “too much MSG”, but it was not so bad to me… 20 years ago. What happened on Baby Star? Or I just grow up?

  2. alicevamp says:

    i completly agree, im trying to eat a small bag right now, which was given to me before by my japanese teacher. it tastes like crap. ive had it opened for over 3 days; trying to get used to the flavor. no good. Disgusting, idk just gross. D:

  3. Jeremy says:

    Actually, I had this once and was addicted. It has inspired me to go looking for recipes for making fried chow mein noodles; I’ve an inkling to make a Habanero verion of these, attempting to be healthy by frying the noodles in some sesame oil and leaving out the MSG. I have no idea what it will taste like; I do ike spicy things and I liked the bullion taste of this.

    To each his own.

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