I first tried some of Joe & Sephs’s popcorn at the Foodies Festival last summer and have since seen them at every food festival and food store I’ve visited. Joe & Seph are certainly making quite a name for themselves which is no surprise as their extensive range of gourmet popcorn consists of so many weird and wonderful flavours. I was kindly given three 90g packs of gourmet popcorn to sample which retail for around £4.
In my eyes, Joe & Seph’s popcorn should be enjoyed in a moment of indulgence rather than scoffed down before that all important meeting, like other popcorn brands. The rise of ‘Skinny popcorn’ has somewhat lifted the enjoyment factors from this much loved snack, something which Joe & Seph will be sure to change. I decided to wait until watching a DVD to enjoy mine as I sat down one Sunday evening. I made the mistake of combining all three flavours into one bowl which meant that I couldn’t tell which flavour was which. I wouldn’t say the popcorn lacked taste but when combined and ate under a dim light, I struggled to distinguish each individual flavour and Sam agreed.
There was only one thing for it, another bowl, but this time one flavour at a time. First up was Trio of chocolate; a mixed bag of white chocolate, milk chocolate and cookies with cream which has a slightly darker colour than the other flavours. Trio of Chocolate is part of Joe & Seph’s limited edition range and was produced especially for Easter alongside gingerbread. I could taste the cookie and white chocolate but only slightly. The density was heavier than other popcorns due to the generous covering of caramel but it was still light and soft inside like popcorn should be. Some pieces had a slight chewiness to them which was great as this provided a welcomed variation.
The second flavour I tried was salted caramel which had a lovely golden colour. Like all three of the bags I received, if I hadn’t known what the flavour was I probably would have probably said caramel. The caramel was rich and smooth but the salt lacked prominence and it could have done with a little more. I expect Joe & Seph have done this on purpose after a large number of tests, as I imagine a salt and sweet popcorn with such intensive flavouring as these would just be too much if consumed by the cinema-sized bag. Again, the texture was soft with a harder outer shell and I found all three flavours less harsh on my teeth than normal toffee popcorn which is great news for those with sensitive teeth.
Saving the best till last, I loved my bag of caramel and peanut butter. I was lucky enough to be sharing with Sam who happens to dislike peanut butter – all the more for me then! This flavour was the most easily distinguishable with strong salty notes of peanut butter. The texture was also different with a slight crunch and dryness to it like you find with peanut butter spread.
Joe & Seph’s popcorn is a world away from the likes of Butterkist and Magicorn and come in some fantastic combinations of flavours. My favourite is mince pie, part of the Christmas range which I tried at a food fair. For those with a more savoury palate, Joe & Seph have a number of savoury flavours such as goats cheese with black pepper and madras curry. As much as I enjoyed my Joe & Seph’s popcorn, I won’t be swapping my Ben & Jerry’s Core Sundae on my next cinema trip, but this is only because I love variation and would find a whole bag of one flavour too ‘samey’. I would certainly purchase more popcorn from Joe & Seph and I especially want to try caramel, honey & almond and toffee apple & cinnamon.
Whether you’re a popcorn lover or not, you must try some of Joe & Seph’s gourmet popcorn which can now be found at a number of independent and specialist food stores such as Harrods and Whole Foods. Joe & Seph will also be at a number of food events this summer including the BBC Good Food Show in Birmingham where they will be launching new flavours including rum infused pina colada popcorn and a breakfast butter popcorn with Marmalade – wow! More details on Joe & Seph’s rollercoaster journey into the world of gourmet popcorn can be found here. I’ll leave you here to embrace these wonderful flavours!
Living life, loving cake