Monday, October 22, 2012
REVIEW: Private Selection Denali Extreme Moose Tracks
My experiences with Private Selection, Kroger's premium brand, have been hit or miss so far. Sweet Honey Baklava was lacking, but the limited-edition Southern Recipe Banana Cream Pie plowed through my expectations. Cashing in on a recommendation from a fellow ice cream connoisseur, I decided to pick up a pint of their Denali Extreme Moose Tracks. Up until this point, I knew nothing of Denali or their famous Moose Tracks fudge. I quickly did some research and discovered that Denali regularly teams up with super markets and corporations such as Food Lion, Publix and Mayfield to help produce some fudge-filled flavors.
A bit self-boasting, Denali claims to be, "creative force behind some of the most successful ice creams sold in the United States today. Owned and operated by husband-and-wife team Wally and June Blume, Denali Flavors has grown to become one of the nation’s leading inventors and marketers of premium flavors for the ice cream industry.Denali works with a large percentage of the nation’s ice cream producing independent dairies to manufacture an array of regional and store-branded products, including six varieties of Moose Tracks® ice cream and over 30 other flavors, including Bear Claw®, Caramel Caribou®, Mother Lode®, Bear Foot Brownie® and Peanut Butter Iditarod®. The company also has licensing agreements with Mrs. Smith’s® and Andes Candies®. Denali ice cream products are available at most major grocery store chains, ice cream shops and convenience stores nationwide. Denali Flavors is perhaps best known for its signature flavor, Moose Tracks, which swept the nation in the mid-90s and remains so popular today that it outsells vanilla in some brands." Donning the trademark Denali moose right on the carton, the promise of rich chocolate ice cream with Moose Tracks fudge filled cups and famous Denali Moose Tracks have me ready to see if this can live up to the self-imposed hype.
Taking off the top revealed a relatively tame first layer, failing to foreshadow the influx of Moose Tracks fudge to come. Grocery stores typically don't cater to the consumers seeking out super-premium ice cream, but it appears that Denali advised against that strategy. Tipping the scales at nearly 240 calories per serving, this is pretty heavy for a generic option. Soon after inhaling the intense fudge fragrance, I find out the chocolate base is more dense than I was expecting. Although it lacks the complexity of chocolate bases from their competitors, it's smooth and acts as a stellar vehicle for the Denali tidbits to come.
Fortunately for the barely above average chocolate base, the famous Moose Tracks fudge has completely infiltrated this entire pint. From top to bottom, it's hard not to get a bite with this intense fudge swirl. These ribbons rival the thick, stiff nature of a peanut butter swirl rather than chocolate. The word fudge gets thrown around a lot in ice cream manufacturing, but Denali's is about the closest to authentic candy store fudge you're going to find. And because there's so much, it gives the ice cream an incredible texture. Although this tag team of chocolate ice cream and stripes of chocolate fudge would have been sufficient, Denali has also included some of their fudge cups.
Almost as abundant as the fudge swirl itself, a plethora of peanut butter cup impersonators were used to round out this flavor. Denali utilizes a rich, outer chocolate coating that gives way to a soft, thick fudge center, instead of the usual peanut butter filling. Despite the added richness, even when all three ingredients were involved, it still wasn't overpowering. From here on out, I'll certainly have an eye out for any generic brands using this famous fudge. At less than a thousand calories per pint, finding a flavor like this isn't an everyday occurrence.
Where I Found It: Kroger
Need some ice cream suggestions? Click on what component you're craving for further assistance!
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