Friday, March 6, 2009

It's the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

That's right, my friends, it's Girl Scout Cookie time! About a month ago, a lady at my internship approached me with an order form on behalf of her daughter and, shoot. How could I say no? I ordered three boxes. And let me tell you what, it was a hard, hard thing to narrow it down to just three boxes. I would have gotten more, but they are $3.50 a pop.

While I love them and will never not buy them when presented with opportunity, I do have an issue with Girl Scout Cookies. And that issue is simple: volume. There is simply too much wasted space in a Girl Scout Cookie box that could be taken up with more cookies. Trays, please. Cellophane wrap, what's that? Unnecessary space wasters that's what it is. They only cookie the package decently is the Thin Mint. They cram 36 of those suckers into one box! Tagalongs and Samoas only come with 15! Why can't they package them like the Thin Mints? Aren't all Girl Scout Cookies created equal?

The simple truth is that, no, not all Girl Scout Cookies are created equal. Certain varieties simply just superior to others. Allow me to break it down for you.

The Thin Mint: the most well-known of all the Girl Scout Cookies, the Thin Mint is a thin, mint flavored wafer covered in dark chocolate. Good frozen, room temperature, or slammed (ask Lewis for more information about cookie slamming).

The Samoa: also known as the Caramel DeLite, the Samoa is the most popular of the Girl Scout Cookies, not to be confused with the country of the same name. Currently, 25% of boxes sold are Samoas. It is a round cookie with a hole in the middle, covered with caramel and coconut, and then drizzled with dark chocolate. It should be noted that the Thin Mint and the Samoa are among the few food items that have successfully integrated dark chocolate into society as their main focus, and not as a variety. There are no milk chocolate Samoas or Thin Mints, nor should there be. Basically nothing else can say that.

The Tagalong: also known as the Peanut Butter Pattie, the Tagalong is a round cookie with a layer of peanut butter covered in milk chocolate. This used to be my favorite Girl Scout Cookie, but recently I've decided that it's just okay. I mean, I'm always down for combination of peanut butter and chocolate, but the peanut butter in this cookie is just this side of bland. That doesn't stop me from buying a box, though maybe that's more for tradition than anything else.

The Do-si-do: don't ask me why, but where the Girl Scouts failed with Tagalongs, they succeeded with Do-si-dos. The peanut butter in this cookie is spot on. Maybe it's because the Do-si-do doesn't have a milk chocolate layer to compete with. Maybe it's because the Girl Scouts outsource cookie production to multiple food companies. Whatever the reason, the Do-si-do is an oatmeal cookie sandwich with a layer of peanut butter squeezed in the middle, smack dab in the middle. I didn't buy any, though. The Do-si-do offers me nothing unique. The same kind of cookie can be found on grocery store shelves year round. It's just a different brand.

The Trefoil: this is a shortbread cookie, with the - get this - Girl Scout Trefoil design. While I'm not entirely sure what a trefoil is (or wasn't, until I looked it up on Wikipedia), it's a very nice design. The cookie, however, is meh. I have no strong feelings about shortbread. It's probably fair to say that on any given day I will not give shortbread a single thought. Shortbread and I just don't have any sort of relationship. We can coexist peacefully, but don't expect me to spend money on it. I guess I'm mostly talking about shortbread by itself. Shortbread covered or filled with something else it an entirely different story and is called a Tagalong.

The All About or Thanks-A-Lot: this grateful cookie (also known as the Animal Treasure) is of the also of the shortbread variety, but with its bum dipped in fudge. It has the words, "Thank You" embossed on the top in English, Spanish, French, Chinese, and Swahili. I think all the languages are featured in each box - sort of like a boxed United Nations. Having never sampled this cookie, I have no opinion on them beyond wondering where the name "Animal Treasure" comes in. I don't need the Girl Scouts' gratitude.

The Lemon Chalet Creme: I think it's best to let the Girl Scouts themselves explain this cookie: "Featuring a design of Our Chalet in Switzerland, a beloved Girl Scout World Center, this sandwich cookie has a touch of cinnamon-ginger spice that evokes the warmth of a fireside chat on a snowy evening."

The Cinna-spin: this cookie only lasted a season, so I'm betting it's gross. It's a cinnamon flavor cookie that came in 100-calorie packs. Girl Scout Cookies can be appreciated even when you're trying to lose weight! At least they could in 2008.

The Daisy Go Round: I was wrong. You weight-watchers can still enjoy the Cookies of the Girl Scouts. The Daisy Go Round replaced the Cinna-spin for 2009, and they also come in 100-calorie packs. From what I gather, they are the exact same thing as Cinna-spins except they are shaped like daisies rather than cinnamon rolls. Apparently that's a more appealing shape. Or something.

The Sugar Free Chocolate Chip: this cookie makes me happy. I always get a smile when I see something delicious come in a sugar free variety, cause that means my grandpa with diabetes can partake. Guess that comes from a long time ago when I asked him how he could possibly eat strawberries without powdered sugar and then felt really guilty after when I realized the answer. These cookies were also introduced in 2008. They are chocolate-chip cookies that lack sugar. I'm surprised you didn't know that.

The Dulce De Leche: another new cookie for the current season, the Dulce De Leche contain caramel chips and are drizzled in more caramel. They sound delicious and make me wish I had heard about them a month ago when I ordered my cookies. Maybe we could have broken the "just okay" Tagalong cycle. But probably not.

The Lemonade: shaped like a lemon slice, this shortbread cookie is made with a tangy lemon icing. Whether the cookie is covered in the icing or the icing is sandwiched between two cookies I do not know. What I do know is that they should get rid of this unspecified pansy of a cookie and bring back the Lemon Cooler. That one was delicious.

A short list of retired Girl Scout Cookies: this list is by no means all-inclusive, and in fact came from only one website. I don't feel like doing more research.
The Lemon Cooler
The Double Dutch

The Ice Berry PiƱata
The Ole Ole
The Aloha Chip
The Apple Cinnamon
The Lemon Drop
The Striped Chocolate Chip
The Snap
(unrelated to Sunday naps)
The Juliette
The Golden Nut Cluster
The Trail Mix
The Cabana Creme
The Country Hearth Chocolate Chip
The Echo
The Chocolate Chunk
The Pecan Shortee
The Medallion
The Van'cho
The Forget-Me-Not
The Granola

Most of these I do not remember, although a few like the Double Dutch and the Striped Chocolate Chip sound familiar. My point is, I like Girl Scout Cookies, I'm happy I bought some, and I really need to have more to do on a Friday afternoon when my boss is out of town than answer his phone.

1 comment:

Laura said...

AHhh Jim is out of town again. I love it when he's gone because I believe that is when you do some of your best thinking (and pranking for that matter). And yes, I didn't respond on facebook (because I'm a slacker) but we need to hang out soon!

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