I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again, because honestly why the hell else am I eating all of this oddly fun factory food – nostalgia is a helluva drug. In the early 90’s little Sean E was a highly impressionable sprouting lad who loved his Nintendo, Raisinets, and professional wrestling. My favorite cereal at the time was WWF’s Superstars Hulk Hogan Cereal, which was a super basic sweetened puffed corn cereal that I’m sure would be exceedingly average if I had it today.
But back then, when Hulkamania was the SHIT the cereal tasted like magic. I can’t explain exactly what it tasted like but the best comparison I have today based on hazy memory is the underrated Post Honey Oh’s, which still slap. Fast forward to 2018 and my cereal nostalgia button has officially been switched with Super Mario Cereal, which combines mixed berry cereal with marshmallows.
The blatantly obvious cereal comparison here is Lucky Charms, so I’ll use that as base of critique for this box of Nintendo morning magic. The star-shaped oat pieces are notably harder than the ones found in Lucky Charms, and carry a heartier crunch. The crunch isn’t necessarily a good thing though, as they feel a little bit stale right out of the fresh box. While that may sound awful, they actually aren’t bad, and I somewhat enjoy their deeper chomp for the way it holds up against yogurt or milk. Is this nostalgia battling my sense of good versus bad? Is Bowser playing evil castle mind games with my tastebuds? I have no idea how to feel.
The flavor of the cereal pieces carry a light berry essence that doesn’t drift too aggressively towards the artificial strawberry or cherry that can be off putting. It’s not a very strong flavor but there’s no doubt they aren’t “plain”, however their lack of Lucky Charms’ thin sweet glaze still leaves them a little less delicious than the leprechaun’s classic offering.
The marshmallows, appropriately in the shapes of mushrooms, hats, and question marks, are again, very similar to Lucky Charms, but somehow feel less fresh. Dehydrated ‘mallows are always kind of dry and these are no different, with an airy sweet crunch that gets softer and more mellowed in milk.
Super Mario Cereal’s theme is super on point, and the flavor is totally fine but nothing new or remarkable at all. If I was eight years old and still privy to the powers of advertisements over taste I very well might think this is the greatest cereal of all time, but as it stands it’s kind of just a bootleg Lucky Charms with a hint of Frankenberry in a really dope box.
Found at: Target ($3.19)