Breakfast and Brunch

Milking It: Pops Chocolate Peanut Butter

Pops Chocolate Peanut Butter Kellogg's Rating: Three and a half spoons out of four

Cereal description: Brownish corn-meal orbs -- but not just any brownish corn-meal orbs. Big ones. Imposing ones. Brownish corn-meal orbs with a gland condition, or a steroid problem. Size-wise, they're significantly larger than, say, the typical Cocoa Puff. They're not cereal pieces. They're cereal planets.

Box description: The braintrust at Kellogg's decided not to give Pops Chocolate Peanut Butter a cartoon mascot -- which is a disappointment, frankly. Couldn't they have adapted good ol' Sugar Pops Pete, the box topper back in the days when cereal companies crowed about sugar content instead of pretending it was zero? But no: Aside from a nice pop-art logo (as opposed to a Pops-art logo), the cover features only a red bowl bursting with cereal boulders even larger than they are in actuality. (If the photo-illustration were accurate, breakfasters would have to carve them using a knife and fork.) More disappointment on two of the other three sides: one panel sports nutrition information, and so does the back, duplicating the data recently described in our Fruit Loops Smoothie review. However, the other side boasts a series of "Fun Factors," some of which are actually interesting. For example, did you know that "the first patent for making peanut butter was owned by John Harvey Kellogg and W.K. Kellogg"? As a result, the cereal inside isn't just delicious; it's a way of carrying on a proud legacy. Makes me a little misty just thinking about it...

Taste: To put it mildly, I'm no cook -- although I'm a pro at warming up Totino's frozen pizza. As a result, the closest I've come to inventing a recipe was when my friend and fellow cereal appreciator Susan Dunlap and I came up with the idea of blending Cocoa Puffs with the newly released Reese's Peanut Butter Puffs cereal back in 1994 or so. A fantastic idea -- and one subsequently imitated by other firms. (Kroger, for instance, markets a product called Chocolate & Peanut Butter Fusion.) Pops Chocolate Peanut Butter is a bit different, since its orbs are one color rather than two. But the concept is similar, and so is the taste. As a bonus, the crunch dynamic is first-rate owing to the orbs' solidity, as well as their dimensions. Did I mention that they're big?

Conclusion: In this case, size definitely does matter. -- Michael Roberts