King Oscar is rumored to come out with even more varieties of sardines this year. King Oscar has changed ownership as of September 2014. I'm curious to see if any changes do occur. I was included in their taste test project last year. One of their new tins for 2014 was the Sardines in zesty tomato sauce; it is available in some markets now. This tomato sauce is thicker than its traditional tomato sauce blend. The sauce also has more flavor than the traditional. I'll attempt to add the can later this year for a full review. As good as the zesty tomato sauce was, I think if they added a chili pod or two to the tin, it would really set this tin off. Maybe for 2015!?
|Traditional tomato sauce|
|Zesty. Much thicker sauce.|
The next sample I received was their mackerel. It was large pieces of white meat. The instructions said to taste test them in any way you liked. I, as always, try them straight from the tin. These are not sardines. I can see these in a spread, dip, sandwich, or other dish. Straight from the tin, for me, no. The flavor is there. They would be better not eaten alone in my preference.
They are equipped with an easy-peel lid. When asked my dislikes of this tin, I disliked the easy-peel system (as I've mentioned on other sardine posts). It seems KO won the silver award at the Can Maker magazine "2014 Cans of the Year" competition for this design. The reason I'm not a fan of this design is that Season sardines use this design also. While hiking, I was a little rough with my pack while carrying said sardines, the lid did not withstand the impact, and it leaked out the oil into my pack. For at-home use or older or people with restrictions, this is probably a good thing. If you're an outdoorsman of any type and carry along tins, I would choose carefully.
I'm a fan of aging sardines. King Oscar is a good brand to age, and it can readily be found at almost every supermarket chain. I wonder if the foil lid would allow such aging? The foil lid is said to be added on with the same canning process as the metal lids. I don't know. I hope they leave their sardine tins alone. Of course, I'm still nostalgic for the can keys.