Saturday 21 July 2012

In which Kellogg's take me to Champneys to eat biscuits

Anyhow.  Yesterday was…curious.  I got up at 5am and drove to the station after about three hours of sleep in a sort of fugue state to catch the early train to London.  It was pretty well empty – hardly surprising when I clocked that the ticket I’d been sent had cost £240 – and no, I wasn’t in first class.  How bonkers is that?  My plane ticket for Greece cost way less than that.

I was going to Champneys, the smart spa in Tring, courtesy of Kellogg’s.  I love Kellogg’s – I seriously do.  Not just because they produce Special K (my total guilty pleasure) – yes, I know, it’s not exactly a cream donut but when you scoff the stuff in industrial qualities it probably ends up amounting to much the same thing. And certainly not because they produce Krave (my son’s total addiction) – hey, even the guys at Kellogg’s have the grace to look a bit abashed about that one. You ever tried it?  Basically chocolates masquerading as breakfast cereal.  
'And so?' says James.
'Whatever,' says I.
Interesting aside – they don’t put MSG in it but apparently Pringles (which are, let’s be honest, stupidly moreish, do contain the stuff – so there you go, that’s why you can’t ever eat just one). Food for thought, huh?  

Be very grateful this is blank...
But no, more than all that, by far, I love Kellogg's because they invite me to lovely pamper days.  The irony is not lost. I am so broke I can’t even afford to get my hair cut.  I can’t even afford to get my disaster of a bush sorted out so now I’m getting ingrown pubic hairs which are threatening to turn septic. Yeah, okay, so that was way too much information. Sorry.  But Kellogg’s, lovely lovely Kellogg’s, plonk me on a killer expensive train and then usher me into a kick-ass Mercedes taxi and then deposit me at this vast pile to be pampered for the day. 

And yeah, I know, you’re muttering into your beards that they hardly do it out of the goodness of their hearts; that they don’t sit there up in Manchester thinking, ‘Poor old Jane. She’s having a seriously crap time right now (and boy, those ingrown hairs are a bugger); let’s organise a pampering press day to cheer up the miserable old cow. How about it, guys?’  Nah.  

For sure, they hope that I’ll write good things about their stuff, that I’ll spread the word through social media and, in my small way, raise brand awareness.  But, as anyone who reads this blog knows; it could backfire horribly.  Let’s just briefly stop a moment and remember the dog food that (allegedly, according to Adrian) nearly killed the SP and ended up costing me an arm, a leg and a perfectly nice sofa. The PR, bless his cottons, had the grace to laugh but did say that it was one he ‘wouldn’t be showing to the client.’

But...whatever...I was very grateful for the invite. Cos not only did they cheer me up with champagne and lunch and steam rooms and massages (of which more anon), but they very thoughtfully arranged for two of my dearest old muckers to be there too.  Alice and Becky were two of the Disney 7, the mad crew with whom I went to Florida back in 2009. Lovely, lovely people. I’d seen Alice at a few odd occasions (hmm, mainly Kellogg’s dos, come to think of it) but I hadn’t seen Becky since we waved goodbye (still cackling) at Gatwick.  And so yesterday we spent a good couple of hours talking – in fact we talked so hard we clean forgot we were in the outdoor Jacuzzi and our whole bodies, not just our fingers, went all weird.  So we cackled a bit in the steam room and then we had smoothies in the café and really, it was lovely.  Cos she’s one of those people that I just feel easy with and, yes, even manage to talk a bit of truth with… (sorry, too many whoms were threatening to overwhom me). 

Anyhow. Somewhere in the middle of all this niceness the Kellogg’s bunch gave us their presentation which was, actually, rather good.  They were launching their first biscuit – aimed at people who are trying to lose weight but keep falling head first into the cookie tin and not emerging until they have munched their way through a whole packet of Hobnobs or whatever and then proceeded to hurl themselves into a broiling cauldron of self-loathing. I’m not big on biscuits so it’s not my particular ‘issue’ but hey… each to their own and this is a smart idea.  These things don’t come in chunking great packets – they come in little self-sealed jobbies that contain two sweet offerings – at 99 calories for the pair. Theory being, having consumed the whole packet, your psyche says ‘job done’ without having scarfed twice your daily calorific load. They’re also designed to be filling – and to taste good.  And yeah, you might think that goes without saying but, seriously, have you tried some of the stuff that's out there?

Okay, so let’s take a look. Biscuit Moments?  Uggghhh!!!!  REVOLTING name. How can you have a biscuit ‘moment’? But, as they pointed out, it’s a helluva lot better than Fibre Plus.  

Hate the packaging – it just screams ‘DIET!!!!!’ (though, come to think of it, that’s probably the point). They look weird – kind of like an anaemic Garibaldi with icing drizzled over.  Let’s take a taste.  Way too sweet for me – there’s a jam filling (strawberry or blueberry) that makes your teeth sing. But, fair play, they are seriously filling – and if you have a sweet tooth, they might be right up your street.  I tested them out on James who absolutely loved them (blithely ignoring the packaging or maybe not realizing it was shouting ‘diet food aimed staunchly at women’). 

His preference was for the blueberry and announced they were ‘just the ticket’ for a mid-cycle snack. In fact, I had to double-check that they really don’t have MSG tucked away in there cos, since writing this, he has eaten his way through three packets (ummm, there’s that theory of mine blown away).  He’s just looked over my shoulder as I was downloading this picture of them and started licking the screen.    
So, thirteen-year old boys love ‘em.  And I suspect a lot of people will. 
‘Couldn’t you do them with chocolate?’ I asked wistfully (and, the words unspoken, ‘And have another launch at another fabby spa?’).
Kellogg’s Sarah tapped her nose.  
‘How about coffee flavoured?’ I sighed hopefully.  Even though I don’t drink coffee (only decaf) I adore anything coffee-flavoured.
‘Oh, I wish,’ she said. ‘But apparently it’s too niche.’
Oh come on!  Let’s sex up these damn biscuits!  Lobby Kellogg’s for funkier packaging and some seductive fillings for the blighters! Let’s make ‘em gorgeous – how about vivid pink or neon orange biscuit for  a bit of contrast to those dark chocolate or caramel coffee fillings? How about drizzling a clashing colour of icing over the top?  Make them totally square rather than that boring old brick shape. Put ‘em in silver or gold shiny pouches with DECADENT or TREAT or DROOL stamped on the outside. 
Sorry, just got a bit carried away there.  But really, why not make it all a bit more fun? 
Anyhow, back in the real world, Kellogg’s Special K do this website that aims to help anyone wanting to lose weight. I reviewed it before and still think it’s pretty good.  Check it out here.  Oh, and try (oh GOD that name!!) Biscuit Moments and tell me what you reckon. 

Biscuit Moments available from August 2012 - £1.99 for a pack of five sachets (each containing two biscuits).


liveotherwise said...

Jealous of your spa day, not that I could go with a permafeeding baby, but I think I'll give the biscuits a miss. £2 for five snacks??

Writer Pat Newcombe said...

I wouldn't mind the spa day but I'm not into biscuits or Kellogs. But chocolate and cream cakes?? Now we're talking...

Rachel Selby said...

They do look good. My suggestion would be if the filling is fruit, then the icing should be thick and real cream flavoured. I would like caramel filling with chocolate on top.

Anonymous said...

U sing subliminal stimuli are you? :o)

Cait O'Connor said...

My Kellogs pleasure is Special K with Strawberries and CHOCOLATE - and only 1% fat I think!

Frances said...

Jane, you've made me laugh reading this post.

I am a Cheerio's fan. No sugar, skim milk. Seems to help with my cholesterol. Every so often I add a banana or some berries.

That train fair truly does sound exorbitant. Hoping the Special K folks picked up that tab and somehow did not pass it along to diet-seeking K biscuit fans.

I don't eat snacks and so have never seen the K biscuits on any grocery shelves. The packaging looks very vague, not at all appealing.

Do we not live in a very strange world?

How I do long for the not too distant past when I had a boiled egg and toast for breakfast ... every morning.


Rob-bear said...

NO chocolate. NO almond. I don't suppose peanut butter and honey there either. Sigh. What's a Bear to do?

Frances said...

train fare...definitely not fair!


Alison Cross said...

Jane I was so goggled by the cost of the train fare that I could hardly read the rest of the blog - where do you live?!!!!!! The Adriatic?!

Biscuit Moments isn't very inspiring name, but I tend to go more on what the product looks like on the packaging rather than the name.

Might give them a whirl!

But that is SERIOUSLY expensive rail fare!!!

Ali x