1995 Chili Con Carne with Beans (Menu No. 4)

Reviews and taste-tests of any MREs from 1981-present
SentientTootsieRoll
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Location: Spokane, WA, US

1995 Chili Con Carne with Beans (Menu No. 4)

Postby SentientTootsieRoll » Wed Jul 26, 2017 2:52 am

Hello! I have something of an oddity for all of you to see. First of all, I noticed that this menu wasn't listed anywhere in the MRE Menus section, which is why I was intrigued by it. I felt it was worth the price I overpaid for it (I have another) so I could document it. This is a 1995 Chili Con Carne with Beans from Right Away Foods.

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Let's see what's inside.
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We have the following items:
- Chili Con Carne with Beans entree
- Chocolate Covered Oatmeal Cookie (denoted CKS, not sure what that's supposed to mean)
- Crackers
- Grape Jelly

Accessory Packet with:
- Spearmint Chiclets
- Tabasco Sauce
- Iodized salt
- Taster's Choice coffee
- Sugar
- Creamer
- Matches
- Toilet paper

What lead me to believe this was a 1995 menu instead of a 1985 were:
- The brown spoon
- Tabasco sauce
- Taster's Choice coffee

I've never seen those in the older MREs. I also noticed that there was no FRH included. The MREs at this time period were supposed to have FRHs. Was this perhaps a civilian version? Further speculation is certainly welcome.

Here's a closeup of the entree for those interested:
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And here's the final result. Not bad! Sorry for the poor quality, I had to compress the pictures so the forum (and quite possibly your connection) would accept them.
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I'll just preface this by saying that everything was still good. You heard it right, a 22 year old MRE (at the time of writing) still managed to taste good. The chili was akin to a current production Chili With Beans MRE. Great texture and reasonably flavorful. The crackers with grape jelly were also amazing. The chocolate covered cookie was amazing as always. It's a real shame they no longer make these cookies. Someone out there has to be producing something at least close to them. I may follow up with the coffee at a better time, but I'm going to take a wild guess and say the coffee is probably dry molded.

So this was quite an odd one. As I said earlier, your wild speculation is encouraged. And if anyone has any info on this, please feel free to share it with us. It's tired and I'm late, so if you see any grammatical/formatting catastrophes above, I will address them later. *yawn* good night, folks!

Edit:
I decided to upload the last two pics to a 3rd party host for those interested in seeing high resolution versions.
http://i.imgur.com/A5Aymvi.jpg
http://i.imgur.com/oII01Md.jpg
Last edited by SentientTootsieRoll on Thu Aug 10, 2017 1:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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steve1989
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Re: 1995 Chili Con Carne with Beans (Menu No. 4)

Postby steve1989 » Wed Jul 26, 2017 5:28 am

Hey Sentient, this was an awesome look into an unusual menu MRE! I love your reviews - always on point descriptions and good pictures. Not to worry on reduced resolution - they are nice & clear!

I had some civvy MRE's in dark pouch a few years back but they were obviously civilian and from Major Surplus & Survival - I guess that company has been around for some time now. But this one here looks govt. spec - but the lack of an FRH is suspect for being civilian - yet the out pouch looks govt. I am not sure at all. Very interesting, indeed.

Good score having a choc covered cookie - and the fact the main course was still edible is always a bonus. Sounded like it was still pretty darn good too!


Starbucks sells a chocolate covered graham cookie that really reminds me of those choc covered cookie in MRE's - not 100% the same... but pretty close. If it were oatmeal and more dense, and if the chocolate had that waxy coating it would be almost exact. But if you ever get a hankerin' for a MRE choc covered cookie, go to Starbucks and check by the cash register - there are little $2 snacks up there like chocolate covered almonds and stuff. But there should be a milk chocolate and dark chocolate covered cookie and 2 to a pack. The milk chocolate one is like 75% match up. Maybe I am nuts... but I pretend they are a MRE choc cookie and it works for me! 8)


Thanks so much for sharing yet another fantastic review of a pretty rare and unusual MRE! :)
What is the oldest thing you've ever eaten?

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alohakid
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Re: 1995 Chili Con Carne with Beans (Menu No. 4)

Postby alohakid » Wed Jul 26, 2017 8:23 am

SentientTootsieRoll - Very cool... always a bonus when it's edible... congrats!

mahalo

SentientTootsieRoll
Posts: 215
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2016 2:26 pm
Location: Spokane, WA, US

Re: 1995 Chili Con Carne with Beans (Menu No. 4)

Postby SentientTootsieRoll » Thu Jul 27, 2017 2:36 am

Thanks steve and alohakid! As something of an archivist, low quality pictures that lack all aspects of detail bother me. Unfortunately there was nothing I could really do about it in this case but I'm glad to hear they still told the story. I can upload the pictures to a 3rd party site, but I'd rather not do that since a lot of those places tend to delete images after a few years *ahem* imageshack *ahem*.

Hmm, there's a Starbucks not too far from where I work. Suppose I ought to take a trip down there during my break and see what I can find. Thanks for passing that along, but I'm still convinced there has got to be someone out there who makes something like these cookies. If not, I've heard that Natick is usually pretty responsive with passing along recipes, perhaps someone could obtain and use that recipe and start their own cookie making business. You'd make a living from that, I'm sure of it!

SentientTootsieRoll
Posts: 215
Joined: Tue Aug 02, 2016 2:26 pm
Location: Spokane, WA, US

Re: 1995 Chili Con Carne with Beans (Menu No. 4)

Postby SentientTootsieRoll » Sun Jul 30, 2017 3:54 pm

Per housil's request, I've decided to open up the accessory packet and see what survived time and depreciation.
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I'm sad to report the coffee was dry molded. Oh well, I grabbed a Diario from a 2012 LRP (I've even seen a few these dry mold) that was still good and decided to use that with the creamer and sugar.
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Success!
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So, what did I do with the remaining components, you may ask. I ate the Chiclets gum and all I can say is that I really wish they would bring it back. The flavor doesn't last long but the flavor is great. I stored the salt, matches, toilet paper and Tabasco sauce for later use.


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