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Chile, Cheese and Chips: a Review of Empty Bowl Queso.

By Teri Smith 9.22.20

For those of you who don’t know, I’m a native of New Mexico and grew up eating homemade tortillas, red chile, tamales and posolé. And I went to college at NMSU, which is just a blink away from Hatch, where the world-famous green chile is grown. I consider myself a green chile snob and like it hot, although I’m lightyears away from my sister Jeannette’s tolerable heat level. (Small aside: she was found atop my grandma’s kitchen table, dunking chunks of cheese in the freshly made batch of red chile at the age of 2. So I reckon she was born a highly evolved creature, without a sensitivity to the heat of New Mexico’s hottest chile.)
Not too long ago, a college friend of mine announced he was starting a new business called Empty Bowl Queso (EBQ). I’m a sucker for a great bowl of chile con queso, which translates to cheese with chile. When I found out he was using Hatch Green Chile, I knew I had to have it as soon as humanly possible. Because it’s so new, the company is still trying to set up distribution of product across the country. So I immediately started a relentless barrage of nagging my friend to provide said cheese nectar to my neck of the woods in Colorado.
Luckily, he made it happen with kind-hearted Samaritans who met with the queso-desperate souls in pre-determined cities. My cheese dealer will henceforth be on my list of favorite people.
After I made it home with my precious treasure, I was able to do about 2 chores before I could resist no longer and dug into the promised manna from heaven. Now, I happen to be a chip-loader, not a chip-dipper. To me, the chip is merely a tool, an edible spoon whose sole purpose is to deliver maximum goodness to my mouth, kinda like a cupcake is for frosting. It’s a yummy-holder, and my very first chip performed it’s duty perfectly.
The Extra Hot Queso-laden chip had my tongue fluttering with the tickling tastes of hot (spicy) and sweet. The flavors danced like a crazy game of Whack-A-Mole, as I tried to determined whether the queso was spicy, mild, savory or sweet. It’s all of them, blended in a perfect taste-twinkle, like a jar of glitter for the mouth. For the ones who need a hot-o-meter, the Extra Hot would be too hot for my daughter, KateLynn, but bearable for my husband. My sister Jeannette would find this delicious but never wonder if it’s hot (remember that she’s a higher being with little sensation of heat according to the Scoville Scale). But whether or not you’re sensitive to spiciness, know this: Empty Bowl Queso is a true taste sensation. It balances the flavors of cheese, green chile, tomatoes and EBQ special spices and I think would impress most executive chefs. It’s just ding dang good.
I’ve yet to try the “regular” queso, but I already know the company is quite aptly named. I give it my highest rating, of 5 chips up. Follow this company and as soon as you have the opportunity, try the epicurean ambrosia of Empty Bowl Queso.
No Teri’s were paid for this review. At least not THIS Teri, and I don’t know any other 1 R Teri’s.