Modern life is full of tragedies. There are the big ones – the climate crisis, living in a late stage of capitalism, take your pick – but the little ones sting too. Like finding out there are 200,000 people in line ahead of you for Taylor Swift tickets or taking a screenshot when you wanted to turn off your phone. Or, say, discovering that your favorite snack is out of stock in the only place it’s sold, and probably never coming back.
I’m not proud of it, but ordering groceries from Amazon Fresh has become a weekly habit in my house. Handy, and Fresh sells surprisingly good snacks under the house brand Aplenty. That should not be confused with the Whole Foods brand, or the 365 house brand, or the Fresh brand. The other-other-other house brand. It is precarious. You can skip the rosemary-spiced almonds, but the runaway hit in my house is the white cheddar puffs.
Let me tell you about the white cheddar puffs. First of all, they are so puffy – airy and satisfying to bite into. The white cheddar seasoning is intense. It’s sharp and in-your-face. It kind of hurts your mouth after a while, in the best way possible.
Pirate booty? Cheez Its? Pfft. Kiddy things. Nothing else has the sharp cheddar flavor or the thick layer of powder like the Aplenty Cheddar profiteroles. When we discovered them, my husband and I started ordering them every week. Then we dropped all sense of self-esteem and started buying several bags at once because we finished the first one in two days and didn’t want to wait a week to buy more.
So it’s a real situation in my house that Aplenty white cheddar puffs have been out of stock since January. I know they were last in stock back then, because Amazon challenges me with a sad little “Bought in January” decal every time I look for the white cheddar puffs, which is weekly. I’ve checked to see if they’re available for takeout instead of our usual delivery – sometimes there’s a different availability for items if you use takeout – but no, not for my precious cheddar profiteroles.
I think old Andy Jassy needs to pick this up urgently
I don’t want to tell anyone how to do their job, but I think old Andy Jassy needs to address this urgently. He needs to stop whatever he’s doing – building AI robots that follow us and sell us laundry detergent or whatever – and get to the bottom of the white cheddar puff situation. Why is there a delay? Where is the snag in the supply chain? For a company so obsessed with customers, I guess someone should be obsessed with the white cheddar puff pastry.
I don’t want to believe what may be the painful truth: that white cheddar puffs will never come back. Someone at Fresh probably didn’t like the ROI on the puffs and just never ordered from whatever company actually makes them. And instead of just telling me the truth, they dangle the possibility of future cheddar puffs in front of me, like some kind of sick game.
I plan to keep looking at the puffs as long as there’s a product list for them, but in the meantime I’ll take suggestions for another snack to fill the puff-shaped hole in my cupboard.