All tested @ 16%, 70v/30p @ 3mg in a SteamCrave RDTA v.1 with fresh cotton and dry burned coils in between flavors.
Spork Pudding Vanilla (VSO) 16% (9-6-20) – Alrighty, ON to the VSO One Shots testing !!! First one on deck, was part of a tripple pack of the Spork Puddings. Pudding, can be a hard one to get right for everyone, and depending on where you’re from or live, your expectations will differ. My tastes lean heavily towards a Jello Pudding, and the like for comparison.
This one presented as a very rich, and full vanilla pudding, that leaned towards custard for my tastes. My current VP fav would have to be hands down FLV VP. Was def. getting some egg from this one, which leaned it towards a custard for me, but had some other elements in there, which kept it from leaning too far to the custard. The vanilla notes were very interesting, and kept you fulfilled, and guessing at the same time. Sweetness was actually lower than expected, and was below mid level sweet. At this testing weight, it was very full, rich, and good. I can’t elaborate on any “Sporking”, but this one was quite good, and to my tastes, fell into a 50/50 Pudding/Custard category. Not a “pure” pudding, but damned good as it was. Solidly at a 8.75/10.
Spork Pudding Strawberry (VSO) 16% (9-6-20) – 2nd Spork on deck, and wow, the Strawberry really works great in this one. I can detect many of the same elements from the Vanilla, but sometime unique happened when Shane imparted the SB in this one. It almost took on a shift towards a SB Milkshake. Not entirely, or even half way, but it’s a delicious shift. The SB is in the lead on the inhale, and the shake/custard/pudding is more pronounced on the exhale. This feels like a delicious pink SB cloud. To my tastes the almost shake-like shift was really a plus, and helped the overall experience. Like the vanilla, I didn’t get a traditional American Jello Pudding out of this, but the custard/pudding base can not be denied. Very satisfying vape at this testing weight, and sweetness felt a tick above mid level, and it worked well. All in, pushing this up a tick to 9.25/10.
Spork Pudding Blueberry (VSO) 16% (9-7-20) – Finishing out this tri-Spork set is the Blueberry Spork Pudding. Yes, the delicious VSO BB makes it’s appearance in this flavor, as expected, and it just plain works. Much like the SB Spork, this one presented as rather a milkshake/pudding/custard flavor, and was solid at this testing weight. I wouldn’t say a BB Smoothie, but it didn’t pull concisely towards a pudding, more of the aforementioned profile. It was interesting to see how the VSO BB fared in a creamy/custard mix, and as to how it held it’s own, and didn’t get lost in the mix. Some of the punch of the BB got absorbed by the base, but there was still PLENTY of it on deck, to make itself known. All in, this one was very good, and lower than mid level sweetness kept it easy to vape. A nice BB milkshake/pudding/custard is what you get, and a great way to finish out the Spork Trio. 9/10.
Pineapple Whip (VSO) 16% (9-9-20) – LAST VSO One Shot on deck. Thanks to @muth, I took some time to get into this one, and was glad I did. Right out of the gate, I got a delicious Pineapple, and an almost Vanilla Soft Serve Ice Cream. Having created one of these, one of the biggest hurdles, was to get the cream level high enough to fully represent a soft serve ice cream, BUT, without drowning out the pineapple, and that proved to be quite a task. Shane did a great job balancing out the two with this one, as both elements were clearly present, without overpowering the other, or muting. It appeared to be an even 50/50 split, and that just really worked out. The pineapple had some lower (darker) notes, and much more mid notes, with just a very few high end notes. Tasted very natural, ripe, and favored the mid body of the pineapple. The “Whipp” didn’t impart a whipped topping like say Cool Whip for those in the know, but I got much more of a light, yet very present vanilla profile, which I took to be a soft serve. Whether it’s a “whip” or “soft serve” will be up to the individual, but I can tell you it works, and the two main profiles, support each other, and that ain’t easy to do. Now on Shane’s site, it does state there is a smidge of Coconut in there, and if you look hard enough, you can find it. Much more of a “rounder” than a player, but again, smartly done, and it works. Sweetness was a tick or two above mid level, and that was expected given the profile(s). Felt really good at this testing weight, and I can’t pull it down with any take offs. Clean, natural, and very even keeled. Having spent quite a deal of time coming up with my own, I can very much appreciate how this one was balanced, and it would appear Timmerz had a hand in this one as well. 9.8/10, without question.
Strawberry Donut (VSO) 16% (9-7-20) – This one took the entire 10ml bottle to try and get a grasp on it. For starters, it was very good, but I couldn’t decide if it was more of a SB Donut, or SB Cookie/Donut. It was missing any telltale yeast notes that often times accompanies “Doughnuts”, and there was no (YAY) Playdoh, so what it did have was a great bakery element that teetered between somewhat of a donut and yet, a cookie. Sweetness was mid level, and the overall mix tasted really good at this level. I deliberated as to missing out on some of the Donut, vs. the absence of heavy yeast or Playdoh, for rating this one. After finishing the entire tester, it continued to be obvious that this WAS indeed a great flavor/one shot, despite it not being overtly donut-y-ish. Finalizing this interesting one at 8/10.
Series II – Mixing Now (11-14-21)
Caramel Apple (VSO) 14% (12-5-21) – Thick and gooey. First take-away. Stick to your hands, delicious caramel is the main player here, WITH, a hint of apple. Having not solo’d VSO’s Caramel or Green Apple, we’ll just have to see how they ride together. This one presented as about 65% Caramel, and 35% Green Apple. The apple I did get, was a fresh, crisp, somewhat tart green apple. It was completely drenched in a rich, sticky caramel. I can’t tell for sure if it’s all the caramel or the pairing, but the caramel was like none other I’ve tried before. Not necessarily buttery-rich, but it had some mid and darker tones that many/most others miss, which led to an interestingly different caramel experience, WITH some green apple hehe. At times I had pondered, Smoky caramel, spicy caramel, but it wasn’t exactly either, but it was great that it kept you guessing. Two ticks above mid-level sweet, and no off notes could be found here. This one does make me want to pick up Shane’s Caramel, and see how it fared in other mixes, so that’s always a good sign. When smelling it, you get hints of the tart green apple, but when tasting they subside fairly substantially as the caramel takes over. Pretty damned sticky delicious. Another nicely done combo from VSO, and the caramel will leave you finding it hard to put down. 9.3/10.
Harvest Moon (VSO) 14% (12-5-21) – I wasn’t sure exactly what this one was by name, but Shane explained it as,
“This flavor brings the wonderful taste of pumpkin and spice and rolls it together with a sweet cream cheese frosting. A must for the holiday season!”
Out of the gate, this one was far smoother than the Great Pumpkin Fudge, and although it shared similarities, i.e. Pumpkin, Spice, the addition of the sweet cream cheese, worked to help blend and smooth. The overall spice level appeared to be much lower as well, and that allowed the pumpkin and cream cheese to better show through, and carry most of the freight. At this weight, it was very rich and full, and sweetness was a tick above mid-level. Def. a great holiday flavor, and for my tastes, the lowered spice level, in comparison to the aforementioned TGPF, really worked. I didn’t get any bready, or roll/bakery notes, but even lacking those, this really worked as almost a creamy pumpkin. If pumpkin is your thing, then this one will keep you going through the holidays. Smoothly placing this one @ 9.5/10.
Sabayon (VSO) 14% (12-4-21) – Having never Sabayon-ed before, BUT, being a fan of everything creamy, pudding-y, custard-like, who better to dive into this one. Little to NO reviews out there, and let’s see if we can change that. Sabayon is an extremely simple, 3 (most times) ingredient sauce made from Egg Yolks, Sugar, and Wine. I’ve seen other derivations, but the aforementioned seems to be how it originated in Italy in the 1500’s. Not exactly a custard huh ? You have the egg yolks, but NOT a standard Custard recipe for sure. Diving into it, it was like a fresh new take (for me) on a custard-ISH flavor. Not meant to be a custard, but more like it, than many other things. I was immediately impressed by this one, as it was very unique to me, and it did present as fairly complex. It was not as thick as a custard, or heavy, which was actually NICE for a change, as you could thicken it up, if you needed to, but it wasn’t forced on you. It was still thick enough to keep you interested, and had good mouthfeel while doing it. The overall exact profile, was fairly hard to nail down (hence the complexity), but it had characteristics OF a custard, and maybe OF a pudding, but was neither, at the same time. Confused ?? Good. I’m sensitive to many things OVERLY eggy, and this one actually was NOT. I can’t tell if I was getting a hint of Marsala wine or not, but I’m thinking I was getting hnits of a light wine, which again, just made this one even more interesting. Creamy, and clean, but still thick enough to really keep the party going. Felt relaxed, but full at 14%, and sweetness was at about mid level, which suited this flavor. If you really needed a direct comparison, maybe a lighter custard-like, pudding-ish flavor, with some really interesting over/undertones, that didn’t overwhelm your senses, nor assault you with egg. Hell, I’m actually considering actually making some Sabayon sauce just to see how it tastes over real fruit, which by the way, this flavor would EXCEL at. I’m glad I skipped ahead to this one, in this 2nd series of One-Shots from VSO, as it was about impossible to fault, and like nothing I have on my racks now, which is saying something. It may not be a custard-killer, but it wasn’t trying to be, and for it’s namesake, I can’t go less than 9.9/10.
Soul Warming Cider (VSO) 14% (12-12-21) – Every once in a while, just ONCE in a while, a flavor turns out to be EXACTLY what the MFG claims. This one was billed as …
This is based off an age old recipe of wassail punch. It is a hearty and crisp cider base, mulled with cinnamon, ginger, cardamom, and star anise. A splash of zesty orange is added to accentuate the crisp clean taste of the apple. The warmth comes from a small splash of brandy to shake off the brisk autumn chill!
… and that is EXACTLY what I got, to the T. Now not being overly familiar with Wassail Punch, I researched it, and indeed, it is/was much much more, than just an apple cider. Now compared to VSO’s Apple Cider, this one was much richer, involved, and deliciously complicated. Overall, the apple profile(s) were somewhat reduced, BUT, only because they were sharing the stage with a delicious orange, and a handful of spices. Now, the spices were not face slamming in any way, and were perfectly paired with the apple and oranges. With the orange added in, it had an interesting “rich-ening” effect, and really fattened out the entire profile, giving it much more weight. Not that VSO’s regular Apple Cider was inferior, because it wasn’t, but I think I preferred this one, over it. Just a perfect Holiday experience to be had. Felt super fine @ 14%, nothing off-putting, and the spice level was JUST high enough, but not overbearing in the mix. All in, this one was really good, and I could find no faults with it. It was an interestingly different take on a “cider” for me, and was craftily done at that. Easily 9.9/10.
The Great Pumpkin Fudge (VSO) 17% (12-4-21) – Because this flavor is not in my typical wheelhouse, it is going to be an interesting test. Shane billed this one as, " Rich and decadent with a touch of spice, and a hint of white chocolate", and that about summed it up. Having tested the Pumpkin already, I knew what to look for in that regard, and it was in there, but with the additional pairings of his White Chocolate, and spice, it almost had a ginger cookie slant to it. Double checking …, yeah, that’s almost what I’m getting. It was very rich and decadent, as billed, and sweetness was about mid level, and with the added spice notes, it seemed to meld into something much different than it’s sum of parts. A slight dry/bitter finish from the spice, but only barely so, and nothing off-putting. I think most of you will love this one, or not love it, with no one left standing in the middle. All in, it was a convincing, pumpkin spiced experience, that was tempered by a creamy white chocolate to smooth it out. As stated in the beginning, this really isn’t my profile of choice, BUT, was it what is said it was ?? Yes. The interestingly strange take-away was the very close similarity to a ginger cookie. For it’s name sake, I think it was pretty close, and felt good at 8/10.