Vigo Canned Octopus

by Rodzilla on September 27, 2010 · 10 comments

Such beautiful packaging and appetizing pictures set my expectations about as high at the shelf I found these on (that would be the bottom)

I feel like octopus gets a bad rap. There is tons of love for calamari, but for some reason big brother cephalopod is just too much for most people.  Octopus when prepared correctly is fantastic (see here) but a piece of tako sushi gone by is like eating a piece of rubber on rice, and just about any more “exotic” meat coming from a can seems like it should be found on probably edible. Still when I saw this can in the store, something told me to review it.

As soon as I opened the can I was met with a fishy/briny smell. I thought my expectations had hit rock bottom, but somehow they were now even lower. I proceeded to drain the excess soy/olive oil and put the pieces in a paper bowl.
Not exactly what I was expecting. I had anticipated a bunch of thinner suction cup laden tentacle pieces, these appeared to be cross sections of larger tentacles without many suction cups at all.


I manned up and took a bite.  Much to my surprise, I dug back in and took another.  That overly briny smell that I mentioned earlier didn’t translate to the taste, these were…good? Not too salty, rather not very salty at all, just a nice meaty flavor with a bit of flavor from the oil.

I hate to be so cliché but these really did have a taste similar to poultry, with a consistency somewhere between turkey breast and calamari. If a turkey and a squid managed to mate, their offspring would 1) be the most disgusting looking animal ever, and 2) be pretty damn tasty.

These guy’s didn’t even need require condiments. I had an array of sauces nearby thinking that I’d need them to take these down. However; I ended up eating the whole contents of the can plain.  And you know what else? I’d do it again

The new 100 calorie packs 

I paid $2 for a can of these. There is a single serving in each can, at that price point I probably won’t make them a staple, but if I catch them on sale I’m stocking up.


Grade: B

{ 9 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Matt

good to know! ive been eying the squid packed in ink every time i go to the store lately, but i always kinda figured the actual squid would be gross (i mostly have been thinking of using the ink to make squid ink pasta) but if the meat is quality too thats even better!

2 Rodzilla

Matt, I tried vigo's squid in ink sauce prior to starting this blog..I wouldn't recommend it. The octopus is the clear winner between the two.

3 Kim Valentine

I love octopus! My mother usually gets frozen octopus for cooking at home. I'm surprised to hear the canned variety is good but still don't think I'd try it.

4 Matt

well… guess its back to my original plan of using the ink for pasta dough and tossing the squid then haha.

some of the grocery stores here actually sell "fresh" octopus… but i never trust it. mostly because i dont even trust these particular stores with simple things like tilapia and shrimp

5 Julia Tylor

I've always been curious what octopus tastes like. I've tried calamari in sushi and it was palatable, but something about eating part of a tentacle makes my stomach turn over a little. But if I could push past that (along with the fact that it comes in a can), I might have the courage to try this. The fact that you said it tastes a bit like turkey is encouraging.

(On a side note, thanks for the blog mention!)

6 Marvo

I've eaten octopus fresh out of the ocean and I have to say I'm not a fan. So I don't think a canned version is very appealing.

But I do like raw fish.

7 Nicholas

I beg to differ, a chicken with 8 tentacles would be way cooler than a chicken with 2 measly wings. I mean, if you think about, for every 2 wings you eat at KFC, a chicken had to die. Now if you had an octopus chicken hybrid, you could have an entire bucket of 'wing' pieces, and only one chicken would have to die. It'd be all sorts of awesome.

8 Rodzilla

Julia, I hope to see at least a few odd canned/potted meats popping up on your reviews!

Kim, fresh over canned of course

Marv – I'm taking you in the literal sense, picturing you on the islands with some live octopi- that would be where I drew the line.

Nick – since when are gross and cool mutually exclusive :p I can always count on you to consider the value in things.

9 Shannon

Very funny post. You might have just given me the courage to try this.

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