We all remember our chemistry laboratory days, whether they happened in high school or college. Cornology connects those lab days to every student’s favorite study distraction: snacks. The geeky chemistry-themed store explores the science of popcorn with an alcohol-based structure in its name and logo. The three stores in Emeryville, Livermore and Walnut Creek even sell chemistry-based products, such as Erlenmeyer flask and beaker drinking cups.
Cornology first started in Walnut Creek and, as stated on its website, produces “a delectable curriculum for all ages.” Every batch of popcorn is popped fresh at 7 a.m. every day. Similar to a chemistry laboratory course, the popcorn is then mixed with other ingredients to produce unique and different flavors, such as truffle parmesan, double cheddar and sweet corn.
The Emeryville Cornology is closest to Berkeley and has been open for a little longer than a year. The team seems very tight-knit with its always joking and smiling employees, and the relaxing and fun atmosphere passes on to the customers.
According to the staff, Cornology’s most popular flavor is the Chicago mix, which is double cheddar with caramel. The shops are very friendly to customers who want to sample a little of everything. Customers can try as many flavors as they want until they make the difficult decision of which flavors to purchase. While you choose your flavors, the employees continue to joke and laugh with you and slowly educate you about Cornology and its popcorn and flavors. With an atmosphere and team like this, shopping at Cornology is a fun experience.
With so many flavors to sample, it can be hard to choose, but you can mix together different flavors in one bag if you really can’t decide. For this purpose, Cornology sells small, medium and large bags at a price range from about $9 to $20.
Out of all the flavors that could be sampled, truffle parmesan and sweet corn were worth buying. Truffle parmesan is a combination of white truffle oil, garlic and herbs, whereas sweet corn is kettle corn made with crisp white sugar and butter. This was a rare but delicious find. After the first bite, it was obvious there was mushroom and garlic. The taste was heavenly and almost emulated the taste of mushroom risotto at a high-end restaurant.
The sweet corn was similar to regular kettle corn. It did not taste like your standard kettle corn though; the corn was perfectly crunchy and not too dry or soggy. The sweetness also was not overpowering, unlike many kettle corns that contain an overabundance of sugar and seem like they are drenched in caramel. This variety was a good balance of sweet and salty.
Both flavors would be perfect for a stay-at-home movie night with good friends, a significant other or even by yourself. Grab a blanket, relax and eat Cornology popcorn with whatever fun activity you have planned. Even studying organic chemistry could be fun under the influence of nerdy chemistry-themed popcorn.
Contact Annie Chang at [email protected].