Isle aux Morts man wins national chip-flavour competition
A national potato chip contest has turned out in a Newfoundlander’s flavour. Tyler LeFrense of Isle aux Morts is the grand prize winner of the Lay’s Do Us A Flavour Contest for his Maple Moose submission.
Tyler LeFrense is the winner of the Lay’s Do Us A Flavour contest. He is pictured with Lindsey Gillard (left) and Claire Petch, both of FleishmanHillard Consumer Marketing Communications. — Photo by Chantelle MacIsaac/Gulf News
The musician and actor from Isle aux Morts, on the province’s west coast, was chosen in April as one of four finalists in the contest launched by the company earlier this year with the help of Canadian actor Martin Short.
Since then, people have been voting online for one of the four flavours hailing from British Columbia (Creamy Garlic Caesar from Jill Munro), Alberta (Perogy Platter from Lucas Crawford) and Ontario (Grilled Cheese and Ketchup from Angela Batley).
LeFrense, whose flavour was shortlisted from 600,000 entries, got the news Monday morning that he was $50,000 richer, but he wasn’t allowed to tell anyone until today.
“I don’t think Mom would be able to keep it until tomorrow so I’m going to keep it from her. I kept quiet from April to July (when he found out he was one of four finalists) so I guess I’m sure I can do another day,” said the 29-year-old, who has since been elected the town’s deputy mayor.
“It’s just like Publishers Clearing House here this morning,” LeFrense said with a laugh Monday, referring to the fact he was greeted at his door first thing in the morning with balloons, a company representative and a photographer from the Gulf News in Port aux Basques.
He said the whole experience of being involved in the competition over the past year has been surreal. The contest wrapped up Oct. 16 and LeFrense said he was told to be next to his telephone Monday morning for the results.
“I was expecting the phone call and my dog started barking. I thought it must have been a cat or another dog — 8:30 in the morning, there’s not much on the go where I live at that time of the day. I heard a knock on the door. I was like, ‘Who the heck is this?’ I was expecting a phone call, but the real life thing, it was wow. There’s no words to describe it,” he said excitedly.
Lay’s representative Lindsey Gillard flew from Toronto to give LeFrense the news.
“It was amazing. He did not believe it and he was looking at me like, ‘Is she a ghost? What are you doing on my doorstep?’” she said, laughing.
Moose hunting in the fall of the year and cooking the catch with a hint of maple syrup are the ingredients he said he used to make his chip, and he says that all comes out in the taste.
“To be honest, mine is the most unique flavour of all because the other three have a taste like other chips that have already been made,” he told The Telegram in July when the voting process was announced.
However, when he spoke to The Telegram Monday, LeFrense said he had his doubts he would win because some people had posted negative comments about his chip flavour on social media.
“I had no idea,” he said when asked if he thought he might win. “Social media can be a bad thing when you do something like this. The rants and raves people have had against it, but it turned out in my favour.
“I guess the loyal voters who followed me on Facebook, they’re the ones I appreciate and I can’t thank them enough, and Judy Bennett from Colemans for getting me out to the stores and helping me out. It’s been an experience. I can’t thank people enough” he said.
LeFrense received a $5,000 cheque when his flavour was short-listed, which is on top of the $50,000 grand prize he’ll get, along with one per cent of the sales.
He said he already has plans for some of the money, which includes spoiling his three-year-old daughter.