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It's a bug's life 

Former childhood bug connoisseurs, rejoice! There is no reason to abandon that youthful pleasure so delicious and yet so disturbing it makes mothers everywhere reach for the Listerine. You can rekindle the creepy-crawly love fires with a trip down to Hotlix, and indulge in some gourmet, bug treats.

 If you’ve ever taken a stroll through downtown Pismo Beach, you’ve probably walked right by Hotlix, which is home to bugs dunked and dipped in all sorts of things.

Employee Samantha Mckee says there’s almost no end to the bug choices. You can choose from all sorts of childhood classics, like the worms, crickets, and ants—or you can walk on the wild side and grab yourself some scorpions.

Mckee said her favorite is probably the scorpions or worms dipped in chocolate, which she said, “taste sort of like a Kit Kat.”

The chocolate-covered crickets are reminiscent of candy bar classics, but you don’t have to pick legs out of your teeth when you gnaw into a Payday.

Many of the bugs are lovingly hand-dipped in the back of Hotlix, but if you don’t have much of a sweet tooth, you can always indulge in a few barbecue or cheddar cheese-covered Larvets.

For the more adventurous palate, a scorpion lollypop is in order. Running into a scorpion in daily life can be scary enough, but the thought of its corpse making its way down your digestive tract seems downright crazy. Add to that the fact that a lollypop takes some time to consume, and you feel like you’ve just entered into a warped culinary version of the movie Saw.

This writer tried (and finished!) a banana-flavored scorpion pop, and is pleased to report that she is still breathing as of press time. The mild flavor of banana collides so effortlessly with the crunch and tang of the scorpion, you forget what you are ingesting until you see a claw sticking out between your lips. As a side note, eating bugs in front of a mirror is not recommended.

So, take a friend down to Pismo and double-dog dare each other to eat chocolate-covered ants, because Hotlix is a great place to be a kid again. And don’t worry; at a couple of bucks a pop, you won’t blow your entire allowance on saccharine bugs.

Hotlix is located at 179 Pomeroy Avenue.


Intern Maeva Considine compiled this week’s column. We want a Bite! Send us your food, wine, and related news at

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