You now have under a week to get your acts in gear for Valentines Day!! Luckily I have already passed my eye over some of Hotel Chocolat's range - including the quite superb Season of Love Selection. In addition to those offerings, for the past few weeks I have been getting stuck into this Hotel Chocolat Heart Strings. This gigantic heart shaped chocolate mould came described as a 'solid milk chocolate heart decorated with cookies coated in strawberry flavoured chocolate and sugar, filled chocolates with Kirsch creme and praline and meringue pieces'.
The product was simply huge - and weighed a massive 700.0g (hence why I have been eating it for a good few weeks now!). There was no denying it looked utterly fantastic; I have said it before about Hotel Chocolat products but this one looked more appropriate sticking on the wall and admiring rather than eating. The box was wonderfully sealed with a lingerie type bow, which when undone revealed the impressive looking innards. The chocolate included swirl patterns, mini truffles, meringue pieces .... I will reiterate ... it looked stunning. As well as looking aesthetically good the smell was also quite forthcoming. It was awash with the usual dairy, cocoa scents of Hotel Chocolat milk chocolate, but also included a degree of sweet smelling berry fruits.
In regards to taste this was a hard product to rate as it was really quite variable in its flavours. The milk chocolate was unsurprisingly fantastic - thick in its melt, creamy yet imposing with its cocoa influence ... simply to die for. At times however it just reminded me a little too much of the Hotel Chocolat Caramel Sweethearts, in that some of the added ingredients such as the meringue and cookie pieces just did little apart from adding an unnecessary sweetness. This was particularly noticeable near the centre of the heart where the sweeter white chocolate was present. Despite this though the additional Kirsch and hazelnut truffles added some fantastic injections of nutty, liqueur flavours to the milk chocolate. I did on the whole enjoy most bites - the base milk and strawberry swirled chocolates were both delicious, it was just the added pieces at times made it all a little too much.
Overall based on looks alone this is a product that is not going to fail to bring a smile to someones face this Valentines Day ... to be honest it is just a huge bonus that it tastes pretty damn good as well. As I have said at times the taste can get a little on the sweet side, though there is no denying the quality of the chocolate, which was simply luxurious. This is one of the more pricey Hotel Chocolat products on offer this Valentines Day, but if your willing to put your hand in your pocket you won't go wrong here.
8.2 out of 10