March 9th: See's Candy Chocolate Assortment Part 1

For Nutritional Information on See's Candy Please SEE HERE

It has been a busy few weeks on ChocolateMission, though sandwiched in between everything I was recently offered the chance to sample some of See's Candies 'famous old time candies'. My contact at See's Jonathan informs me that they have several Easter Candy varieties and assortments currently available - so if your interested in gifting chocolate this Easter you might want to have a wander over to their site

For the next two days on ChocolateMission I will be giving you all my lowdown on See's 'Chocolate Assortment', which was formed of a selection of 21 different chocolates (Yes I know there are 23 in my photo above but randomly there were two that got doubled up!!). 

Now before I get into the nitty gritty of each individual piece let me give you my views on the presentation etc. In regards to the packaging I thought the product was presented very well indeed. The box weighed in at a huge 454.0g and came nicely wrapped in both paper wrapping and a stylish, retro looking cardboard box. Inside the chocolates were well protected by thing layers of bubble wrap and individual paper wrappers. My only disappointment in regards to packaging came in the lack of 'menu' i.e. there was no telling what piece was what!? This particularly annoyed me, though I guess is a problem that could be very easily be solved. 

To save this review being as long as my University dissertation I have decided to split it over two days - with the eventual score in tomorrows post. Below are my thoughts on the first 11 pieces from the selection:

Milk Buttercream:
This piece seemed like a sensible place to start given that looking at the See's Candy website, the 'Buttercreams' seemed to be deemed a speciality of the brand. To be honest I really didn't think much to this piece. It had a pleasant distinction in the texture of the outer chocolate and inner stodgy truffle centre, however the overall taste was frighteningly sweet. The initial flavours were predominantly milky and creamy, though these soon found themselves lost in what was a sickeningly sweet culminating taste. Not a great start. Poor.

This piece was comprised of buttercream with cherries and walnuts, coated in milk chocolate. Again the eventual sweetness was quite overbearing, though the introduction of the cherries and walnuts did somewhat curb the sugar dominance. The walnuts added a nice crunch to the texture, and combined well with the tart red berry flavours of the cherries to bring added interest in the taste. Standard

Rum Nougat:
As I mentioned above this was one of two pieces that I got two of - I guess I was lucky in this sense as it was actually one of the best as well! Combining raisin nougat, cherries, walnuts and rum all coated in milk chocolate, this was one of the more unique choices in the selection. The raisin nougat was particularly pleasant and combined well with the cherries and walnuts to provide a nice fruity, nutty background taste buzz. The rum element was not excessive, but highly detectable and brought a sophisticated, counter-balance to the sweet tasting milk chocolate. One of my favourites. Very Good.

Strawberry Cream:   
Described as strawberry buttercream with strawberries I was somewhat reticent to trying this one, so I split it with a friend and they offered their views as well. Both of us thought that the piece was again very sweet, though personally I didn't think it suffered as much as others due to the fact that strawberries are generally sweet anyway. In between the sugary flavours there were strong, zesty red berry tones that ultimately made for a relatively refreshing taste. Standard

Dark Nougat:
Combining honey nougat, vanilla, almonds and coconut coated in dark chocolate this one sounded right up my alley ... and it was. This was one of favourites of the entire box and I could instantly tell I was going to like it from the smooth melting of the outer dark chocolate. The inner fillings beautifully complimented each other with the honey tinted nougat and almonds providing a wonderful contrast in salty, floral tones. The aftertaste left a lovely lingering coconut, vanilla essence lick in the mouth, I just wish there had been more of these in the box. Superb.

Milk Pattie:
This was a pretty simple piece incorporating a vanilla caramel centre and milk chocolate coating. Again the milky, creamy flavours of the outer chocolate got annoyingly sweeter as the melt progressed, however I was impressed by the inner caramel. Combining all the good elements a good caramel should do - butter, sugar and salt with just a touch of vanilla it had a nice taste in the mouth. Although somewhat lacking in an aftertaste it was still overall quite pleasant. Good.
Despite just being dubbed Caramel on the website this piece incorporated a hard caramel centre, almond and a milk chocolate coating. This piece had a distinctly nutty smell, and this corresponded with the taste where the almonds were largely dominant. See's might want to rethink the the name of this piece as the hard caramel took more of a backseat to the savoury tasting almonds. The nuts were fresh tasting and full of flavour, thankfully abiding the sweetness of the milk chocolate. Good.

Almond Square:
Following much the same idea as the piece above, this was slightly varied in that the outer milk chocolate was replaced by a dark chocolate base. Unfortunately the dark chocolate was very flimsy in its portioning, and was too thin to really provide a substantial influence on the taste. Despite this the caramel in this piece established its buttery flavours a little more forcefully against the almond pieces. Another nice piece, though had the dark chocolate been better portioned it would have been better. Good.

Milk Bordeaux:
Another See's Candy speciality the Bordeaux was formed of brown sugar butter cream coated in milk chocolate. I enjoyed the distinction in textures between the crunchy pieces placed on top and chocolate and creme layers, however I found the taste too one dimensional and not to my liking. Unsurprisingly the sugary nature of the inner filling made this piece way too sweet for my liking. The flavour progression was very poor indeed and struggled to provide more than just a very sugar based taste. Poor.

Dark Pattie:   
This piece obviously incorporated the same vanilla caramel as the Milk Pattie, just in a dark chocolate coating. The dark chocolate had a delightful melt, and its unsweetened nature established some delicious cocoa flavours before the chewy caramel centre introduced itself to the taste. In comparison the milk chocolate piece I preferred this one, as the more sophisticated flavours from the dark chocolate complimented the good quality caramel very nicely indeed. Very Good.

Milk Molasses Chips:
Combining mollases honeycomb crisp in milk chocolate this was one of the pieces I was most looking forward to. It proved however to be somewhat of a disappointment, with the milk chocolate dominating the taste entirely. The honeycomb element seemed all but lost in the sweetness of the milk chocolate - in truth it offered nothing aside from a curious foamy texture. Yet another piece that was dominated by an overly sugar based milk chocolate. Poor.

Phew .... eleven down the rest to come tomorrow!! Be sure to check out the site tomorrow for the rest of the selection and of course the all important ChocolateMission scoring chart!