May 2nd: Ghirardelli Luxe Milk Hazelnut

Kcal 230 Fat 15.0g Fat(sats) 7.0g Carbs 23.0g (per 43.0g - 4 pieces)

Over the past few weeks thanks to *IShop4YouII* I have been sampling some Ghirardelli products. Their Luxe Milk range contains Almond, Duet, Crisp (as reviewed by Cybele) and Hazelnut variants - the last of which I reviewed today. The bar on pack was described as 'milk chocolate with roasted hazelnuts' and was manufactured in California, USA.

I ate the 85.0g bar over the course of two separate sittings. The product was well presented with the white packaging cutting a classy and sophisticated look with its gold coloured fonts. The chocolate also looked very appetising with each block sporting an intricately imprinted Ghirardelli logo. The hazelnut pieces were evident both aesthetically and through the aroma emanating from the bar. The pieces looked well portioned and this told in the smell where a strong, appetising nutty influence was very evident amongst some sweet chocolaty scents.

Just as I found with the other milk chocolate Ghirardelli products I have reviewed the taste was really quite sweet. The chocolate was very American tasting with its powdered milk like taste. It was undoubtedly creamy, but just had too much of a sweetness for my liking, and could have done with a little more emphasis on the cocoa. That said the product had some lovely textures with the melt of the chocolate being soft and thick whilst leaving the well sized hazelnut pieces in its wake. The hazelnuts were really full of flavour and produced some fantastic roasted, savoury influences that contrasted well with the sweet milk chocolate. The hazelnuts were not only tasty, but also had a nice fresh crunchy appeal.

Overall this was a nice milk chocolate and hazelnut combination, however it wasn't quite up to the standards of some of the better bars in this congested field e.g. Ritter Sport Milk Whole Hazelnuts. The chocolate for me was just a little on the sweet side and I would have preferred a chocolate with more of a sophisticated taste to compliment the very flavoursome hazelnuts. This was undoubtedly an enjoyable bar of chocolate, though as I have said this chocolate/hazelnut part of the market is a very competitive one and I would have to say there are slightly better options out there.

8.1 out of 10