According to Wiki the herb Thyme is used in a wide range of different countries as a basic ingredient. From French, Greek, Lebanese to Persian cuisine ... you name it ... they use it. Chocolate flavoured with Thyme though was a completely new concept to me and I hadn't see it attempted by any manufacture. That was all until today of course, when I tried the Lindt Thyme & Orange Fantasy bar thanks once again to Dean-German-Grocery. Promising simply 'dark chocolate with orange and thyme' I hadn't a clue what to really expect, though on reflection I guess this was only ever going to turn out one way.
This bar was the first from the Lindt 'Chocolat Provence' range I had tried and it came in a standard 100.0g format. I wasn't overly taken in by the appearance of the packaging as I thought it all looked a bit '80s bathroom wallpaper' - take a look for yourself above. The illustrations where pleasant on the eye but just not entirely fitting for this sort of product. Aside from my reservations about the outer wrapper I was more impressed with the usual branded Lindt foil wrapper and the clean cut nature of the dark chocolate that was sealed below. Due to the oddity of the flavour combination I must admit I was a little wary that this might all end tears. The smell didn't go any way to abiding these fears as the herby scents in between the orange and cocoa made for an unsettling insight in to what was to come.
In true football language the taste was a story of two halves - the first half being a 5-0 drubbing and the second half being a respectable 0-0 draw. This was a chocolate that didn't wait around to impose itself and from the outset the added flavours were all but evident. Placing the dark chocolate in the mouth I was straight away struck by what was a pretty benign herb influence. I was getting some pleasant enough chocolaty cocoa flavours but at the same time I was getting a barrage of slightly spicy herb elements that just seemed completely out of context. The addition of the thyme just simply didn't work and it wasn't until the orange kicked in later during the melt that I started to feel comfortable with what was in my mouth. Although the mixture of the dark chocolate and orange was pretty ok it still didn't make up for the puzzling taste that came before it. Thinking about it now I think the word 'uncomfortable' is the best way to describe the experience - it was like putting salt in your tea instead of sugar ... frankly I just didn't like it and struggled to eat more than a few blocks.
Overall I think I have been pretty generous giving this a 4.0 in the taste test - I guess I was a little swayed by the fact that the dark chocolate and orange elements were actually pretty good. I don't know who in their right mind thought adding thyme to chocolate would work but it just simply didn't and I am surprised it got past testing at Lindt. Personally I just can't see thyme ever being implemented into chocolate successfully - I think some ingredients are just best left to seasoning my Sunday Lamb roast rather than my dessert. I guess if you want to experience this for yourself as far I know this is the only thyme infused chocolate on the market. My advice, and its one I think you should take notice of, is that you stay well clear ... Lindt do so many better things than this.
5.3 out of 10