September 29th: Sarotti Erfrischungs-Stabchen
Kcal ??? Fat ??? Fat(sats) ??? Carbs ???
Thanks to Dean-German-Grocery I must now be close to reviewing as many German products as I have done English ones. I hope that statement isn't seen as a complaint as I tend to think that the German products I review are generally a lot more interesting than most of the UK based ones. Today I got to try another offering from the Sarotti range in the form of their Erdrischungs-Stabchen ... or in plain old English 'Sarotti Refreshement Sticks'. They came billed as 'chocolate sticks with an orange and lemon flavoured filling, coated with plain chocolate' which didn't sound an all to dissimilar proposition to the Hotel Chocolat chocolate covered fruit chocolates I have been trying recently.
The chocolates came in a 75.0g box that contained two layers of mini stick pieces. In regards to size they were about half the size of a Cadbury Finger and rather light in texture meaning that even half a pack wasn't the most substantial of snacks. The packaging was altogether fun looking, though I didn't think it conveyed the actual properties of the product that well i.e. I couldn't actually tell you exactly what the product was until I tasted it. The sticks themselves cut a pretty unremarkable look and I thought their clear inner contents wasn't exactly inspiring, though at the same time it was hardly a turn off of any manner. I was a little disappointed to see that the inner pieces were unprotected by any sort of film or foil wrapping but this didn't seemingly hamper the smell of the product that much as a sweet orangey, chocolaty smell was evident upon opening.
It took a little bit of experimentation to get the best out of these but once I found the best instance to eat them in they weren't altogether that bad. Initially I just dove right in and ate these at room temperature which really didn't prove to be the best condition to consume them. In this state the chocolate was extremely fast melting and its milk cocoa flavours were soon all but dominated by the inner filling which took a rather odd form. Lining the chocolate inside a layer of sugar gave the texture an odd crunchiness and contained the sweet, fruity syrup inside. In this state the sugary nature of the filling all but overtook the flavours generated by the outer chocolate which made for a pretty fowl tasting monotonous taste. Having tasted them at room temperature I thought that these would benefit from being chilled ... so I stuck them in the freezer for a good few hours. I am glad to report that this did them the world of good. The chocolate was slower to melt and due to this extended duration left a lasting impression in the mouth. The inner liquid was still a little to sweet for my liking, though there was no doubting the refreshing nature of the cool inner liquid centre which seemed to have a stronger lemon and orange fruit influences the greater chilled they were. As previously mentioned I ate these across two different sittings - the second felt a far more substantial experience as in their chilled state the chocolates could be savoured that bit longer.
Overall I have never come across a chocolate that has managed to vary so much in performance with just the small added factor of a quick period being stored in the freezer. In their normal state these were frankly pretty poor and the sugary nature of the inner filling just managed override any other factor that was brought to the taste by the chocolate. Once chilled though these were a different story altogether. The chocolate managed to express itself more, whilst the inner liquid provided a cool, fresh tasting fruity element that these chocolates completely lacked when eaten at room temperature. In conclusion I wouldn't say these are ever a must try product as they simply weren't altogether that amazing. On the other hand though if you were to be given them as a gift or just fancied trying them I would stress the importance of a bit of patience and a quick visit for these to a cooling unit.
7.2 out of 10