February 4th: Rocky Caramel

Kcal 102 Fat 4.9g Fat(sats) 2.9g Carbs 13.1g (per bar)

Fox's Rocky bars are a staple for many a lunch box here in the UK and they are one of the best selling chocolate biscuit bars of all time. Rocky bars are available in two different flavours - Original and Caramel and are distributed in most supermarkets and food retails outlets. I normally stay a away from the chocolate biscuit bar sector as they are a slightly different proposition to your normal chocolate bar, but for todays review I decided to give the Rocky Caramel bar a crack at the ChocolateMission rating system. The Rocky Caramel is a bar constituting of a biscuit base, topped with caramel and covered in milk chocolate.

I found these on special offer (74p) in my local OneStop shop for a multi pack of 9 bars. Although I didn't like the look of the packaging on display here I am quite aware that by the time this review gets published the new style Rocky packaging will have been rolled out. The pack shots I have taken above are the old style wrappers and I think you will agree it is lucky they have been changed because they very cheap and tacky. Personally I think the new designs are a bit cleaner and I like the direction they have gone accentuating the 'R' for the branding. The chocolate bars themselves I thought looked pretty good though I remember being a bit bigger when I was younger. The caramel looked appetising poking out between the biscuit and chocolate layers, though even when removed from its wrapper the bar failed to make an impression in regards to its aroma, registering little more than a faint biscuity smell.

As I have fleetingly mentioned above it wasn't an all too uncommon occurrence for one of these to appear in my lunch box as a nipper so I was already well aware of what I was really in for. To my surprise things had changed very little though I have to say that the cut back on the milk chocolate was very obvious compared to the bars I was having years ago. For such a cheap product per unit the milk chocolate was actually surprisingly ok and it was no worse than the quality of milk chocolate that you get on any Nestle bar. As I have mentioned above what was disappointing was the thickness of chocolate layer which I have to say was embarrassingly thin and thus lasted for only a matter of seconds in the mouth with its fast melt. The biscuit element to this bar was not exactly out of this world, yet like the chocolate it held up its part of the bargain with its wheaty, sugary taste providing a degree of sustenance. The part of this bar that I have always thought was disappointing, and still to this point do, is the caramel layer which tasted almost like a gooey sugar layer. With better quality products you get touches of butter, toffee and burnt sugar but the caramel on offer here was one dimensional and ultimately just rather poor. Like many products nowadays it is almost like someone has stuck the Rocky bar from a few years ago in the wash on a too high temperature, the bars are noticeably smaller and personally I thought it wasn't the most satisfying of snacks.

Overall I was never expecting miracles from this Rocky Caramel but I certainly thought it had potential for hitting the low 7s on the ChocolateMission rating scale. Ultimately that score proved a little out of reach for this product even though I was rather kind in the score I gave the packaging. The bar didn't quite hit the 7.0 rating because of two fairly obvious reasons - the portioning of the chocolate and the quality of the caramel. Simply put the chocolate needed to be kinder in its portioning and needed to implemented a bit thicker in order for it to have a greater say in the overall taste. Frankly the caramel in Rocky bars has always been a bit on the dodgy side so I wasn't really that surprised at the quality on offer here. On the whole I think the Rocky Caramel is far from being the best chocolate bar out there but I have to say that for the price (especially when halved!!) I don't think you can really argue with what it offers.

6.6 out of 10