Thursday, 19 November 2009

November 19th: Green & Black's Mint

Kcal 478 Fat 27.3g Carbs 50.5g (per 100.0g)

It has taken me a while but I am a slowly making my through Green & Black's extensive range and this week I have been trying out their 'Mint' variant. Described as 'dark chocolate with a mint fondant centre' this bar didn't exactly sound like a new proposition - especially since it was only a week or so ago I was trying a very similar product from Bendicks. Taking a look back at the scores of some similar sounding products, with only a few aside this combination is one that can generally be quite unremarkable e.g. Nestle After Eight. In fact a little dig through the archives shows that the only manufactures to have scored over 7.5 for this combo are Ghiradelli and Bendicks - no pressure then!

Despite the bar coming in the usual 100.0g Green & Black's size it was split into different shaped blocks to normal. Instead of the standard tiny sized flat blocks this bar was formed of some bigger filled pieces which held a nice serving of mint fondant within each. Personally I thought this did wonders for the presentation of the product and at last I was really pleased to see something a little different from the Green & Black's brand. Just as I noted on the 'Ginger' review last week G&B's have started flipping the placement of their primary brown and secondary flavour indicative colours on their wrappers. Again I thought the greater presence of the dark green made the product have more stand out on shelf and just made the product look more interesting - I can only hope G&B's plan to do this across their entire range. One thing I have never had a problem with is the inner gold foil wrapper which kept the chocolate both looking and smelling fresh releasing some fragrant mint and cocoa scents as soon as I broke the seal.

One thing that I did find quite humorous about this bar was the ingredients list as it had the word 'organic' in it no fewer than twelve times. I understand pushing the organic credentials of the bar but surely a simply 'made with organic ingredients' line would have sufficed. Putting this to a side having not had such a great time with G&B's last dark chocolate variant I was pleased to see that they ramped up the strength somewhat and used their 70% recipe instead of their 60% formulation with this bar. Although this may only seem like a number the actual difference in the taste was very noticeable and the chocolate tasted far stronger with coffee and red wine notes complimenting the underlying cocoa flavours nicely, leaving a lasting impression in the mouth. Admittedly the chocolate wasn't the most rounded in terms of taste and was about to verge on what I would describe as bitter until the mint fondant came to the party. The mint fondant itself was of a pretty good quality and it blended nicely into the melt of the chocolate without a grainy texture like many fondants I have had before. The fondant was sweet but never poweringly so and delivered a fresh tasting peppermint flavour element that complimented the dark chocolate nicely. This was a chocolate best eaten in small quantities and was a nice to eat just a few blocks at a time after an evening meal.

Overall I was pleasantly surprised by this Green & Black's bar and I am pleased I can finally write something positive about a bar from their range. I guess the best way to sum this bar up would be to describe it as a posher version of Nestle After Eight. I would say that in comparison both the dark chocolate and mint fondant were of a better quality and combined made for a nicely rounded overall taste. One of the things I was most pleased to see was that the 70% dark chocolate was far greater in terms of taste in comparison to some of the milder G&B's dark chocolates that I have reviewed recently. As I have commented above this was a chocolate that was best enjoyed in small portions and I would not recommend it as one that should be eaten in vast quantities at a time. In comparison to some of the dark chocolate and mint fondant combinations I mentioned at the start of the review this wasn't the best out of the lot but I would certainly say it was in the same league and worthy of a try if it takes your fancy.

8.0 out of 10

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