Thursday, 7 January 2010
For the past two years when I have taken a look at the site traffic figures I have seen a consistent January dip in the number of visitors accessing the site. Why would this be you ask!? Well I happen to think it is the 'New Years Resolution Lose Weight' crew staying away from potential temptation. In a bid to get to these people back on board just like last year I have decided to look at some diet friendly chocolate snacks, starting with this Slim Fast Chocolate Nutty Nougat. Containing just 95 calories and only 3.0g fat the Slim Fast 'Plan' suggests that this bar should be consumed as one of three snacks to be eaten throughout the day.
The bar came in a 25.0g size and was bought for the price of 50p in my local Tesco. In hand the bar looked pretty miniature but it was about the size of a two Kit Kat. I thought the foil wrapper looked relatively smart but I would have liked the on-pack picture to have been clearer given that there was no description of the actual contents. upon opening the packet and cross-sectioning the bar I immediately noticed that the chocolate, caramel and peanut constituents were all pretty minimal. The bar did emanate a sweet smell however it did little to stir my anticipation to any great degree.
Given that this bar was formed of milk chocolate, caramel, peanuts and nougat I guess we can assume this was going to be just as good as a Snickers but only 95 calories right!? .... haha lets not kid ourselves :) As I had observed through the cross-sectioning process (very precise skill I will have you know!) the chocolate and caramel layers were extremely thin so it was unsurprising they were lacklustre in taste. In truth the overall experience was very dimensional with the main contributor in flavours being the nougat layer which dominated all the other elements. The nougat offered a very mild malty taste and was dense and extremely chewy in texture. Truth be told the toughness of the nougat did mean it offered a little in the way of sustenance, however I still didn't find it that satisfying and found myself feeling the urge for the biscuit tin soon after.
Overall I don't like criticising products but the Slim Fast Chocolate Nutty Nougat gets a ChocolateMission thumbs down I am afraid. Despite what I said above I was expecting it to be anywhere near as satisfying or tasty as Snickers but being totally blunt the thought needn't have ever been contemplated. The real problem with this product was that the chocolate, caramel and peanuts were a complete non-factor and it may just have well of been a slab of nougat given their lack of presence in the taste. Although I probably should have expected this from a 95 calorie bar, for me this doesn't make it anymore acceptable and I for that reason I can't recommend this as an option for any ChocolateMission dieters (is that even a word!?). If you have any diet friendly chocolate items you want reviewed be sure to drop me a request.
4.8 out of 10
Wednesday, 6 January 2010
Today we have the second little number from my latest box of J-List goodies - these Lotte Sasha Chocolates Original. On the J-List website they come described as 'a mixture of semi-sweet chocolate, woven with white chocolate' and are supposed to cater for those 'who desire more of a sophisticated taste'. Personally I normally view snacks from the Far East as being more 'wacky' and 'innovative' (especially when it comes to flavours!) and not necessarily aimed at an older target market. To keep this review true for it's intended occasion I shared these with the rest of family over the Christmas period ... this was as sophisticated as I could get :)
I probably should have counted how many chocolates there were in the box before we dug in, though I would hazard a guess that there were about 15-20 wrapped pieces. Apologies for repeating myself from my last Japanese review but the packaging was absolutely superb - everything from the outer box to the inner chocolates were immaculate hence the 9.5 rating. Contained within inner plastic packet sleeves each piece was superbly crafted and the woven two tone chocolates looked both intricate and desirable. More to the point they looked exactly like what was promised on the front of the box which frankly I was little surprised to see be a reality.
Having admired both the packaging and the chocolates for a considerable amount of time we finally got around to eating a few and I am glad to report it was a similarly pleasurable experience. Depending on what side you placed on the tongue first the taste was a progressive experience and delivered two unique tones of different chocolate. As with the majority of mass produced 'dark' chocolate the taste was relatively mass consumer friendly in terms of strength however it was noticeably less sugar than the white chocolate and provided a fine amount of unsweetened cocoa flavours. On the contrary the white chocolate was super sweet but this was kept in check by the aforementioned 'dark'. Bringing strong milk and vanilla influences to the party the presence of the white chocolate was certainly welcome and it was a unanimous verdict made by all that both the different chocolates worked in tandem pretty well. As you may have guessed by the nutritional information each piece was pretty miniature (4.6g) but having said that just a few at a time were a satisfying experience.
Overall these a top class that I would recommend on the basis of several reasons. Firstly the product as a whole is presented fantastically with both the box and inner chocolates not only looking classy but also very unique in craft and design. More importantly backing the looks up the actual taste of the product was magnificent - I don't think the chocolates will be winning any awards as separate entities but collaboratively they provided a taste that was nicely constructed with the two tones of chocolates contrasting superbly. Comments by the rest of family went along the lines of that they were be a perfect set of chocolates to bring to a dinner party because the packaging and presentation creates a talkability factor and the taste is better than average - you can't really ask for more than that. By my reckoning these are well worth a look at if you like the more unique snacks from the Far East.
8.2 out of 10
Tuesday, 5 January 2010
At the back end of last year I got a request from reader Lottie for me to review a pack of these Italian Gianduiotti. Generally I do try to stay well clear of Own Label (Supermarket brand!) chocolates as there are hundreds of varieties in Tesco just alone but when I saw these sitting on the shelf they looked to be something a little different from the norm. Contrary to what I was expecting these ITALIAN Gianduiotti were genuinely Italian, and were 'produced in Italy for Tesco'. On the pack I discovered they were 'indulgent cocoa and hazelnuts milled in to a velvety paste with a soft texture and refined aroma' - that's gianduja to me and you!
These chocolates came in a 180.0g bag and set me back a pretty hefty £2.40 in the pocket. Presentation wise the product reminded me of a bag of fresh coffee but I thought it looked relatively smart none the less with the inner chocolates kept nicely fresh in thick, silver inner foil wrappers. The pieces themselves were nicely sized and could be consumed in a comfortable two mouthfuls; I felt they could have looked a little prettier though I guess it is probably a little harder to keep gianduja in a firm shape than other denser types of chocolate. Although perhaps a little underwhelming aesthetically these Gianduiotti smelt fantastic with some strong nutty scents coming to the fore as soon as they were unwrapped.
Of course with these being ginaduja chocolates the longevity of the melt in the mouth wasn't long so it was down to the strength of the flavours to make these worthwhile consuming. Thankfully I can report that they were very much worth my while and I had further confirmation of this from my family who also dug in to the bag over the few days they survived in our household. In line with expectations the melt was indeed incredibly fast and the chocolates quickly softened in to a liquid state when simply left of the tongue. Thankfully the flavours were soon forthcoming with the woody tasting hazelnuts quickly coming to the party and grabbing authority on the experience. The taste was indeed majoritly nut led though there was of course a relatively strong chocolaty background taste with the cocoa sweetened somewhat by a hint of bourbon vanilla. Each chocolate was rich yet at the same time a little moreish - I didn't want to consume more than two of these at a time though there were occasions were a thought of a third didn't feel necessarily greedy.
Overall I did like these Tesco Italian Gianduiotti but I am not sure whether I would be happy about paying £2.40 regularly to make them a frequent purchase. I have to say that I enjoyed the immensely flavoursome hazelnut experience and loved the dominance at which the nuts had in the overall taste. Personally though as a matter of personal preference I tend to like grittier praline chocolates that have just a little bit more bite and texture to them as chocolates like that seem to leave a greater lasting impression in the mouth. An example of this would be like the filling in the Schogetten Praline bar where the inner praline innards was a little differentiated in texture against the smoother outer chocolate. Regardless I would still say these are certainly worth a try if you like ginadujas or pralines - I know I would certainly welcome having them again if they were bought for me.
8.0 out of 10
Monday, 4 January 2010
I told you these Japanese reviews would be coming thick and fast! Today we take a look at a Kit Kat flavour that I have reviewed in one form already back in March 2009(See HERE). Indeed back in March I found the Kit Kat Sweet Potato to be somewhat of a surprising hit and it ended up scoring 8.0 out of 10 on the ChocolateMission scoring chart.
New this year J-List have sent me the latest incarnation of this flavour in the form of these Mini Roasted Sweet Potato bars, which came bundled in a multi pack of eight consisting of 4 original and 4 sweet potato flavoured.
Unlike most Japanese Kit Kats these mini ones didn't come in separate cardboard boxes but rather in a large foil bag. I am not complaining about this at all but at the same time I have to say it lacked the eccentricity of some of the single pack bigger flavours that I have reviewed previously. Below are my brief thoughts on both the flavours ...
Kit Kat Original Mini:
Kcal 66 Fat 3.6g Carbs 7.5g (per 12.3g piece)
What more can I say about a normal Kit Kat!? Just like our UK one the milk chocolate was sweet and milky and friendly to the taste. Just as with the standard sized Kit Kats there was a layer of milk chocolate creme sandwiched in the layers of the wafers which further reaffirmed the flavours of the outers chocolate. These didn't offer anything I hadn't experienced before but I am not going to complain about that now. Very Good.
Kit Kat Sweet Potato Mini
After a little persuasion I finally persuaded a few of my other family members to taste one these - they weren't all filled with joy at the prospect of a sweet potato Kit Kat (can't say I blame them!). The comments from them were that they wouldn't have guessed it was sweet potato flavoured had they not been made aware. They suggested the main flavour influences were rooted in the white chocolate base with hints of cream and custard. Personally comparing it to the Sweet Potato Kit Kat I ate previously I similarly thought that the sweet potato didn't come through as strongly. Unlike in the bigger version I tried in March the notes of sesame, pepper and salt didn't come through as strongly. There was a starchy stirring in the background but like my family I would sturggled to pin this down as sweet potato had I not been aware. Good.
Overall these were a puzzling product to rate as I found them on the whole quite pleasant but at the same time a little disappointing. If you are buying them as a gift based on the fact that they are a 'weird sweet potato flavoured product' I guess these work out as you not only get the novelty factor but you also get a pretty friendly tasting Kit Kat that most people would like. On the other hand if it is yourself that you are buying for with the intention of tasting a genuine sweet potato flavoured chocolate you would perhaps be a little disappointed with these given the tame sweet potato taste flavours you get. Another question worth pondering is that do you really want four mini original Kit Kats when they are readily available across the globe!? On that basis I probably wouldn't recommend these as a product to get off J-List but I would certainly checkout the rest of their wonderful range of Far Eat Kit Kats. There are more Kit Kat reviews coming soon!
7.4 out of 10
Sunday, 3 January 2010
Last month you may remember me taking my first look at the Mr Bunbury range in the form of the Millionaire's Shortbreads. Despite them gaining only a rather poor score of 6.2 out of 10, I couldn't not give the brand a second chance especially considering the company is so locally situated to me. Just as with the Millionaire's Shortbreads I found these Mr Bunbury Madagascan Brownies in my local Sainsbury's supermarket at the same £1.99 price point. Described as 'marvellous brownies as rich as Croesus and packed to the gunwales with highly superior Madagascar chocolate' Mr Bunbury was again talking a pretty big game, I was hoping they would fair better than the shortbreads.
My 199 pennies bought a pack of 5 brownies which I consumed across a weekly period one by one. Aesthetically the packaging looked pretty much no different to the Millionaire's Shortbreads aside from the baby blue colouring replaced with a pastel pink. Personally I wouldn't have chosen that colour myself for a brownie product though I wont get hung up on that too much. The brownies themselves were kept within individual plastic packets and although I thought they weren't the most unique or vibrant looking of products they smelt great and I was excited by the freshly baked chocolate scents that emerged.
You may have noticed that I started reviewing a fair few brownie and cake products at the back end of last year so these had pretty high standards to contend with from the outset. With the outer packaging promising high quality Madagascan chocolate I was expecting these brownies to taste insanely rich and for this part they did deliver. You could argue that for 167 calories a serving you would expect a really satisfying product but to counter that I could name several more calorific snack that are simply not as fulfilling as these brownies were. The richness was mainly rooted in the strong, unsweetened cocoa flavours that were brought to the party in each bite. The underlying cake constituents were buttery in taste with a slight lick of salt enhancing the sugar nicely. If I had one disappointment with these brownies it is that the texture felt monotonous and one dimensional and could have done with an added something like chocolate chips to bring a little bit of differentiation.
Overall these were a vast improvement on the Mr Bunbury Millionaire's Shortbreads but I still think there a few areas for improvement. The core constituents of this product were pretty much on the money and just as promised by the on-pack blurb these brownies were pretty rich tasting and left me feeling satisfied after a single piece. As I have referred to above though I couldn't help but feel that there was something a missing here and the feel of the brownies in the mouth was just a little boring and placid. With the simple introduction of either chocolate icing or chocolate chips I think these Mr Bunbury Madagascan Brownies could have a winning formula. I never like being critical of a local manufacture so I was glad to see that the guys in Kingston-Upon-Thames had a better product here. They aren't the best brownies around and are a little on the expensive side, but if you see them on an offer somewhere they are at least worth a try.
7.7 out of 10
Saturday, 2 January 2010
Just before 2009 drew to a close my friends in the Far Eat J-List sent me another batch of goodies of their latest stock to review on ChocolateMission. Of course it goes without saying that you can expect a lot of Japanese reviews this month - from past experiences with Far East snacks I am sure they will range from the sublime to the bizarre! Kicking things off we have these Glico Winter Kiss Almond chocolates which J-List describe on their website as 'almond nuts covered in milk chocolate with a sprinkling of cocoa powder'.
These chocolate covered nuts came in a 60.0g size and were contained within an inner foil packet and cardboard box combo. As with the majority of things from the Far East the packaging was a real strength of the product and the outer box in particular was well decorated with some nice looking illustrations and Japanese wording. Inside the dainty looking box the almonds looked exactly as they did on the exterior pictures and they smelt wonderfully tempting, emanating some fine nutty scents when the foil packet was unsealed.
As I received these from J-List in December these were a product that I shared with my family over Christmas and they suited this occasion perfectly. In total these Glico Winter Kiss Almond lasted for only one day sat on our coffee table as they combined that dangerous combination of having both a moreish and fair taste. One of the things that I noticed immediately with these were the thickness of the chocolate shells, and it was nice to see that the portioning of the chocolate was generous in comparison to products such as M&M's etc. Speaking of the chocolate itself the quality wasn't quite what I would describe as the 'finest' (as the packaging stated!) but it was pleasant nonetheless with its friendly, milk rooted taste. The cocoa dusting added little in terms of flavour but it did bring the desired melty feel when each piece was placed in the mouth. Given the fair yet unremarkable standard of the chocolate a lot was going to be left up to the quality of the almonds which I can report were equally as average. The almonds were crunchy fresh, but not so fresh tasting and brought only minor buttery, nut notes to the party.
Overall it is not often I say this about a product from the Far East but these were pretty average ... mundane even! Don't get me wrong these were not bad at all, but packaging aside these Glico Winter Kiss Almond aren't anything you can't get quite readily available in the West. The quality of both the nuts and chocolate were good but not worth getting overly excited about at the same time. This may sound a little stupid but one thing I did really like was how nice the packaging looked. The Japanese always seem to do a great job presenting their snacks, though I guess some may think it is a bit on the excessive side. Based on taste I can't really recommend these as a product you should invest in or import as I am sure there has to be an equivalent product closer to hand. Based on the look of the rest of the J-List stuff there is more exciting stuff to come - take a look at the website HERE if there is anything you want me to take a look at.
7.7 out of 10
Friday, 1 January 2010
Is there a better way to nurse your new years day hangover than reading a chocolate review from your favourite website ChocolateMission .... err OK there are probably better ways but hey now your here you may as well just give this a read ... oh and HAPPY NEW YEAR :) Kick starting this year we have this Mars Almond bar which was sent to me by ChocolateMission reader Alan. Being the geek I am I did a little research on the product and found out that it is distributed throughout middle Europe - judging by the packaging it says that it is manufactured in France. Described as 'milk chocolate with nougat, almonds and caramel' it sounded remarkably like the Snickers Almond I had reviewed previously - Click HERE to see this review.
The bar came in a 49.0g form which you wont be surprised to hear that I ate in single sitting. The outer packaging looked very familiar to the standard Mars and held many consistencies in its design with the Mars logo at the forefront of this. The differentiators for this product came in the red wood colour of the wrapper and the subtle almond branding which was placed on the logo. Looking at the bar itself it was noticeably flatter than a normal Mars and when cross-sectioned had visible almond nuts placed throughout the nougat. In regards to smell I was a little disappointed that I couldn't detect any almond or nut influence, however the expected sweet, chocolate and caramel scents were appetising to say the least.
Comparing this bar with Snickers Almond was an easy task for me as I consumed the Snickers one on mass when it was available during its limited period. To cut to the chase this bar maintained almost all of its positive attributes but unfortunately not all of them which meant I thought this Mars Almond wasn't quite on a par (very close mind!). The quality of the outer chocolate held no surprises with its sweet milky taste that cut through nicely with its chocolatyness delivering the all important chocolate flavour hit. Where this bar differed slightly was in the implementation of the almonds which had been chucked into the nougat as opposed to the caramel where they were situated in the Snickers Almond. From a totally selfish perspective I preferred the nuts being in with the caramel as this allowed the crunchy textures of the nuts to come through more which gave an added dimension in terms of textures. On a more positive note the almonds chucked in with the nougat didn't compromise the flavours whatsoever and the full span of buttery, savoury nut flavours present in the nougat still nicely contrasted with the butterscotch, sweet flavours of the caramel that lay on top. As you would expect with the smaller size this bar wasn't as fulfilling as a normal Mars, however it was still more than sufficient in satisfying the hunger I had at the time.
Overall this was yet another intriguing bar to try even though the differences observed weren't quite implemented for the better. At the end of the day this was still a very enjoyable chocolate and although I won't be swapping it for the more classical standard Mars bar anytime soon it was still nice to how the slight variation on the recipe played out. In contrast to the Snickers Almond produced in the US I would say the swapping of the placement of the almonds wasn't favourable as the nougat in a way suffocated the textures of the nuts, not allowing them to express themselves fully. As I have mentioned above though the taste at the end of the day was not compromised with nuts still inputting nicely to the usual caramel, nougat and milk chocolate combination. On a note of personal preference I would have rather the nougat had been kept chocolate flavoured rather vanilla but this really could not be cited as detrimental at all on the product in the grand scheme of things. This is certainly a product that all Mars fans should try at least once if they get the opportunity. A nice twist on what it is a fantastic original.
8.2 out of 10
Thursday, 31 December 2009
Wednesday, 30 December 2009
Roll on Part 2!! If you missed the first hald of my Cadbury Milk Tray review yesterday take a look below and familiarise yourself with my families conclusions on the first six pieces from this selection box. Today I bring you the thoughts on the final four plus the all important rating chart and 'Overall' conclusion.
Honey Love - Honey-flavour caramel. This had one a cheesy name but boy was it good! This chocolate was shaped like honey hive and it held one of the sweetest caramels I have ever tasted. I am not sure I would want to eat a whole bar of the stuff but I enjoyed the floral noted sugary centre and would say it was one of my favourites from the selection. Very Good.
Orange Truffle - Chocolate truffle flavoured with tangy orange. Oh dear this one didn't go down well! The older generation in my family were both expecting an orange fondant filled chocolate and felt robbed by the very weak tasting fruit centre. Both commented that the orange was disappointingly lacklustre in the taste. Poor.
Caramel Charm - Luxurious chewy caramel. You know the square caramel piece in Cadbury Roses!? Well add three lines of white stuff and this is what we had here! This is no criticism of course ... the soft, chewy centre lasted a long time when sucked on in the mouth and butterscotch and toffee flavours were delicious if perhaps a little weak tasting. The variation of the hard centre to all the other soft ones was very welcome. Good.
Caramel Heart - soft caramel encased in milk chocolate. This was the fourth of the caramel pieces in the selection and it was exactly what you would expect from a Cadbury caramel chocolate. The caramel was wonderfully smooth and runny with its a sweet sugary, salt hinted taste and it complimented the milky chocolate nicely. Very Good.
Overall this was a selection box full of nice tasting chocolates but there is no escaping the fact that too many of them were too similar. It is pretty safe to say that if you are not a fan of caramel or hazelnut chocolates there is not much here to get excited about. Thankfully the majority of my family are fans of both these types of chocolates so pieces like the Hazelnut Caress, Honey Love, Caramel Heart and Caramel Charm went down really quite well along with the Fudge and Turkish Delight chocolates. Unfortunately there were also a number of disappointing chocolates in the lot with the fruit flavoured and truffles pieces especially standing out as being not up to standard. As I mentioned in Part 1 of this review yesterday one particular annoyance was that Cadbury don't use Dairy Milk for the Milk Tray which strikes me as an odd decision given the name. Looking at the RRP of £5.99 I think there are better options out there for the price I can only recommend these on the basis if you are a fan of Cadbury chocolate to the core.
7.0 out of 10
Tuesday, 29 December 2009
I thought my review writing for 2009 was over but I have decided to treat you all to one last two part review on the box of chocolates that my family and I have been eating our way through over Christmas.
The Milk Tray is one of the Cadbury's oldest products (produced first in 1915!) and has gone through many changes in both packaging and selection in its lifetime. Nowadays the selection isn't fronted by some cheesy Milk Tray Man advertorials but rather comes in a nice looking 400.0g purple coloured box.
Inside two trays of twenty pieces consisted of ten different chocolate varieties (each of which was portioned four times of course!). Starting today I will give you our brief musings over the first six pieces, tomorrow I will bring the final four and the all important ChocolateMission scoring chart.
One thing that is worth noting is that the milk chocolate used for every piece was Cadbury's secondary recipe with 14% cocoa and milk solids. It is worth saying that I would have preffered the use of Dairy Milk but the slightly sweeter milky taste was still very familiar with its friendly and inviting nature.
Eastern Delight - Turkish delight covered in milk chocolate. The resident Turkish Delight connoisseur (my old man!) said this was very similar to the Fry's Turkish Delight which makes me think that it is probably the same thing! It was nice to have a thicker coating than you usually get with Turkish Delight chocolates. Good.
Hazelnut Heaven - Whole roasted hazelnut in milk chocolate. This was a good looking chocolate but it was disappointing to see that only one hazelnut piece was included in the centre. This meant that the nut flavours were very much dominated by the sweeter milk chocolate. It was nice enough but could have done with a few nuts instead of just the one. Standard.
Nut Secret - Hazelnut in milk truffle. The description of this piece somewhat bemused me but I was expecting a sort of praline type experience. Unfortunately neither myself or any of the rest of my family could detect much of a difference between the taste of the outer chocolate to the inner filling, which itself was not the most distinctive in texture with only a slightly smooth texture. Standard.
Strawberry Kiss - Strawberry filling with vanilla flavour fondant cream. According to my mother Milk Tray used to be all about the fruit fondant fillings so this chocolate had a nice nostaglic appeal. Unfortunately it was commented however that the taste wasn't particularly fruity and that the fondant lacked any sort of vanilla influence. The chocolate itself looked good but it obviously could have been done better. Standard.
Coming Tommorow: Cadbury Milk Tray - Part 2
Monday, 28 December 2009
Over the past few days I have further investigated the Tender range by trying out these Lime & Black Forest Cake variants, both of which came in 5 bar multi-packs. Looking at the outer packaging both flavours looked like your standard supermarket multi-pack cake treats, though I was pleased to see inside that both flavours were coated with the same thick foil wrappers which kept the inner mini rolls in really top condition and both smelling wonderfully fresh.
Below are my thoughts on each variant:
Milka Tender Lime:
Kcal 156 Fat 7.8g Fat(sats) 4.6g Carbs 19.5g (per roll)
These came described as 'sponge cake with a lime creme filling, covered in Alpine Milk Chocolate' and I was surprised to see they were the more calorific of the two flavours, containing no less than 23% of the GDA of saturated fat - gulp!
These were always going to have a tough time living up to the wonderful Tiramisu flavour I reviewed last month but I have to admit I was a little disappointed at what I got here. Just like the Milk & Tiramisu variants the milk chocolate was again spread rather thinly and only compromised 28% of the actual product. Just as I found before the chocolate was tasty in its milky sweet flavours, however it was soon dominated the stodgier cake which also held the disappointing creme. With lime normally being quite a strong flavour I was surprised to see it had little say on the overall experience as it failed to cut through the cake element and establish a say on the taste. Judging by the three bars I ate myself I would say this was predominantly because the creme wasn't portioned as much as it should of been and it was also noticeable in the texture as the creme didn't provide the moistness to the extent that it did in the other variants.
6.4 out of 10
Milka Tender Black Forest Cake:
Before I had to translate the word 'Schwarzwalder' I had no idea that Black Forest Cake was such a popular product in Germany. Described as a 'sponge roll with a milk creme and cherry jam filling, covered in dark chocolate' it sounded the more unique out of the two variants of show today.
Despite the chocolate being billed as 'dark' the chocolate was more unsweetened when it came to the taste and was still as disappointingly portioned again compromising 28% of the final product. Despite its thinness the chocolate still had a relatively strong say in the taste as its flavours were only further enhanced by the chocolate cake that lay below, which was noticeably more flavoursome than the lighter coloured sponge used in the Lime variant above. Inside the mixture of the two types of fillings was glorious with the cherry coming through the stronger of the two delivering some tart, red fruit influences on the overall taste. Unlike the lime creme in the creme and jam elements were portioned pretty generously giving a much needed moist density to the drier cake.
8.0 out of 10
Overall the Black Forest Cake variant was easily my favourite out of the two though I wouldn't say it quite got to the same level of the Tiramisu flavour I reviewed before. Just like found in my first review of this range a few weeks ago, one of the failings of both these products were that the outer chocolate was not portioned generously enough, and should have been at least 1.5 times the thickness that it was. As a total range I would say that Milka Tender does in fact triumph over the Cadbury Mini Rolls, however not all of the variants were as good with the Lime flavour noticeably lacklustre when placed in the context of the others. The Milka Tender range is certainly worth a try if you get the chance.
Saturday, 26 December 2009
So here we are ... the BIG one!! What chocolate has won the award of ChocolateMission best overall product of 2009 as chosen by none only than ME :)
Having trawled through all the reviews from this year and considered things such as value for money, quality of innovation, availability, public perception etc etc ... I have finally come down to my top three *ahem* four for this year.
*drumroll* and in 3rd place we have ...
Thorntons Milk Chocolate with Tonka Bean:
This bar has featured heavily all week and I think it deserves its place in the top three. As you will have bar witnessed to throughout the year Thorntons have served up both the sublime and the terrible but this Tonka Bean bar is a real shining star in their very unreliable square bar range. Combining the usual cream based flavours of their milk chocolate with added influences of honey, milk and vanilla I would recommend this as a chocolate that undoubtedly has wide appeal. Congratulation to Thorntons on their 3rd place ... See the Review ... HERE.
*drumroll* and in 2nd place ... we have ...
a tie ..
Hotel Chocolat The Sleekster White & Light / Seriosuly Dark Selection:
How can their be a tie? How can you rate one higher than the other and then say they are equally as good!? ... Because I can :) Indeed, I personally liked the dark chocolate Sleekster more but from the Readers Choice Award yesterday it was obvious that the White & Light had broader appeal with the public - which is something I just cannot ignore! In the most simplest terms both these selection boxes are superb! From choice and selection, presentation to overall quality of the chocolates these were both top class. Hotel Chocolat produced some amazing products this year that I loved reviewing but nothing gave me more pleasure than sharing these with my family. The only thing that excites me more than having one of these again is seeing what Hotel Chocolat come up with in 2010. See the Review(s) ... HERE & HERE.
*drumroll* and the winner ... in 1st place ...
... taking home the title of BEST OVERALL PRODUCT 2009 ...
... we have ...
Cadbury Wispa Gold:
As good as many of the chocolates I had this year were I just couldn't over look this as my favourite overall product. After the press release earlier in the year saying it was coming back to the UK market I feel everything about the relaunch was done superbly. There was a sense of anticipation, it had a new shiny wrapper, it wasn't ridiculously priced and mostly importantly it tasted exactly liked we remembered it ... evoking warm, fuzzy nostalgic feelings all round. Looking back over the comments on the review and seeing it got third place on the Readers Choice Award all but confirms that its reappearance has gone down very well with the general public. If you are one of my readers from outside of the UK I would strongly suggest you try get hold of one of these - as far as our mass produced confectionery goes it is one of the best we have to offer. Congratulations Cadbury Wispa Gold ... See the Review ... HERE.
COMING DECEMBER 30th: Closing Comments on the Year!
Friday, 25 December 2009
Thursday, 24 December 2009
Although these Oreos Cool Mint Creme didn't quite get Misc product of the year they are without doubt my favourite cookies of the year. Indeed they did get stiff competition from the white chocolate covered limited edition Oreos we got in the UK this Christmas but for me I have to pick these mint flavoured. When I reviewed these way back in May I found them to be as addictive as anything I have eaten this year and they had the 'just one more' appeal in abundance. If you like Oreos and then I would strongly suggest you hunt down a pack of these - See the Review ... HERE.
Wednesday, 23 December 2009
As much as a surprise as Paul.A.Young's was I was really overwhelmed by the amount of votes that this Hotel Chocolat White & Light piled up over the week that the competition was open. It wasn't always peoples first choice but it featured heavily in the make up of many peoples top three reviews and amassed a winning 22 votes. Personally I preferred the dark chocolate sleekster box but if white chocolate is more your thing then pieces like the Eton Mess, Gianduja, Nut Crest and Fudge Praline are sure to satisfy. A well worthy winner in my opinion! Thanks for all the votes. See the Review ... HERE.