January has been a month for Japanese chocolate reviews here on ChocolateMission and I can't think of a better way to end them than with yet another Kit Kat. If you have read the title and find yourself wondering what the hell Kinako Ohagi is please don't worry - I am sure you are in plenty of company! Luckily you for you guys you have me ... and luckily for me I have google :) From what I can gather Ohagi takes it name from a fall flower called Hagi, and is a rice-based cake which is traditionally covered in kinako (roasted soy flour) powder and is filled with red beans. Your probably better off forgetting trying to piece this together in your mind - just squint your eyes and take a look at the picture on the box.
Getting down to business this was a Kit Kat that was split into two packs of two finger biscuits. The packaging was again pretty awesome but hey what did you expect from a Japanese Kit Kat. Some may think that the outer cardboard packaging is excessive but I personally love it and I think it just makes the product feel all the more special. That said the inner Kit Kats themselves weren't exactly scintillating as they looked no different at all too a normal milk chocolate Kit Kat. Although they may have looked a little placid there was no escaping the lovely roasted biscuit smells that emanated when the foil wrappers were broken into and the fingers snapped.
Taking my first bite into the Kit Kat the first thing I noticed was the glorious fresh snap of the wafers. Indeed the wafers seemed to be just a touch crisper than normal and the wheaty flavours seemed just a little bit more malty and came through just a little firmer than normal against the sweet, milky outer chocolate. Although the wafer took a greater hold of the taste the flavours that were most influential were that of the Kinako Soy and that absolutely delightful. Reminding me a touch of the Kit Kat Kinako Soy I reviewed a year or so ago the taste was influenced by a strong roasted nut element that brought peanut like flavours to the party. This varied the taste wonderfully bringing a beautiful contrast of salt and sweet elements. This contrast was simply delicious and so very moreish in every which way. Personally there was just no way I was going to be able eat just a single two finger packet in one sitting, though I definitely got a great deal of satisfaction from all four.
Overall this was one of the better Kit Kats I have from Japan in a long time especially after such hit-and-miss flavours of the Ginger Ale and Sweet Potato. As with every Nestle milk chocolate Kit Kat the standard of the chocolate wasn't sublime but it was certainly passable and it did at least allow the crisper wafers and kinako elements to take centre stage. With the kinako bringing a very peanut like influence to the taste this bar reminded me very much of our once beloved Kit Kat Chunky Peanut Butter .... oh the memories! If like me you miss that bar and want to try an authentic Japanese Kit Kat I would really suggest you consider tracking this Kinako Ohagi bar down at some point. This is a Kit Kat I would definitely have again.
8.5 out of 10