Over the last few weeks I have been slowly making my way through the latest bunch of chocolates sent my way by Montezuma's and like some of my readers like to put it I have found some 'good'uns' and some bad'uns'. The latest bar I tried was this Montezuma's Milk Chocolate Lime & Chilli which comprised of '34% milk chocolate flavoured with ground chilli and lime oil'. Reading the on-pack blurb this was once a limited edition bar created by Monte's for a chilli festival in South Devon. Due to it proving to be so popular, Montezuma's brought the bar back into their standard range given the high consumer demand. high consumer demand eh!? ... this one had to be good.
Just as with the Montezuma's Milk Chocolate Butterscotch this bar was not from the speciality bars range and came in a 100.0g size. Like the aforementioned the chocolate came in a suave looking black coloured cardboard box which was decorated with light green and pink fonts which had great stand out. Inside it was unfortunately same old story with the chocolate wrapped in a cheap looking cellophane packet and lacking any decoration on the blocks whatsoever. More positively the smells that were released from the packet were pretty promising with a distinct citrus fruit scent complimenting the sweet smelling chocolate nicely.
Now if there was ever an exhibition of how to tart up a pretty bland tasting chocolate with some added flavour enhancers this was it. With the addition of the chilli and lime this chocolate went from super mediocre to super full of flavour and it was a lot more enjoyable because of it. The milk chocolate itself wasn't an amazing experience but I have come to expect that given my previous experiences with Montezuma's milk chocolate bars. Aesthetically it actually looked darker in appearance than previous 34% cocoa offerings I have had from Monte's and it looked more like the 50% recipe used in the Butterscotch bar. Unfortunately it didn't quite have the depth of chocolaty flavours as the 50% but this was more than made up for by the twist of lime and chilli that became immediately evident once the melt initiated. The first one of the two to have its say in the taste was the lime and it immediately brought some citrus fruit flavours to the party with a sharp zingy juiciness. After the initial shock of the lime the chocolate calmed somewhat with the less enthralling sweet milk flavours dominating the taste. Just as the experience seemed to somewhat peter out a warmth of spicy chilli element lingered in the aftertaste leaving a pleasant warmth on the tongue. With the flavours as forthcoming and strong as they were this was not a chocolate that I neither wanted or needed to consume in any mass manner.
Overall in a few of my previous Montezuma's reviews I have been begging them to be bolder with their flavours and it looks like they finally got the right idea with this Chilli & Lime chocolate. As I have described above the milk chocolate was no better than your average chocolate offering but the chilli and lime elements made for up for its lack of prestige with some hard hitting additional flavours. Seemingly Monte's didn't hold back here and this chocolate was so much better for it. The lime was fresh tasting and unique and brought the chocolate to life as soon as it hit melting point. Although the mid part of the experience was a little underwhelming the taste was capped off nicely with the chilli coming through in the latter stages bringing added dimensions in terms of flavours and textures. If I had it my way this is how I would tell Monte's to treat all their chocolates, as they are already to many companies sitting on the fence producing 'friendly chocolates' for the mass consumer. In a mass contested market you have to differentiate yourselves ... the lesson is be bold!
7.9 out of 10