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Having reviewed over 50+ Ritter Sport products in the last three years, you would of thought it would be impossible for me to be as excited as I was about trying one of their new flavours, but ever since I received the e-mail from my contacts at Ritter offering me the chance to get a sneak peak of their latest 'Espresso' flavour, I have literally been running to my door everytime the postman has dared venture anywhere near my postbox. Last week a big box of samples (more on that below!!) finally made it's way to me from Germany, included in which were several bars of this new Espresso variety. Unfortunately it wasn't me that signed for my package, so the rest of my family were well aware of the large Ritter branded parcel that had been sent my way :) As much as I selfishly wanted to keep these bars of 'milk chocolate with coffee cream' all to my greedy self I of course did the decent thing and shared - expect some second opinions floating about this review :D
I'm not sure you will have taken as much notice of the packaging as I did but the first thing that caught my eye was the word 'Neu' (translation: New) on the top left of the wrapper. By the looks of it, rather than being a limited edition flavour, this Espresso seems to be a permanent addition to the 100.0g Ritter range. You may be thinking that my photo of the wrapper looks slightly odd - well thats because the packs sent to me by Ritter were pre-sale samples, so they were mock-ups of what will actually be in market in a few months. Although the exterior packaging was made up off stickers stuck on to a generic white film packet, the chocolate itself was presented as it would be for the final product. The surface area of the chocolate looked smooth and dark in colour, and the bar broke with a pleasant snapping sound. Sandwiched between the two layers of outer chocolate, the filling looked nicely portioned and was evidently lighter in colour and noticeably differentiated in terms of appearance.
In 99% of cases the smell of a food is highly indicative of what it tastes like, so you can probably imagine that I was extremely receptive of the glorious coffee scents that were offered by the chocolate. These coffee smells were present everytime I went to eat a piece of this chocolate, and provided more than sufficient insight to the taste that I was to be treated to. As suggested by it's aesthetic appearance the chocolate melted with a delightfully soft smoothness and delivered the usual array of sweet, milky cocoa flavours that I have come so accustom to with Ritter Sport milk chocolate. As the soft melted developed the inner coffee cream filling started coming through slowly in the taste, and peaked in it's flavour delivery during the middle stage of each block melting on my tongue. To be put this in the frankest terms the coffee cream element of this chocolate tasted absolutely delicious. The centre filling gave a well strengthened, roasted coffee flavour burst that tasted both real and fresh. Various members of my family take their coffee in certain ways - ranging from milky white, to double espressos, yet all four of us agreed that this was pretty much spot on in strength. What has sometimes spoilt other brand's coffee chocolates before (See Green & Black's Espresso) is their tendency to have slightly bitter aftertastes. This Ritter offering thankfully balanced the end note of coffee with the sweetness of the base layer of milk chocolate. As a lover of coffee chocolate it was a bar I found very moreish, yet felt it had a satisfying richness to it due to the volume of flavour delivered with each block.
Overall this is one of ... if not THE best Ritter Sport flavour I believe the brand has to offer, and I simply can't wait for you guys to give me your own views on it. I have looked back across all my other Ritter Sport reviews, looking at the likes of the Karamell-Nuss, White Hazelnuts etc, and whilst those bars have got similarly high ratings, I think if I was told I could only have one Ritter Sport bar for the rest of time this probably be my bar of choice. Whilst in the past I have happily settled for the Ritter Sport Cappuiccino bar satisfying my Ritter chocolate coffee cravings, this bar blows it out the water. In the context of my other favourite coffee chocolates I would rank it up there with likes of Lindt's Excellence Coffee Intense - I think it is that good! This may not be a chocolate that is to everyones tastes, but if you like coffee flavoured chocolates I think this should be near the top of your 'must try' lists. I will happily concede that there is very, very marginal room for improvement in the milk chocolate, but when it comes to the quality of the coffee cream Ritter have metaphorically speaking 'hit the nail on the head' with this one. I needn't bother writing whether or not I recommend this bar - I think you all know the answer to that!
9.0 out of 10