September 1st: Thorntons Chocolate Truffle / Choc Nut Crunch Bars

On a recent shopping trip to my town centre I realised it had been awhile since I had last been to my local Thorntons shop, so I popped inside to see if they had any new or exciting products to feature on the site. Looking amongst their 'impulse' bars range I found these two new looking Chocolate Truffle and Choc Nut Crunch bars. Neither of the two were graced with a 'New' logo on their wrapper like a lot of new products choose to have nowadays, however it was the new modernised packaging that made them stand out amongst the rest sitting on the shelf.

Although neither of the bars seemed that big in my hand, I thought the 59p price tag was fair (even more so after tasting them!). Whilst capturing my attention, I also thought the new style packaging looked nice, and I especially liked the new lettering using for the branding as well as the tempting looking on pack visuals. Below are my brief thoughts on each of the bars, starting with the Choc Nut Crunch, and then the Chocolate Truffle.

Choc Nut Crunch - Kcal 197 Fat 12.6g Fat(sats) 5.7g Carbs 17.8g
'Milk chocolate bar with a hazelnut praline and nougat centre'

This bar was delightfully flavoured and had a wonderfully progressive taste that grew in prestige as the melt developed. After a short duration chilled in the fridge, the outer milk chocolate broke with a firm, crispness and revealed a softer, drier crumbly layer below. The milk chocolate wasn't the most flavoursome ever, but it established a smooth, creamy cocoa led taste that allowed full expression of the nuttier influences in the filling. The hazelnut element contained within the smooth praline was powerful with a very woody flavour direction that left a lasting impression with each mouthful. Within the praline, small chunks of crystallised almond further reaffirmed the nuttiness of the bar which was a nice touch to end each mouthful. This wasn't the richest tasting chocolate ever, but it was positively surprising in the depth of it's nutty flavours.

Chocolate Truffle - Kcal 212 Fat 16.0g Fat(sats) 9.0g Carbs 14.9g
'Milk chocolate bar with a milk chocolate mousse centre'

Having tried a similar Continental Vienesse Truffle bar a few years ago (which was very poor!), I wasn't expecting much from this Chocolate Truffle bar. Whether my low expectations inflated the subsequent score I don't know, but the experience I had with this bar was certainly very different to that one back in 2008. The outer milk chocolate did a very similar job to what I have described above, and it fast established a creamy cocoa flavour base. Sat plentifully portioned below the solid chocolate exterior, the unexciting sounding chocolate mousse turned out to be the real star of this bar. Texture wise the mousse was very well received with it's smooth, yet dense and substantial mouth feel. Against all expectations it tasted pretty wonderful as well, bringing greater emphasis to the cocoa flavours of the chocolate which in turn brought a delightful richness to the taste. For such a small bar I was very surprised at the satisfaction it delivered - it truly was like one big truffle piece.

Choc Nut Crunch - 8.0 out of 10
Chocolate Truffle - 8.0 out of 10