January 3rd: Ed Hardy Caffeinated Chocolates

Just before Christmas I was contacted by a company called Eat Hearty who are based in Beverly Hills, USA. A kind chap by the name of Gary offered me the chance of trying some new caffeine fueled chocolate products that his company had recently made under the guise of a brand called 'Ed Hardy'. Using the wonder tool that is wikipedia, I managed to find out that Ed hardy is actually a well known tattooist based in America who has licensed his name to clothing lines and now snacks (See HERE). Being open to all things chocolate, I of course told Gary to feel free to send some samples over, and I present to you today both these Chocolate & Coffee Rocks variants.

Both flavours came in 40.0g boxes that contained 30 or so hard candy shelled chocolate pieces. I wouldn't personally say that the style of the packaging was to my taste, but I could appreciate that the nature of the Ed Hardy brand was communicated well. To be honest I was more preoccupied by the bold on-pack claims, which informed me that just five of these small chocolates contained 100mg of caffeine - that's the equivalent of a cup of coffee. The taste tests were certainly going to be interesting.

Chocolate Rocks
Kcal 190 Fat 10.0g Fat(sats) 6.0g Carbs 26.0g (1 box)

I thought I would start off with the plain chocolate flavour so took a handful to eat with my traditional morning black coffee. Caffeine fueled chocolates that I have tried in the past have often stumbled at the taste test due to the common occurrence of a bitter aftertaste forming after consumption. Well whilst I'm pleased to say I didn't encounter this with these, I have to admit I didn't think all that much of the chocolatey taste generated by the 60% cocoa centres. For my liking the chocolate tasted a little bland and the sweetness of the outer shells dominated the main stay of the taste. Whilst I wasn't in awe of the chocolate flavour hit, one 'hit' I did get was the caffeine kick! Eating ten of these in one sitting (pieces not boxes haha!) brought about a definite increase in my alertness for a brief period after consumption. Speaking as someone who drinks strong coffee every morning, this amount did the equivalent.

Coffee Rocks
Kcal 190 Fat 10.0g Fat(sats) 6.0g Carbs 26.0g (1 box)

Having hardly been bowled over by the taste of the plain chocolate variety I was hoping for better things from these coffee chocolate ones. As soon as I opened the packet my hopes were raised - the roasted coffee smells emanating instantly struck as stronger, though I was a little confused as to why they were lighter in colour (I think they might have got the colourings the wrong way round!!). As indicated by the aromas, the taste did prove to have a little more backbone to it. The outer candy shells took more of a backseat in the taste, with some pleasant coffee notes coming to the party as soon as the inner chocolate constituents began melting. The introduction of the coffee flavours meant the taste was simply more impactful, longer lasting and generally just more exciting. As with the above chocolate variant, the coffee buzz was just as noticeable.

Overall these Ed Hardy Caffeinated Chocolates are a product that are more notable for their functionality rather than their flavour experiential credentials. Although I doubted them at first, these genuinely offered up the sort of caffeine hit that I get from normal cups of coffee. Taste wise neither of the two variants offered anything particularly special, or noteworthy than I have had from any confectionery before, but lets be honest, these aren't what they are all about. The coffee variant was more to my liking than the plain chocolate one, but even those were OK at best and not offering a taste that I would pin down as a 'must try'. What I do think needs respecting though, is the fact that these Ed Hardy Caffeinated Chocolates don't mess about when it comes to delivering on their promise of a caffeine kick. When you think that a whole box contains the equivalent of 600mg you have to wonder what sort of state you would be in if you consumed one whole box at a time :D haha! I may not recommend them based on their taste, but if you are game for a laugh and the novelty factor, these are one of the few palatable caffeine chocolates out there.

Ed Hardy Chocolate Rocks Caffeinated Chocolates - 6.8 out of 10
Ed Hardy Coffee Rocks Caffeinated Chocolates - 7.4 out of 10