Back in December, Thorntons released this press release HERE, announcing the launch of a store exclusive Cookies range. Common readers of the site will be aware that Thorntons have tended to score consistently well with their more random chocolate offerings here on ChocolateMission - I'm talking about the likes of their Millionaire Shortbreads, Brownies etc. With these past experiences in mind I was delighted when I was approached by one of Thorntons's PR agencies who offered me the chance of trying these new cookies. I quickly snapped their hands off, and before I knew it I had all four of the varieties in-hand, photographed and prime for sampling.
Before I give you the run down of how each tasted and bombard you with photos and graphs, I must first give you the finer details about the four different flavours. Distinguished by their coloured packs, the four variants were Sicillian Lemon Meringue, Triple Chocolate, Praline & Milk Chocolate and Ginger & Dark Chocolate. Three out of the four (all but the Praline 175.0g) weighed 200.0g with eight cookies in each pack. Aesthetically I thought the presentation quality was fair to standard. I wouldn't say they looked as premium as one might have thought Thorntons would have chosen to make them look, but they looked appetising enough, and it must at least be said the on-pack pictures gave a very good steer as to how they looked in real life.
With thirty-two cookies in my possession, there were more than enough to pass round the family to get some second opinions - brace yourselves for a feast of photos, graphs and ratings:
Sicilian Lemon Meringue
'Lemon flavour cookies baked with white chocolate covered meringue pieces'
Kcal 120 Fat 5.1g Fat(sats) 2.5g Carbs 17.3g (per cookie)
Lets start off the worst ones and get them out the way. When I first showed all these cookies to my family, both my mother and sister latched on to these stating they were the most desirable. Unfortunately they were none to impressed with them, and described them as overly sweet, and fake tasting in regards to their lemon fruit flavours. When I got around to trying them myself I have to say I 100.0% agreed with them. The covered meringue pieces acted almost like lumps of sugar, and the lemon element was tart enough to take the edge off the sweetness (if anything it just enhanced it). Want to know the worst thing of all about these cookies? They made the rest of them smell and taste like them when stored in the biscuit barrel!
4.6 out of 10
Triple Chocolate Chunk
'Baked with white, dark and milk chocolate chunks, half coated in milk chocolate'
Kcal 124 Fat 6.1g Fat(sats) 3.8g Carbs 15.7g (per cookie)
On to the next disappointing ones :D Now before you all get the wrong idea please take notice I say 'disappointing' and not 'bad'! Essentially these were tasty cookies - the dough bases were pleasant, and the half coated milk chocolate undersides were a nice touch if a little messy. My disappointment, actually, OUR collective disappointment came in the fact that they didn't deliver a 'Triple' chocolate experience. Had you asked me what flavour they were in a blind taste test, I would have told you that they were just milk chocolate chip cookies. Unfortunately the dark and white chips didn't cut through in the taste, with neither the unsweetened flavours of the dark or the creamier influence of the latter mentioned managing to shine through. Good cookies, but didn't live up the Triple Chocolate billing.
7.0 out of 10
Praline & Milk Chocolate
'Hazelnut & almond praline, roasted hazelnuts, half coated in milk chocolate'
Kcal 117 Fat 6.9g Fat(sats) 3.1g Carbs 12.1g (per cookie)
These cookies were slightly smaller than their other counterparts, but what they lacked in size they made up for taste. These were the favourite of both my mother and sister, and I have to say they did give the Ginger cookies a run for their money. These cookies were billed as being filled with nutty influences and I'm glad to say the nut element was more than delivered on. The combination of the base biscuit and milk chocolate set the taste up with an initial sweet chocolatyness. As the melt developed, and the crunchy hazelnut pieces came into play, a pleasant woodsy nuttyness came to the fore and brought a delicious salty savoury note along with it. These weren't as satisfying as some of the others, but they were well liked all round.
7.2 out of 10
Ginger & Dark Chocolate
'Ginger flavour cookies backed with candied ginger pieces, coated in dark chocolate'
Kcal 120 Fat 6.1g Fat(sats) 3.8g Carbs 14.9g (per cookie)
Hands down these were the nicest of the lot. As much as the praline variety was liked, these were loved! Being the dark chocolate ginger lover of the family, my father didn't wait to long before tasting one of these, promptly telling us how 'awful' they were, and attempting to run away with the rest of the packet haha :D Luckily the rest of got to him before he could get to far - and we are very glad we did. The combination of the dark chocolate and ginger was executed flawlessly. The outer lick of dark chocolate was thick enough to create a kind, unsweetened dark chocolate taste, which contrasted nicely with rest of the sweeter components. At the heart of each biscuit, the ginger didn't hold back when it came to the taste, offering a beautifully contrastive set of sweet, spicy flavours. Quite simply, these were damn tasty cookies.
8.5 out of 10
Overall its pretty obvious which of these cookies I would be happy to recommend to you all. Fans of praline or ginger chocolates will be sure to enjoy those variants, whilst I'm pretty certain the Triple Chocolate would go down well with anyone none to demanding of the triple chocolate experience. As ever with Thorntons we got a real mixed here - my advice is just pick and choose wisely.