May 23rd: Thorntons Dark Chocolate with Rose

Kcal 556 Fat 38.1g Fat(sats) 23.1g Carbs 40.9g (per 100.0g)

'New Product Mondays' have been a common occurrence for us here in May 2011 and the trend doesn't stop today. Kicking us off this week we have a limited edition bar from Thorntons - the Dark Chocolate with Rose. This is the first of three chocolates being released this year to commemorate the '100 years' of Thorntons, with the other two following later on in 2011 (I've tried the other two aswell and boy are they great!!). All three of these chocolates will be being released in the Thorntons Chocolate Blocks Collection and are based on classic British flavours. Whilst I could understand the symbolism of the 'British Rose' I wasn't quite so sure most of us Brits would have Rose as classic flavouring in our food!? I'll let you debate that one.

Like all the limited edition Thorntons Chocolate Blocks this one came in the slightly smaller 80.0g bar form. Although I have questioned the colouring of some of the previous chocolate block flavours in the past, I thought the use of a light pink option was suitable for this particular rose variety. I feel I must also give acknowledgement to the fact that Thorntons have resisted going overboard in the celebrations of their 100 years of trading - the sticker you see on the top right of the box was the only reference aside from the on pack blurb. Inside the box the chocolate was kept in a layer of bright silver foil and was sectioned into the usual block sizes and with the same moulded markings providing decoration. Unsealed, the bar emanated some pleasant cocoa scents with detectable sweeter, fruity hints detectable every so often.

This bar came described as '64% Peruvian dark chocolate with crystallised rose petals' - an interesting and unique concept at least. I don't know if any of you girls or girls remember the last time I tried some flower flavoured chocolates, but it was the Zotter Labooko Ein BlumenstrauB (See HERE) and they turned out to be rather fine. Hoping that this rose chocolate could create a similar impression I went in to the taste test with an open frame of mind and I'm pleased to report that this was an enjoyable chocolate. The 64% dark was of a better than average quality and liked the way the initial cocoa flavours were built upon by tones of red wine and citrus fruits to create a nice edgy flavoured chocolate. The crystallised rose pieces were at times a little infrequent in number, but where present they tempered the sharpness of the chocolate with a fruitiness that had influences of sweet raspberry and cherries. The culmination of these bitter and sweet taste tangents created an interestingly flavoured chocolate, though one can't deny that the chewing of the crystallised rose pieces was an unwelcome textural drawback.

Overall one may question the choice of 'rose' to represent a traditional British food flavouring but we can at least feel solitude in the fact that the actual chocolate delivered was pretty decent. The blend of the dark chocolate and sweet rose influence is a combination that works, and I'm glad that Thorntons were able to create a decent enough synergy with the two. As I said above the only drawback for me was the nature in which the rose was implemented in it's crystalised form. Given that dark chocolate is most pleasantly consumed when left to simply melt on the tongue it might have made better sense to integrate the flavour using some sort of rose flavoured oil. That criticism aside there really isn't anything to dislike here if you are a fan of flavoured dark chocolates. Out of the three bars being released to celebrate the 100 years of Thorntons this might possibly be the weakest, but that is more a reflection of just how grand the other two are - reviews coming soon.

7.7 out of 10