June 10th: Ritter Sport Amarena Kirsch

Kcal 572 Fat 38.0g Fat(sats) 24.4g Carbs 50.1g (per 100.0g)

As I get older I get more and more scared at just how quickly time flys by. It genuinely feels like only a few months ago that I was reviewing Ritter Sport's Summer line up for 2010, however looking at the dates on the review HERE its almost exactly a year to the day since I wrote of those delights. Indeed, the Summer season is again upon us, and of course that means only one thing - more Ritter Sport chocolates. The Ritter Sport summer range this year again consists of three flavours that have been based on popular European ice creams. Keeping their places from 2010, the Stracciatella and Mango-Passionfruit bars are this year joined by an Amarena Kirsch flavour.

As we would all expect the bar this year has been delivered in the traditional 100.0g square block format, in the usual sixteen block grid. Those of you aware of the packaging from last year will notice that very little has changed - in fact nothing has changed on the Stracciatella and Mango-Passionfruit bar wrappers aside from the year stated for development. Though this may sound a little boring to some of you, I more think along the lines of why fix something that isn't broken. In my opinion the packaging is good and encapsulates the fresh feel nature needed for a summer chocolate. As always I was also impressed by the definition of the filling when I split the bar into it's blocks - there were visible red cherry pieces evident amongst the cream coloured filling.

If you hadn't of guessed from the photographs this was of course a Ritter Sport 'milk chocolate bar filled with an Amarena Kirsch creme filling'. For those unaware as to what Amarena Kirsch is, allow me to consult our longtime friend Wiki - "an Italian specialty, consisting of dark cherries that have been placed in a syrup of sugar, almond oil and vanilla. It is traditionally eaten with ice cream". This all sounded well and good to me, and I felt a little more encouraged by the strong sweet red fruit scents that emerged when I split the wrapper. Being the lucky recipient of a number of samples I tasted this alongside a few friends and I'm pleased to announce that the general consensus was that this was a decent fruit flavoured chocolate. In my experience, the flavour journey started off well with the outer milk chocolate establishing a fair, yet unspectacular milky cocoa chocolate flavour hit from the outset. The inner creme initially came to the party offering incremental creamy tones to the taste, though as soon as the small pieces of red cherry were founded (and they were plentiful!!), a sweet red cherry flavour set soon firmly announced it's arrival. The cherry influence was remarked upon as being too sweet by some of my taste panel, however on the whole it was met positively by the majority who agreed with me that it was notably real tasting and had a small hint of savoury nuttiness to take off it's sugary edge. This was a chocolate that I felt comfortable eating in blocks of four (25.0g), this seemed like a nice amount for a quick chocolate hit with a touch of sweet fruitiness.

Overall as I'm not a massive cherry fan I wasn't as excited about this particular flavour than I have been with some of the more recent Ritter innovations. Despite my slight lack of enthusiasm to begin with, I'm happy to report that I was pleasantly surprised by the time I had finished my first taste test and I continued to be so for the next few that followed (Second taste tests are always necessary of course haha! At first I was a little sceptical that this bar might just come across as simplistic compared to last years 'busier' Wildberry Yogurt variation, but in truth I think this one was equally as good with it's more focused one fruit focus. As I alluded to above, some of the taste panel I conducted this with were a little put off by the overall sweetness of the chocolate by the time the sugary fruit had been enhanced by the sweet milk chocolate. The majority however were aligned that this was a very tasty cherry flavoured chocolate, and that it made a nice change from the more traditional strawberry and raspberry flavourings that we get in the UK. Fans of cherries will feel right at home here with this one. If you fall in to that category I can highly recommend it.

8.3 out of 10