November 28th: Artisan du Chocolat Christmas Pudding Couture Box

The Christmas reviews are well underway here on JCM and I'm delighted to bring you my thoughts on this Artisan du Chocolat Christmas Pudding Couture Box today (Website See HERE). A few weeks ago one my contacts at Artisan contacted me saying they had some very special lines of chocolates lined up for Festivities this year. The sound of these 'Christmas pudding flavoured couture chocolates' certainly got my attention, and I was very pleased indeed to receive a box just over a week ago.

I'm sure to the disappointment of no one we have somewhat of a photo frenzy going on today. You guys can thank the 'Old Man' for that, he got very keen with snapping away with these and I can't say I blame him. If you take a peek at the score chart below you will see I have awarded Artisan a 10 out of 10 for their product presentation. These were nothing short of stunning looking and I can't say enough good things about the quality on show here. My whole family agreed that this was a beautiful box of chocolates - everything from the suave outer leather box, opening mechanism and the chocolates themselves just oozed class and sophistication of the highest order.Once we built up the courage to disturb the elegantly packed box there was only one thing left to do and that was to run these milk and dark Christmas pudding flavoured chocolates through the JCM taste test. With expectations sky rocket high I have the disappointing news to report that I was totally underwhelmed with my first taste. Opting for one of the milk chocolates I was surprised at the total lack of flavour generated by the inner Christmas pudding centre. Not to be perturbed I straight away tried another, thankfully it was about a hundred times better - phew :D Yes indeed, like the first one I tried, their were no qualms with their chocolate whatsoever. It delivered a delightful fresh, crisp creamy cocoa flavour base and melted with a soft, flowing mouth feel. To my relief, with the second chocolate, the stodgy cake filling was packed with different festive flavours, with elements of cinnamon, nutmeg, sweet citrus fruits, nuts and salt providing a taste journey that was multi-depthed and compelling. The dark chocolate variety were heavily favoured by the 'Old Man' who said that even in the chocolates where the centre Christmas Pudding filling was more subdued, the richer, earthier cocoa flavours were more than compensatory.

Overall this was a highly enjoyable box of chocolates and one certainly worth taking note of for Christmas this year. On the balance of things it was agreed by one and all that it's positive features in it's glorious presentation and unique Christmas Pudding concept, vastly outweighed it's only negative in the consistency of it's flavour strength delivery. There were definitely more chocolates packed to the brim with the desired Christmas Pudding flavours, but just as my unlucky first experience panned out there were instances where other chocolates in the box were equally as flavourless. This Russian roulette style flavour strength may suit other options better, but for a box of chocolates that is presented with such grandeur it would no doubt of been better if they had a little more consistency given just how wonderfully tasty they were at their best. So would I buy them? I sure would! Their looks sell them alone.

8.2 out of 10