September 13th: Hotel Chocolat Salted Caramel Cheesecake Giant Slab

You can guarantee that when you send the ChocolateMission team an e-mail with the subject 'Salted caramel cheesecake' its highly likely your mail will at the very least be opened :-) Indeed there was mass excitement at ChocolateMission HQ when this very thing happened, even more so when it was realised that the e-mail had been sent from our good friends at Hotel Chocolat. We have been so busy getting around to reviewing all of their 2013 Summer Collection and new Cocoa Cuisine collection that its been a while since we last dipped into their standard chocolate slabs range. Today we got the opportunity to put that right with their invitation to try their new Hotel Chocolat Salted Caramel Cheesecake Giant Slab an offer that we simply couldn't refuse.

The 500.0g beast was sent to us just last week and came very well packaged in it's own padded cardboard box. The level of care taken to keep the slab in good condition was certainly worth it as the huge slab of chocolate looked mightily impressive - even when still contained within it's thinner cardboard sleeve container you could tell it was one impressive looking specimen. Out of it's confines the slab was beautifully patterned with the swirls of milk and white chocolate creating an aesthetically engaging looking product. The additional lashings of caramel coloured chocolate and cookie pieces further added intrigue and heightened expectation levels.

As you can imagine with the product carrying a on-pack description of 'salted caramel blended with marscapone-flavoured white chocolate, sprinkled with crunchy cocoa biscuits' there wasn't exactly a lack of ChocolateMission team members willing to participate in the taste test. Luckily the product was big enough to share around the team, though embarrassingly we do have to admit the entire thing was seen off over the course of the single taste testing session. Breaking the slab apart it was soon apparent this wasn't a straight up slab of chocolate. The texture had some 'give' to it and the slab slightly bent a little before it snapped. This was obviously down to the mascarpone in the chocolate and was to be indicative of the extent to which it affected the taste. The result was a very realistic cheesecake like taste with the usual creamier tones of the white chocolate given a cheesier, yogurty flavour lick. The team were mostly amazed at how accurate it was but that wasn't the end of the praise the slab received. The added biscuit pieces were highly regarded for their crunchy texture and additional bursts of cocoa flavours, whilst the caramel chocolate was noted by a few for adding a highly thought of salty flavour note to the mix.

Overall it goes without saying that this Hotel Chocolat Salted Caramel Cheesecake Giant Slab lived up to expectations and has managed to score a very impressive ChocoalteMission rating. With a name containing the words salted caramel and cheesecake expectations were sent through the roof so the fact that Hotel Chocolat have managed to create an offering that delivered on the proposition is an impressive feat to say the least. The 500.0g slab may sound excessive but if you find yourself in a situation where sharing is the name of the game then trust us you will soon find that the large size is going to be something you are thankful of. The combination of the milk and white chocolate was again impressively done and the cheesecake element executed perfectly with the mascarpone element accurately encapsulating the promised flavour theme. Add in the biscuits and salted caramel to the mix and we should have never been in any doubt this was going to be a winner. It goes without saying this carries a ChocolateMission recommendation.

8.4 out of 10