September 6th: Hotel Chocolat Summer Fusions Collection

The summer may sadly be drawing to an end but you will be glad to know the Hotel Chocolat Monday reviews are going to keep on coming. Recently we have been giving you all our thoughts on Hotel Chocolat's new Cocoa Cuisine range but today we are going to focus on one of their all new offerings in their Summer 2013 line-up.

This Hotel Chocolat Summer Fusions Collection is a 175.0g selection of summer themed chocolates. The varieties of chocolate on offer include: Orange & Elderflower, Banana & Caramel, Raspberry & Pomegranate, Earl Grey & Lemon and Peppermint & Chilli - a varied selection of flavours dont you think!?

The collection came well presented with the outer cardboard pack sleeve harbouring five 35.0g slab chocolates. The team really liked the use of different colours to communicate the flavours and thought it was one of the most colourful and exciting looking products seen coming out of Hotel Chocolat HQ for a long time. The use of cellophane packets would normally be something we would question, however hiding these colourful chocolate slabs inside non-transparent foil packets would have been a waste of their decorative look.

So how did they taste ... lets take a look what the team thought:

Orange & Elderflower - This was one of the more unique offerings and it was well received by those that tried it. The use of white and milk chocolate facilitated a nice base of creamy cocoa flavours and delivered a high quality chocolate experience. The additional elements of the floral elderflower and sharp, juicy orange was highly enjoyed and described as unique and oddly refreshing. Very Good.

Banana & Caramel - Jim made a beeline for this due to his love of both caramel and banana. Suffice to say he couldn't get enough of it - finishing it all to himself (greedy!) and describing the taste as a beautiful representation of chocolatey banoffee pie. He added that the balance of sweet toffee caramel and real tasting banana flavours was delectable. Superb.

Raspberry & Pomegranate - This was one of the two that received some mixed reviews from the team. Taste wise the red berry fruits flavours were said to be highly enjoyable and integrated well with a high-degree of realism. Unfortunately there were some taste testers who reported a grittyness to the mouth feel with the blame attached to the seeds contained within the dried fruit contained within. Good.

Earl Grey & Lemon - This was obviously the most 'adventurous' flavour pursued by Hotel Chocolat but it still went down well with the team. Although not many are Earl Grey fans the floral tea flavours were said to blend well with the acidic, zesty lemon. The bitterness of both of these flavour enhancers was balanced by the white and milk chocolates. The eventual conclusion was that it was a chocolate that was nice in small doses but not one that would be great to buy in any larger form. Good.

Peppermint & Chilli - Last but by no means least this mixture of mint and spice went down fantastically. The team loved the richness of the cocoa flavours and said that the added mint and chilli enhancers were a refreshing and interesting experience. The peppermint brought a cutting sweet mintyness and the chilli a delightful warmth to the mouth feel. Thumbs up all round and worthy of a Superb.

Overall summer hats off to Hotel Chocolat they have done it yet again. As you can see in our taste testing above all the chocolates and flavour combinations had their upsides and even the ones that had their flaws were still of decent quality. The team said that that the Banana & Caramel and Peppermint & Chilli flavours stuck out as clear favourites - these would certainly be welcomed as long term varieties once the summer has left us. If you are after a package that contains some interesting, high quality summer chocolates we don't think you need to look much further than what is on offer here. ChocolateMission recommended.

8.2 out of 10