Friday, 19 September 2014

Cadbury Dairy Milk: Freddo



Product name: Cadbury Dairy Milk: Freddo
Purchase details:
£1.00 for a multipack of six bars (Tesco)
Calories:
95 per 18g bar
Country of origin:
UK

I don’t usually buy the famous Freddo anymore on principle – I miss the days when they were £0.10 each! However, I was becoming aware of how many uneaten higher-calorie treats I currently have ‘in stock’ and, since I need (yes, need!) some chocolate every day, I thought I’d buy some smaller bars to help me get through the other non-chocolate goodies as accompaniments. Since Cadbury Dairy Milk is always good, I felt it wouldn’t hurt to pay more than I would have done ‘back in my day’ on this occasion!


The purple wrapper featured the brand’s frog holding a tennis racquet. Quite what that had to do with anything, I don’t know, but there you go. Having said that, I did wonder if there was meant to be a general sporting theme going on, since the Australian strawberry variety involved surfing.


I’ve already covered most of the bases of this Mondelez product in my review of the popping candy version so I won’t repeat myself here. This one obviously didn’t contain the bits, though, so it didn’t have the unattractive speckle when I opened it.


As I said in the popping candy review, I did enjoy the chunky, thick and slightly grainy texture more when I didn’t have the distraction of the crackly pieces and, as a result, this was another good way to serve this classic Cadbury recipe.


It’s just a shame about inflation...

Appearance: 7.5/10
Aroma:
8/10
Taste:
8/10
Texture:
8/10
Overall score:
7.88/10

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Nestlé Kit Kat: Chunky (peanut butter)



Product name: Nestlé Kit Kat: Chunky (peanut butter)
Purchase details:
£0.60 for a 48g bar or three for £1.20 (tesco.com)
Calories:
259 per bar
Country of origin:
UK

The Nestlé Kit Kat: Chunky (peanut butter) is one of my all-time favourites. However, I’ve obviously been slacking as I know for a fact that, since I started this blog 14 months ago, I’ve only had one (and that didn’t even get a review as I ate it on a motorway journey!). This treat was certainly long overdue.


The ‘crisp wafer finger with a creamed peanut topping (19%) covered with milk chocolate (60%)’ came in a red Kit Kat-branded wrapper that feature a yellowy-orange panel to represent the flavour. I also noticed, for the first time, the clever way the recycling image on the back used the logo’s ‘K’ to look like a person putting rubbish in a bin!


The bar had the same outward appearance as the original Chunky but cutting it in two revealed its soft inner secret. The thick peanut butter layer was quite dark in colour and almost looked like a caramel. I also thought that the filling between the wafer sheets looked darker than normal and wondered if this could be peanut butter, too, but it turned out to be chocolate.


As soon I opened the wrapper, the aroma was apparent, with an emphasis on the peanut butter rather than the standard Kit Kat scent. Whilst this was good, it didn’t quite compare to an actual jar of peanut butter.


Obviously, the base flavour and texture was the same as the plain Chunky, but the 10% ground roasted peanuts and 2% peanut flour combined to provide a great flavour. It was nice and salty on the sides of the tongue, there was a peanut aftertaste, but the usual sweetness of the product was maintained.

I don’t know if anyone else ever has this problem, but I sometimes find that the chocolate on Kit Kats tastes a bit odd in places. I did find that here but I know from experience that it does tend to vary from bar to bar – it’s a taste I can’t compare to anything but, at the very least, it’s not a natural one. Thankfully, though, this didn’t spoil my enjoyment of this particular bar and, overall, there was a great balance of salty and sweet flavours.

The soft, fudgy texture of the peanut butter transformed the bar so I couldn’t not give it full marks in that area! I just loved the way it practically collapsed, before the crisp, as I took each bite. Amazing.

I’m pleased to say that my love of the peanut butter Chunky hasn’t lessened – it’s still a fantastic product. The levels of salt and sugar can both seem a bit intense, at times, but I think this is a good thing as it stops me from eating too many at once! I’m still waiting for a white chocolate version, though, Nestlé.

Appearance: 8/10
Aroma:
7/10
Taste:
8.5/10
Texture:
10/10
Overall score:
8.38/10

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Kingdom Milk Chocolate & Cappuccino Coffee Centre



Product name: Kingdom Milk Chocolate & Cappuccino Coffee Centre
Calories:
168 per 30g serving (559 per 100g bar)
Country of origin:
England

I received this bar of Kingdom Milk Chocolate & Cappuccino Coffee Centre as part of my prize from their Facebook page and, as a lover of coffee-flavoured chocolate (although not actual coffee!), I couldn’t wait to try it.


The overall concept and design was the same as the Dark Chocolate Lemon & Lime Centre, but this bar came in a dark brown and spearmint wrapper (which I thought gave the impression of mint-flavoured dark chocolate!), and featured coffee beans in the background and an image of a coffee cup.

Since the coffee centre also consisted of milk chocolate, it accounted for a huge 94% of the bar. Within this, 38% of the chocolate was sugar, and it also contained a minimum of 34% cocoa solids and 27% milk solids. Once again, the chocolate formed part of the Cocoa Development Project, and natural flavouring was used to achieve the coffee taste.


The slab had the same ridiculously chunky appearance but, obviously, was paler in colour than the dark chocolate. The filling was almost indistinguishable from the shell but it was just about possible to work out which bit was the core.


The aroma wasn’t very strong but there was an element of slightly bitter coffee about it. This bitterness was also present in the taste but the chocolate’s sweetness overruled it, with the two components combining to form a decent coffee chocolate experience.

 
To chew, the bar had the same texture, and I just loved the silky, smooth and creamy melt of the shell as the milky chocolate gave way to the coffee centre.

The best thing about this bar, for me, was that the emphasis was on the chocolate rather than the coffee, making it preferable to the Ritter Sport Espresso. That’s not to say that the coffee didn’t make a good impact – it did – it just wasn’t so strong that the chocolate became superfluous.

This was another great quality product from Kingdom and my appetite is now well and truly whetted to try the final bar from my bundle – thanks, guys!

Appearance: 7/10
Aroma:
6.5/10
Taste:
8/10
Texture:
8/10
Overall score:
7.38/10

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Lindt Hello My Name Is: Salted caramel



Product name: Lindt Hello My Name Is: Salted caramel
Purchase details:
£0.60 for a 39g bar (tesco.com)
Calories:
199 per bar
Country of origin:
Germany

Back in my early blog days I reviewed the new (at the time) Lindt Hello My Name Is range (Caramel brownie, Cookies & creamCrunchy nougat and Strawberry cheesecake). Having really enjoyed them, I was please to find out about this new addition: Salted caramel.

To my memory, this was the first time I’d had a mainstream salted caramel product, so I was interested to see what Lindt & Sprüngli had come up with.


The overall branding was the same for this bar and I noticed that the wrapper was actually identical to last year’s Caramel brownie – it just featured a puddle of caramel rather than a brownie image. The shape and design of the bar was also unchanged but the inside looked phenomenal and was full of a gooey, viscous caramel.


The bar was described as ‘filled milk chocolate with caramel (45%) and a touch of salt’ and, as much as I like the idea of salted caramel, I was glad of the suggestion that the saltiness would be mild as I prefer sweet flavours! The chocolate contained a minimum of 30% cocoa solids and 14% milk solids and produced an immediately noticeable and strong milky Lindt scent on opening.


As usual, the thick chocolate shell didn’t disappoint. It had a voluptuous melt and a sweet, milky flavour. The caramel popped out of this with ease and provided a soft, smooth and thick sensation, as well as adding to the richness of flavours. The salty aspect almost felt like an afterthought, if I’m honest, but it was still recognisably different to standard caramels.


I would never class caramel-filled chocolates as my favourites, and I definitely prefer sweet tastes to salty ones, so this bar didn’t absolutely astound me in terms of flavour. However, there was no denying its excellent quality, and it did look and feel amazing.

I wonder when we’ll get a peanut butter variety?! 

Appearance: 9/10
Aroma:
7.5/10
Taste:
7.5/10
Texture:
9/10
Overall score:
8.25/10

Monday, 15 September 2014

Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream: Peanut butter cup



Product name: Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream: Peanut butter cup
Purchase details:
£2.50 for a 500ml tub (tesco.com)
Calories: 280 per 100ml serving

Given my love of all things peanut butter, I should have rushed out to buy this Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream: Peanut butter cup when it was released, following many consumer requests. However, I wrongly assumed that it wouldn’t be that much different from the Core: Peanut butter me up that I tried about 18 months ago, so I waited for a price reduction and then kept the tub unopened in my freezer for a while. Let me tell you, I’m kicking myself now!

Made by Unilever for the UK and Ireland, this Fairtrade ‘peanut butter ice cream with peanut butter cups’ was a simpler idea to the Core variety since there was no jam. Although I’m a big fan of Reese's Peanut Butter Cup: Miniatures, my memory of the non-Reese’s cups in the Peanut butter me up was that their frozen nature made them a bit hard, which I guess is why I was hesitant to try a version that didn’t have the distraction of other flavours.


The tub featured the cheerful Ben & Jerry’s farmyard design and stated that each serving was the equivalent of two scoops or 86g. With a promising 20% of the product being the cups, the speckled ice cream turned out to be full of rugged chunks that actually made it quite hard to serve. I’m rubbish at scooping ice cream at the best of times but I had no chance of getting a neat portion here!


Despite being frozen, I was pleasantly surprised to find that this ice cream did have a slight peanutty scent. With 9% of the tub consisting of peanuts, and peanut flour also included, I was glad this did manage to come across.


Although 20% of the product was cream, I had been slightly disappointed to learn that the main ingredient was actually water. However, even when melted, the ice cream was quite thick and had a fairly creamy taste, as well as a slight graininess. The peanut flavour was by far the main aspect, though, with the emphasis being on salty rather than sweet tones.


Breaking up these salty hints was the star attraction: the peanut butter cups! I really don’t know what I was worried about because the chunky shells gave way to soft centres which were heavenly. The chocolate added a much-needed sugar hit and the abundance of peanut butter itself was more than I could have wished for.
 
I’m not going to pretend this ice cream was without faults. Personally, I would have liked the ice cream side of things to have had a tad more sweetness or creaminess (if not both!), but this was very good indeed and I did enjoy how the delicious cups were able to take centre stage.

Appearance: 7.5/10
Aroma:
6/10
Taste:
8.5/10
Texture:
8.5/10
Overall score:
7.63/10
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