These two bars of from Lindt have been on store shelves for some time now. I have a faint recollection of when I first saw them, perhaps late high school or early college. The time sticks out in my mind so vividly because I immediately snatched up the White Chocolate Coconut bar and fell in love with my first bite. Realizing how addictive it was (and being overly conscious about my waist line at the time) I decided it was best to ignore it from then on. Now that I keep a blog of such things, it is only my very delicious duty to try it again along with its sister bar the Intense Mint, to see if the one lives up to memory and to give the other a go.
White Chocolate Coconut:Once unwrapped, it’s a pretty standard looking white chocolate. The surprise comes when you turn it over, where you see the bright white flecks of coconut in it. As for the aroma? Oh, it smells so sweet and strongly of coconut. It reminds me of how a Mounds bar’s center tastes.
This bar indeed is as good as I remember it. It’s heaven! The white chocolate is mild, buttery, creamy and smooth like it should be. The coconut delivers a wonderful fresh flavor, no suntan oil essences here, and the little shavings give a nice bit of chewy texture to the chocolate. The coconut isn’t overpowering either, which is often the case, but instead is balanced beautifully so I can still enjoy the flavor of the white chocolate too. I believe when this was first released as an limited edition, and I’m so glad it’s now a permanent member of the line. I am definitely hoarding this!
Intense Mint: Described as “infused with mint flavor” (as if I couldn’t guess that) and it doesn’t say what percentage the chocolate is. Looking at the ingredients, sugar comes before cocoa solids, so guessing It’s a 50-60% bittersweet. I also see peppermint oil listed, which I find funny, because peppermint and mint are two different flavors in my book. The chocolate is dark with nice red undertones. The aroma smells brightly of mint and it’s extremely refreshing.
The flavor is like an Andes mint. But a rich, cultured, world-traveling Andes mint. The chocolate is luxurious, smooth and buttery with a strong chocolate flavor. I find it hard to taste any of the chocolate’s individual characteristic flavors because of the overwhelming flavor of mint, as it completely downs them out. The mint is strong, so I feel a coolness in my mouth and a bit if a burn in the back of my throat. I feel minty fresh afterward. As a flavor, I think this runs a little strong since I want to taste the chocolate more and have it feel less like I"m trying to wash out the flavor of dinner on my palette. A nice piece if you enjoy “intense mint” (I can’t say the label didn’t warn me!) flavor, but a little too fresh for my enjoyment as a treat.
Rating: White Coconut: Hoard
Intense Mint: Might Eat Again
Yet another Japanese candy today, I’m on a roll, I know. This candy is by far the wackiest I’ve had to date. It’s not only meant to be eaten, but assembled and played with a well. Talk about an interactive candy!
The premise of this is based on a typical Japanese game you find at most festivals in the summer. It’s like scooping fish in a barrel, really, and kids just love to play it. The idea of the game is the player is given a little scoop, where the strainer part is frail and will dissolve very quickly in water, and the child tried to quickly catch a fish into a little dish to take home as a prize. Often the scoops breaks before a fish is caught, so you do need some skills to win at this. I’ve played versions of this, but with floating balls representing certain prizes, and I never fared very well.
Once I opened the package, there was a large plastic tray with a deep well in it, a small spoon, a packed of powder, a wafer scoop and a packet of gummis. The powder packed showed a pictures of a goldfish taking the spoon and stirring the powder into water placed in the plastic tray. Even tho I could read the directions, anyone who couldn’t could still know what to do.
So I added some water, poured the bright blue powder into it, which smelled like bubble gum, and stirred. The powder clumped a little, but it did a nice job of turning my water a nice shade of blue, making it feel more like a game right out of a cartoon. I then added the fish gummis, there’s two colors, pink and yellow. I then grabbed my wafer scoop and prepared to catch my first fish.
It was a pink one. It tasted fruity, with a tart tropical base to it. The package says the flavor is apple but I don’t get that at all. With catching the first fish, half of my scoop went with it, and it has a nice, bland wafer flavor it it that’s a little sweet, a little vanilla-y. The yellow fish was my next target and I caught it with the last half of my scoop. Pineapple flavored, and soooo tasty. They captured the wonderful zesty sweet flavor perfectly. At this point I had a dilemma, since my scoop was no more since I consumed it, yet I had more fish floating around in my water (which, by now, had congealed and was very odd looking). I ended up picking them out with my fingers, which was kinda gross since they had gotten quite slimy. They still tasted great though. I then used the spoon to eat the water, which has a light cotton candy/bubblegum flavor (the package says soda flavored, based off Ramune no doubt) and further reminded me of festivals and carnivals that this is supposed to mimic. They did a good job.
Fun to play with, but not enough fun (or flavor) to eat again. Worth the purchase just to give it a try.
Rating: Might Eat Again
I wish I had more information on these gummis. I was given them by a close Japanese friend of mine in a candy care package, so I didn’t even have the benefit of a store label to help me with the name of these. Despite my moderate knowledge of the Japanese language, I can’t even decipher an official name, or even a company or brand name of these. All I know is that they’re passion fruit flavored.
The others information I can gather from the package is what the gummis are like. There’s an illustration that shows them as a round ball with a shell, a white middle layer and a gooey inside.
The candy smells more like banana than passion fruit, and they’re the size of an average gum ball. The color is a matte yellow. The bite is very soft, and the whole gummy collapses as it’s pinched by your teeth. The light sugar shell cracks, revealing a foamy white ring with the gummi center. This delivers an intense passion fruit flavor. It’s just smacks you right in the mouth: tart notes of pineapple, some flavors of apple and mango all making that extremely tart and juicy passion fruit flavor. Wow it is good. The chew is not so much gummi, but does remind me more of a gumball, chewy with a good give to it, but gradually turning grainy and dissolving in your mouth. The gummy center is the last to go and has a good, extra rubbery jelly bean chew to it.
I liked them, and I don’t know where else I’d get a gummi in this flavor, so they’re worth trying if you’re a fan of passion fruit.
Rating: Will Eat Again
Vere Chocolate (pronounced “very”) is a chocolate company with a conscience. They strive to produce chocolate that’s good for the body and the earth by using the best ingredients by using sustainably grown, pesticide-free cocoa beans with minimal sugar and no preservatives. The pride themselves in making the best possible tasting product while making ecological choices.
I found these two mini bars on a recent trip to Chelsea Market in New York City. They’re very cute, coming in colorful little boxes. Each bar is a 75% dark chocolate base and weighs in at 10g. Obviously meant to be a small indulgence.
The bar come nicely protected with board covering and sealed heavily plastic foil wrapped inside. The bar is a single long piece that is reminiscent of Legos.
Ultimo Dark: Smells very floral, fruity and of course chocolatey. Notes of red berries, raisins, cream, cinnamon.
The flavor is very musky and bitter at first. I taste notes of mushrooms and green coffee. The middle flavor gets more fruity and acidic, with red berries, citrus and cocoa. The finish is a little sweeter, with cream appearing and mingling with the dry, tart fruity notes. The aftertaste is dry and lingers a little while with flavors of cocoa.
The mouth feel is not as smooth as I’d like. It’s a little grainy and doesn’t melt very easily on the tongue.
Raspberry + Lemon Organic Dark: It smells odd and I can’t really distinguish a chocolate, raspberry or lemon aroma. It’s a strange, muddled sour like smell.
Immediately tastes of lemon right away and it’s beautiful. The middle flavor is where the raspberry finally kicks in and it’s very fresh and authentic. So much so I felt like I needed to reach in and pick out seeds from my teeth. I almost thought too soon, because there are bits of raspberry seed in there, providing an slightly crunchy texture and much teeth picking.
I do like the idea of these bars: getting organic chocolate with interesting flavors in a small, portion controlled size. I can’t help but feel I can get this elsewhere where it tastes better and possibly costs less (even though I can’t recall how much I paid for them).
Rating: Might Eat Again
Vere Chocolate Website
I can’t help but feel I’m beating a dead horse with this review. I did a taste test for them a bit ago during my time at CandyAddict.com and it wasn’t favorable. Granted, Skittles are not a go-to candy of mine at all, but this still didn’t prepare me for the nastiness that is contained in the chocolate mix.
Where do I begin with these? I will do my best not to rant, but I feel like I have to stress a few things about these. Firstly, why would such a successful fruity candy like Skittles try and make something chocolatey? And it’s not even real chocolate, it’s a removed, fake chocolate one. That doesn’t even sound appealing to me. Secondly, they’re not pretty to look at. Where’s the rainbow we all love to taste? Candy should do it’s best to be attractive if it can be helped, and these sadly don’t cut it. I could go on, but I won’t.
So these are neither tasty nor appealing to the eyes. But considering my last taste of these was months ago, have my taste buds changed? Only one way to find out.
Vanilla: This has a buttery bourbon vanilla taste. My thoughts turn to yellow cake mix.
Chocolate Pudding: Immediately very sweet and empty tasting, like bad cocoa. It’s bland, nasty and artificial. Not even remotely chocolatey.
Chocolate Caramel: This one tastes flat and very chemically. This doesn’t even get to the level of a tootsie roll it’s so fake and removed.
S’mores: Has more of a sweet graham marshmallow vanilla flavor
Brownie Batter: Something about this does read as brownie. It’s starchy and reminds me of the powder in a boxed mix. Fake, fake, fake.
So, the best flavor in this chocolate mix is the vanilla. That makes sense right? I can’t stress enough how much these are to be avoided.
Oh, and I don’t even like that Pinata Man in the commercials. He’s creepy.