I’ve realized my love for Japanese Kit Kats has led me to acquire so many that I haven’t gotten around to reviewing them all! For shame! I will try and remedy this in the upcoming weeks, with a format similar to this post. I don’t feel like I need to go into too much detail on these, as we all know what Kit Kats are like. Am I right? I will go into the bits of these that are different from the Kit Kats you can get anywhere else, so I’ll mostly be commenting on the flavor of these beauties.
On with the reviews!
Kit Kat Hojicha Tea
Hoijicha is a type of roasted tea in Japan. It’s one of my favorites actually. The bar captures it perfectly, as the milk chocolate is light, creamy, sweet and carried the flavor of the tea well. The flavor of the tea, usually in chocolate, is too light and it swallowed up by the chocolate. Not so here. It’s got a wonderful roasted, tea-like, malty flavor that blends beautifully with the chocolate and gives it some really nice herbal and earthy flavors. It takes the milk chocolate and the Kit Kat to a whole new level for me, and it’s really tasty. I’m sad I only got one bag!
Kit Kat Watermelon Salt
I thought salting watermelons was a thing from the South, not in Japan. Whether or not this is a cultural nod to them or not, I found this combination one of the most unusual I’ve encountered yet.
This Kit Kat has nice milk chocolate base. The bar smells light, watery and fruity like melons. The aroma is a tad fake, only because the scent is more floral that real melons are.
The flavor is so beautifully and realistically watermelon. It’s awesome. You get that wonderfully fresh, juicy flavor of the watermelon combined with the creamy, sweet flavors of the milk chocolate. I know it sounds odd, but trust me, it’s really good. You don’t taste the salt until the finish and aftertaste. It’s not very pronounced, but it does give a nice edge to the bar. Yum!
Kit Kat Alexandria Grape
It’s a pale green in color with a white chocolate base. It smells very sweet and (what do you know!) lightly of green, muscat grapes. Fruity, bits of melon, and lightly tangy.
The flavor is….oddly grape. It’s floral, light, sweet, and has notes of cantaloupe and tang just like the in the aroma. The flavor ends on a nice, milky, white chocolate note: creamy, smooth, chocolatey, and lightly fruity. I’m weirded out and confused by the idea of this one, especially how the flavor turned out. It’s this strange medium between authentic and fake, and my taste buds don’t know what to make of it. If you’re a grape fan, I’m sure you can still get your hands on some if you want to.
Kit Kat McFlurry Caramel Macchiato
This flavor was particularly unique in my mind as it was a flavor based on a McDonald’s McFlurry. I don’t know much about the Macchiato, as I don’t eat at McD’s, much less get their McFlurries, so I can’t make any commentary here as it’d be totally unfounded. My guess is it’s pretty darned popular if Kit Kat goes and makes a flavor based off it it.
The base of this bar is white chocolate, with no special markings or colors. I was expecting it to have swirls of caramel on the surface, I have to admit. Instead, they’re smooth, pristine, white fingers. The Kit Kat smells very intensely of brown sugar and fake butter. Together they combine to make a caramel-like smell that’s slightly fake.
The flavor is mildly sweet and milky at first. It takes a few beats before that odd fake butter flavor to kick in. Thankfully it’s not as intense as the aroma suggests. I do taste a little coffee in there, but it’s very faint, so it’s more like a cappuccino. The bar but it does succeed in having a nice cream flavor that is reminiscent of a milkshake. It’s been ages since I’ve had one, but it’s a flavor you just don’t forget. It’s ok, I might eat this again. nothing stellar about this flavor, I’d rather have a coffee or a plain whit choc Kit Kat.
So there you have it. The great, the good and the “meh” of this round of Kit Kats. Have you had any of these flavors? If so, what did you think of them?
Rating: Hojicha and Watermelon Salt: Hoard
Grape and McFlurry: Will Buy Again
Links Kit Kat Japan (Breaktown) Website
This Kit Kat was a summer limited edition from Japan. Yes, I’m still quite late on the pickup. This edition is a mix of blueberry, strawberry and cranberry.
Opening the box, then one of the two two-finger packages inside, the Kit Kat immediately smells mostly of that of Japanese artificial strawberry flavor. It’s a sweet, jam-like, floral, frosting-like smell. I kinda with it was a perfume. The Kit Kat has a white chocolate base, and it’s pretty to look at since it’s pink with white stripes.
The flavor is very fruity yet delicate. I taste the blueberry and strawberry right away: jammy, sweet, and very floral with rose qualities. The wafers give a nice crispiness, as always. The cranberry shows at the end as a bit of tartness, which, in the overall scheme of things, is still very mild. Overall the bar has a great fruity flavor with a little vanilla taste from the wafers, which gives it a breakfast cereal type feel to it. Like berry berry kix, but more sweet.
This was a nice one to try, but not anything I’d go crazy for trying to hunt it down again.
Rating: Might Eat Again
Links Kit Kat Japan (Breaktown) Website
Guittard is one of those chocolate companies you start to hear more about one you dive into the chocolate and candy world a little more than your average candy eater. I didn’t really become aware of them until my love of candy went from “enjoy” to “enthusiasm”. Guittard works a little more behind the scenes than most chocolates, in a sense, as they don’t really produce a mass produced chocolate bar like Godiva, Ghirardelli, Lindt, Mars, Hershey’s, etc. yet you can find their chocolate most anywhere. For example, See’s uses Guittard chocolate to make all their confections, as does many other companies and bakers. You just gotta look for it.
Guittard also is a very groundbreaking company. They did a lot of work to establish themselves into Single Origin chocolates, Fair Trade chocolates, as well as the fight to “Keep It Real” when the FDA wanted to allow mockolate to take the same identity and the pure stuff. I admire them immensely for this.
I’ve been meaning to do a review of their work for some time and wanted to really express what wonderful chocolate work they do. I’m going to try and not overdo any of the tasting with too much information. Sometimes simple is best.
65% Madagascar Criollo: A delight to look at with it’s gorgeous temper and hard, clean break and classy red/brown color with a subtle gloss. The taste is nice and chocolatey, with flavors of red berries, raisins, coffee and caramel. Like many Madagascar chocolates, it’s not very acidic. It has a beautifully clean finish.
55% Hawaii: One of Guittard’s newest chocolates, using beans solely grown in Hawaii. It has a nice chocolate color that’s a rich brown. It has a beautiful snap and temper, and it smells of fruity, roasted coffee and berries.
The bite is slightly soft, as it’s only 55%, which is the range of all my favorite chocolates. The flavor is stunning. Strong flavors of milk, cream, and caramel at first. Then the main taste shows and it’s of sweet raisins. There’s a slight fruity crescendo in the middle of red berries, and the chocolate finishes lightly and completely clean on the palate.
And the texture? It’s so smooth and slick. It’s completely decadent. I love it, love it, love it.
Guittard Tasting Kit:
Sur Del Lago: A very “green” flavor of vegetables and mushrooms. There’s a cream flavor in the middle and has very sour notes at the end of citrus and spice.
Quevedo: Smells deep with floral, spice, woody and fruity notes. The flavor is lovely, notes of cream that evolve into fruity notes, with hints of dates and raisins. The aftertaste is slightly dry, but clean. I really liked this.
Chucuri: This one smells peppery and very strongly of “green”. Asparagus jumps to mind. The flavor is dry, yet sweet. Again, such a bright green flavor of asparagus, mushrooms, and some light herbal notes that remind me of tea. The aftertaste is a little musky.
Ambanja: The lightest of the four in color. The aroma is light, floral and fruity/citrusy and a little spice thrown in. It starts lightly fruity with woodsy notes that emerge into prune plum flavors with some cinnamon and allspice.
Overall, Guittard’s chocolate is just stellar. I buy the bars whenever I come across them, and I made some stellar truffles with them recently. Whether for just cooking, baking, or eating, you can’t go wrong.
Rating: Will Buy Again
Links Guittard Website
Another winter limited edition made by Dolfin. This one is “Cranberry and Maple Syrup in Dark Chocolate”. Out of all the flavors that were released, I looked forward to this one the most. I’ve always wondered how maple would work in chocolate, and I was hoping this bar would appease my curiosity.
The chocolate’s color is deep with purple undertones. It smells very sweet with notes of caramel, coconut, coffee, and cranberries. It’s extremely pleasing. The snap is firm and crisp with a clean break, save a few air bubbles.
The flavor is dry and earthy at first. It tastes of cocoa and caramel at first. Then the chocolate melts a little more on the tongue giving a thick, slippery mouth feel and a more intense flavors. I get pine and cream as the next big flavors. The cranberries and maple are chunks in the chocolate. The bits of cranberry are chewy and fresh with a nice tart kick. The maple flakes are crunchy and deliver a sweet hit, and sadly the chocolate washes out the delicate flavor so it becomes more of a crunch and texture.
Rating: Might Eat Again
Links Dolfin’s Website
Dolfin came out with a bunch of limited edition flavors this past winter, following the footsteps of their limited edition flavor released from that post summer. Considering they’re such foreign manufacturer, it means we get the chocolate here in the states a little on the late side (I didn’t find these until spring!) but as long as I eventually get to taste them, I’m not complaining.
This “Winter Emotion” bar is “milk chocolate with rooibus”. I’m confused by this a little, since rooibus is an African plant and has nothing to do with winter in my mind.
The chocolate is a nice medium brown color. I see dark flecks in it that I’m assuming are bits of the rooibus tea. I sense cream, caramel and earth in the aroma. It’s unusual. I’m reminded of a cup of earl gray tea with lots of milk in it.
The flavor is very earthy. I get notes of wood, pine needles and moss in this. There’s also flavors of cream, caramel and sweet chocolate. The texture is odd, as the chocolate texture is great because it’s so smooth and rich. The strangeness comes from the rooibus pieces, as they make it feel like I’m eating pine needles mixed into the chocolate. It’s extremely gritty and scratchy, and I don’t enjoy it at all.
This chocolate bar needs more flavor intensity and less texture. It does live up to it’s name of “winter emotion” as I do feel cold towards it.
Rating: Might Eat Again
Links Dolfin’s Website