Monday, 2 August 2010

More Bars from the Chocolate Cafe

When I heard about the new Strawberry Bar from The Chocolate Cafe, I couldn't wait to get my mitts on it and more importantly get it into my mouth.  Having really enjoyed the Chocolate Cafe's first three own brand bars back in March, I was looking forward to trying their next creations.  Another three bars duly arrived, so not only was I able to try out the strawberry but also their mint and honeycomb too.  I loved the new bold colours of the wrappers and was already a fan of their distinctive logo which went brilliantly with the new colours.

70% Premium Dark Chocolate with Mint - cocoa Mass, Sugar, Cocoa Butter, Mint Oil, Soya Lecithin, Natural Vanilla
A wonderful scent of dark chocolate and mint wafted up from this bar as soon as I picked it up and it became even stronger when I opened the wrapper.  I had to savour this for a while as I love the smell of mint.  I couldn't hold out for too long though, so I soon broke off the first piece.  It gave a very satisfying snap and then proceeded to melt gradually on my tongue.  It has a very smooth texture which gives it a sensuous quality. Not too minty, which was a big plus as far as CT was concerned as he does not likes his mint to be too strong.  The mint was a good foil for the cocoa, cooling and softening its powerful wallop.  Overall it has a harder, drier, stronger flavour and is not as sweet as the other bars, making it ideal for the adult palate. This is not a bar for gorging on, but rather to be savoured in small doses and would make an excellent after dinner mint. 8/10

Premium Milk Chocolate with Honeycomb (33.6%) - sugar, cocoa butter, whole milk powder, cocoa mass, glucose syrup, butterfat, water, polydextrose, salt, soya lecithin, natural vanilla.
As I have now come to expect with the Chocolate Cafe, this chocolate was silky smooth even though it had crunchy bits of honeycomb scattered throughout.  It had a creamy taste and texture although it was rather too sweet for my liking.  It does, however, have a pleasant coconutty flavour which becomes more pronounced over time as does its emollient quality.  Despite not liking my confectionary overly sweet, I do have a penchant for honeycomb and butterscotch in chocolate.  I decided to compare this to the G&B Butterscotch, which is one of my favourite bars.  They were two very different beasts indeed.   The G&B bar was richer, chunkier and not as sweet, but it was also harsher - more bitter with a coarser texture. 7/10

Strawberry Chocolate with a hint of Black Pepper (28% cocoa) - sugar, cocoa butter, whole milk powder, freeze dried strawberry  black pepper, soya lecithin, colour E120, natural vanilla.
As soon as I opened the wrapper, I was accosted by a strong strawberry aroma; this was followed by an equally strong fruity hit as soon as I bit into it.  The chocolate was most definitely pink and although I would prefer not to have any added colouring, it was quite fun.  Following on from the strawberry, came the sense of overwhelming sweetness from the sugar, although the sharpness of the fruit does help to counter this a little.  I really liked the hint of pepper, but a hint was all it was, accenting the strawberry flavour rather than overpowering it.  Like its sister, the white chocolate bar, it is slightly cloying and leaves a  bit of a coating on the tongue.  Highly reminiscent of one of my childhood favourites, the strawberry Pink Panther Bar, I had to say I did enjoy this one.  I suspect the quality of this version is of a much higher standard though and I'm sure it would be infinitely preferable if only I had one of the old panther bars to compare it to.  However, because it is so sweet, scoffing the whole bar in one sitting would probably be a bit of a challenge.  6/10.

These bars are variations of the three originals, the dark, milk and white, but with some very noticable differences.  They all retained the underlying smoothness characteristic of the Chocolate Cafe brand.  All in all, I think these bars are rather good and at £9 for the three, they represent good value for money.  The Chocolate Cafe is a cafe I would very much like to visit and if ever I am in the vicinity of Ramsbottom I most certainly will.  However, they do a very good line on high quality and interesting chocolates that can be bought online so a visit is not essential.

15 comments:

  1. Its nice to see some interesting chocolate bars with good quality chocolates. Never had strawberry in a chocolate bar before. Love the sound of the mint one.

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  2. It goes without saying that I bet the choc was delish, but aren't they attractive wrappers?

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  3. Mint for me definitely!

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  4. Honeycomb for me hands down!!

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  5. I'm a honeycomb girl too, but I hope you realise what a fantastic public service you are doing here - all this sacrificing in the pursuit of the perfect choc - so we don't have to...

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  6. oh oh oh mint... oh... honeycomb...oh....strawberry... oh...oh...mint... oh hell just buy them all! I'm sure i've said this before but your descriptions are like reading porn... chocolate porn... too good!

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  7. Thanks for the review Choclette. Thorough as ever ;-)

    The Paul A Young recipe book has a truffle made with white choc, strawberries and pink perrpercorns. Must try that sometime ...

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  8. I don't like dark chocolate, especially when it has such a high cocoa content, but I think it might be nice with a hint of mint... Maybe the mint takes the edge off. I love mint anyway! Now honeycomb and milk chocolate... That HAS to be great!

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  9. Strawberry and black pepper! What an unusual combination. And the mint sounds delicious..

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  10. Mint and chocolate are fabulous, that's the one I'd like to try - will have to visit Manchester though as I overdid the internet shopping recently and so have vowed to do no more this summer

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  11. Thanks for all your comments. I've said it before and I'll say it again, I do so appreciate your visits and comments. It's also interesting to see what floats your chocolate boats.

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  12. The wrappers are gorgeous. Never mind the chocolate, I think I would buy them just 'cause they look pretttttyy.
    I wish now that I had started a chocolate wrapper collection when I was travelling around a lot. A book full of different wrappers that I had tried around the globe...Now, not so much travelling though.

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  13. These sound wonderful - I love the packaging. Lucie x

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  14. What do you reckon we need to do to becaome paid chocolate tasters
    ;0)

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  15. CityHippy - Love your idea of a chocolate wrapper collection. Wish I'd done that too.

    Chele - I'm making very slow progress on this one.

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