Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Lion Candy Bar

So I think I may have found a candy bar that I actually really enjoy. Usually my candy bar of choice is a Milky Way, but this one, the Lion Bar from England. I actually really like this description of it (from the website):

This thick candy bar had crisp wafers in the middle, with Rice Krispies above and around the wafer. The innards of Rice Krispies and wafer were held together by caramel, and then the whole thing was coated in chocolate. The Rice Krispies underneath the chocolate gave the top of the bar an uneven, lumpy appearance. The whole thing was very crisp, but soft enough to bite into, and it tasted great.

First of all chocolate innards just makes me crack up. It's the perfect way to describe the inner workings of a chocolate bar. I wouldn't actually call the crispies inside rice crispies. I didn't really taste the rice crispies that the reviewer mentioned, but it could have been so subtle I missed it.. This bar is by Nestle and it actually really reminded me of another bar they have called 100 Grand. Except 100 Grands are a little bit denser because the caramel is thicker. The softness of the Lion bar was what made it stand out to me. Everything blends really well together and the contrast of the crispy wafers added to the whole package. I would add this to my list of candy bars that I like; a small list, but still very satsifying. 4/5 stars.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Fresh Palate...New Bar Brawl

So this post might not be the most coherent thing in the world, so sue me. I am posting this after three hours of sleep (and it hasn't been that long since the last one I posted), so bear with me here. I guess I'm excited about blogging again. Who knows :)

Anyhow, from what I've heard from various sources, it is much better to taste chocolate in the morning when your palate is completely fresh. Which makes a lot of sense. Your mouth tends to keep flavors of food in mind long after you've eaten them. This is why sometimes during a fancy meal they'll give you a little sorbet shot in the middle to cleanse your palate. I've also seen coffee beans used at different places that have perfume to try and clear the air of all the perfume you've spritzed. And I also suppose it isn't really fair to the chocolate to judge it right after you've had a double shot espresso from Starbucks (ahem...sorry Blackberry Bar you still were not that good).

So which bar will it be this morning? How about the bar from the actual grocery store where I brought it from? Guess you guys don't really have much of a say here, so I'll be going with that one.

The Zeytuna bar comes in a bunch of flavors but I chose the Milk Chocolate with Almonds variety. The bars are actually made for the Zeytuna market by a company called Astor Chocolate. I'm not sure how many of these markets there are in New York, but the only one I've been able to find is the one down the street from me. This is a beautiful market. I was also surprised at how much chocolate they sell and how many of their bars I hadn't tried.

So after opening the bar and giving it a good wiff, I can already tell that this is going to be good, or at least better than the last one. The milk chocolate gives off a strong chocolate flavor which is great. Most milk chocolate loses its chocolate flavor when the sugar and milk are added in. A good milk chocolate recipe keeps the flavor of the chocolate while smoothing out the flavors.

Biting in. The bar was a little mushy due to the heat level in my apartment. In any case the bar is still delicious. And I love the fact that the almonds are chopped so small they only leave small traces in the chocolate. Compared to a Hershey's almond bar where the almonds are whole, this bar doesn't ruin the chocolate with nuts. The almonds compliment the chocolate. There's enough hint of crunchy almond to remind you that it's there, but not enough to overwhelm.

The aftertaste is also really pleasant and stays with you a while after the chocolate is gone. I love chocolates that stay with you partly because you don't have to eat a lot of it to enjoy it. One or two bites is enough to keep you satisfied. And this chocolate is satisfying. Nothing like a warm and delicious bar of chocolate in the morning, right?

Now I think I'll go make myself a cup of coffee and enjoy my breakfast. A new day is waiting. Good Morning.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Weekly Bar Brawl- Hachez blackberry

So since I've been so lazy at updating this blog as of late, and seeing as I will be even more lazy updating it next week when I will be in Japan with no internet, I thought I'd do a blogging speed run of sorts and post my review of a bar a day for the next week.

The first bar is a Hachez Blackberry 77 % Dark Chocolate with Cocoa Nibs.
So this is one of those bars that bothers me alot. They claim to be "all natural" and talk about the quality of their ingredients. And yet there is that red flag "natural flavorings." I'm always a little wary of flavors being added to chocolate. I'm a purist. Chocolate doesn't need much to make it good. But ok maybe I'm overreacting right? This is blackberry flavored chocolate after all. How else are you going to get the flavoring into it unless you flavor it?

The beans in this chocolate are supposed to be an arriba variety from Ecuador, for what that's worth anyhow.

Unfortunately this chocolate, as with many other flavored chocolates I've had, left a really bad aftertaste in my mouth. I could smell the fragrant blackberries, which for some reason reminded me of the kind of perfume you get as a little girl (don't ask me why), even before I opened the gold wrapper. The blackberries seemed to cover up the fact that the chocolate was lacking something.

One other thing to note that the ingredients list also includes lemon acid. I wonder if this is what left the bitter aftertaste. I can understand that the lemon acid was used to balance out the blackberry flavor, but it seems a little overpowering for me.

All in all I give this bar a 2/5 stars (and yes I have stars now! BOOYAH~! :) )