Archive for the 'received as gift' Category

Droste Orange Pastilles

January 17th, 2011 by Rosa

My friend Neil, who’s currently living and blogging in the Netherlands, brought me a generous assortment of Dutch goodies when he was back in the states over the holidays. Included among the treats were these Droste Orange Pastilles.

The packaging is unusual – a hexagonal paperboard tube with an inner sealed roll of silver. The chocolates’ shape is unusual too: large, flat disks, each etched with the Droste logo.

I think the disks were a good chocolate delivery device. They were the perfect shape to place flat on the tongue and let melt against the roof of the mouth.

The chocolate was snappy with a creamy, tongue-coatingly thick melt. According to the packaging, the chocolate was 35% cocoa, making it technically dark chocolate.

With chocolate and orange, it’s hard to avoid Terry’s Chocolate Orange comparisons. This was far better. It tasted very strongly of orange oil with a lot of citrus zestiness, far less artificial than Terry’s version.

I enjoyed it in small amounts, but any more than a disk or two, and the chocolate’s sweetness became cloying, with that cloy lingering in the finish.

I give it an O. I liked it, but the mounting sweetness keeps it from being addictiable.

Yes, I just made a mash-up word.

Category: chocolate, European, O, received as gift, review | No Comments »

Cote D’or Banana

October 6th, 2010 by Rosa

This Cote D’or Banana bar was given to me by my friends Katie and A.J. They stopped by Rochester on their way back from a visit to Canada. I think that’s where the bar came from as well.

As I’ve said in the past, I’m terrified of artificial banana flavored things. So this bar was pretty scary.

The bar was chunked into six segments, each filled with a banana fondant and each stamped with their little elephant logo. Alas, mine got a little smooshed in transit, which caused the fondant to get rather oozy.

The banana scent of this bar was quite strong. It smelled just like an overripe banana while avoiding any obvious chemical notes.

All the banana flavor was in the fondant, which tasted like the bar smelled. The fondant was grainy, yet melted instantly when it hit my mouth. The texture was reminiscent of the center of a York Peppermint Patty.

The chocolate was a dark-ish milk that was grainy and sweet with a fruity finish. I couldn’t really get a feel for its flavor because the banana-ness overtook everything.

This bar wasn’t as scary as it could have been. I found the banana flavor to be overwhelming, so it wasn’t for me, but at least the banana flavor tasted like real bananas. An O.

Category: chocolate, O, received as gift, review | No Comments »

Kit Kat Milk Coffee

October 4th, 2010 by Rosa

This Kit Kat Milk Coffee came courtesy of my roommate’s boyfriend, Steve. I’m not sure how Steve got his hands on it, but I’m so thankful that he thought of sharing it with me!

I can’t read any of the Japanese text on the packaging – if any readers know, feel free to leave a translation in the comments! I think the cherry blossom in the bottom left corner means that it’s a Limited Edition/seasonal flavor.

Like all the Japanese Kit Kats that I’ve had, these came in two individually wrapped sets of two fingers each. More packaging makes it less environmentally friendly, but it does help with portion control.

I probably would’ve eaten my way through all four fingers if they hadn’t come separately packaged (tangent: what a weird sentence out of context). That would’ve been bad, as it would have meant no sharing.

This Kit Kat was made from white chocolate. I’m usually not that big on white chocolate, but this was a pretty tasty white chocolate. It tasted fresh, creamy, and milky.

From the looks and taste of it, the coffee flavor was stashed in the cream that sat within the wafers. It tasted deep and crazy roasty, like a fresh brewed pot of coffee.

There was a light bitterness to coffee, but that only added to the genuine flavor. The coffee taste lingered in the finish, long after the chocolate had melted and the airy, crisp wafers had been crunched away.

I loved this bar, with its great mix of textures and solid coffee flavor. An OMG from me. If you want other takes on it, check out what Jim and Jen had to say!

Category: Asian (China, Japan, and Korea), chocolate, coffee, cookie, Nestle, OMG, received as gift, review | 4 Comments »

Aunt Sally’s Creamy Pralines – Triple Chocolate

September 24th, 2010 by Rosa

As promised in Wednesday’s review, here’s a third Aunt Sally’s Creamy Praline, this one triple chocolate flavored. Like the others, this came from New Orleans courtesy of my generous roommate.

I’m not sure how a praline can be triple chocolate. The sugar portion is clearly chocolate, but I have no idea what the other two chocolate things could be.

Maybe there are three kinds of chocolate in here? At any rate, it smells amazingly strongly of a deeply rich cocoa.

The sugar portion had a soft snap and was lightly chewy with a noticeable grain. Its chocolate flavor was reminiscent of Tootsie Rolls in that sweet, candied way, but the praline’s chocolate had much more depth to its flavor.

The pecans are soft and fresh and deliciously nutty. They really make this praline soar. So much chocolate depth and delicious nuttiness! I couldn’t stop eating it.

I adored this praline and kept reaching for more bites. The texture and flavor were spot on. I’m so glad that my roommate brought it into my life! An OMG.

Category: chocolate, nuts, OMG, received as gift, review | No Comments »

Aunt Sally’s Creamy Pralines – Bananas Foster

September 22nd, 2010 by Rosa

Monday’s review was of a Swiss praliné. Today, we’ve got a different kind of praline: Aunt Sally’s Creamy Praline, Bananas Foster edition.

Like the last Aunt Sally’s praline that I reviewed, this one (and a third that will be reviewed on Friday) came courtesy of my roommate.

I enjoy real bananas just fine (though I don’t especially love them), but artificially flavored banana things scare me because they’re usually done rather poorly. Banana Runts? Terrifying!

The Bananas Foster praline smelled strongly of real, genuine bananas. A promising sign!

The praline had a soft, chewy texture that slowly cracked rather than snapped. The pecans were soft (as far as nuts go) and brought their pleasantly mild nuttiness to the praline.

The sugary portion of the praline tasted like real bananas, only much sweeter. Altogether, the Bananas Foster praline tasted like a nice, sweeter-than-usual banana nut bread.

Banana bread and bananas aren’t my personal favorites, so I’m only giving this an O. But I’m sure many would enjoy this (the friends that I shared it with did!).

Category: nuts, O, received as gift, review | No Comments »

Zitner’s Butter Krak

September 13th, 2010 by Rosa

I got this Butter Krak confection from my friend Laurel. I don’t remember where she bought it. I think she mostly bought it because the name’s hilarious.

Neither the wrapper nor the name gave much indication as to exactly what this was. The ingredients list did list “cocoanut”. Typo or purposeful pun?

It turned out to be a dark chocolate log filled with a coconut and vanilla butter cream.

The dark chocolate that made up the shell had bits of coconut mixed in. It was pretty good on its own: a decent depth of chocolate flavor with a sweetly nutty finish.

Unfortunately for the dark chocolate shell, the center filling was a nuclear sugar bomb. It was so sweet that it burned my throat.

The white filling was basically a butter cream with bits of coconut mixed in. It had a dry, pasty, grainy texture with some chewy coconut flakes mixed in.

There was some nice coconut flavor hidden in there, but the balance was totally wrong. The cloy of the filling totally overwhelmed everything from the coconut to the chocolate shell.

I’m glad Laurel bought this for me. I did eat the whole thing over several sessions and with liberal quantities of water to wash it down, but it’s just too sweet. A .

If you want a second opinion, Candy Addict reviewed this a few years ago.

Category: --, chocolate, coconut, received as gift, review | 5 Comments »

Aunt Sally’s Creamy Pralines – Sugar & Spice

August 13th, 2010 by Rosa

My roommate brought home a pack of these Sugar and Spice-flavored version of Aunt Sally’s Creamy Pralines after her trip home to New Orleans. I nabbed one and filed it away in my candy stash, where it promptly got forgotten.

Thankfully, per Roddy’s urging on the ZOMG, Candy! Facebook discussion page, I dug it out and ate it up. And I sent Roddy a box of candy for his trouble (incentive for you to join the Facebook page!).

A praline, in the Southern sense, is a mixture of sugar, nuts, and cream. New Orleans pralines, like mine, feature pecans as the nut of choice.

This sugar & spice flavored praline was intriguing because of the bottle of Tabasco and the Tabasco logos that decorated the packaging. I think it’s the first Tabasco candy I’ve ever come across.

Alas, this praline had seen better days. I think it was a combination of elapsed time and summer heat wave that left it slightly melted, shiny, and droopy. Not exactly appetizing.

Pecans are a relatively soft nut to start; the ones in my praline had softened further, along with the praline itself. I wish I had eaten this while it was fresh. Based on the other pralines I’ve had before, I’m pretty sure it’s supposed to be crisp.

The praline initially tasted lightly spicy but was mostly sweet and savory. The pecans added their mild but distinct flavor.

The texture was grainy and soft (again, the disclaimer that mine may have softened with time/heat wave). As the sugar grains melted away, a powerfully tingly underlying heat came through.

I don’t think it’s fair of me to review this praline as is because the texture may have changed, so my O rating comes with a grain of salt. I found the spiciness to be unique and interesting enough that I’m glad I tried the praline, but the sweet and savory flavor threw me for a bit of a loop.

Category: nuts, O, received as gift, review | 3 Comments »

Nestle Bros

August 2nd, 2010 by Rosa

My friend, the newly minted Dr. Neil (congratulations, Neil!), is soon moving from Rochester to the Netherlands for a post-doc position. This makes me very sad because Neil is one of my favorite people, and I will miss him lots when he’s gone.

Neil is one of my favorite people because he’s now gone to the Netherlands twice, and both times, he brought me back Dutch candy. I should note that it’s not the candy-bringing itself that makes Neil endearing (I’d like to think that my affections are not so easily purchased); it’s that the candy-bringing is just one example of how Neil is a kind and thoughtful friend.

On his last trip, he brought me back a Nestle Bros bar. I had never heard of the Bros bar before and was initially confused at Neil’s email with the subject line, “Delivery” and the body, “Bros.” Was Neil going to bring me Dutch frat boys?

Nope. Turns out that the Bros bar is an aerated chocolate bar, pseudo-separated into six segments, each with a cute little bubble imprint on the top.

The wrapper touts the bars relatively low calorie count (131). This was both unsurprising – aerated chocolate is full of air, hence the lower caloric density – and surprising – low cal doesn’t quite fit my mental image of a Bro (FYI, Keystone Light is not actually lite). Though now that I think about it, I think the calorie count marking is just a difference in European nutrition/packaging laws.

The chocolate has a beautifully bubbled interior. I love the look of aerated chocolate so much! And I love the way it feels against the tongue, when the bubbles smoosh away and dissolve in the mouth.

It tasted thick and sweet, brightly fruity, with dusky cocoa notes. I wouldn’t call it dark or milk; instead, it fits the semisweet bill. In fact, it reminded me of semisweet Nestle Tollhouse chips.

I managed to eat the whole thing in one sitting. Fortunately, the aerated factor meant that I felt no guilt for scarfing a whole candy bar in one quick go. An OM, and my repeated wish that aerated chocolate was more bountiful in the U.S.

Category: aerated, chocolate, European, OM, received as gift, review | 2 Comments »

Cote d’Or Lait Noisettes

May 7th, 2010 by Rosa

This brick of Cote d’Or Lait Noisettes (that’s milk hazelnuts) was part of my friend Neil‘s Dutch candy haul. It really stood out because it was ginormous. Its size plus its pretty paper wrapper made it look like a fancy bar of soap.

The bar was so thick, in fact, that it was a bit intimidating. I couldn’t imagine how I would gnaw through the thing.

Fortunately, removing the paper wrapper revealed that the bar was actually divided height-wise into two thinner slabs, each foil wrapped and reasonably proportioned.

The underside of the bar was quite pebbly with all the hazelnut bits. The smell of the bar, however, diverged from its nutty appearance.

I found it a bit odd and hard to place – yogurt? or petrol? It wasn’t off-putting, exactly; just strange.

The individual slabs were further broken down into demarcated fingers, each beautifully stamped with the Cote d’Or name and elephant logo. I was impressed at how well the chocolate held its shape, especially since its milk chocolate-ness meant it had a super soft break.

The milk chocolate was absolutely lovely – thick and creamy, as milk chocolate should be. The hazelnut flavors came through loud and clear and provided a wonderful contrasting nuttiness.

I was greatly impressed at how fresh and flavorful this bar was. If only American mass produced milk chocolate could taste so good! An OM.

Category: chocolate, European, nuts, OM, received as gift, review | 1 Comment »

Kinder Bueno White

April 16th, 2010 by Rosa

My friend Neil just got back from a trip to the Netherlands and was kind and awesome enough to bring me back a bunch of Dutch chocolates. When he handed me this Kinder Bueno White bar, he noted that I’d reviewed the regular version but not the white one, a blog fact that I didn’t know at the time. November 2007 was a long time ago!

Everything on the wrapper was written in both Dutch and French. My French isn’t that great, but I got that these were made with milk and hazelnuts, and I’d loosely translate the description as “two individually wrapped bars of white chocolate and cocoa meringue bits”.

The underside of the bars were coated with these little crunchy cocoa beads, and each of the four segments wore a stripe of the beads as well. While I think they were called meringues, they tasted like cocoa powder cookies.

The outer shells were airy, crisp wafers that provided structural stability and a pleasant crunch. Each segment pod was filled with an amazingly thick and creamy white chocolate filling.

The tasted strongly of milk and vanilla and was reminiscent of really high quality frosting. I didn’t get any hazelnut flavors, but I didn’t really care.

The filling was quite sweet, but it was nicely tempered by that wafer shell. It’s basically a non-cute version of the biscuit Kinder Happy Hippo, but with chocolate sprinkle/cookie bits.

The Kinder Bueno White was tasty and delicious (thanks, Neil!). I rated it an OM before I reread my old Happy Hippo review and saw that the Hippo version earned my highest rating. Looks like presentation does count for a lot!

Category: cookie, European, Ferrero, OM, received as gift, review, white chocolate | No Comments »