Archive for the 'region' Category

Churchill’s Confectionery Carousel – Toffee and Vanilla Fudge

September 24th, 2014 by Rosa

Churchill’s Confectionery is family-run, London-based company that is now making inroads in the U.S. via shops like Williams Sonoma and Bloomingdale’s. They recently sent me a free sample of their Carousel tin filled with toffee and vanilla fudge.

The tin itself was beautiful: a round cylinder with a tented top and embossed with colourful (see what I did there) carousel horses. The tin held two bags of individually wrapped candies, one of round dairy toffees and another of rectangles of vanilla fudge.

The vanilla fudge squares were softy grainy and easy to bite through. They chewed up into a pleasant, pliable mush that melted in my mouth.

The fudge had a mellow, round, floral sweetness that finished with a hint of fruitiness. I usually dislike fudge because I find it too sweet, but I enjoyed these. An O.

The dairy toffee was firm, but I was able to bite through it cleanly. It had a sticky chew that left bits of toffee wedged in the nooks and crannies of my teeth.

The flavor was sweet and buttery, with just an edge of burnt sugar deliciousness. I’m a sucker for British toffees, and while I prefer the deeper scorchy notes of Walker’s Treacle Toffee, this lighter toffee was good enough for an OM.

Category: caramel, European, O, OM, review, toffee | Comments Off

Haribo Bärchen-Pärchen

August 22nd, 2014 by Rosa

This is the second bag of Haribo gummies that I bought while in Switzerland. They caught my eye because I’ve never seen them in the U.S., and they had a giant Neu sticker on it, which made me think that they were, well, New.

Google translate tells me that Bärchen-Pärchen means Bear Couple. Doesn’t have quite the same ring to it in English. The male-looking bear says he’s Sauer, and the female-looking bear says she’s Süss, which I took to mean that these bear couples are Sour and Sweet.

There were there different sets of bear couples: red/blue, orange/green, and yellow/purple. The firmly bouncy gummies were quite cute if you think that they look like bears that are holding hands.

They also looked like conjoined twins. In the case of the yellow/purple pair, the purple visibly leeched into the yellow, which made it look like the yellow bear was stealing the purple bear’s life-force.

Yellow was the Sour of its pair, a piquant lemon that was sweet, yet puckeringly tart. It made me salivate. Purple was Sweetly mellow and artificially grapey (thankfully without any unfortunate fake cough medicine allusions).

Orange was the Sour of orange/green, and it too, was puckeringly tart but with orangey undertones to the citrus. Green was candied green apple, with the flavor of apple juice.

Red (or pink if you held it up to the light) was the Sour of the red/blue pair. I think it was supposed to raspberry, as it had a bitey undertone to it, and it wasn’t as tart as the yellow and orange bears.

The blue half was sweetly fruity with an undertone of fresh blueberry to the flavor that developed as the chew progressed. I was surprised at how well this captured the flavor of real blueberries, as most blueberry-flavored candies just taste like sugar.

These were a fun twist on a classic treat. An OM.

Category: European, gummi/gummy, Haribo, OM, review, sour | 1 Comment »

Haribo Orangina P!k

August 18th, 2014 by Rosa

Today and Friday, I’ll review some Haribo gummies that I bought while in Switzerland. First up is Orangina P!k. I know Orangina is a fizzy orange drink that’s available in Europe. No idea what the P!k means (and why it’s not a Pik).

At any rate, it’s pretty clear that these are supposed to be gummified soda bottles, though I think they also look like chicken drumsticks when turned to the side. They came in yellow, pink, and red (no orange, despite the name!).

The gummies were covered in sour sugar and had a wonderfully firm, sproingy chew. Red was tart to start from the sour sugar, then sweetly fruity. If I had to guess, I’d say it was a mild cherry or fruit punch flavor.

Pink was strawberry, maybe? Again, sweetly fruity, but with more floral notes that played off the tartness.

Yellow was citrusy. The color suggested yellow, but the flavor was mellow with no acidity or pithiness, so I think it was the classic orange flavor of Orangina.

I loved the strong fruity flavors and bouncy texture of these guys. They were just the right amount of tart. I wish I’d bought an additional bag, or three. OMG.

Category: European, gummi/gummy, Haribo, OMG, review, sour | Comments Off

Lindt Passion Chocolat – Caramel & Fleur de Sel

August 11th, 2014 by Rosa

I’m lucky enough to have recently returned from a trip to Switzerland. We were mostly hiking the Alps, but I made sure to make some time to buy Swiss candies, including lots of chocolate.

First up, this fancy Lindt Passion Chocolat – Caramel & Fleur de Sel. It was described as “accord parfait du chocolat noir et du pur caramel,” which my rusty high school French translates as, “a perfect agreement between dark chocolate and pure caramel.”

The chocolate had a prettily artisanal look about it, with a little cellophane windowpane through which to view the bar. The top side was generously sprinkled with caramel and fat grains of sea salt, while the bottom was imprinted with the scripted Lindt logo.

The dark chocolate was creamy with a smooth and thick melt. It had a nice cocoa depth with a slight fruitiness that was highlighted by the occasional flash of salt.

The caramel bits were plentiful and brought a nice, clean crunchiness to the texture of the bar. They tasted sweet, with buttery toffee flavors that took on a slight toasted scorchiness as they melted away.

I found this to be a well-balanced treat that was surprisingly well-made for a mass-produced bar. An OMG.

Category: caramel, chocolate, European, Lindt, OMG, review | Comments Off

Cadbury Dairy Milk Buttons

July 7th, 2014 by Rosa

These British Cadbury Dairy Milk Buttons were a surprise international treat in the free sample MunchPak that I received a while ago and am still slowly munching my way through.

The buttons were little thumbnail-sized disks with a flat side and a domed side. Their flat side had the scripted Cadbury logo imprinted on it.

They were the perfect size and shape to slip onto my tongue and smash against the roof of my mouth. Doing so caused the buttons to dissolve into a tongue-coatingly thick and creamy puddle of milk chocolate.

The Cadbury’s milk chocolate was quite sweet, with dusky caramel flavors amidst the cocoa. As far as mass-produced milk chocolate goes, I much prefer Cadbury’s to the sour milk tinge of Hershey’s.

The buttons were a fun diversion that were well-sized for slow savoring. An O because I probably wouldn’t buy them for a snack – there are better milk chocolates out there, especially if you’re willing to spend an extra buck or two – but I wouldn’t turn them down if they were offered to me for free.

Category: Cadbury, chocolate, European, O, review | Comments Off

Bocandy sample – Ptichye Moloko (“Bird’s Milk”) from Russia

July 2nd, 2014 by Rosa

Ptichye Moloko was another eastern European treat that I received as part of my free sample of Bocandy, a new subscription treat service that specializes in international candy. According to the folks at Bocandy, “Ptichye Moloko” means “Bird’s Milk” in Russian and is so named because “Bird’s Milk” is a Slavic idiom that means an unattainable gift (when was the last time you saw milk coming from a bird?).

The Pitchye Moloko was a squashed cube (so not actually a cube) consisting of a chocolate shell around a snow-white whipped center. Mine had melted a bit before arriving, so they weren’t their most photogenic by the time I got them.

That chocolate shell was incredibly sweet and a little crumbly. In fact, I caught some crunchy graininess to it, I think because some of the filling’s sugar had crystallized onto the chocolate.

At first bite, the shell was way too sweet and just tasted like sugar to me. After my tastebuds were able to adjust from the original sugar shock and awe, however, some nice coconut and cocoa notes came through.

The marshmallow filling at the center of the Pitchye Moloko was great. It was soft and fluffy in texture, and though sweet, also had a lovely dairy whipped cream note to it.

I hated the first sugarbomb bite, then loved the rest after my tastebuds recalibrated. An OM.

As noted on Monday, you can get a free Bocandy sample if you pay $3.50 shipping. Bocandy is also currently running a giveaway of 3 year-long subscriptions.

Category: chocolate, European, marshmallow, O, review, Russian | 3 Comments »

Bocandy sample – ROM Cel Mare from Romania

June 30th, 2014 by Rosa

Bocandy is a new subscription treat service (those seem to be popping up all over the place!) that specializes in international candy. I love trying international treats, but they can be hard and/or expensive to come by, so I was super excited to get a free Bocandy sample to see what they’d send.

I got a red mailer envelope with a plethora of treats, some of which I’ve reviewed before (tiny Haribo gummis, Walker’s toffees) but also some new things I’d never tried. This week, I’ll review a couple of Eastern European treats, starting with a ROM Cel Mare bar from Romania.

The ROM bar has a fascinating backstory (covered here by Fast Company) – they once used reverse psychology to up sales by replacing its Romanian flag wrapper with an American flag one. Romanians got mad and protested. When they returned the ROM Bar to its original Romanian wrapper just a week later, sales went up!

My ROM arrived melted (darn North Carolina summers!) but reconstituted itself fairly well into a softly solid bar of chocolate. It had a unique flavor profile – a little toasty wafer note to start, then a very strong fruity booziness that was set off quite nicely by the chocolate.

It turns out that the Cel Mare variety of ROM has a rum-flavored middle, hence the booziness. I loved it! It was just the right amount of alcoholic flavor to be noticeable but not overwhelming. An OM.

If you want to try Bocandy for yourself, you can get a free sample if you pay $3.50 shipping. They’re also currently running a giveaway of 3 year-long subscriptions. Check them out! They’re a candy reviewer’s dream because you get a little taste of lots of things, and it’s way cheaper than international shipping or airfare.

Category: chocolate, European, OM, review | Comments Off

Nestle FruTips – Chinese Assortment

April 18th, 2014 by Rosa

On Monday, I reviewed the mango, grapefruit, and lychee FruTips that I bought in China. Today, I’ll review their regular flavor assortment.

The regular FruTips were the same size and texture as their specialized flavor counterparts, and they also contained lychee flavored jellies (white). You can refer to Monday’s review for my notes on texture and the lychee FruTips.

Yellow was lemon. It tasted tart and zesty with lots of bitey lemon zest flavors. Orange was orange and tasted of candied citrus. It, too, was quite zesty, but its flavor profile was more rotund and orangey.

Green was apple and tasted like apple juice. Pink was strawberry, which was floral and sweetly tasty.

Finally, purple was blackcurrant, which is not a flavor we usually get in the U.S. It had intense, seedy tannins with almost menthol-y undertones that gave it some bite.

Nearly six years ago, I wrote a review of Rowntree’s Fruit Pastilles that may be the same product as these, except this time around, I really liked them. I’m not sure if the Chinese ones were fresher or a different formulation, or what, but I think they’re worthy of an OM.

Category: Asian (China, Japan, and Korea), chewy, gummi/gummy, jelly candy, Nestle, OM, review | Comments Off

Nestle FruTips – Mango, Grapefruit, and Lychee

April 14th, 2014 by Rosa

As previously mentioned, I’m way overdue for a review of Nestle FruTips from China. When I was in Shanghai this March, I bought of couple of fresh tubes to cover today and Friday. I’ll start with the Mango, Grapefruit, and Lychee tube.

The FruTips were thumbnail-sized flat disks that were covered in gritty sugar sand. The chew started off mostly soft with a bit of tension, then became softer and stickier as I chewed. The texture was smooth and felt like limpid jelly on my tongue.

Grapefruit was a white with a greenish tinge. It was tart with a slight pithiness that highlighted its bright citrusy grapefruit flavors.

Mango was a pale orange. It was round and floral with nice flash of tartness at the end, and it tasted of the tropical seediness of ripe mangos.

Finally, Lychee was white and tasted just like real lychees, though more like canned lychees than fresh ones. These were sweetly floral and addictively tasty.

I wish these were available in the U.S. They’re a great combination of flavors that we usually don’t get in American candies, and I enjoyed their intense fruit flavors and chewy texture. An OMG.

According to Wikipedia, these guys may be available in Canada. They may be the same thing as Rowntree’s Fruit Pastilles, which I had reviewed before in a different flavor arrangement but didn’t care for at the time.

Category: Asian (China, Japan, and Korea), gummi/gummy, jelly candy, Nestle, OMG, review | 2 Comments »

Everyburger

April 11th, 2014 by Rosa

This box of Everyburger was an impulse buy at my local Asian grocery store. I couldn’t read a word on the package besides “Everyburger”, but the box was shelved with other chocolate+cookie treats, so I assumed that these were some sort of chocolates+cookies shaped to look like hamburgers.

Fortunately, my assumption was correct, and I didn’t accidentally buy some weird shelf-stable normal burgers in a tiny box. The Everyburgers were made of two nickel-sized cookies sandwiching a chocolate patty that was topped with a little schmear of frosting cheese.

The cookies had a soft crumble with a mildly sweet, buttery flavor. The top bun had some fake sesame seeds that added a toasty crunch and an edge of burnt flavors.

The chocolate was standard – it was sweet and thickly creamy with a caramel finish. The “cheese” was creamy but didn’t carry any specific flavors.

Altogether, the Everyburger was a nice mix of flavors and textures packaged into a cute bundle. An OM.

Category: Asian (China, Japan, and Korea), chocolate, cookie, OM, review | 1 Comment »