Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Monster X-Presso Coffee Energy Drink


This is another one of my recent finds from a local Chinese store, and it's a new one on me as I've never seen a chilled coffee energy drink before. But then I'm not the greatest fan of energy drinks and rarely pay attention to them. I find they have all have a weird sickly taste, although I guess they're good for a quick burst of energy.

This Monster drink sounded like it would give me the best of both worlds - a boost of coffee in the form of a traditional energy drink, with all it's additives like Taurine, Ginseng etc that supposedly boost mental focus. In reality it didn't turn out to taste very nice and re-affirmed my feeling that energy drinks just taste weird!

Something I should mention is that it contains nitrous oxide as a foaming agent. For those unaware, Nitrous Oxide is commonly known as "laughing gas" and is often used in dentistry for it's anaesthetic and analgesic effects. Unfortunately this drink didn't have me in fits of laughter after tasting it, which was disappointing!

Pouring it into a glass, it had a foamy appearance thanks to the Nitrous Oxide:


It tasted very sweet, but quite smooth and creamy. Presumably the creaminess was coming from the Nitrous Oxide. It had a weird, almost "bitter" chemical aftertaste, which spoiled the overall flavour. Coupled with the excess sweetness I didn't enjoy it much at all. It gave me a bit of an energy boost though, so at least it served its purpose.

Overall, I can't really recommend this drink as it's neither a tasty fizzy drink nor a delicious creamy coffee drink (I would recommend Emmi Caffee Latte for that instead). It sits somewhere in the middle but tastes too artificial to be enjoyable, at least to my tastebuds. If you need a caffeine boost I would go for real coffee!

Price: £1.30 at Chinese supermarket.
Nutritional/ingredients: Contains caffeine, nitrous oxide, taurine, panax ginseng root, guarana seed extract, inositol, l-carnitine, l-tartatate.
Made in: Ireland.

Monday, 29 April 2013

Wonka Runts & Gobstoppers (at Poundland!)


I couldn't believe my eyes when I spotted packs of Nestlé Wonka Gobstoppers, Runts and Nerds in my local Poundland store. They're usually sold for very high prices at American import stores, so getting them for £1 was a real bargain!

Fruit shapes!
I declined to buy any Nerds because I've had plenty of them in the past and the smaller packs are already available at Morrisons. However Runts were a new one on me, I've never tried them before despite always seeing them in American import stores. They never really appealed to me for some reason, however what I never realized is that they come in little fruit shapes! How cool! It made me grin like a big kid when I shook a few out of the box to find strawberry, banana, orange, apple and grape shaped candies. This is what the UK has been missing out on in sweets all this time!

Top banana
The colours are insanely bright, so it comes as no surprise that they contain lots of e-numbers. But who cares, they're sweets, they're meant to be fun and full of junk! They tasted verrrrrry sweet and artificial, but were weirdly addictive, and the flavours were quite nice despite being artificial. After a few small handfuls though I couldn't eat much more as I got that familiar throat burning sensation and felt a little ill.


I've had Wonka Everlasting Gobstoppers back when I was a kid, infact I used to buy them regularly but they were the large ones that took hours of crunching before you could get to the "core" part. These Gobstoppers by contrast are a mini version which can be crunched through much more easily, although they are still very hard so I wouldn't recommend trying if you have sensitive teeth!


The flavours are pretty decent - fruity and sour, but also very artificial tasting. They're verrrry sugary too, which makes it difficult to eat too many at once.


Overall, out of both of these I would say the Runts were my favourite, but they were insanely sweet. I'm not sure why Nestlé USA can't tone down the sugar in them a bit and add some fruit juice instead, like most UK manufacturers are doing these days - it would make them more tolerable. Still, they're a fun product and I enjoyed them for what they were.

If you're a fan of Nerds, Gobstoppers or Runts then I'd suggest stocking up on these from Poundland while you can! According to Poundland's facebook page they're selling out very fast (apparently some people have been buying up to £70 worth in one go!)

Price: £1 at Poundland.
Nutritional: Contains mostly sugar, colours and e-numbers. May contain wheat or egg.
Made by: Nestlé USA.

Sunday, 28 April 2013

Barfix (Turkish Lion bar copycat!)


I love 99p Stores, they're always full of such odd European foods. When I spotted these Barfix bars near the tills there recently I just couldn't resist, since the wrappers were so shiny and they looked just like Lion bars! I thought they might be like those imitation versions of popular bars you usually see in shops like Aldi or Lidl, and I was right!

This bar is made in Turkey by a company called Simsek. It's described as "Crisp wafer coated with milk chocolate, crisped rice and caramel".


It tasted pretty much like a cheap knockoff version of a Lion bar. The wafer wasn't quite as tasty as Lion, and the chocolate was somewhat sweeter, as was the caramel. Overall, it was ok but it was never going to come close to the real thing! Especially when real Lion bars can also be found cheaply in White Chocolate and Peanut varieties! (reviews by The Snack Review).


Overall, if you're strapped for cash then these are a decent bargain, but I think it's better to fork out the money for a real Lion bar, or for the legendary White Chocolate Lion! (which are currently 3 for a pound in some Poundland stores!)

Verdict: Go for the real thing!

Price: 4 bars for 99p at 99p Stores.
Made in: Turkey.

Thursday, 25 April 2013

Chocolove Peach & Pecan (Cybercandy)


Today's review comes courtesy of Cybercandy, a well-known company specializing in imported snacks from around the world. They offered me a product for review when I joined their bloggers network, so I chose this Chocolove bar as it's not one of the most well-known American products they had on offer, and because fruity chocolate always gets my attention! I loved Cybercandy's presentation of this bar with the coloured foam pieces in the box - it reminded me of fruit loops cereal.

The premise of this bar is that it's meant to be a gift for your lover, and contains a love poem by Robert Browning inside the wrapper. If your partner loves chocolate and poetry then this is probably the perfect combination, but then perhaps some people might find it a bit cheesy. Personally, I think it's a lovely idea, being a lifelong chocolate lover and romantic at heart! The wrapper is also made to look like a love letter envelope, which is a cool idea - who wouldn't want to receive one of these through the post?

The chocolate contains 33% cocoa solids as well as 33% freeze-dried peach pieces. Each piece has a loveheart printed on it which you can hopefully see here:


Given that this bar is all about luuuuuurve you'd expect it to be delicious, so how did it taste? Well, it was very good! It's tastier than most mainstream chocolate bars like Dairy Milk or Galaxy and has a quality feel to it. Infact I would describe the taste as a "better quality Galaxy" - it has that distinctive creamy smoothness that Galaxy has, but is less sugar-laden and has a richer cocoa flavour. The peach pieces were quite crunchy, but surprisingly they didn't have a very strong peach flavour. They were subtle and fruity but I wouldn't be able to distinguish them in a blind taste-test. The pecans added a lovely woody, savoury sweet crunch, and balanced out the fruity flavour with a nice hint of nuttiness. Combined with the creamy milk chocolate these flavours worked together really well.


Overall, I thought this was a delicious bar of chocolate. I would certainly love to get one from my other half; they're very romantic and and I love the concept of them.

Looking at Chocolove's website I see they do many other flavours, such as cherries and almonds in dark chocolate, salted peanut in milk chocolate, toffee and almonds in milk chocolate...and more! It'd be nice if more of them were available in the UK, please get on it Cybercandy! :)

This bar is available from Cybercandy's online store here:

http://www.cybercandy.co.uk/store/American-Candy-Everything-Else.html

Cybercandy Facebook: https://en-gb.facebook.com/www.cybercandy.co.uk
Cybercandy Twitter: https://twitter.com/CyberCandyLTD

*Cybercandy sent me this bar for an honest review and all views expressed are my own. 

Sainsbury's Discounted Valentines Chocs - Chocolate Rose, Lovemobile, etc...


I know it's a bit late for a Valentines themed post, but I had taken pics for these chocolates a while ago and thought it about time I do a brief review of them.

They were all discounted after Valentines Day at my Sainsbury's Local, and to be honest I can see why: they were all quite cheap tasting and tacky.

First up is the Chocolate Rose. It's basically a hollow chocolate rose with a plastic stalk and leaves, wrapped  in red foil. It's a nice idea, but unfortunately the chocolate used in it was very cheap. It tasted quite waxy and without any real chocolate flavour. If your Valentine likes novelty then they might get some kicks out of it, but otherwise it's rubbish. Did you get one of these for Valentines Day this year? If so please feel free to have a moan about it in the comments!



Next up is the Chocolate Lovemobile. It's called "You make my heart race" and is a little chocolate car with a pink chocolate heart sat in the drivers seat. Which is a really sweet idea, to be fair. If your loved one has a sense of humour I'm sure they would enjoy this as a novelty gift, but I doubt they'd be laughing once they taste the chocolate. Like the Chocolate Rose, it was cheap-tasting and poor quality.



Lastly we have the most interesting product of the lot, the white chocolate LOVE bar:


This was one of the few chocolates from the selection that tasted OK, in a "it's cheap and sugary... but I kinda like it" way. It tasted slightly creamy, at least. The pink coloured letters didn't taste of strawberry or anything, just coloured white chocolate. Don't get me wrong, it was still a cheap tasting white chocolate, and I would never give one of these to someone I love, but for the cheap price it wasn't too bad (about 30p or thereabouts).

Overall, I can't complain too much about these chocolates because they didn't cost a lot, but it does make me wonder who would give these as Valentine's gifts, or who would want to receive one from their lover. It's not the product concepts that are bad, it's the quality of the chocolate.

I guess they're meant to be just fun "supplemental" gifts, so on that note I will let Sainsbury's off on this occasion. It'll be interesting to see if they make a return next year!

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

Cadbury Double Decker Ice Cream Bars


Incase you have never heard of a Double Decker bar before, here is an introduction thanks to Bible of the Internet, Wikipedia:

"Double Decker is a brand of chocolate bar currently manufactured by Cadbury. First introduced in 1976, its name derives from the double-decker bus, and these vehicles have invariably appeared in advertisements for the product. The chocolate bar is lightly flavoured with coffee and structured in two layers; an upper whipped nougat layer, with a lower layer of cereal 'crispies', these are then coated in milk chocolate. Originally the bar contained raisins within the base layer, however consumer research in the mid-1980s led to these being removed and the current formulation being introduced."
Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_Decker_%28chocolate_bar%29

This ice cream version is significant because it's the first time Double Decker has ventured into ice cream (the brand, not the bus - it probably wouldn't be a good idea for a double-decker bus to venture into icecream!).

It's described as "A creamy nougat ice cream top with a chocolate ice cream and crunchy cereal bottom, all covered in Cadbury milk chocolate".


Cutting a bar in half, it certainly looked the same as a Double Decker, with the nougat ice cream layer on top and the crispy cereal and chocolate ice cream layer at the bottom. It was never going to replicate the exact same taste or texture as a real Double Decker, but it did a pretty good job. The upper layer tasted somewhat malty whilst the bottom layer was chocolatey and had a nice crunch from the rice cereal pieces. The milk chocolate coating had a familiar Cadbury taste and finished things off nicely, making for a tasty little ice cream bar.


Overall, I thought these were a decent replication of Cadbury Double Decker, and a good snack for the price. I would recommend them!

Price: £1.25 for a 4 pack at Morrisons.
Allergy advice: Contains milk & soya, may contain nuts and wheat. Suitable for vegetarians. 

Monday, 22 April 2013

Chrysanthemum Tea Drink


Whilst browsing a local Chinese store recently I was wide-eyed with amazement at all the unusual, interesting and downright odd (at least to my British senses) food items sold there. Amongst the oddities I discovered coconut jam, various Meiji products, soybean soda and...this. Yes, you read the title correctly, this is a Chrysanthemum Tea Drink.

Looking at the ingredients I noticed it contains 12% "aqueous extract of chrysanthemum", as well as water, sugar and a few e-numbers. The label helpfully informed me that these "may have an adverse effect on attention and activity in children". Thankfully I'm not a child, although you would be forgiven for thinking otherwise!

Pouring it into a glass, I could smell a horrible sickly sweet flowery smell that reminded me of cammomile tea, which is the only reference I have for flowery-tasting beverages. I was a little scared of trying it to be honest; it had a pale yellow colour that didn't look all that appetizing (I won't say what it reminded me of since this is a family-friendly blog!)


I finally took a sip, and it tasted just as bad as I had imagined. It was insanely sweet, and very sickly. I struggled to drink much because it made me feel a little nauseous. The best way I can describe the taste is like cold cammomile tea, with lots and lots of sugar, but without the calming, gentle taste that cammomile tea has. After a few sips I poured the rest down the sink.

Overall, I'm glad I tried this chrysanthemum tea drink just so I can add it to the list of odd food and drinks I've tried, but I won't ever be touching it again!

Price: 70p at Chinese supermarket.
Nutritional/ingredients info: Contains 12% aqueous extract of chrysanthemum and e-numbers.
Made in: Product of Malaysia.

Sunday, 21 April 2013

Carte D'or Salted Caramel

walls ice cream

When I saw this new Carte D'or flavour from Wall's I couldn't resist giving it a try. I love all things caramel flavoured, but salted caramel can either be really delicious or really weird, depending on how it's done. Luckily Wall's got it right!

I found this tub on special offer in Morrisons for £1.75. It's described as "salted caramel flavour ice cream with caramel pieces (8%)" and contains no artificial flavours.

Opening the lid it smelled more like butterscotch than caramel to me. I scooped out a few portions into a bowl.

walls ice cream

It tasted creamy and delicious, as I expected. I was waiting for the salted caramel flavour to become apparent, but it tasted more like butterscotch. It was very tasty and moreish, and the caramel pieces made it even more so because they added a lovely chewy, fudgey bite to the icecream. After a while it hit me that it did actually have a slightly salty taste, which was difficult to detect initially. The flavour is very subtle and well done, but I maintain that it tastes more of butterscotch than salted caramel. It hardly matters though because it's delicious regardless.

Overall, this is a tasty new flavour from Carte D'or which I'm sure fans of toffee or caramel icecream will enjoy. The flavour isn't too salty or off-putting so if you don't like salted caramel then chances are you'll still enjoy this. It's very addictive and I'll definitely be buying it again. I think it could be improved even more with some actual caramel swirled in.

Price: £1.75 for 900ml at Morrisons, £2 at Tesco.
Nutritional/ingredients: Contains milk, whey solids, condensed milk. May contain nut traces. 

On the subject of Carte D'or does anyone else remember the coconut flavour Wall's used to make? It was one of their best flavours in my opinion; it was so creamy and luxurious and had an amazing coconut taste. I haven't seen it in years so assume it must have been discontinued. I'm seriously considering bombarding Wall's with requests for it's return!

Here is a pic (image courtesy of iceshop.co.uk):
If anyone else remember this flavour please let me know in the comments!

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Milka Good Plum Cream (Limited Edition)


I'm always wary of the new Milka bars I see in my local Polish store. Like the Raspberry Cream and Cherry Cream bars I've reviewed previously, they are often overly sweet or artificial tasting. So when I saw this "GOOD Plum Cream" variety I was again rather hesitant to buy it. But it sounded unusual and was Limited Edition, and I am the rare snacks hunter, so I had to give it a try regardless!

Apparently there are a few different varities in this range, such as "Happy", "Good", "Sweet" etc. This plum cream variety contains a milk cream filling with a plum "jam" filling sat above.


There was a generous amount of plum filling in this bar, infact it oozed out as I cut into it. The chocolate was very sweet, as was the cream filling. The plum jam tasted artificial as I expected, but not quite as artificial as the Raspberry and Cherry Cream Milka bars. It was actually rather plain. Plum isn't one of the most interesting fruit flavours, in my opinion, so I found the taste a bit boring overall.

If you're a fan of plums with chocolate you might like this bar. It's an uncommon combination here in the UK, although seems to be a lot more popular in Poland. Kudos to Milka Poland for trying new Milka flavours but I wish they'd just make the chocolate less sweet and more creamy, like the Milka we get in the UK.

I'm still yet to find the amazing sounding Milka Elderberry Cream as reviewed here by Grocery Gems, but suspect the time time for that one has passed. Such is the way with limited edition chocolates I guess!

Price: Around £1.10p, although I can't remember exactly.
Made by: Milka Poland.

Friday, 19 April 2013

Seed & Bean Lemon & Poppy Seeds White Chocolate


This delicious bar of Lemon and poppy seeds white chocolate is made by Seed & Bean, a company specializing in organic, ethical and fairtrade chocolates. Described as "Italian inspired dreamy white chocolate infused with organic lemon oil from Italy, with a gentle dusting of poppy seeds" it is also hand made and has won a "Great Taste Gold 2011" award.

I'm not that familiar with Seed & Bean but I've seen their bars in Holland and Barrett plenty of times, which is where I bought this. I've wanted to try it for ages now because it's always made me wonder: how does white chocolate, lemon and poppy seeds taste together? Really nice, as it happens!

Opening the wrapper I was met with a delicious creamy lemony scent, like lemon cheesecake. Infact, that's how I would describe this chocolate: "like lemon cheesecake in a bar".


I've never had poppy seeds in chocolate before so this was a new experience for me. And despite there only being 1% poppy seeds, it felt like there were a lot more because they were in every bite of the chocolate.

I thought this bar was lovely. It was sweet as you would expect from white chocolate, but this was tempered by its creaminess and the tartness of the lemon oil, and as well as that there was a slight nutty crunch when biting down on the poppy seeds. All the flavours really worked in tandem together and made for a light, fresh and creamy bar of chocolate. I really enjoyed it!


It brought to mind another, lesser quality bar from many, many years ago: The Kitkat White Lemon and Yoghurt. Does anyone else remember them? It's the only chocolate bar I've ever really eaten that tasted similar to this. But enough of the snacks geekery, because that was a much inferior bar compared to this!

Overall, I think this is a lovely bar of chocolate and if you like light, fresh flavours, I would recommend seeking it out. As well as being organic, ethical and fair trade, it's really tasty!

Price: £2.35 at Holland & Barrett. Seed & Bean are also available at other health food stores.
Ingredients/nutritional facts: Contrains fairtrade ingredients, 1% poppy seeds and 1% Sicilian lemon oil.
Allergy advice: Contains soya and milk. Wheat & Gluten free. May contain traces of nuts. Suitable for vegetarians.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

The Grown Up Chocolate Company Fruit & Nut Hunky Dory


Today's review comes courtesy of The Grown Up Chocolate Company, who kindly sent me some of their bars for review recently.

The Grown Up Chocolate Co are a small company producing hand-made luxury chocolate bars in small batches using only quality ingredients. They set up their business in 2011 and have grown in popularity ever since. For more info do check out their website here: http://www.thegrownupchocolatecompany.co.uk/about/

The idea behind Grown Up Chocolate Bars is that they're reminiscent of the chocolate bars we ate as children, but with an adult twist. I think they've certainly succeeded - all their bars are like much higher quality versions of a lot of mainstream chocolate bars, for example they do a coconut bar that is similar to a Bounty bar, but is much nicer.

Today's review is for their Fruit & Nut Hunky Dory. Firstly I have to comment on the packaging; the design is very quirky and..."different". I've never seen any chocolate brands use such a concept before, and it certainly stands out. It's not my cup of tea personally, but I'm sure lots of people will appreciate it - let me know what you think in the comments!

The description for this bar set my expectations very high: "A decadent muddle of nuts and fruit on a bed of milk chocolate gianduja, enrobed in luxury milk chocolate". Sounds lovely, doesn't it?


Opening up the box, the chocolate comes in two pieces in a plastic tray. They looked very chunky and knobbly; you can tell they are hand-made because they lack the precision perfection of mainstream chocolate bars. Which is a good thing - I like my chocolates knobbly and chunky!


Biting into one of the pieces I was met with the delicious taste of praline - it was very smooth and nutty. And then the fruit (cranberries and citrus peel) and nuts (hazelnuts and almonds) came to the party, adding chewiness and crunch. They were really fresh, and tasted delightful combined with the praline. My favourite part of the whole bar though was the citrus peel, which I thought was really tasty with the other ingredients and made a lovely change from raisins, which you usually get in chocolate bars. I was a little disappointed there wasn't more of it to be honest.

Make no mistake, this is a very rich and indulgent bar. My only issue was that there was an uneven distribution of fruit and nuts, but I guess that's the charm of handmade chocolates - there's no machines to robotically calculate the exact ratio of ingredients in each bar!



Overall, a lovely indulgent bar from The Grown Up Chocolate Company and one I would love to try again. I wish they were more widely available because I'd happily buy them over most other mainstream chocolate options.

Allergy advice: Contains milk, nuts, soya. May contain traces of gluten and peanuts.
Price: £2.50.

You can check out The Grown Up Chocolate Company's bar range here:

http://thegrownupchocolatecompany.com/acatalog/Our_Delicious_Bars.html

Plus they are also available at Fortnum & Mason and Booths stores.

*The Grown Up Chocolate Company sent me these bars for an honest review and all views expressed are my own. 

Please stay tuned for more Grown Up Chocolate Company reviews!

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Cadbury Dairy Milk Marvellous Creations: Jelly Popping Candy & Cookie Nut Crunch

cookie nut crunch jelly popping candy beanies

There's been a lot of excitement brewing in the snacking world about these new bars from Cadbury. They have already been launched in Australia and are apparently a big hit over there, so Cadbury have decided to launch them here in the UK too.

To my surprise, I found these almost literally on my doorstep at a local Premier store. They were price marked at 50p per bar, which is an RRP Trial Price. Presumably they will be bumped up in price at a later date.

The wrapper designs are quite cool and very eye catching. I think they look a lot more fun and quirky than regular Dairy Milk bars.

Opening the wrappers I was met with the unmistakable aroma of Cadbury Dairy Milk. I couldn't wait to tuck in! The blocks are irregularly shaped which I think is a nice idea; it adds to the overall "fun" experience of these bars.

jelly popping candy beanies
Jelly Popping Candy
Jelly Popping Candy Shells:
This bar is described as "Milk chocolate with fruit flavour jellies (6%), sugar coated cocoa candies (6%) and popping candy (4%)".

jelly popping candy crunch
Jelly Popping Candy
Taste-wise, this bar was delicious if not a bit unusual. The jelly pieces added a lovely fruity chewiness to the creamy chocolate, and the sugar coated candy added a nice bit of crunch. As you would expect, the popping candy crackles in your mouth, giving a weird fizzy sensation.

I guess whether you enjoy this bar or not will depend on whether you like popping candy. Personally I really enjoy it in chocolate, and I mourn the loss of the X-Ploding Smarties bar from years ago (which had a similar concept to this), so I actually enjoyed this bar despite how unusual it is. It's a unique combination of tastes and textures and is very tasty.

jelly beans popping candy
Jelly Popping Candy
Cookie Nut Crunch:
This one is described as "Milk chocolate with pieces of biscuit (8%), crunchy almond caramel (5%), and chopped and roasted caramelised hazelnuts (3%)".

cookie nut crunch caramel
Cookie Nut Crunch
There was no weirdness at all from this bar; just familiar delicious flavours. This is undoubtedly the star of the two bars and is one of the nicest new mainstream chocolate bars I've tried in a long time. The combination of flavours and textures is perfect; you've got sweet crunchy caramel, buttery biscuit and caramelised nuts. All of these flavours combined with the creamy Dairy Milk made this a very moreish bar.

cookie nut crunch caramel
Cookie Nut Crunch
Overall:
I enjoyed both of these bars and think they are a great idea from Cadbury. I hope to see new varieties added to the range in the future; perhaps even one with peanut butter? Pretty please, Cadbury?

Price: 50p per 47g bar.
Found at: Premier Stores. Also available at Morrisons in small and large bars.
Nutritional facts/ingredients:
Jelly Popping Candy - Conatins milk, wheat, gluten, soya. Suitable for vegetarians.
Cookie Nut Crunch - Contains almonds, hazelnuts, milk, wheat, gluten, soya. NOT suitable for vegetarians.

Saturday, 13 April 2013

Laima Miks Bar


When I saw this Laima Miks bar in my local import store I thought it was a Latvian version of Snickers or something. Upon examining the ingredients however, I became a bit more interested as I learnt that it contains apricots, various types of nuts, raisins, dates, coconut, roasted sunflower seeds and even banana chips. This sounded pretty unique to me so I couldn't resist giving it a try!

I certainly didn't expect this to be a bar of what is essentially apricot jelly coated in fake chocolate compound! Dissecting it, I found lots of different nuts and bits of dried fruit embedded in the jelly centre:



"What a bizarre chocolate bar" was my first thought upon tasting this. The apricot jelly had a weird "air freshner" kind of taste, which is the only way I can describe it: fake, artificial and perfumey. It wasn't very pleasant.
The fruit and nuts added a bit of texture to the jelly and were kind of interesting, and even the chocolate compound coating added a little bit of cocoa flavour, but ultimately this bar was just too weird for me. The odd artificial flavour from the jelly was really off-putting and the various fruit and nut elements were hard to detect.

Overall I would file this into the "interesting to try once, but never again" category. I'd be interested to hear from anyone else who has tried this bar, because it's kind of perplexing to me. Who buys this sort of thing? And why? Is it a case of a once-popular brand being cheapened with poor ingredients?

I checked out the Laima website, and their description of this bar (run through google translate) goes something like this:

"When you need energy for mind and body, is useful nutritional bars Mick. Article 42 grams hidden beneath the glaze and delicious jelly, or dried fruits and whole nuts - a real treat, encouragement and energy reserve for any life stage."

So there you have it. This bar is supposed to give you energy for the mind and body, at any life stage. Personally I'd rather have a Snickers!

Price: Around the 50p mark.
Nutritional facts/ingredients: Contains apple, apricot, hazelnuts, raisins, dried dates, almonds, oats, dried banana, coconut ices and roasted sunflower seeds.
Company infoLaima are a Latvian company and "one of the few European producers where full production process from cocoa beans to chocolate is ensured". They recently celebrated their 140th anniversary. I've previously reviewed their "Christmas Chocolate" bar which you can check out here.

Friday, 12 April 2013

M&S Percy Pig Percy In The Pink


I've wanted to try these M&S Percy in the Pink chocolates for ages now, even after reading Gobble Monkey's funny review here saying how overly sweet they are. I'm a big fan of the original Percy Pigs; they're basically the best gummy sweets ever made (though with the recent food scandal I do hope horse hasn't somehow ended up in them!), so I was hoping these would be just as good.

They're described as "Flavoured white chocolate with dried raspberry and strawberry concentrates" and cost £1.25 for a 90g bag.


I'm a big fan of coloured and flavoured chocolate, it seems so much fun even though it usually ends up tasting too sweet. I guess I'm still a little kid at heart. So I kind of expected these Percy in the Pink to taste too sweet, and indeed they did. Infact they were as I expected - vaguely fruity, chalky, and very sweet. Underneath all the sweetness there was a hint of creaminess from the white chocolate, but the predominent taste was of sugar and strawberry/raspberry. Which is fun for a while, but you can't eat too much before it becomes overbearing. They're definitely one for the very sweet-toothed, or for children.

Percy waving goodbye before he gets eaten
Overall, although these Percy in the Pink chocolates were very sweet...I kind of enjoyed them. They satisfy a sweet craving pleasantly enough, and there's certainly much worse chocolates out there. That said, with such a large variety of Percy Pig sweets sold in Marks & Spencer, you'll probably want to go for the real thing. The only trouble is that Pery Pigs are so addictive it's easy to eat a whole bag to yourself! (or maybe that's just me?)

More Percy Pig reviews coming soon...

Price: £1.25 at M&S.
Nutritional facts/ingredients: Contains milk, suitable for vegetarians.