30 September 2008

Options Cafe Coffee (30/09/2008)

Options Cafe Coffee Latte
Options have branched out from their hot chocolate market and entered the realms of coffee products with both a Latte and a Cappuccino.
Like their hot chocolates, you just need hot water, and they mix up nice and easily.
I don't take sugar in coffee, and I tend to get disappointed with these types of products as they are usually rather sweet. These on the other hand aren't too sugary at all, in fact they both tasted very nice. The Cappuccino was a little stronger and had a nice froth, and the Latte was smooth and creamy. You would never guess they were low calorie either!

29 September 2008

Pringles Select – Spicy Szechuan Barbecue (29/9/08)

Pringles Select – Spicy Szechuan Barbecue no tube
Having already tried Pringles Select - Italian Cheese with a Hint of Garlic, and found them to be pleasant but not as enjoyable as regular Pringles, I was expecting the same from these.
I thought the Spicy Szechuan Barbecue flavour was really good, gentle yet full of tang. I’m not sure that under a blind tasting test I would have described the flavour as Spicy Szechuan Barbecue, but all the same the phrase ‘nice and spicy’ would have sprung to mind.
I would definitely rate them over the cheese and garlic variety, the Spicy Szechuan Barbecue are back on track to the morish flavours you would expect from regular Pringles.

28 September 2008

Skittles Confused (28/9/08 Sainsburys)

Skittles Confused

[The post below relates to the first UK release of Skittles Confused in 2008, the 2013 review can be found HERE.]

These are a new Skittles product, but they are a Sainsbury’s exclusive - at least for now. The word Confused relates to the fact that the flavour doesn’t match the colour. In a way they are an attempt at a non-chocolate version of Revels I think. The thing with Revels is that hiding a mysterious centre under a chocolate coating is nice, where as this just draws attention to the artificial colours.
They are tasty because they are Skittles, but they taste just like normal Skittles. As for the product concept, I just don’t get it.

27 September 2008

Oringina Sanguine (24/9/08)

Oringina Sanguine
I'm sure I saw this drink last year, but labelled as Orangina Blood Orange? They missed a treat naming it that what with Halloween coming up. (Fanta have repackaged their orange drink label with Halloween eye balls - eek).
Anyway it is very similar to regular Orangina except the flavour is a little stronger and a little more zingy, and of course its redder! Very refreshing, it’s just a shame I couldn't find a diet version too.

24 September 2008

Wispa!!! (24/9/08 Sainsbury's)

Stop Press! I couldn’t believe my eyes when I saw this! I knew Wispa was due to re-re-launch this year, but I was under the impression it wasn’t due till mid October. However there were boxes and boxes of these in Sainsbury’s, and I had to fight the urge to panic buy them all up. I had to keep reminding myself that they are now a permanent product, and will be available everywhere soon enough. Thank you Cadbury!!!

Ferrero Rondnoir (23/9/08 Makro)

Ferrero Rondnoir
Ferrero have two new offerings to accompany their Ferrero Rocher, this Ferrero Rondnoir with dark chocolate, and Ferrero Garden with white chocolate. I will update you on about Ferrero Garden when I manage to get my hands on some, in the mean time let me tell you about Ferrero Rondnoir.

Bite into the crispy chocolate coated wafer shells, and it reveals a dark gooey nutty chocolate centre, which is hiding a chunk of fine dark chocolate. Wow. Its Ferrero Rocher perfected for fans of the darker side and it has quickly established a place on my Christmas list.

23 September 2008

Green & Blacks: Dark & Gingerbread (22/9/08 House of Fraser)

Green & Blacks: Dark & Gingerbread
This is the second of green and blacks seasonal bars, but it is in complete contrast to their other flavour.

For a start the cocoa content of 60% makes for a more grown up chocolate. The gingerbread is full of flavour, and doesn't add any unnecessary sweetness to the rich cocoa. I was very impressed by the size of the gingerbread chunks, each piece is around 1cm by 1cm and has a good crunch to it. This bar would make the perfect accompaniment to a cup of coffee as the bitterness of the coffee would emphasise the sweetness of the chocolate. Realistically though - it would also go rather well with a glass of mulled wine!

22 September 2008

Green & Blacks: Milk & Spiced Fruit (22/9/08 House of Fraser)

Green & Blacks: Milk & Spiced Fruit

"Tiz the season to be jolly, tra-la-la-la-la le-la-la-la"

Ok, is nobody else feeling Christmassy yet? Well, to be honest I’m not really either, but Green and Black have already released their Christmas Specials, and who am I to resist?

This bar is a rich sweet milk chocolate with a good amount of mulled fruits. If Christmas was a flavour it would be orange, cinnamon and ginger and this bar doesn’t disappoint. The fruit adds good texture and all the spices make for a very indulgent seasonal treat.

21 September 2008

Whole Earth Peanut Butter with Chocolate Chips (20/9/08 Waitrose)

Whole Earth Peanut Butter with Chocolate Chips
I couldn’t believe this when I saw it!!! Those of you who read the article about Reese’s Pieces, will know about my desperate search for Chocolate Peanut Butter. So when I found this it was hard to contain my excitement (but you sort of have to in the Supermarket)!

Anyway, I put a good portion on a nice hot crumpet, and couldn’t help but smile when the chocolate chips started to melt and mix in with the spread.

It’s very nice, but the chocolate flavour is a little too mild. They could easily double the number of chocolate chips and make this the most amazing spread on the market!

20 September 2008

Milka Cream (Sainburys 20/9/08)

Milka Cream

This write up comes with a disclaimer, I am a big Milka fan, and thus the contents may include a small element of bias - to be honest, you probably won't be able to tell.

Oh my god - its like eating a piece of chocolate heaven. I really thought you couldn't get better than a regular Milka bar, but this is out of this world. A creamy, and yet not too rich flavour with that distinct Milka hint of nuttiness. The centre is soft and makes the bar just melt in the mouth. Chocolate perfection. *no bias*

19 September 2008

Hello Panda (Selfridges)

Hello Panda (Selfridges)
Back to the theme of Japanese biscuit treats, we have Hello Panda. They are packaged in a very sweet pink box, reminiscent of the Hello Kitty Pocky mentioned earlier. These however aren't a pretzel stick, these are a shortbread biscuit ball filled with a strawberry flavoured centre. The whole product is very nice, but I do feel the strawberry filling could do with being a little stronger.

18 September 2008

Dairy Milk Apricot Crumble Crunch (13/9/09 Sainsburys)

Dairy Milk Apricot Crumble Crunch

As promised, here is the second of Cadbury’s new bars. I have discovered that where cranberries are good, apricots are better. The flavour of them is more distinct and it feels more like a new product. Biscuit crumble also gets my approval, far more so than granola... But seriously, nuts would be heaven.

Dearest Cadbury

I hope you don't mind me messaging you so quickly after my last communication, but I had another amazing idea: apricot and nut.
I know - simple, but genius!

Best wishes,

Foodstufffinds x

PS I’m just full of ideas at the minute and I just wanted to let you know: peanut butter and chocolate would work too – in fact that would make a great bar! (But not apricot and peanut butter - that's just silly.)

17 September 2008

Pringles Select - Italian Cheese With a Hint of Garlic (17/09/09)

Pringles Select - Italian Cheese With a Hint of Garlic and no tube

I was very excited about a new flavour of crisp but the calorie content of the bag did put me off initially (but some how the packet managed to find its way in to my trolley). These are really nice garlic and cheese crisps, about as nice a crisp as you could imagine. They have a good strong flavour that works well, and bizarrely I can’t remember ever having had garlic flavoured crisps before. The strange thing is though they don't have that amazing morish "once you pop - you can’t stop" aspect to them. I was quite happy with just a small portion of them with my sandwich at lunch time. Probably a good thing, I'm sure I could happily eat a whole tube of regular Pringles to myself!

15 September 2008

Fox's Whipped Creams

Fox's Whipped Creams
The most obvious assumption from appearances of these biscuits is that that they look similar to Viennese Whirls and therefore you may expect them to taste similar. They don't, which to me is a good thing as I find the aforementioned biscuits a bit too rich and stodgy. These on the other hand melt in the mouth; it is as if they are made with icing sugar. They have just the right proportions of cream, strawberry and biscuit and they are absolute heaven - a thoroughly indulgent treat.

13 September 2008

Dairy Milk Cranberry & Granola (13/9/09 Sainsburys)

Dairy Milk Cranberry & Granola

Cadburys have two new offerings, this one and an apricot bar, the details of which will follow shortly. I guess this is aimed at giving the fruit and nut audience an alternative, or making their chocolate seem ‘posh’.

I feel that the cranberries are very nice, and their taste does work well with the chocolate. The granola on the other hand adds a decent texture, but its flavour is no replacement for nuts!

Dear Cadbury,
Please can we have cranberry and nut dairy milk?
Many thanks,
Foodstufffinds x

11 September 2008

Pocky (Available by specialist importer)

So what is Pocky?

Pocky are a biscuit stick, rather like a stick of pretzel (but without the salt) and then dunked in a flavoured coating. They are so nice and tasty, the only problem with them is once you have one, you immediately want another!

They come in many varieties…

Pocky -Thai/Singapore
(Available from Yum Yum Oriental Foods, Worcester)

PockyPocky – Milk
The coating is a lovely milk flavour, not vanilla, not white chocolate but a proper creamy milk flavour.

Pocky – Banana
Mmmm… just like a banana milkshake flavour, really nice

Pocky – Chocolate
You just can’t go wrong with chocolate, and this is a flavoursome milk chocolate.

Pocky – Strawberry
Creamy strawberry flavour, again rather like a milkshake flavour.

Pocky - Japanese

Pocky - Hello Kitty (Available from play-asia.com)
How sweet is this packaging? The strawberry coating on this is really nice, good strong flavour, nicer even than the strawberry Pocky mentioned above!

Pocky - Men’s (Available from Mt. Fuji restaurant Birmingham Bullring)
Ok, so I hate the name! As if Men prefer bitter chocolate? I’d like to see the statistical study that produced that idea… Anyway, name aside I really like these, the chocolate isn’t that strong at all – more like Bournville that one of Lindt’s 70% offerings.

9 September 2008

Oats & More -chocolate chip (3/9/08 Sainsburys)

Oats & More -chocolate chip

This bar is quite thick and chewy, and really is packed with oats. I really enjoy anything that contains chocolate – my thinking is if I can’t have new, I will take the chocolate version, so I was very pleased to see that this contained choccy pieces.

(New and chocolate flavoured is unbeatable!) however the chocolate flavour wasn’t quite strong enough, it could have done with a more generous sprinkling! Still it was a very pleasant bar, and felt very satisfying!

5 September 2008

Oreo's (WHSmith / Sainsburys)

Mini Oreo's

I was going to write that this review was going back to the American theme, but these Oreo's have not been bought via any specialist importer, they have now been launched in the UK.
I can’t get over how nice they are, the strong cocoa in the biscuit compliments the cream filling perfectly. Very morish and I love the four biscuit serving pack - just right for a treat. The minis are good too, perfect for sharing... Particularly in an office ;-)
I have a question though: How do they make the biscuit such a dark colour? I don't think it's artificial colourings. I don't think you can put enough cocoa in them to make them that colour, without them ending up rather bitter. Curious.

4 September 2008

Alpen Luxury Granola (Sainsury's 3/9/08)

Alpen Luxury Granola
Imagine a standard size box of breakfast cereal, add to this a decent amount of hazelnuts and raisins. Get a good portion of granola oats and roll them in chocolate, add this to the box… now fill every last space remaining in the box with chocolate.. pack it in… leave no area empty of chocolate! This is what Alpen has done.

This cereal screams chocolate overload, and is absolute heaven for the chocolate lover. The pieces of chocolate are a proper size too, not just a chocolate-chip, but a proper chocolate chunk! Gorgeous – but not for those without a sweet tooth!

2 September 2008

Jammie Dodgers Snack Bar (Asda 1/9/08)

Jammie Dodgers Snack Bar

What makes a jammie dodger biscuit great? Well in my opinion it is the mix of sweet zingy raspberry jam and creamy crunchy biscuit.
This bar has the jam, and it’s a good thick layer all the way through. I didn't really expect the crunchiness, after all it is a cereal bar, but I was disappointed that the creamy biscuit flavour wasn't very defined. Unfortunately the (rather tasty) layer of jam makes the bar a little unstable, and makes the whole consistency somewhat fragile! I’m desperately awaiting the "new improved recipe" sticker to appear on the label and for them to make this nice bar into a perfect bar with some added extra biscuit pieces!

1 September 2008

Hazlewood Pickled Eggs (Makro 31/8/08)

Hazlewood Pickled Eggs
Pickled eggs are great, if you’ve never had one – you really should. I was a little unconvinced by the idea at first, but one bite was all it took for me to change my mind!

The supermarkets all sell pickled eggs, and they are all very nice too, but not quite as good as proper eggs from the chip shop. But guess what, these ARE the ones that the chip shops sell, hiding away at Makro. Look for the Hazlewood label when you are next in there, these have the perfect mix of egg and vinegar flavour.

A quick word of warning though… The label states: “keep refrigerated once open”, bare in mind the jar isn’t small!

McDonalds Oriental BBQ Beef (McDonalds 31/8/08)

McDonalds Oriental BBQ Beef

Ok this clearly is not from the recent haul of American candies! I'm also not sure how new it really is, as I very rarely eat at McDonald's. However I could not resist a special, and very nice it was too. I wasn't expecting the burger to have such a nice spicy taste. If the Chinese themed burger is available post Olympics, I thoroughly recommend it!