24 December 2010

Thornton’s Tasting Collection Vs Hotel Chocolat Rather Large Cracker


I hope everyone is having a great Christmas, and that Santa brings you all that you want in the morning! As everyone tries not to over indulge too much – you can all watch me do the exact opposite. ;-)

Here is a very Christmassy Foodstuff Fight, with the Thortons Vs Hotel Chocolat Christmas mega gift sets.

Thornton’s Tasting Collection:
I have to say the box is very different to the usual Thornton’s offerings, it is modern and patterned and very elegant to look at. To open it you remove the lid, undo the ribbon and slide the doors open. A selection of trays appear sliding out from underneath each other, each tray has two layers of chocolates within them. This is a very elegant box of chocolates, and one of the prettiest gift boxes I have seen in a long time. There is a very definite full marks for packaging for this set, it really does have the wow factor.
The chocolates are a lovely selection form the Continental ranges, and have some of my favourites such as the Vanilla Truffle and the Viennese Truffle. Also mixed in on the layers, which makes it the tasting adventure, are some of Thornton’s chocolates I have never tried before. The Panna Cotta was remarkably creamy, contrasted perfectly by its dark chocolate coating. I also have to give a special mention to the Valencia with its tangy orange and warming brandy flavour, it is a complete treat. All were gorgeous, sweet and very flavoursome. The quality of the chocolates is, as always with Thornton’s, very much up to standard and the packaging is immaculate.

Hotel Chocolat Rather Large Cracker:
This may not have the posh element of the Thornton’s box set, but it certainly is novel, very Christmassy and rather fun. I’m sure that if this was taken to any seasonal dinner, all guests would be rather impressed by this remarkable looking pack. It is effectively a giant cracker, and by ‘effectively’ I mean a genuine working giant cracker! To open this fine object, just like a regular cracker, you pull either end and a pleasing bang cracks in the air and the goodies are released!!! Could this be any more cool if it tried!?!
Inside the cracker are golden paper crowns, some corny jokes, and 40 chocolates; mostly packaged in pairs. I loved the selection of chocolates as they had a decent seasonal spin. Even the Crunchy Praline was decorated with a Santa’s hat, and there were chocolate set Christmas shapes; such as white chocolate snowmen. I really loved the Mulled Wine truffle, it was lovely and warming with a decent Christmas spice flavour. The Billionaire’s Shortbread was also a favourite with is sweet, rich caramel flavour and its crunchy cookie topping. This chocolate selection could not fail to go down well, there isn’t a bad one in the bunch! And the clever novelty of the cracker will ensure it is a gift not forgotten.

Both packages of chocolate are exceptional and will certainly be enjoyed by all. The chocolate in each are of high quality, and the flavours are all excellent. Hotel Chocolat gains a bonus point because their selection does have a Christmas theme, with wonders such as the as the Cinnamon Praline and the seasonal cast shapes. The thing I really liked about the Thornton’s set was not just that the box was so beautiful, but it is also practical. If you didn’t finish all the chocolates in one sitting, you can tidily pack the chocolate back in their neat box. So, if you are after a stand out seasonal after dinner treat go for the Hotel Chocolat Rather Large Cracker, but if you are looking for an impressive, but more classical gift, choose the Thornton’s Tasting Collection.

Merry Christmas Everyone!!!!!!
By Cinabar

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