Monday, September 27, 2010

Kinder Bueno

I noticed I had some pictures of a candy I meant to write about last week, but never got around to. This was part of some goods I bought from the European market. I usually buy a lot from there because I never know when I'm going to come back. Also, I don't go there often because chocolate melts really quickly, so it's hard to base a review off of melted chocolate.

The highly recommended Kinder chocolate brand comes back and it has yet to disappoint. With a name like Kinder Bueno, it advertises itself to be good, or my poor level of Spanish leads me to believe

I swear I didn't bite this one either

As one of my students stated, this tasted like Kinder Happy Hippo. And all these candies taste like a smoother Ferrero Rocher. I assume it's because they aren't covered walnuts. I'm starting to think Europeans enjoy hazelnut-filling as I have seen many other products at the European market with hazelnuts or hazelnut-flavored filling. Well, it certainly is bueno and it does indeed taste like Happy Hippo with the exception of being covered in chocolate and not having those chocolate bits covering it. And like Happy Hippo, I'd definitely recommend getting a bar of Kinder Bueno.

Kinder Bueno: 8.5/10

Japanese BBQ Corn Snack

It's a rare treat when I buy chips or salty snacks from foreign countries. The reason is because there are so many kinds of Doritos out there that I don't think I need to. However, when one walks down the aisles of an Asian market, one begins to realize that the foreign possibilities may be endless.

I bought this solely because of the picture on the lower right. My friends can attest that I am no fan of baseball, but there's something appealing about purchasing a product that has athletes on it. This is why I assume Wheaties has seen such great success. And if you notice there's Tim Lincecum throwing a pitch...he's a pitcher, right?

I took a picture of the back to verify that it was indeed a corn snack and because I thought I would be getting a mini jersey or something. There was no prize in my bag of BBQ corn snacks

Well it looks like we just met the Cheeto's Japanese cousin

Here's the skinny: Someone took Funyun flavor and put it in a Cheeto. This a perfect description for the snack. When I first ate one I thought, "This is a Funyun-flavored Cheeto, I am both disappointed because it is not a new flavor, but I love Funyuns." If you like Funyuns, and who doesn't, then this snack is worth the purchase. I won't say that I didn't like it, because I do like Funyuns a lot, but I was just disappointed that it was something familiar.

Japanese BBQ Corn Snack: 8/10

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Volin Ti: Hazelnut, Almond, and Caramel

This bar is related to the lime/yogurt chocolate bar I wrote about a few entries ago. "Volim ti", according to Google Translate means "I love you" in Serbian. Good to know if I ever go to Eastern Europe. Onward to the candy at hand:

This candy bar has three different sections with different flavors which are hazelnut, almond, and caramel. This concept reminded me of the Japanese, "LOOK", line of candy bars where there are four different sections with different flavors. I figured that any of the three flavors listed above would pair well with chocolate.

A cross section of the three flavors: hazelnut, almond, and caramel

All three flavors tasted pretty much like caramel, so that was a bit disappointing. However, the flavor was still good, so it wasn't that bad. The last minor gripe that I have is that this was a bit too sweet without anything to balance it. I would have liked more richness and depth with the flavors, but otherwise I would say I liked this candy bar. The aroma was pleasing and the chocolate may not have been amazing, but this was a solid candy bar.

Volin Ti: Hazelnut, Almond, and Caramel: 7/10

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Three on three with Phil and Karina

This is going to be another post featuring guest input from my friends. This time it is from my friends Karina and Phil, who were the ones who contributed to my Japanese Loot series of entries. The following products are Japanese, but we found them in a Korean supermarket. This supermarket had a large selection of candies, but the prices were a little bit more expensive than at a Japanese market. However, they did feature some things that I had not seen before, or things that have not returned to the shelves at Japanese markets. Anyway, the first item that we sampled was:

Blueberry Kit Kat. Meiji has a blueberry flavored chocolate bar, which is excellent as are there green tea and strawberry flavored bars. I figured that if Blueberry Kit Kat was anything similar to those, it would be worth the try.

A melted Blueberry Kit Kat. I'm going to assume that these were not the best stored candies because a majority, if not all the bars, were melted

We all agreed that this was a pretty mediocre candy. I expected a lot more, but there wasn't much flavor at all. The chocolate wasn't that good, there was a hint of blueberry, but overall it lacked flavor in general. I would recommend getting regular milk chocolate Kit Kat over this.

Blueberry Kit Kat: 6/10
Phil's input: 6 - 6.5/10
Karina's input: 6/10

The next item we tried was Mango Oreo bars. Mango and chocolate are not a combination I could have thought of. There are some fruits that pair well with chocolate, such as strawberries, but things like mangoes, oranges, or anything that you can't really imagine with chocolate never come to light, so I imagined this would be interesting

A Mango Oreo bar cut in half

The best way I can describe the way this tasted is that it's like a sub-par Chinese pineapple cake. Phil agreed with me on this and all three of us thought that this was a step down from the Blueberry Kit Kat. I expected more of a mango taste, but I suppose pineapple is the closest Oreo could get. It lacked even more flavor than the Blueberry Kit Kat and was extremely average

Mango Oreo Bar: 5/10
Phil's input: 5 - 5.5/10
Karina's input: 5/10

Lion Cola Candy was the last candy we tried and I figured that it was a safe bet. Cola candies are generally quite good when they have a fizz to them. The only time I could imagine a cola flavored candy being good without having some sort of fizz is with Haribo Cola Gummies

Lion Cola Candy from another angle

This was definitely the winner of the items we tried. It had lots of flavor, most importantly a lot of cola flavor, and it had a nice fizz to it. We've been screwed before with other hard cola candies that didn't have fizz and just weren't good at all, but this one was very good. The only thing that I could hold against it is that I think it wasn't stored properly either, so a lot of the pieces were sticky and stuck to each other, but that's more of a storage issue than a flavor issue. We're glad we tried this last, so that we could get the flavor of the previous two candies out of our mouths.

Lion Cola Candy: 8/10
Phil's input: 8 .5/10
Karina's input: 8/10

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Stadium Nacho Doritos

Since I wrote about Tailgate BBQ, I felt that I should try the other limited time flavor which is Stadium Nacho. After having a wonderful experience with Tailgate BBQ, I had high hopes for Stadium Nacho.

The main reason as to why I didn't get this flavor before getting Tailgate BBQ is because the name implied that it would be too plain of a flavor. Nacho is pretty much a staple flavor of Doritos, so I couldn't really see how they could improve on it. However, because it is a limited time flavor, it won't be around forever

A Stadium Nacho Doritos chip

The flavor was very subdued in this one I felt. It had less flavor than Nacho Cheese Doritos or any of the other flavors of Doritos that are offered year round. It had a bit more of a corn tortilla chip aroma to it which I guess is a reflection of the tortilla chips that are a part of nachos. However, I feel like by adding this element, they made this flavor seem more like a typical corn chip than a typical over-flavored Doritos chip. Because of this, I feel that Stadium Nacho Doritos are passable and that Tailgate BBQ or a regular flavor of Doritos is preferable.

Stadium Nacho Doritos: 7/10

Friday, September 3, 2010

Zvecevo Samo Ti: Limeta & Jogurt


Okay, so I put like two squares in my mouth and it reminded me slightly of key lime pie. This way is much more enjoyable than my original way of just biting a square and tasting it.

Two square method with Zvecevo Samo Ti: Limeta & Jogurt: 7/10


It had been a while since I purchased more chocolate because of the heat. However, in California it has been a relatively cool Summer. It's pretty bad timing on my part to purchase chocolate today, on one of the hotter days of Summer. The chocolate did survive though, and one of hte ones that interested me was:

Lime and yogurt in chocolate? Ridiculous I say. Well it's not ridiculous to the people who make Samo Ti, which I think means "Only You" in Croatian. The main draw of this candy bar was to see if lime and chocolate would make a good combination

A square of lime chocolate

Right off the bat, the first complaint I have about this product was that there wasn't enough lime flavoring. Near the end of the square, I got a bit of candied lime zest or something, but that was about it. There wasn't any yogurt flavor either. This is more of a slightly lime scented chocolate bar more than anything else. The chocolate also wasn't that great; I would have preferred a Lindt chocolate bar to this. Overall, it was worth a try, but it was a swing and a miss.

Zvecevo Samo Ti: Limeta & Jogurt: 6/10