Today has been one of those days. I woke up realizing I accidentally left two of my car windows partially down during the huge storm last night (passenger side thank goodness), I fell down the stairs while carrying my laundry to the basement, and to top things off, I sliced my right pointer finger open while trying to fix my noisy CPU fan. If there was ever a day to eat chocolate, it's this one.
I had a few different chocolate bars from Aldi's fancier line leftover from our Store Brand Chocolate Candyology101 podcast, so it's time to cram my face with candy and forget today ever happened.
These Moser Roth bars come in a cardboard package, similar to Lindt and other fancier grocery-store chocolate bars, but what makes this different is that instead of one large segmented bar, each of these cardboard packages holds 5 individually wrapped mini chocolate bars.
The packaging may function well, but visually, it's not on the same level as big brand chocolates. The gold is a nice touch, and the layout isn't bad, but that gradient background makes this product look cheap, and in a way it is. These chocolate bars are really affordable for the amount of chocolate you're getting, and if you're already shopping at Aldi, odds are brand names won't matter, but due to it's lower-end look, I don't know if this item is really gift-worthy. (At least not presentation-wise.)
I have three flavors to review today, and since my bandaged finger is making typing a little difficult, I'll try and keep everything brief.
First up is one of my favorites, dark chocolate. This bar is so beautiful and nicely molded that it almost looks like plastic. My photos make it look like some kind of CG rendering, but really, it's just that perfect in real life. It's made with 85% cocoa, so it smells deliciously bitter, like most dark chocolates, and it's a decent size for a single portion.
As far as taste, this is a bitter, almost dry, chocolate bar. It's barely sweet, and it leaves your mouth with a dry cocoa powder-like finish. That might not sound appealing to the general milk chocolate loving public, but I love it. I eat sweet things all the time, both in my personal life and for review purposes, so it's nice to give my mouth a break with something different. Those of you who like really dark and bitter chocolates, this is great, and my only complain might be that it can make your mouth feel a bit dry, so you might want a drink to wash it all down, but really, it's a great bar. I wouldn't say it's the best dark chocolate in the world, but for the price, the quality is pretty great.
Next up, a little something spicy, some chili infused chocolate.This bar is just as beautiful, but it's a bit lighter.
This one smells sweeter than the dark chocolate bar, and it has a hint of dried peppers. Out of the three, this one is actually my favorite. The chocolate is a bit sweeter, not as sweet as a traditional milk chocolate, but sweeter than the 85% cocoa bar, and it has a really nice amount of spicy flavoring. The spice isn't overwhelming, it's just enough to hit the sides of you tongue an occasionally the back of your throat, but it's just enough to keep you coming back for more. The sweet and spicy combo isn't just a gimmick either. The flavors really compliment one another making this a really delicious treat, especially for a store branded item. If I could recommend just one bar from this line for people to try, it'd be this one. I think it's fantastic and one of my favorite chocolate chili bars of all time.
Lastly, I have something classic, a chocolate almond and orange bar. The chocolate here seems even lighter than the chili bar, so this seems the most like our typical American milk chocolate. Due to the mix-ins this one isn't as perfectly molded as the other two, there are a few imperfections here and there, but it's still pretty nice.
Since this is milk chocolate it smells a lot sweeter than the other two bars and it has that iconic chocolate orange smell. It's sweet, refreshing, and appealing.
Since this was the only bar with mix-ins I figured I'd show a bite shot to give you a better idea of what's inside. For a grocery brand, the mix-ins do not disappoint. There was a healthy dose of slivered almonds in this bar, but didn't find many bits of actual orange or candied orange peel, if at all. Maybe the chocolate itself is just orange flavored? Anyway, this bar tastes just like you would expect. It's sweet, like a classic chocolate orange, and the almonds add a nice crunch as well as some nutty flavoring. It's delicious, and I like it a lot, but it doesn't hold a candle to my #1 favorite, the chocolate chili.
If you're a chocolate fiend, or just having a bad day, any one of these bars would make a great pick-me-up. There's a little something in this assortment to suit everyone's needs, they are affordable, and the quality is pretty great considering it's price point. I know there are a lot of fancy chocolates out there (with fancy price tags to match) and I'm not saying these would beat the best-of-the-best in a tasting contest, but out of all the Lindt and other fancier chocolate bars I have had from the grocery store, I still prefer these.
© Maria Smith http://poison-and-antidote.net
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