Sunday, 11 May 2014

Hotel Chocolat Easter Selection

I have a confession to make: I have never tried anything from Hotel Chocolat before. I know people rave about it but somehow it has slipped me by. However, I received this Easter Selection as an Easter present and only finally got round to opening it today. The first thing that struck me is how premium it looked. The box was beautiful to look at with a great design with the clear plastic 'H' window allowing you a tantalising glimpse of the treasures within in.

Opening up the box, a really rich cocoa smell arose. Hotel Chocolat use more cocoa solids than sugar and this was evident from the smell alone. The chocolates didn't smell sickly sweet and you could tell this was really high quality chocolate with real depth and character.

As if the high end chocolate wasn't enough, it's the flavour combos that really intrigued me. Instead of the usual toffees and strawberry creams you get in chocolate selections, this contained:

  • Raspberry Zinger Egglet
  • Caramel Bow Tie bunny
  • Mandarin Olive Oil Egglet
  • Nutty Caramel Egglet
  • Apricot Ganache Egglet
  • Easter Bunny Cocktail Egglet
  • Praline Bow Tie Bunny
  • Orange Bow Tie Bunny
  • Irish Coffee Egglet
  • Salted Caramel Ganche Egglet 

What an exciting and innovative range of flavours. I absolutely love trying experimental flavours so knew these would be right up my street. In the end I decided to try the orange bow tie bunny, the apricot ganache egglet and the salted caramel egglet.

Taking these three morsels out the box, I was again extremely impressed by the design and level of detail in the chocolate. These weren't crushed and covered in bits like other selection boxes but were whole and perfect. It is no exaggeration to say these are works of art.The little whiskers sketched on the bunny, the subtle changes in colour and speckles in the eggs... these look like they were handcrafted. I particularly like the little 'H' neatly stamped on top of the eggs. It's a really nice touch and makes them look so ornate.

Orange Bow Tie Bunny:
Described as "a dapper dark chocolate bunny filled with a dangerously moreish orange and milk chcolate ganache"

The orange ganache was really intense with real depth. It wasn't sugary or sweet or even sour or refreshing. Instead, it was absolutely sumptuous and smooth and worked so well with the dark chocolate. It had a really intense orange flavour that wasn't overpowering or in the least bit artificial.

Salted Caramel Egglet:
Described as "our best salted caramel in an indulgent milk chocolate ganache"

I adore salted caramel and fully appreciate it becoming so prevalent and popular at the moment. The caramel was done perfectly - it didn't taste salty per se but had a really rich, butterscotch like flavour that was strong and melting.

Apricot Ganache Egglet:
Described as "a fantastically fruity egglet filled with a smooth apricot and white choclate ganache"

Wow, this one really took me by surprise. Maybe because the others were so rich and intense but I couldn't believe how fruity this was. You could taste the apricot and I could almost taste a sort of passion fruit taste as well. The white chocolate wasn't overly sweet either and it tasted totally tropical.

I was really impressed by these chocolates and they more than justfied the cost. I only needed three to feel satisfied and those three were utterly decadent and luxurious. I can't wait to slowly work my way through the rest of the box.

Price: £12
Available: Hotel Chocolat - although you might have to wait until next year now!

Pros: Fantastic and innovative flavours that work. Premium quality chocolate and stunning to look at. Would make a perfect gift.
Cons: That I can't get any more until next Easter!

Score: 9/10

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