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Mars

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Starburst Sweet Fiesta

Starburst Sweet FiestaStarburst come in a myriad of flavor packs these days. I picked up a few of the less common flavors at some convenience stores recently. The Starburst Sweet Fiesta has been out for a few years. At first I thought it was a limited edition version, but it appears to be a regular item.

The package contains four different flavors, each is a combo flavor all based on a sort of tropical and sub-tropical flavors. It has Cherry mango, peach guava, strawberry pineapple and melon berry, with three of each flavor in the 2.07 ounce pack.

Starburst Sweet Fiesta

Strawberry Pineapple is pink and delightful. It’s sweet and tangy with floral notes that are close to honey and then something a little deeper and more heady.

Melon Berry is bright green. It’s quite melon, a cross between watermelon and musk melon, but there’s a strong sort of papaya note to it. It’s too musky for me, to tropical.

Peach Guava is peachy. It smells like coconut and has a peachy, apricot note at first. The guava is not terribly strong, which is fine with me because I’m not that keen on guava, it’s almost like passion fruit.

Cherry Mango is red. It smelled like the regular Cherry Starburst at first, but the flavor is quite a bit better. It’s cherry, with all those woodsy flavors, but there’s a pine and peach note to it that’s quite good. I’m not usually a fan of cherry, but I like how Starburst does them for the most part, and this is a good example.

Overall, this flavor set is different enough from the standard Starbust Fruits but I don’t feel like it completely breaks out of the show of the perfection of the original. If you’re the type of candy fan that hates citrus, this is a good mix, as it has none, which is pretty rare. I love the pineapple, but I’m not big on melon, so I’d probably give this a pass in the future as a whole pack, but if I can just pick out the Strawberry Pineapple and share the rest, it’s all systems go.

Related Candies

  1. Starburst Flavor Morph
  2. Haribo Maoam Fruit Chews
  3. HiCHEW World Fruit: Dragonfruit, CamuCamu, Durian & White Peach
  4. Starburst Sour & Sweet
  5. Starburst Baja California & Tropical
  6. Starburst
  7. HiCHEW Assortment
  8. Storck Mamba Chews


Name: Starburst Sweet Fiesta
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Wrigley’s
Place Purchased: 7-11 (Silver Lake)
Price: $1.19
Size: 2.07 ounces
Calories per ounce: 120
Categories: Candy, Mars, Wrigley's, Chews, Starburst, 7-Worth It, United States, 7-11

POSTED BY Cybele AT 9:56 am     CandyReviewMarsWrigley'sChewsStarburst7-Worth ItUnited States7-11Comments (3)

Friday, June 1, 2012

M&Ms Sweet & Salty Snack Mix

M&Ms Snack Mix - Salty & Sweet Milk ChocolateLate last year Mars introduced a new line of snack mixes incorporating M&Ms with nuts, dried fruits, cookies and pretzels. There are currently three varieties available, I picked up one of each.

All share the use of M&Ms chocolate candies and pretzels, but then have slightly different elements from there. The basic mix, based on the Milk Chocolate M&Ms is Milk Chocolate M&Ms Snack Mix Salty & Sweet.

The bags are eight ounces and I got mine on sale for $3 each at Walgreen’s, but I have to believe that they’re going to be priced less than that on a regular basis for them to catch on.

First I have to say that the packaging is well done. The stand up bag does stand up and the zip lock closes easily and securely enough to both keep contents from spilling and protect from moisture. The bag also will sit “open” well enough to serve from.

M&Ms Snack Mix - Salty & Sweet

The items within the Milk Chocolate mix are: Roasted Peanuts and Crunchy Pretzels from the salty side and mini Chocolate Chip Cookies and Milk Chocolate M&Ms from the sweet side.

In the case of my bag, things appeared to be packaged in tiers, so all my peanuts were at the bottom and all my pretzels were at the top. So when I first dumped it out for photographing, I missed the peanuts entirely. (See below.)

The pretzels are barely an inch across and just lightly salted, which I thought was perfect. They’re not so big that they took up a whole bite, allowing me to combine elements for a customized flavor/texture profile.

The little chocolate chip cookies are like Chips Ahoy!. A bland vanilla cookie with teensy little chocolate chips. They’re about .8 inches around and reminded me of Cookie Crisp Cereal in shape, but actual chocolate chip cookies in flavor. They’re a little salty, very sweet and nicely crunchy.

M&Ms Snack Mix - Salty & Sweet

The M&Ms are, well, Milk Chocolate M&Ms. They’re a bit dusty with crumbs or salt, but otherwise fresh and crunchy, the sweetest thing in the bag.

The peanuts, well, this is where things took a bad turn. I didn’t like the peanuts at all. I thought they were roasted too dark, they were bitter and sometimes chalky. Since everything else in the bag was perfectly fresh, it made very little sense to me why they were consistently so unappealing. (One or two bad peanuts are understandable, but they were all the same color, uniformly small in size and rather lifeless.) I have to wonder if they were a bit on the over-roasted side as a way to stabilize them, especially the fats in peanuts that can make everything greasy.

As long as I ate the peanuts in the same bite as something else, I didn’t mind the. But on the whole, I prefer a snack mix with a strong protein component (usually from nuts).

M&Ms Snack Mix - Salty & Sweet PeanutPeanut M&Ms Snack Mix Salty & Sweet is in a bright yellow bag featuring the yellow Peanut M&M as its mascot.

This bag features a mix of salted roasted almonds and pretzels along with mini shortbread cookies and Peanut M&Ms.

The little shortbread cookies are similar to the chocolate chip ones in size, but actually more successful in this application. The flavor is quite good, I got a great sense of the toasted shortbread cookie with its vanilla flavor. But what was really interesting was that the salt from the almonds had rubbed off on the, so there was an excellent contrast going on. They’re dense and crunchy and not too sweet.

M&Ms Snack Mix - Salty & Sweet

The pretzels were again nicely layered in, a good crunch with a mild flavor.

The almonds were tiny, but roasted perfectly thought slightly over-salted for my tastes. (The overall sodium level for the snack mix is 125mg for a 1/3 of a cup portion which is about 190 calories.

The Peanut M&Ms were, well, exactly like Peanut M&Ms. They were big and had a lot of crackle going on and added a buttery element to the whole mix.

All of the items went with each other. An almond with a Peanut M&M was great. A cookie with a pretzel was also really satisfying. I was surprised at how much I liked this mix, though it does combine some of my favorite items. It was the cookies I was hesitant about, but they really did add to the satisfaction level.

M&Ms Snack Mix - Salty & Sweet Dark ChocolateDark Chocolate M&Ms Snack Mix Salty & Sweet is the only mix in the set that doesn’t have little cookies.

The mix contains salted, roasted almonds and pretzels along with raisins and Dark Chocolate M&Ms.

This is the “healthiest” of the mixes, if you go by calorie load. There are 132 calories per ounce, slightly less than the milk chocolate mix with a half a gram less saturated fat but still 16 grams of sugars. But it does have a bit of iron at 6% of your daily recommended allowance and two grams of fiber.

Of course all of that relies on eating the exact proportions of each element in the mix. If you pick out the M&Ms and almonds, well, all bets are off.

M&Ms Snack Mix - Salty & Sweet

The mix is attractive and has a good salty note to it from the pretzels and the almonds. The raisins were pretty big, soft and juicy without being sticky. The Dark Chocolate M&Ms pair well with any of the elements. Part of me would like to see a more interesting dried fruit in the mix, like dried cherries or cranberries (which do suffer from being sweetened) but this version does fit the bill by adding in a little tangy chew.

These are not candy. There’s very little candy in there, by most accounts, about 25% of it is actually M&Ms, the rest of snack foods. Mars has made a nice mix and chosen each element pretty well and balanced them expertly.

It’s a good mix for a lot of different purposes. Easy to share you can take it on an airplane, a car trip or a movie theater (of course you’d pay concession prices ... probably about $8 a bag). I prefer to make my own mixes, but if I have to grab something already made a store, this is a fair value.

Related Candies

  1. Glico Pocky Cookie Crush
  2. Snyder’s Peanut Butter Pretzel Sandwich Dips
  3. Pretzel M&Ms
  4. Candy on the Trail
  5. Limited Edition M&Ms Coconut
  6. Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Covered Pretzel Bites


Name: M&Ms Snack Mix Salty & Sweet: Milk Chocolate
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Mars
Place Purchased: Walgreen's (Echo Park)
Price: $3.00 (on sale)
Size: 8 ounces
Calories per ounce: 138
Categories: Candy, Mars, Chocolate, Cookie, Kosher, M&Ms, Peanuts, 5-Pleasant, United States, Walgreen's


Name: M&Ms Snack Mix Salty & Sweet: Peanut
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Mars
Place Purchased: Walgreen's (Echo Park)
Price: $3.00 (on sale)
Size: 8 ounces
Calories per ounce: 142
Categories: Candy, Mars, Chocolate, Cookie, Kosher, M&Ms, Nuts, Peanuts, 7-Worth It, United States, Walgreen's


Name: M&Ms Snack Mix Salty & Sweet: Dark Chocolate
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Mars
Place Purchased: Walgreen's (Echo Park)
Price: $3.00 (on sale)
Size: 8 ounces
Calories per ounce: 132
Categories: Candy, Mars, Chocolate, Cookie, Kosher, M&Ms, Nuts, 7-Worth It, United States, Walgreen's

POSTED BY Cybele AT 2:24 pm     CandyReviewMarsChocolateCookieKosherM&MsNutsPeanuts5-Pleasant7-Worth ItUnited StatesWalgreen's

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Candy Tease: Mars 2012 Announcements

Mars has scaled back on the new product introductions they announce at Sweets & Snacks Expo, but there are still plenty of new twists on your favorite candies coming out in the next six months or so. Here are some highlights:

Dove Cookies and CremeName: Dove Cookies and Creme
Brand: Dove (Mars)
Description: Savor the grown-up experience of a childhood favorite with the delicious flavors of cookies and crème. New DOVE® Brand Silky Smooth Cookies and Crème blends sweet and creamy white chocolate and crunchy chocolate cookie bits into an indulgence that only DOVE Chocolate can deliver.
Introduction Date: September 2012
Notes: I am actually looking forward to this. The Hershey’s version has gone downhill since they stopped using all cocoa butter but the Dove Peppermint Bark that came out two years ago did turn out really well ... the big question remains, will it have the right ratio of chocolate cookies.

Milky Way Caramel AppleName: Milky Way Caramel Apple
Brand: Mars
Description: Caramel apples are a Halloween tradition, and new MILKY WAY® Brand Caramel Apple Miniatures add a chocolate twist to this Halloween favorite. Combining the irresistible tastes of chocolate, rich and creamy caramel and apple, this new item brings a unique, new flavor to trick-or-treating, decorating and snacking.
Introduction Date: September 2012
Notes: These are coming out for Halloween, but will be around through the end of the year. I know that the apple and caramel flavor thing has been around for a while, but I have my doubts that this will taste realistic and not fake.

3 Musketeers Hot CocoaName: 3 MUSKETEERS Brand Hot Cocoa with Marshmallow
Brand: Mars
Description: What’s better than hot cocoa on a cold winter’s day? Try new 3 MUSKETEERS Brand Hot Cocoa with Marshmallow Minis and find out! This new limited-edition holiday flavor may not warm the bones, but with its smooth and creamy goodness, it’s sure to satisfy holiday decorating and snacking this season.
Introduction Date: November 2012
Notes: 3 Musketeers has been the area where Mars has been throwing its muscle in the seasonal flavors. The previous 3 Musketeers Marshmallow for Easter 2011 was a bit lackluster. I’m not quite sure what this flavor will be, except less malty (is it possible for the current version of 3 Musketeers to be less malty) than the current version.

Dove StrawberryName: DOVE PROMISES Silky Smooth Milk Chocolate & Strawberry Crème Swirl Hearts
Brand: Dove (Mars)
Description: Juicy strawberry crème coated in milk chocolate combine for a decadent and irresistible taste sensation. DOVE captures this hallmark flavor of the season in new DOVE PROMISES Silky Smooth Milk Chocolate & Strawberry
Introduction Date: January 2013
Notes: The white & milk swirl that Dove came out with is nicely done. The fakey fruit flavors that I had in the raspberry was just not my cup of tea, but there are others that might enjoy these, especially in small pieces with a Valentine’s theming on them.

Other items returning:

M&M’S Candy Corn White Chocolate Candies were an unexpected hit last year. I was surprised that I liked them and am glad to see that they’ll return for Halloween 2012. Full review here.

Dove Peppermint Bark will be back for Christmas in the bark and Promises version, but also a new DOVE Peppermint Bark Singles which sounds like a great way to just pick up a small, easy to eat bar instead of a large bag. Previous review of Promises here.

DOVE PROMISES Silky Smooth White Chocolate will also return for Christmas 2012. Previous review is here.

3 MUSKETEERS Dark Chocolate Strawberry Minis were introduced in a Fall Mix in 2007 (along with French Vanilla and Cappuccino). Lately they’ve been bringing out Cherry and Raspberry seasonally, but this Strawberry version will be out for Valentine’s Day 2013.

Images courtesy of Mars, Inc.

Related Candies

  1. Candy Tease: Sweets & Snacks Expo 2012 - Part 2
  2. Candy Tease: Sweets & Snacks Expo 2012 - Part 1
  3. Candy Tease Spring 2012
  4. Candy Tease: October 2011
  5. Candy Tease: Mars 2011 Announcements
  6. Candy Tease: Mars 2010

POSTED BY Cybele AT 8:09 am     CandyNew Product AnnouncementMarsHighlightFeatured NewsComments (4)

Monday, March 5, 2012

M&Ms White Chocolate (Easter)

M&Ms White ChocolateMars has introduced White Chocolate M&Ms a couple of times in the past, most notably the M&Ms Pirate Pearls tie in with the Pirates of the Caribbean movies.

This new Easter version of M&Ms White Chocolate is a little different in all the right ways.

The first thing is the appropriateness. White Chocolate is inextricably tied to my memories of Easter. The white confection works so well with pastel colors, it’s milky sweetness just embodies the sugary overload of the season.

M&Ms White Chocolate

I picked up this bag at Target, it’s over a half a pound but still a little pricey at $3.19 for the bag at regular price. Though they’re Easter themed, with the Red M&M wearing a furry white rabbit suit on the package, it’s just the colors. There are no little icons on them like M&Ms has done in the past with the holiday versions.

M&Ms White Chocolate

The morsels are larger than regular M&Ms. I’ve come to expect this with the limited edition M&Ms. The Dark Chocolate Mint M&Ms are also oversized and part of me wonders if they’re just using the former Mega M&Ms production line or the M&Ms Premium.

M&Ms White Chocolate

The large size and thick shell means that there are a lot of textures going on, and each gets to shine. The shell is crunchy and crisp. The light coloring means that there’s no perceptible off flavoring from the colors for me. The centers are smooth and creamy. When I say cream, it’s like it’s real dairy cream. Instead of tasting like frosting, these taste more like vanilla pudding. The white chocolate has both a lot of cocoa butter and milk solids in it. Cocoa butter is the second ingredient, so it’s quite light without being overly sweet or greasy.

While I wasn’t blown away by the earlier Pirate Pearls, this larger size and less sweet flavor is really quite good. Granted, you have to like white chocolate in the first place, but for a mass-marketed white chocolate product, Mars has addressed a lot of the confections shortcomings quite well.

The package lists possible allergens as peanuts, almonds and wheat and it’s definitely made with dairy and soy. Mars has not released any information about going fair trade or ethically sourcing their current American cocoa products, though they’re planning release of ethically trade chocolate products in Europe. (More on that here at Change.org.)

Related Candies

  1. Dove Promises White Chocolate
  2. M&Ms White Chocolate Candy Corn
  3. Cookies ‘n’ Creme Showdown
  4. M&Ms Premiums
  5. See’s Hollow Eggs with Novelty
  6. M&Ms Line
  7. Green and Black’s White Chocolate


Name: White Chocolate M&Ms (Easter)
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Mars
Place Purchased: Target (WeHo)
Price: $3.19
Size: 9.9 ounces
Calories per ounce: 147
Categories: Candy, Easter, Mars, Kosher, M&Ms, White Chocolate, 8-Tasty, United States, Target

POSTED BY Cybele AT 1:29 pm     CandyReviewEasterMarsKosherM&MsWhite Chocolate8-TastyUnited StatesTargetComments (14)

Monday, February 6, 2012

M&Ms Mint Dark Chocolate

M&Ms Mint Dark ChocolateMint and Chocolate is a classic combination and one that M&Ms has brought back seasonally with their Milk Chocolate Mint M&Ms in the winter for the past few years.

This year they’ve introduced a new item with a little twist, Mint Dark Chocolate M&Ms. Like other Mars dark chocolate products, it’s not a true dark chocolate, just a semi-sweet chocolate with a bit of dairy fats thrown in.

I found them in this stand up bag, which was a bit pricey at $3.39 per 8 ounce bag at Target. I expect they go on sale often, so keep an eye out. But I’ve heard tale that they’re also available in single serve packages.

M&Ms Mint Dark Chocolate

They come in two colors. Green and Green. Maybe there are three shades, it’s hard to tell. But they’re green, and they’re beefy. They’re much larger than regular M&Ms.

M&Ms Mint Dark Chocolate

Because they’re bigger, there seems to be more chocolate than shell, so it felt like there was more chocolate flavor.

They’re lightly peppermint, not so much that it completely overpowers the chocolate. The chocolate is smooth and buttery, though a little grainy ... kind of hard to tell if you chew up the sugar shell though. Overall, a very nice rendition of minted chocolate in candy. It does remind me quite a bit of Peppermint Bark. It’s much less sticky tasting than the milk chocolate variety. I’d definitely chose the Dark Chocolate over Milk Chocolate. So much that I’d kind of like to downgrade the Milk Chocolate variety.

M&Ms Mint Dark Chocolate

They’re also satisfying. M&Ms, by design, are engineered to be unsatisfying. You eat some, and then you want some more. Otherwise folks wouldn’t keep eating a whole bag and then buying more. The dark chocolate variety has a lot going for it with the textures, but the mint is light and reminds me (because I still taste it in my mouth) that I just had some and that I enjoyed them. So no need to keep shoveling them into my maw.

Mars made Premium M&Ms for a while, they were M&Ms without the shell, instead something more like a thick layer of latex paint (okay, it was really just food coloring and edible wax). The flavor that seemed to make it the longest on store shelves was their mint version, and this hard shell variety does emulate that flavor profile quite well.

Last week Mars introduced a new M&Ms character, Ms. Brown. She’s voiced in the current campaign by Vanessa Williams (Ms. Green is voiced by Cree Summer) and characterized as a bit brainy (because she has glasses) and chic. It seems odd that all the M&Ms are “candies of color” in name only, their arms and legs are actually rather pale and lead me to believe they’re Caucasians. None of this has anything to do with Mint Dark Chocolate M&Ms, I was just thinking about it over the weekend.

Related Candies

  1. Trader Joe’s Dark Chocolate Mints
  2. Marich All Natural Holland Mints & Chocolate Jordan Almonds
  3. Dove Peppermint Bark
  4. Hershey’s York Pieces
  5. Mint Chocolate M&Ms
  6. M&Ms Premiums
  7. 3 Musketeers Mint with Dark Chocolate


Name: Dark Chocolate Mint M&Ms
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Mars
Place Purchased: Target (WeHo)
Price: $3.39
Size: 8 ounces
Calories per ounce: 140
Categories: Candy, Mars, Chocolate, Kosher, M&Ms, Mints, 8-Tasty, United States, Target

POSTED BY Cybele AT 3:30 pm     CandyReviewMarsChocolateKosherM&MsMints8-TastyUnited StatesTargetComments (10)

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Skittles Riddles

Skittles RiddlesI’ve been waiting for a new variety of Skittles to come along to blow me out of the water. Something that really turns expectations about Skittles on their ear, like the Skittles Carnival limited edition version a few years back. Mostly I’ve been hoping for Skittles Soda Pop: cola, root beer, lemon-lime, orange and grape soda. But that doesn’t look likely. Instead I picked up this teal blue bag of their newest called Skittles Riddles.

The newest version of Skittles have a new set of flavors and a new twist. The riddle is that The Colors Don’t Match the Flavors. There are the standard set of five colors, in this case aqua, light green, blue, red and pink. The flavors are apple, strawberry, punch, watermelon and raspberry. And as they note, they won’t necessarily match up with their colors. Some of the flavors aren’t actually that new, raspberry, strawberry and punch are found in other mixes.

Skittles Riddles

My big curiosity was whether or not the color swap would be consistent throughout the bag. Would all blues be the same flavor, or would it be completely randomized? My initial observation is that they’re randomized. (Though limited, I found one flavor in three colors at most.)

Watermelon was unmistakeable. The first time it was a dark red, another time it was aqua. It was like a Jolly Rancher in chew form. The flavor dissipates fast, but comes on strong.
Punch was strong, like a big chewy glop of Hawaiian Punch. I don’t care much for the flavor, and not having that ruby red color to warn me was a little discomforting.
Strawberry was, well, the classic Skittles strawberry. Sweet, floral, tangy and very consistent. It tasted a little like a strawberry kiwi.
Apple was a strongly artificial flavor, very little of an apple juice or apple peel note. In my case, it was actually green.
Raspberry was hard to find, I had to eat a lot of these before I stumbled on this one. It was subtle, a little tangy but missing the jam and floral notes I like in a raspberry candy.

On the whole, I like the idea of mixing up expectations. But one thing that I like about Skittles is how I eat them. I like to line them up, grouped by color and then eat them in matched pairs. When I get to the end with the singles, I like to keep my citrus flavors together and mix my grape with strawberry. With this version, I simply can’t do that. I can’t ever be sure I’m putting two of the same flavor together, and not all of the flavors actually go together well. I didn’t like watermelon combined with anything else and strawberry probably would have gone well with raspberry.

It’ll be fun for folks who don’t actually look at the colors and it is nice to see new flavors. But I’m still waiting for my Citrus Mix or Soda Pop. The novelty flavors like Crazy Cores and Fizzl’d Fruits are wearing thin and I don’t even want to talk about the poor execution of the Chocolate Skittles.

Skittles are gelatin free now and labeled as gluten free. There’s no statement about other allergens like nuts, eggs or gluten.

UPDATE 11/28/2012: Wrigley’s in the UK will be introducing a version of these called Skittles Confused (I believe they were a Sainsbury exclusive limited edition back in 2008.)

Related Candies

  1. Mystery Smarties
  2. Skittles Blenders
  3. Skittles Fizzl’d Fruits
  4. Skittles Crazy Cores
  5. Skittles Carnival Flavors
  6. Skittles (Fruits, Wild Berry, Tropical, Smoothies & Sour)
  7. Skittles Fresh Mint
  8. Skittles Ice Cream


Name: Skittles Riddles
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Wrigley’s
Place Purchased: Target (West Hollywood)
Price: $3.39
Size: 14 ounces
Calories per ounce: 110
Categories: Candy, Mars, Wrigley's, Chews, 7-Worth It, United States, Target

POSTED BY Cybele AT 10:17 am     CandyReviewSkittlesMarsWrigley'sChews7-Worth ItUnited StatesTargetComments (22)

Monday, January 23, 2012

3 Musketeers Coconut

3 Musketeers CoconutIt’s as if Mars has a multi-year bulk deal with some coconut flavor supplier. They’ve added coconut varieties to their major brands over the years: Dove, M&Ms and Twix. The newest is 3 Musketeers Coconut.

3 Musketeers has been advertising that it has 45% less fat than average of leading candy bars. (This is true because the leading candy bars have more chocolate and/or nuts, which makes them more fatty.) This bar, which is described as Whipped Up, Fluffy Chocolate Coconut Taste says it has 40% Less Fat. This bar is also Canadian. There’s something strange about using our neighbors to the north to tropical-ize an American candy bar.

3 Musketeers Coconut

There are two bars inside, each about 2.25 inches long and 1 inch wide. They’re about .75 ounces each (for those keeping track at home, that’s the same weight as a single Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup).

The set of bars is 30% smaller than the classic (chocolate flavored) 3 Musketeers. The regular one is 2.13 ounces and this set of small bars is 1.49 ounces. Now, if you need help with portion control, not only does the separate bar format help, but the lighter weight means that this package is only 180 calories (90 per little bar) while the classic is 100 more at 280 calories. So while the value of the bar is in question, the moderation aspect is certainly a selling point.

3 Musketeers Coconut

I like the smaller bars, they used this style for the 3 Musketeers Mint. The coating is attractive and has little ripples and swirls on the top. The chocolate doesn’t look particularly dark, not very glossy but still in good condition. It sticks well to the foamed nougat center. The filling is fluffy and sweet but also a little salty. The coconut flavor is there ... but I’m never quite sure where. Is it in the chocolate coating? Is it in the nougat fluff? It’s more of a scent, like a candle is nearby or I’m wearing suntan oil or maybe someone’s baking macaroons. Whatever it is, it’s not in the actual candy bar. No toasted coconut flakes, no creamy coconut milk caramel stripe. Just this vague coconut scent adjacent to my candy bar experience.

That’s okay, I like the combination well enough. It’s extremely sweet, but mercifully small. I wish it was a dark chocolate coating instead, or maybe just better milk chocolate. But I actually enjoyed it more than the classic 3 Musketeers. My favorite would still be the Mini version they made about 5 years ago that were Cappuccino flavored. They should bring that back ... after they run out of coconut flavoring.

Mars still isn’t ethically sourcing their chocolate for the North American market. There’s hydrogenated palm kernel and/or palm oil in there. Of course vegans can’t eat it because of the milk and the egg whites. There’s no statement about gluten but it does say it may contain peanuts.

Related Candies

  1. 3 Musketeers Richer Chocolate Taste
  2. Limited Edition 3 Musketeers Marshmallow
  3. Twix Coconut (Limited Edition)
  4. Limited Edition M&Ms Coconut
  5. 3 Musketeers Cherry & Raspberry
  6. 3 Musketeers Mini Mix
  7. 3 Musketeers Mint with Dark Chocolate
  8. Kisses Coconut Creme


Name: 3 Musketeers Coconut
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Mars
Place Purchased: Walgreen's (Union Square, San Francisco)
Price: $.69 (on sale)
Size: 1.49 ounces
Calories per ounce: 121
Categories: Candy, Mars, Chocolate, Coconut, Kosher, Nougat, 7-Worth It, Canada, Walgreen's

POSTED BY Cybele AT 2:11 pm     CandyReviewMarsChocolateCoconutKosher7-Worth ItCanadaWalgreen'sComments (5)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Dove Promises White Chocolate

Dove Promises White ChocolateMars has finally hopped into the white chocolate game with both feet. Their new Dove White Chocolate Silky Smooth Promises stand alone as the only mass-market true white chocolate in bite size pieces.

I don’t know if this is a regular item or a seasonal offering from Dove. They’ve already proven that they can make a good white chocolate, which has been their base for their rich Peppermint Bark offerings for the third year in a row.

The package is a stylish amber and gold design with the Dove logo featuring most prominently. The see through part reveals the pieces are foil wrapped in two different shades of gold with white snowflakes.

Dove Promises White Chocolate

Hershey’s has their White Chocolate Meltaway Bliss, but that’s a filled candy, with some sort of palm oil & cream inside. The Dove White Chocolate is truly a white chocolate product, in that it contains only cocoa butter and dairy as its fat base without any other vegetable fats.

Still, it’s pricey stuff. The bar was just shy of 8 ounces while the true chocolate varieties at the same price are over 9.5 ounces.

Dove Promises White Chocolate

The flavor is oddly buttery, as in milky with that sort of churned flavor to it. However, there’s more of an aged dairy taste than a fresh milk flavor. There’s a light hint of salt (45 mg per 5 pieces).

The texture is firm but has a smooth melt, not nearly as silky as the regular Dove Promises but still decadent. It’s sweet, and that sugary quality does give it a but of a thick and sticky quality as it dissolves. Sometimes though it tasted a little on the rancid or perhaps slightly stale side of things. This could be because it picked up some flavors from other items (such as some chocolate flavored marshmallows), but considering the fact that they’re tightly foil wrapped and then in a heavy plastic bag, they shouldn’t be doing that.

Dove White Chocolate Promises

White chocolate is definitely a tough item to do well. These are good, and true white chocolate is hard to find, especially in the grocery or drug store these days. The ingredients are pretty good: sugar, cocoa butter, skim milk, milk fat, soy lecithin, salt, natural flavor and PGPR. They’re made in a facility that processes peanuts and tree nuts. There’s no mention of gluten. They’re Kosher.

It’s a good quality product for the price, but it’s not going to be my go-to white chocolate. I’ll still opt for Green & Black’s super-vanilla infused White Chocolate which is also fair trade. But if I needed something festive and foil wrapped, I’d grab a bag of these.

Related Candies

  1. Trader Joe’s Eggnog Almonds
  2. M&Ms White Chocolate Candy Corn
  3. Dove Peppermint Bark
  4. Cookies ‘n’ Creme Showdown
  5. Hershey’s White Chocolate Meltaway Bliss
  6. Ritter Sport White Chocolate with Hazelnuts
  7. Green and Black’s White Chocolate


Name: White Chocolate Promises
    RATING:
  • SUPERB
  • YUMMY
  • TASTY
  • WORTH IT
  • TEMPTING
  • PLEASANT
  • BENIGN
  • UNAPPEALING
  • APPALLING
  • INEDIBLE
Brand: Mars
Place Purchased: Target (Glendale)
Price: $3.49
Size: 7.94 ounces
Calories per ounce: 156
Categories: Candy, Christmas, Mars, Kosher, White Chocolate, 7-Worth It, United States, Target

POSTED BY Cybele AT 11:27 am     All NaturalCandyReviewChristmasMarsKosherWhite Chocolate7-Worth ItUnited StatesTargetComments (9)

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