Thursday, May 18, 2006

Baci Bar

One of my favorite treats we’d get in our Christmas Stocking were Baci. If you’ve never had this little Italian chocolate, you’re missing something. It’s a hazelnut nougatine with chopped nuts topped with a whole hazelnut and covered in a thin shell of rich dark chocolate. They’re wrapped in silver foil with blue printing and wrapped around the chocolate is a little piece of glassine with a saying about love or kisses in four languages, after all, baci means kiss in Italian.

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Instead of individual morsels, the Baci Bar is a thick semisweet chocolate bar with domed sections filled with a mix of chocolate, hazelnut paste and crushed hazelnuts.

Holy moly, it’s good.

Seriously good. The chocolate is rich and buttery with a slight bitter and dry hit to it - which offsets the super-sweet and nutty, thick filling. The little bits of nuts give it a wonderful crispy crunch. There wasn’t a bad nut bit in the bunch.

If there’s anything at all wrong with it, it’s that it’s kind of soft. It’s getting warm here in Los Angeles, and eating a bar like this mid-day is just plain messy. No matter, I’m having the rest of it for breakfast ... see, I’m flexible! I miss the whole hazelnut you get the with traditional Baci, but the chocolate ratio here is amped up a little, which I like just as well.

Now that I’ve raved about this bar, I fear I will never have another one. I’ve looked around on the Perugina/Nestle site and find no reference to this bar. It was generously transported directly from Italy to me by uber-blogger, JozJozJoz. Maybe if you’re in a European airport you’ll spy one.

Perugina is an Italian company, started in the 20s but was bought out by Nestle in 1985, which explains their wider distribution in the United States late in the last century.

Name: Baci Bar
    RATING:
  • 10 SUPERB
  • 9 YUMMY
  • 8 TASTY
  • 7 WORTH IT
  • 6 TEMPTING
  • 5 PLEASANT
  • 4 BENIGN
  • 3 UNAPPEALING
  • 2 APPALLING
  • 1 INEDIBLE
Brand: Perugina (Nestle)
Place Purchased: gift from JozJozJoz (thanks!)
Price: unknown
Size: 4.41 ounces
Calories per ounce: 159
Categories: Chocolate, Nuts, Italy, Nestle

POSTED BY Cybele AT 6:25 am Tracker Pixel for Entry    

Comments
  1. Hello! I have been reading your blog for a few months now - it was great to see a blog about the Baci bar! I live in Italy now but I’m American - actually my company does the Perugina website but it’s in Italian so that won’t help you much. Those bars are in every supermarket here. If you want to consider a candy exchange, let me know. I miss my Reese’s.

    Comment by Sara on 5/18/06 at 6:48 am #
  2. maybe they have these at world market?  the packaging looks familiar; but then again, whenever i go into world market, i am in a perpetual state of awe and my memories could be getting mixed.

    Comment by jessica on 5/18/06 at 6:55 am #
  3. sorry to comment again so quickly, but the website says that target carries the ball version of this bar.  i guess the balls are similar to ferrero rocher?  anyway, i know my target has started carrying a lot of “upscale” candy.  so maybe it was target and not world market that i saw the packaging!

    Comment by jessica on 5/18/06 at 6:59 am #
  4. ....must…find…baci…

    psst Cybele, try putting it in the freezer, maybe that will help firm it up.  some bars are even better when frozen, especially in summer.

    Comment by Julilla on 5/18/06 at 7:49 am #
  5. I see these every Christmas at Cost Plus World Market. (I’m realizing I refer to the bliss that is Cost Plus in just about every comment I leave on this site. I don’t work for them, honest!)

    I haven’t noticed Baci there off-season, but then, I haven’t been looking. They definitely have other Perugina stuff.

    Comment by Lesley on 5/18/06 at 8:25 am #
  6. you just HAD to post this didn’t you? *whimper*  i also used to get baci in my christmas stocking, but that was after receiving some as a gift from a school friend whose family owned an italian bakery/deli…i haven’t had any in years though, and had sort of forgotten them. :-\ and now a DARK chocolate version??

    googling got me this site (http://www.peruginachocolate.com/chocolatebars.htm), but it says they’re sold out, with no indication as to whether or not they’ll be restocking *sulk* i guess i’m going to have to go back to that italian bakery and see if they have them…

    Comment by laurie on 5/18/06 at 9:04 am #
  7. Hi there—love your blog! Been lurk-reading for a while now smile

    The Baci biscotti is absolutely insane. A piece dunked in some fresh, hazlenut coffee is one of my fave treats. My boyfriend (from Italy) gets a whole range of Perugina stuff shipped from home at least once a month.

    Comment by Chrissy on 5/18/06 at 9:04 am #
  8. Try ebay! (yup they have plenty Baci there, I checked) =)

    Comment by mousy on 5/18/06 at 9:43 am #
  9. Cybele's avatar

    Just a note - you can absolutely get the regular Baci at a LOT of places in the states. At the holidays through Valentines most department stores carry different packages. Some are the little boxes with four baci all the way up to big platter sized boxes that have several dozen in there. Cost Plus World Market, Target and many upscale grocers carry them year round.

    They’re easy to share and keep as an indulgence.

    Jessica - Ferrero Rocher have a bit of a crispy shell in there - they’re very tasty but a little sweeter and not as chocolatey as the Baci.

    If you like Ferrro Rocher and chocolate, you’ll definitely like these.

    Chrissy - I just found the biscotti for sale on Amazon ... looks AMAZING.

    mousy - I always forget about eBay! There’s always someone there selling exactly what I’m looking for.

    Comment by Cybele on 5/18/06 at 10:12 am #
  10. I know it’s not the same, but have you had the Black Rhino Bar from Endangered Species?  This bar is my new passion - I can’t get enough.  And I don’t even like hazelnuts, really.  There are tiny shards of hazelnut toffee studded throughout perfectly dark and salty chocolate.  I’m curious to know what you think.  Maybe not enough hazelnut for a true hazelnut-lover…
    http://www.chocolatebar.com/shop/pc/viewPrd.asp?idcategory=2&idproduct=23

    Comment by joanna on 5/18/06 at 8:38 pm #
  11. yumm.  whenever i come here i leave hungry…  i will have to check out one of the import markets around here to see if they carry this…

    Comment by erin on 5/21/06 at 9:19 am #
  12. You can get these at World Market—I bought one for my husband’s stocking last Christmas!

    Comment by Jackie Joy on 5/25/06 at 10:40 am #
  13. I HATE Baci, but I am curious. The Baci balls have really cool quotes in the wrapper, and I was wondering if the bar had any of those? World Market prob would have them, like Jackie said. Their chocolate selection is pretty good.

    Comment by Meghan on 8/18/06 at 2:29 pm #
  14. Yes, but does eBay or any stores have the Baci BAR? I’ve been looking everywhere but I still can’t find it. My last resort is to have someone from Italy ship them to me, but really… I don’t want to seem like a complete chocolate nutcase. Please tell me they haven’t discontinued them!

    Comment by Mila on 10/09/06 at 10:31 am #
  15. Just lookmin B.J.;s or Costco and it’s swimming in Perugina at rediculous prices. The Baci Bar was discontinued in the US several years ago and trust me ,even Hersheys makes a better product than the now who knows where it comes from Perugina vrand

    Comment by maxine on 10/26/06 at 10:35 am #
  16. There is no way that anything Hershey puts out is better than Perugina chocolates.  Obviously you haven’t had European chocolate before!  American chocolate is crap.  You really want to eat good chocolates try Leonidas.  They are one of the premier chocolatiers in Belgium and they import too. 
    Yummmmmmm!

    Comment by Lisa on 2/14/07 at 12:39 pm #
  17. Lisa:
    And obviously YOU haven’t had American chocolate if you think it’s all Hershey’s.  Like Dagoba, Theo,Chocolove, Lake Champlain, Scharffen Berger, Endangered Species, Vosges…just for starters. 

    The notion that American chocolate sucks is not only antiquated, but completely inaccurate.  You’ve got some homework to do, man.  Get busy!

    Comment by Joanna on 2/14/07 at 5:10 pm #
  18. I’ve seen these in various Italian Deli’s on Long Island.

    Comment by Katie on 4/24/07 at 9:04 am #
  19. when i was in rome recently we noticed mcdonalds were doing a baci mcflurry.  omg it was heaven!!

    since then we have been addicted to baci but can’t find them in the uk - wah!!  i’m going to america soon and will be seeking these out - i wonder if they’re just seasonal over here because i’m sure i’ve seen them before.

    Comment by cd on 10/04/07 at 1:34 pm #
  20. I love Baci…............... for me they are my favorite…..........it’s also nostalgia for me. When I was a little girl in Brooklyn, NY my Nonno (grandfather) always had boxes of Baci around. He’d pass them to all of the grandchildren when we visited my grandparents.  Marshalls used to have them.  I don’t see them anymore over there. I’ve also heard Macy’s has them.

    Comment by Laura on 12/04/07 at 4:10 pm #
  21. Does anyone know if Baci is glutten free?

    Comment by Rosemary on 2/12/08 at 4:06 am #
  22. Hi there:

    I just got back from three weeks in Italy where I practically lived on Baci bars! Out of nostalgia I bought a bar at Fiumicino airport, resisting the urge to buy five because I thought I’d be able to find more in the U.S. (I’ve been a lifelong addict of the Baci balls and had never seen the bar in the U.S.)  To my dismay, I have not been able to find Baci bars here in the Los Angeles area. I was in Cost Plus this Saturday on a specific mission to find the bar, but to no avail.If anyone knows of an L.A.-area vendor who sells them, please let me know! I just finished the last two squares of my bar. Seriously—two minutes ago! I’m going through some serious withdrawals.

    Comment by PamelaC on 6/19/08 at 1:42 pm #
  23. you can get baci here. i’ve never seen the bars, but the truffles are pretty common.

    Comment by bowie on 10/06/09 at 1:12 pm #
  24. My family(especially my mother) loves Baci. We get the balls though with dark chocolate, but we discovered these while living in Italy for three years. Best three years of my life I must say. We now get ours at a store here in Michigan called Vince and Joes. AMAZING store, absolutely love it. [:

    Comment by Tabitha on 1/17/10 at 3:59 pm #
  25. I have been searching for the Baci bar here in the states for about 3 years, and finally,  I located one today at World Market - YEAH!!!  It is just as tasty as I remembered.  I have seen the individual baci in many stores, but this is the first time I have found the bar!

    Comment by Samantha Simmons on 4/22/10 at 11:24 am #
  26. While in italy my tour guide pointed them out (we were there during valentine’s day)
    I was hooked once I tried them..thankfully my town has a small import store called Lombardi’s which carries them so I buy mine weekly there :D
    [lovely post by the way! brings back many happy memories!]

    Comment by Dorian on 6/06/10 at 7:44 pm #
  27. Visited Cost Plus a few months back (~March), they still had Baci Bars in stock.

    Was excellent, but it was kinda crumbly, a bit disappointing.

    Comment by Carrie on 6/08/10 at 9:21 pm #
  28. So, ever since you posted this review I’ve been searching for the Baci Bar. Alas, several years later I have found them!! While I’ve tried the regular Baci candy, the bar sounded amazing. I found them in the Tropicana Casino in Atlantic City in their little market in the Quarter. So, if any of your readers frequent AC, they should check it out…just leave some for me please grin

    Comment by Jennifer on 6/30/10 at 9:27 pm #
  29. Rite aid drugs carries Baci chocolates in the Christmas section this year!!

    Comment by BRENDA on 11/23/12 at 8:45 am #
  30. Yes they do but it’s not the Baci bars. I was able to find the bars though at a European store in Atlantic City. They were amazing.

    Comment by Jennifer on 11/23/12 at 8:48 am #

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