Monday, January 19, 2009

Koeze Cream-Nut Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cluster

Koeze Cream-Nut Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter ClusterI’m a the Fancy Food Show in San Francisco right now and just completed the first day on the floor as I write this.

One of the items that I’ve tried every year is the Koeze Cream-Nut Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cluster but never actually saw them in stores until I found them at my local cheese shop. (And then later saw them at Williams-Sonoma.)

Koeze Company used to be known as a tried-and-true roasted nut company, mostly cashews. You may have even gotten it as a corporate gift at some point.

Koeze Cream-Nut Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cluster (Bloomed)The sad part is that I paid $10.50 for this box of five pieces and it was bloomed. I could have, and probably should have, taken it back for a refund. But I’m kind of lazy and I realized that in this case, they weren’t that bloomed, as in the chocolate wasn’t chalky, so I ate them.

The other cool thing is that I knew I was coming to the Fancy Food Show and would have the opportunity to try them again ... just to confirm.

Koeze Cream-Nut Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Cluster (Bloomed)

The construction of the cluster is pretty simple. A base layer of whole pecans (or are they half pecans?) covered in a thick layer of Koeze’s combination of their peanut butter and “white confection” and then the whole thing is coated in dark chocolate.

A candy that combines pecans and peanut butter certainly isn’t common. What’s great here is that that the elements of each of those nuts is used to its full potential. the pecans are light and crispy with a great woodsy flavor. They’re plentiful and the nice size of the pieces means that it’s a lot of pecans.

The peanut butter layer is the unique selling point here though. While they say it’s white chocolate, close inspection of the ingredient label shows that it’s really “white confection” and sadly contains no cocoa butter. However, things like fractionated palm oil and hydrogenated palm kernel oil aside, what this white confection does is add some dairy to it - some none fat milk and whole milk along with the super fine & creamy peanut butter that Koeze Cream Nut is known for.

It’s not a thick and sticky peanut butter layer, instead it’s a light and creamy peanut cream. A touch of salt but mostly it’s a slick and silky peanut sweet.

The pecans are so light and airy as well, they’re not crushed to bits and packed in there, instead they’re just loosely lumped there, it makes the whole thing feel, simply light.

The dark chocolate is also silky smooth. More of a semi sweet than a really dark, it holds it all together, but the nuts are the true star.

There’s really nothing else like it on the market. It’s extremely munchable, very satisfying.

My big complaints, really, are the price and the pseudo-cocoa butter. But good nuts are worth it. And if you have the money or what to give an indulgent gift to a nut lover, this is a pretty good option.

(I'm experiencing a few tech problems and will add the info box after the Fancy Food Show.)

POSTED BY Cybele AT 6:37 am Tracker Pixel for Entry    

  1. I saw these at our grocery store around Christmas, and almost bought them as a family treat, but didn’t (because of the white confection and the price). Now that I’ve read a review, I’ll look to see if they still have them!

    Comment by Tricia on 1/19/09 at 7:33 am #
  2. I love Koeze candies and nuts!! Their dark chocolate pecan puddles are the bomb! Have you tried them?

    Comment by Darla on 1/19/09 at 8:46 am #
  3. These look delicious! You have seriously inspired me to order some yummy stuff. I went to and found many of the older candies you described on here and spent well over 40.00 to try them. I’m a candy addict and can’t wait to have these delicious beauties in my hands!!

    Comment by Lauren on 1/20/09 at 3:15 am #
  4. If you haven’t left town yet, and are going to be in the East Bay, I can recommend a great new chocolate shop, Chocolatier Bleu in Berkeley:

    It’s walking-distance from BART (and my house—lucky me!) Be sure to try the turtle bars if you go.  You can see them making the candy right there.  The owner used to be the pastry chef for Charlie Trotter’s, I believe.

    Comment by JJR on 1/20/09 at 8:19 am #
  5. Hey, you forgot the out-of-ten rating!
    Naw, it’s okay. Those sound… mediocre.

    Comment by Jeni on 1/21/09 at 1:29 pm #
  6. So one note on these, they used to sell them at Bi-rite Grocery on 18th st, but stopped, I asked why and they said because they use palm oil in the indgredients. That said they are still delicious.

    Comment by Nickh on 1/22/09 at 6:52 pm #
  7. Funny, I just talked to williams sonoma today for a return label.  I bought 2 of these boxes after xmas for 7.99 each and they adverstised them as “white chocolate”.  I was going to give them to my spouse for vday, but she happened across them so we opened up a box.  The nuts were good and very fresh, but I was offended by the white confectionary coating.  False advertising on the part of willams sonoma.  The regular price was 19.99 so I would have been even more pissed.  Anyway, they’re sending me a return label so thats good, but really I’m shocked about the price and the confectionary coating.

    Comment by Randi on 2/02/09 at 10:48 am #
  8. Does anybody have a recipe for these candies? (Cream-nut milk-chocolate peanut butter clusters? I would love to make them because I certanly am NOT going to pay good hard-earned money to get “bloomed” chocolates!!  Please let me know.  I am a candyholic and would love to make them for my family (mostly myself)!

    Comment by Maria Hargis on 7/06/09 at 10:13 am #
  9. Cybele's avatar

    Maria - please don’t confuse my experience with purchasing these from a selected store to everyone’s expectations. (I got these from The Cheese Store of Silver Lake.) It’s not the candy company’s fault, it’s the store’s responsibility to store them properly.

    If you do get bloomed ones, by all means, return them.

    Comment by Cybele on 7/06/09 at 10:18 am #
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