Remember back in December when I reviewed the Lindt Excellence Passion Fruit Intense block? Well now Lindt have come out with another variety, Strawberry Intense. (There's also a coconut version, but I'm sorry coconut lovers, I won't be reviewing that one!)
Made with mildly dark chocolate (47% cocoa solids), Strawberry Intense combines 'strawberry pieces' with Lindt's 'fine dark chocolate'. The ingredients listing reveals that the strawberry pieces are in fact pieces of freeze-dried strawberry. Silly me, thinking Lindt would use sub-par ingredients! Actual strawberry pieces are of course a good thing, and I can't wait to see what kind of flavour they impart on the chocolate.
As with all of the Lindt Excellence range, the block is long and thin, similar in size to the Cadbury 200g blocks, although half the thickness. Still, when I open the matte branded foil I can tell from the strong chocolate-dipped-strawberry scent that 100g will be plenty! It's a delicious and warm scent. If you find the scent of plain dark chocolate to be a little off-putting like me, you should find this block's aroma inviting and friendly.
On top, the block is branded with the Lindt name and distinctive lined pattern. The back shows a surprising number of bumps from the pieces of strawberry - although the block contains1% of strawberry pieces, the rippled reverse indicates that far more is included.
Snapping off a piece reveals the pink and white strawberry pieces, bright against the rich mahogany-coloured chocolate. It reminds me a lot of the cross-section of the strawberry Froots I reviewed earlier this year. The pieces themselves are small (the biggest is around 3mm wide) but if the scent is anything to go by, the flavour they impart should be rich and strong. It's interesting to note that all the pieces are at the base of the block - there are no bumps to mar the smooth and glossy logo side.
When bitten, the chocolate starts out as the main flavour, but soon gives me to a gentle flavouring from the strawberry pieces. Surprisingly, the berry flavour isn't as strong as I had guessed - instead of tasting like a chocolate-covered strawberry, the dark chocolate is still the dominant flavour, but the strawberry adds a light, playful dimension to the normally boring high cocoa content. It's a less-serious version of dark chocolate.
For those who don't lumps and pieces in their chocolate, you may come across the occasional seed, but the actual pieces themselves crumble easily into the chocolate so as to be barely detectable.
The block is made in France, and may contain traces of almonds and hazelnuts.