Wednesday, 25 September 2013

Nestle Wonka Caramel Hat Trick

Happy 100th blog post!

Released in August this year in answer to Cadbury's Marvellous Creations range, the 170g Wonka chocolate blocks from Nestle come in a range of four different varieties. I have the Caramel Hat Trick here to review today.

I say that the Wonka blocks are a rebuttal to Marvellous Creations, but honestly that's just my opinion (and these are a bit less creative than MC anyway). Nestle has actually been sitting on the Wonka branding since 1988 (international). The whole name of the brand is The Willy Wonka Candy Company, although all - bar the word Wonka - are not used in Australia. Interestingly, the Wonka chocolate blocks already exist in the UK and Ireland with similar packing, but with vastly different flavours (Millionaire's Shortbread, Creme Brulee and Chocolate Nice Cream).

Caramel Hat Trick is described on the pack as 'smooth flowing caramel and crunchy caramel pieces covered in creamy and smooth Wonka chocolate'. The block itself is moulded in squares that measure about one inch square, complete with Wonka top hat, and some are upside down. On the back of the pack, there is a pictorial guide to which parts of the block contain caramel, and which parts contain the crunchy caramel pieces (the two outer columns contain the caramel, while the centre column is made with the candy pieces). The chocolate itself is milky and light brown in colour, and smells strongly of sweet milk chocolate. (The block comes wrapped in this great diamond-patterned gold foil, which I love.)

I first bit into a caramel square. The chocolate top hat is 1-2mm thick, and provides good protection of the flowing caramel. It's rather runny, a bit like topping used on ice cream, but on its own is not crazily sweet. It has lovely burnt sugar notes that are complimented by the sweetness of the chocolate.

The caramel candy squares are moulded the same as the flowing caramel ones (in that the top hat contains all the fun stuff). The little candy pieces are small, like the flecks of popping candy in some of the Marvellous Creations blocks, and are yellow and translucent against the milk chocolate. They add a nice crunchy texture to the smooth chocolate. I also found that these squares were sweeter than the others, and tasted more along the lines of a caramel-flavoured hot chocolate. They weren't bad, but when eaten in conjunction with a flowing caramel piece, it upped the sweetness considerably and made the mouthfeel rather cloying.

There's no denying that this block will only be enjoyed by people who love caramel (but really, that was obvious from the start, wasn't it?) I found that I needed to have this one square at a time, and slowly; doing the opposite was a bit much, even for me. I bet that perhaps salting the caramel on one side would break through the sweetness, but alas, playing with savoury doesn't seem to be within Wonka's skill range.

Score: 4 out of 5 stars.

Nestle Wonka Caramel Hat Trick is made in Australia, and contains milk, wheat and soy. It is made on equipment that processes peanuts and tree nuts. A serving size is 16.2g (or two squares).

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