Wednesday, 26 September 2018

Today's Review: A Review A Day

Well, this is awkward. For a blog named "A Review A Day" there seems to be a significant amount of days now without a review. I'll preface this by saying I'm fine, nothing traumatic has occurred to explain my absence. On the flip side, I haven't been off sunning myself in an exotic location either. I'm afraid the reasons for my lapse in reviewing are fairly mundane. Life has simply caught up with me lately.

Those of you who read my reviews daily (there may be a few of you out there) may have noticed over the last month or so that I've had periods of a few days where I've failed to write anything, only to catch up after the fact. Even then, my reviews have been brief, uninteresting, mundane. Simply put, I've been ticking boxes. Phoning it in. 

I started A Review A Day over seven years ago, a young man with a semblance of a dream to become a writer. I worked in Blockbuster at the time, and watched a hell of a lot of movies, alongside my hobby of eating a hell of a lot of food. So I figured the best way to hone my writing chops would be to write a load of reviews, the daily element just clicked one day, and off I went, not knowing that it would lead me on a non-stop seven year reviewing journey. 

I've reviewed through good times and bad. I've lined up a week's worth of reviews to publish autonomously while I've been on holiday. I posted reviews while my baby daughter stayed in the ICU, and once later on while I applied pressure to her almost-severed finger in a hospital waiting room (keep your hands away from doors, kids!) I've written some reviews drunk, some half-asleep, some on trains, some in the middle of nowhere. I've received care packages, interesting products, I've been invited to press events where I didn't feel I belonged. I've been accepted into the fold of snack food bloggers (there's a lot of great ones out there, check them out for all your foodie needs). I've even received fan mail. It's been surreal at times.

At first I was full of ideas, I loved coming up with unique concepts and doing in-depth analyses of mundane things. After a few years I settled pretty wholly into snack foods. They were quick to write and delicious to eat. Well, some of them. But therein lies the problem. Naming the blog "A Review A Day" backed me into a corner from the start, I set myself a deadline out of the gate. Quick, easy reviews were the best way to reaach that deadline, and although I loved hunting down new and interesting foods (and still do), there are only so many ways I can say something is delicious, or disgusting, or somewhere in the middle. I may be consistent, but I'm a little stagnant. 

They say all good things must come to an end. I've contemplated it for a while now, and was waiting for some mind of nice rounding off point. I was hoping to reach my eighth anniversary, or my 3,000th review, but they're still a ways off. But family, career, general life have gotten in the way of me consistently cranking out a review every single day, and finally letting go of that daily deadline has alleviated my overall stress levels. So here I am, signing off. 

Wow, that's a lot of writing there. I'm a modest man, I'd be the first to say I'm not sure anyone will read this, but I know I have some fans out there, and I want to thank you all for accompanying me on this awesome journey. Just know that this is not the end, just the end of A Review A Day. I may yet come back with more reviews in a different form, and hopefully a more creative one. I may establish some other form of blog, I've toyed with a few ideas in the past, and letting go of this may allow me to focus on other projects in the future. Thanks to all my readers, you're all amazing.

My rating: 5/5

Monday, 17 September 2018

Today's Review: Cadbury Darkmilk Roasted Almond

Perhaps I should have covered both Darkmilk varieties in the one review, but I have a slightly different opinion of this one. I was going to grab the almond one on its own, but went for both flavours just to get a nice comparison going. While I was blown away by the creamy darkness of the original Darkmilk, the addition of almonds here doesn't add a whole lot. Sure, they taste nice, but it's just a somewhat subdued nut flavour, especially with the chocolate there struggling for dominance. Maybe a different filling would work out better, but I prefer the unadulterated experience of this new dark(ish) chocolate. Worth a try, but grab one without nuts as well.

My rating: 4/5

Sunday, 16 September 2018

Today's Review: Cadbury Darkmilk

Cadbury have just brought out something a little different, instead of stuffing things into their Dairy Milk, they've gone and released a dark chocolate bar. Not majorly dark, mind you, this isn't a rebranded Bournville. This bar consists of 40% cocoa solids and 14% milk, so there's still a bit of creaminess in there to take the edge off. Dark chocolate has grown on me over the years, so I was hoping this would sit well with me.

Say what you will about Cadbury and their changing recipes, but I still enjoy it. This bar is another great effort, a lovely dark chocolate that is just the right balance of bitter and sweet. It's definitely dark, that's obvious from the first bite, but the milk is there to lay down a nice creamy base and make for a smooth, very chocolatey bar. Yes, I'm sure there'll be much uproar about the size reduction compared to Dairy Milk, but I still enjoyed my experience, and paid less than the retail price, pick it up for £1 in Tesco, it's worth it.

My rating: 5/5

Saturday, 15 September 2018

Today's Review: Gingerbread Matchmakers

It's September, so you know what that means. Yeah, it's Christmas! So cast aside those "it's too early" naysayers, and check out some of the new stuff starting to fill the shelves. Like these gingerbread Matchmakers. Last year saw the introduction of the excellent salted caramel flavour, so I was worried these wouldn't quite live up to those lofty heights. I was expecting something unpleasantly spicy, but instead I was pleasantly surprised. The ginger is mild, but has a nice impact on the flavour. Creamy chocolate with a nice little hint of spice, that builds up to a nice point but doesn't overwhelm too much. Eating a whole box full would probably get a bit too much (not that I'd know anything about that), but for a little Christmas sharing snack, these are sweet and warming. Not quite as good as the salted caramel, but another great effort.

My rating: 4/5

Friday, 14 September 2018

Today's Review: 7 Days Bake Rolls Garlic

Well, that was quick. Yes, I picked up the other variety of Bake Rolls at Poundland, and after the fantastic pizza ones I was looking forward to these, although apprehensive that they'd be a little heavy on the garlic. The good news is they're not, but the bad news is that makes them a little on the bland side. not too much though, these are some lovely crunchy snacks with a nice garlic flavour, it's nice they didn't go overboard, I wouldn't have wanted to walk round with horrible breath all day. So yes, the pizza ones are supreme, but these are pretty good too, just not as flavoursome. Worth hunting down these bags of bagel shaped goodness.

My rating: 4/5

Thursday, 13 September 2018

Today's Review: 7 Days Bake Rolls Pizza

I've spied these treats in several places, but was always wary to take the plunge, pizza flavoured treats don't normally satisfy me, especially in what looks to be dry bread form. Still, I took the plunge after finding these on offer in Tesco, and I have to say they're absolutely delicious. The bag basically consists of a load of dry, crunchy bread rings, but the flavouring is top notch. You can taste the cheese, you can taste the tomato, there's a hint of herbs in there, these things taste like pizza, they deliver what they promised. I was worried they'd be a bit too dry, and I'd be choking them down like crackers after a few, but I polished off the bag with no worries. These are great, and I'm definitely going to seek out the garlic variety. Grab these bagel-shaped bites when you can.

My rating: 5/5

Wednesday, 12 September 2018

Today's Review: Primo Magic Croissant

A little pick up from my local Polish store, I was promised magic in the form of a croissant, complete with chocolate, hazelnuts, shoved into a croissant so brown I can only assume it could be classed as triple chocolate. I was excited, despite this being an ambient pacakged croissant, fresh it was not. 

This isn't magic, well, it might be black magic. The croissant is indeed chocolate coated, but that coating is dark and bitter, and gives way to a dry doughy centre with no flavour. The hazelnuts are barely noticeable over that bitter chocolate taste, I had to give up halfway through this and throw it away. It's less a magic croissant, and more a pile of what that chocolate swirl up there looks like.

My rating: 0/5