Tuesday 31 January 2017

Today's Review: McVitie's Digestives Thins Milk Chocolate Cappuccino

Thin biscuits are a trend now, apparently. Oreo Thins are promoting a more "sophisticated" way of eating Oreos, but these Digestives are a lighter way of eating, or so they say. 31 calories per biscuit doesn't sound bad, but that's based on the assumption that we'll eat less just because they're thin. So this is probably good for those with self control, but for people like me, we were doomed from the start. Still, it's a different way of enjoying Digestives, and these ones come in a chocolate cappuccino flavour, so I had to try them out.

These are thin you know, but the composition is much the same, it's the classic Digestive biscuit, and the chocolate coating is as good and creamy as ever. In fact, due to the reduced biscuit size, these are actually more chocolatey than the original. The cappuccino flavouring is embedded in the biscuit, and it's a sweet, bold coffee taste that work pretty well alongside the coating. It's a bit strong in places, but overall lending towards a good combination of flavourings that make for a nice little treat with fewer calories. Well, I suppose it depends on how many you eat, it's probably not healthy to eat the whole pack, not that I'm speaking from experience...

My rating: 4/5

Monday 30 January 2017

Today's Review: Kellogg's Crunchy Nut Peanut Butter Clusters

I don't often get excited over cereal, but spying this one on the internet a couple of weeks ago got me bit worked up. It's a peanut butter cereal, in the UK, no extortionate import prices, peanut butter is finally getting the recognition it deserves. Granted, this is a little pricey, at just under £3 a box, but it's a marked improvement on that imported Reese's cereal. This is a variation on the Crunchy Nut Clusters, featuring oat and wheat clusters and peanuts, all bound together with peanut butter.

I'll state the obvious here, this is not a healthy cereal. Each portion is over 200 calories, and it's clear from the taste that it's not in the same realm as your granola or muesli. It is, however, utterly delicious. The clusters come in all shapes and sizes, but they're filling and moreish, a great combination of oat and wheat flavours, with an unmistakable peanut butter taste running through the whole thing. The addition of milk seems to amplify the creaminess of the peanut butter, and overall this makes for a very sweet, deliciously nutty bowl of cereal. A new favourite of mine at breakfast time.

My rating: 5/5

Sunday 29 January 2017

Today's Review: Oreo Peanut Butter Ice Creams

It's been almost a year and a half since peanut butter Oreos came out over here. I was so looking forward to them, and then so disappointed that I haven't really touched them since. Not that they were awful, I was just expecting so much more. Now we have the peanut butter Oreo in ice cream sandwich form, and again I became excited at the prospect of these. But would I be burned again? Or would these deliver the definitive Oreo and peanut butter experience?

These sandwiches consist of two chocolate biscuits, between which lies a peanut butter flavoured ice cream. A pretty standard ice cream sandwich, and the cookies are pretty good. Soft, chocolatey they have that distinct Oreo taste, while keeping the consistency that's fitting for an ice cream. As for the stuff in the middle, I must say I'm impressed. It actually tastes like peanut butter, and while the creaminess of the ice cream itself takes precedence every now and then, it's a good effort at a flavour that's pulled off pretty well. These may be pretty small, but they're tasty, and if you're looking for peanut butter Oreo goodness, these will serve you better than the biscuits. A great creamy, chocolatey, peanut butter dessert.

My rating: 4/5

Saturday 28 January 2017

Today's Review: McVitie's Hobnobs Nibbles

McVitie's brought out Nibbles last year, based on several varieties of Digestives. I liked them, and it turns out everyone else did too, because they're still on sale today and another flavour had been added to the range. Here we have Nibbles based on the wonderful Hobnob. Oaty biscuits are right up my alley, so I was really looking forward to these.

If you've had the other Nibbles you'll know what to expect, these are tiny biscuit bites with a fairly generous chocolate coating. It's pretty much the same here, except the filling is different. It's definitely Hobnob in there, and packs a great oaty flavour that's all packaged up nicely with the creamy chocolate coating. These aren't perfect though, the consistency of the biscuit does mean these are a little dry, but that's a shortcoming with the actual Hobnob biscuits, so I'm not overly mad. This is a nice addition to the range, they taste good, and are a nice way to enjoy a chocolate Hobnob on the go.

My rating: 4/5

Friday 27 January 2017

Today's Review: Pizza Union Classico

I found myself in a pretty impressive pizza joint named Pizza Union last night. I could write about the pizza, it was pretty damn good, but what really got my attention was the dessert offering. There was only one, but by the sound of the description, one was all they needed. This is the Classico, a warm dough ring with Nutella and mascarpone.

You may notice you can't see the Nutella and mascarpone in the picture, but that's just because the dough is chock full of it. This is just a fantastic dessert. The dough has a slight crunch to it, but is fairly soft, and gives way to a sweet gooey combo of hazelnut, chocolate and mascarpone. It's a great combination of flavours, and thankfully the stuff inside isn't molten, despite my haste with biting into it. The temperature is not just a saving grace in terms of mouth protection, because the filling pretty much went all over my hands. I'm sure I could have fully utilised a knife and fork to prevent mess, but there's so much filling that goes everywhere I figured I'd just embrace it. Also, the cocoa and icing sugar dusting on top is easily inhaled while going in for the kill. I had a few initial chokes when I started tackling this, but I'm not mad. If I was going to choke on something, I'd probably choose cocoa powder. So yeah, this thing is messy, but it's also fantastically delicious. I highly suggest you get stuck in. This is what napkins were made for.

My rating: 5/5

Thursday 26 January 2017

Today's Review: Rockstar Punched Pure Zero Guava

Ahh, Rockstar, the awkward distant cousin of Relentless and Monster, the energy drink I turn to when the others elude me, or when a new flavour appears. There seem to be a number of different flavours available depending on where I am, so I'm never sure if I've tried them before. I'm pretty sure this is new to me, a guava flavour, zero sugar Rockstar. Guava is not the most well represented tropical fruit, but I enjoy it, so I figured this would go some way to scratching that itch.

Oh wait, no, it's not very nice. Despite containing no sugar, it still seems to retain that syrupy texture I find in the regular Rockstar cans. The guava flavouring is present, but it's distorted, more chemical than fruit, the tartness is too much, and coupled with the syrupy texture it just tastes artificial. Not refreshing, not very tasty. I guess the only saving grace is that it doesn't have many calories, but even as a diet drink it's very poor. I'll go elsewhere for my guava. 

My rating: 1/5

Wednesday 25 January 2017

Today's Review: Starburst Very Berry

I eat my sweets in colour preference order, I'm sure I'm not alone. It invariably goes green, yellow, orange, and then some combination of the purple/red/whatever. The point I'm trying to make is that the berry flavours are my favourite, and I always jump for joy a little when they bring out dedicated bags of just red/black/purple sweets. That's why I was so drawn to this pack of Starburst, which boasted flavour only based on berries. Also, there's blueberry in there! What could go wrong? 

This pack consists of four flavours of Starburst. There's the classic strawberry, and the new additions of raspberry, cranberry and blueberry. The strawberry, of course, is good, it's been perfected over many years, you can't fault it. The others, I must say, were a slight disappointment. The cranberry is inoffensive, it's got a certain fruitiness to it, but it's fairly bland. Not bad. The raspberry starts out as a fantastic burst of juicy goodness, but it does become a little sickly after a few chews. Still, it's a fairly faithful rendition for the first part. I saved the blueberry for last, expecting to be blown away, but I have to say it seems a little wrong. Maybe it was just me, but it tastes more like a combination of blueberry and liquorice than just fruit, it's a fairly dark taste with not too much sweetness. Hanging around in the after taste is a certain blueberry flavour, but it's not particularly great. This is an odd pack of Starburst, it had so much potential to be great, and some amount of good flavouring in there. But overall these just aren't all that. Nice enough, but they don't beat the original flavour selection.

My rating: 3/5

Tuesday 24 January 2017

Today's Review: Müller Light Blackcurrant & Liquorice

Müller seem to have a new flavour out every time I check out the yoghurt aisle. This one called to me with its lovely deep purple cover, then repulsed me a little with its inclusion of liquorice. It also has blackcurrant though, so I was tempted, and I don't hate liquorice as much as I used to, so I figured it was worth a go.

I went into this expecting to hate it, but it's actually pretty good. The blackcurrant is at the forefront of the flavour, it's a dark, slightly bitter, but very nice fruity taste. I thought the liquorice would ruin it all, but it presents with a smooth undertone. It's not strong, but it is noticeable, and while it's definitely not my favourite flavour, especially in a yoghurt, it actually blends pretty well with the blackcurrant here, adding another slight layer of bitterness, but smoothing out the sharpness a bit. It's a bit of a different flavour for a yoghurt, but it's pulled off quite well. Certainly not my favourite, but much better than I thought it would be.

My rating: 4/5

Monday 23 January 2017

Today's Review: Oreo Thins

Oreo Thins. They're like Oreos, right, but they're thin. I mean, I like a new product as much as the next guy, but sometimes I just pause to wonder whether some things are necessary. What is the purpose of a thin Oreo? I assume they're jumping on that diet bandwagon, and offering a way for you to get your Oreo fix with less calories. That's fair enough, but let's look at how they're packaged. Your regular Oreo snack pack contains two regular sized Oreos. Not that I agree with it, but it's apparently a portion. Those two Oreos contain a total of 105 calories. Now let's turn to the Thins. A portion of Thins is four cookies, which total 147 calories. More calories, you see? More baffling still, these are bundled up into two separate foil packets of eight cookies each, so what's the motivation to stop at just four? 

So while looking up all that, I discovered that apparently Thins are not designed to be a "diet" form of Oreo, they are meant to be a new, sophisticated way of snacking aimed at grown ups. I had no idea Oreos were meant to be for children, because it seems everyone loves them anyway. So I need to have a thin biscuit to look sophisticated? All it does is give me fewer options of how to eat it. There's no twisting or dunking involved with these, it's a straightforward hold and bite, and I'm guessing the expectation is that your little finger is extended while you do it. Well, I'm not buying it (clearly I did buy these, but you get my point).

Moaning aside, these are just the same as regular Oreos, but thinner. They're pretty crisp in comparison to the thick ones, and that does give them a certain je ne sais quoi. They taste good, the proportion of creme to cookie is good, and the chocolate version is just as awesomely sweet as ever, so I really can't slate these too much, just the idea of them. Plus I used a nice little bit of French up there, so clearly they're already making me more sophisticated. If you want to try your Oreos thinner, then these are a good shout. I just don't fully understand why you'd want to.

My rating: 4/5

Sunday 22 January 2017

Today's Review: Goodfella's Sweet Fella's Raspberry Cheesecake Pizza

The Goodfella's dessert pizza range has expanded. After a lacklustre opening effort, and an improved apple crumble offering, this raspberry cheesecake has been on the shelves for a little while now, but has only just gone down to a reasonable enough price for me to bite. Currently £1.50 in Tesco, this is the raspberry cheesecake pizza. It's a dough base, topped with cream cheese sauce, digestive biscuit crumble, white chocolate pieces and a raspberry drizzle. What more could you want from a cheesecake?

A marriage of cheesecake and pizza sounds like heaven, right? But whereas this sounds perfect on paper, it's not to perfectly balanced in reality. A lot of this pizza is pretty good, the crumble is plentiful, the chocolate and raspberry provide bold flavours. But the cream cheese sauce isn't all that noticeable. There's a certain undertone of something in there, but it's lost to the taste of the toppings, and the dough underneath. The base is fairly nice, but it's not exactly flavoursome, so it does lend a certain thickness to the pizza without offering much in the way of taste. All in all, it's a sweet pizza that has some good stuff piled on top, it just doesn't taste all that much like cheesecake. A decent effort, but it could be better.

My rating: 3/5

Saturday 21 January 2017

Today's Review: Mr. Kipling Chocolate & Orange Whirls

I thought chocolate orange was mainly a festive flavour, but it's now sneaking into Easter, and why not? Chocolate and orange go together just fine. Here they've been bundled up inside a Mr. Kipling whirl, a chocolate sauce with an orange buttercream layered on top. Sounded good to me.

I wish I could say these were as good as I'd hoped, but they're really not that great. The chocolate sauce is alright, a bit dense but it works well with the whirls. The buttercream, however, is just too much. It's thickly layered on, and the flavour just overwhelms everything else. It's a very bold, not particularly natural tasting orange. It has an okay texture, but it's just too sickly, and it pretty much makes the chocolate unnoticeable. Perhaps they would have been better off combining the two fillings, because this doesn't work very well. Not inedible, but a sickly sweet whirl that doesn't live up to the rest of Mr. Kipling's offerings.

My rating: 2/5

Friday 20 January 2017

Today's Review: Maryland Cookie Bites

We all love Marylands, right? Be they regular size, or huge, or bitesize, I can always get on board with a Maryland cookie. Well, now not only do we have cookies, we can also have thme covered in chocolate and piled in a sharing bag. "Sharing" is just a suggestion. As you can tell, I was pretty eager to get stuck into these, I ripped the bag open before realising I hadn't taken a picture. But oh well. These Cookie Bites comes in two varieties. There's regular choc chip, and choc chip and caramel.

I'll get it out of the way, these are good. The cookies are as good as you would expect from Maryland. nice and crunchy with a good smattering of chocolate chips. The chocolate coating makes these a lot more decadent, but it doesn't go overboard, it's just a nice thick chocolate coating that compounds the sweetness of the cookie. It does overwhelm the chocolate chips in the cookies themselves, but there's still chocolate there, so it's still good. In the caramel bag, there's a definite hint of sweet caramel throughout the cookies, it's a shame it's not stronger, but overall these are a couple of pretty good bags. Sweet, crunchy, a tiny bit sickly, but well worth tucking into.

My rating: 4/5

Thursday 19 January 2017

Today's Review: Lindt Sheep

It's not even the end of January, and I'm struggling to find new Easter products already. Perhaps more will come out closer to the time, but meanwhile here's the Lindt sheep. It is like a Lindt bunny, but it is shaped like a sheep. There's really not much more to say about it. Yes, it's slightly boring, but it's Lindt chocolate, so it's still good. I will say that there are significantly less angles on this chocolate animal, which means the chocolate isn't as thick in some places as I'd have hoped. I think it evens out a little in terms of how big the sheep is compared to the bunnies of the same price range, but those thicker bits are nice. Either way, it's nice, creamy chocolate, and it makes for a nice little Easter chocolate treat. Not baaaaad. Although that joke was.

My rating: 4/5

Wednesday 18 January 2017

Today's Review: Costa Coffee, Oats & Banana Smoothie

New year, new me. Out with the sugary drinks, in with the smoothies! Please note, this smoothie is 255 calories, with 30g of sugar. So don't go into it thinking it's a lovely healthy alternative to your regular coffee based drink. Go into it like I did, thinking it sounded pretty damn delicious. It's a smoothie with a shot of espresso in it, blended up with banana and oats, with a little bit of honey thrown in for good measure. I love coffee, and I love oats, so this sounded like a perfect combination.

Each element is very well represented here, at least the ones in the actual drink name are. The coffee is distinct, and rather than overwhelming the whole drink it provides a bold, solid base on top of which is layered a substantial oat flavour, and a fruity banana hit. The banana does come through a bit more than the others, but the oats floating around in there provide a great bit of texture and taste that makes this a well rounded drink. The honey isn't all that noticeable, I guess it's just there to bring the sweetness levels up to the right amount. I'm not too mad though, this drink promised coffee, banana and oats, and it delivers. A refreshing smoothie with a good caffeine hit.

My rating: 4/5

Tuesday 17 January 2017

Today's Review: Chicago Town Cheese & Tomato Pizza Toastie

We can put pizza in the oven, and the microwave, so why not the toaster? The answer to that is that, of course, putting pizza in a toaster would result in melted cheese all up in your toaster. Well, Chicago Town have apparently performed an impossible feat, and have brought out a personal pizza that's "toaster friendly". So if you want to cook pizza in your toaster, here's your chance.

It took a few tries to cook it to a hot, melty, satisfactory condition, but in the end it turned out okay. I certainly wasn't going to adjust my toaster settings too far. But, here's the finished product in all its glory. It's easy to see why this is toaster friendly, there's a whole lot of crust and a small amount of topping, so dripping cheese doesn't become an issue in the cooking time frame. The result here is a fairly thick crust, but there's a fairly sizeable divot that's filled with the tomato sauce and cheese, so the balance isn't too bad overall. The crust is crunchy, and a little stodgy, but it's not the worst dough I've come across. The cheese and tomato is good stuff, it's just a shame there's not more of it. I understand the logistics behind not having it covered in cheese, but I think I'll be sticking with more conventional pizza cooking methods. This is a neat attempt at something new, but it's not a pizza revolution.

My rating: 3/5

Monday 16 January 2017

Today's Review: Magnum Double Raspberry

Walls brought out a fantastic selection of Double Magnums last year, my personal favourite of which was the peanut butter variety. I thought the original range was enough, but it turns out they weren't done. Now there are two more flavours available, coconut and raspberry. The former didn't appeal to me much at full price, I'll probably pick some up on offer. The raspberry however, that sounded good, and although these appear to have been around for a while in the US, it's the first I've seen of them over here. These consist of a raspberry ice cream, covered in two layers of chocolate with a raspberry sauce in between.

The pink raspberry Magnum is already one of my favourites, so I knew the raspberry ice cream was good stuff. It's smooth and creamy with a lovely fruity flavour. The double chocolate shell provides a thick, satisfying crunch, and while I don't think it's as great a pairing as the white chocolate coating on the pink raspberry, it's still a pretty good blend. The raspberry sauce adds that extra hint of fruitiness to break through the increased amount of chocolate, and while it does get a little sickly towards the end, it serves to enhance the flavour more than overwhelm. This is another good addition to the Magnum Double range, and I'm looking forward to trying out the coconut soon.

My rating: 4/5

Sunday 15 January 2017

Today's Review: Monster Ultra Citron

With all the calorific new products I've picked up over the last week, at least one is conducive to a diet. It's a new flavour of Monster Ultra, the delicious Monster range that contains some of my favourite "diet" drinks. This looked like a low-cal version of the Monster Doctor that surfaced a couple of years ago, so I was hopeful it would be pretty great.

I know diet drinks aren't normally as good as the regular versions, and that's the case here. This stuff does taste like lemon, but it has more of a lemon sherbet edge thanks to the slight chemical tang. It's not a bad tasting drink, but the sweetener is definitely more noticeable than in the other Ultra flavours. It's still refreshing, and has a certain citrus edge, but all in all it's not particularly great. It'll do for a lemony energy hit though.

My rating: 3/5

Saturday 14 January 2017

Today's Review: Dunkin' Donuts New York Style Raspberry Cheesecake Donut

I tried to diet this week, I counted calories in the days leading up to the weekend, but it all kind of fell off the rails when I saw the poster advertising cheesecake donuts in the Dunkin' Donuts window. Okay, it actually fell off the rails when I ordered Domino's the other night, but I don't want to talk about that. I want to talk about how amazing even the idea of a cheesecake donut sounds. There are a few varieties to choose from, but since I afforded a space in the half dozen box to each member of the family, I only took two home today. This one looked pretty great, a "New York style" raspberry cheesecake offering. Not sure what makes it specifically New York styled, but there we go.

This is your regular Dunkin' Donuts dough, nice and soft, and the glazing gives it a nice crunchy edge. Unfortunately the action is all packed into the centre, meaning the outer edge is a little bland, but once you hit the middle it gets a whole lot better. The stuff inside is a great cream cheese flavoured cream, it's sweet and flavoursome, it's just a shame there wasn't more of it spread evenly throughout the dough. The raspberry jam on top is great too, very bold and ever so slightly sharp, and couple with the filling it gives a a pretty authentic raspberry cheesecake experience, with the dough providing some nice finishing touches. This is a great attempt at a cheesecake donut, it's just a shame all the goodness is concentrated in the middle. 

My rating: 4/5

Friday 13 January 2017

Today's Review: Hula Hoops Big Hoops Chilli

Aside from salt and vinegar, chilli has to be one of my favourite crisp flavours. I don't know how long these chilli Hula Hoops have been around, but I'm pretty sure today was the first time I laid eyes on them. Not only are these Hula Hoops, they're Big Hoops, so would they be big enough to handle the heat? Also, would they be big enough to fit on your fingers proper instead of just the tips?

Well, they didn't go past the knuckle, so that was disappointing, and unfortunately it wasn't the only disappointing thing. These are definitely Hula Hoops through and though, but the problem is there wasn't much chilli to be experienced. These are big, satisfyingly crunchy crisps, but they're just very bland. The heat did come to a head sometime after eating, but it wasn't particularly strong, and by then it was too late. I think the hoops are perhaps too big, and the taste of them pretty much envelops the small amount of flavouring placed on top. These are some nice quality hoops, but they're just not flavoursome.

My rating: 2/5

Thursday 12 January 2017

Today's Review: Müller Light Melon And Mango

The snow is falling, but my mind was in more tropical climes earlier thanks to this melon and mango flavoured offering from Müller. They've been churning out a few limited edition flavours over the last few months, and this was an exotic attempt at a fruity one, which is great, because I'm a sucker for the tropical fruits.

This is a pretty good effort. some authentic fruity flavours with some good sized chunks thrown in for good measure. The fruits aren't quite as strong as i'd hoped, but the good quality Müller yoghurt is there as well to provide a nice creaminess. The melon and mango are quite distinguishable, and they work very well together, this is a nice, tropical tasting yoghurt that's worth picking up.

My rating: 4/5

Wednesday 11 January 2017

Today's Review: Coco Pops Choco Bakes

Hey kids, do you like breakfast?! Well, why not take more breakfast to school in your lunchbox, in cake form? Breakfast bars are by no means a new thing, in fact they keep popping up all over the place. Kellogg's seem to want more of that pie by doubling up on their Coco Pops lunch offerings. Well, it might be more than doubling, how many Coco Pops bar products are out there now? Anyway, these ones are Choco Bakes, which really have not much to do with the cereal. They're basically chocolate squares with some chocolate chips thrown in.

I think the rest of these will be confined to the lunchboxes. These aren't nice. I'd like to say you can't really go wrong with chocolate cake, but they have here. I'm not sure if it's more of an overly dense sponge or a light brownie, but you don't really want either to be fair. On top of that, it's dry. Considering how small these squares are, I found myself almost choking it down for a couple of mouthfuls. It's pretty tasteless too, a hint of chocolate but nothing that's much good. These are just bad bars, and they're trying to get them in your cupboards by pushing the health agenda. The box says they're a "source of calcium". Well, my teeth are a source of calcium, but you don't see me chowing down on them, although that might be more enjoyable. Nah, I'm kidding, that was a bit harsh. It might be just as enjoyable.

My rating: 1/5

Tuesday 10 January 2017

Today's Review: Zed Candy Double Dares

I picked up a box of Bean Boozled some time ago now, and was mightily impressed with how close they were to making me physically sick. It seems more people want their fingers in the nausea-inducing pie, as here we have another offering, from Zed Candy (I've never heard of them). Here we have six colours of jelly beans. They could be your regular fruity flavours, or they could be something weird and gross! Check these out, we've got squid, snot, rotten cheese, and... fresh blood?! Wow, that's a dark turn. Especially the tiny jelly bean on top seemingly fearing for its life. 

These are alright, pretty middle of the road really. The fruit flavours are nice enough, but they're not particularly bold. The disgusting ones are what you came for though, so let's cover those. Some are pretty tame, like the cough medicine, which is basically just a strong aniseed. I'm not sure why toothpaste is considered the disgusting flavour, it's just a mint jelly bean, which is actually quite nice. As for the squid, snot and rotten cheese, they're pretty disgusting. Not quite vomit-inducing like the Bean Boozled, but the rotten cheese especially was authentic enough to produce a little gag. I can't say I've eaten snot recently, but I imagine it tastes kind of like how the bean tastes. The squid just has a strange flavour. I like squid, but I don't like the jelly bean, so I think it's a bit off. Disgusting though, so I guess that's all that matters. So last, but not least, the fresh blood. It basically has a metallic taste, which gives it a fairly distinct blood-like flavour, so I guess they've put some effort in there.

This is an odd mix of jelly beans. From lacklustre fruit flavours to not-so-disgusting bad flavours, to semi-authentic gross out offerings, I'd say overall these are a nice enough alternative to the Jelly Belly, but not particularly great in their own right. Stick with Bean Boozled, it might be a little more expensive, but if it's disgusting you're going for, you can't get better than that.

My rating: 3/5

Monday 9 January 2017

Today's Review: Rockstar Freeze Pineapple & Coconut

I don't normally go for the Rockstar energy drinks, the Relentless and Monster flavours are normally so much better. But I'll always give it a go when a new variety comes along, even though I've been burned in the past by some really sickly, syrupy drinks. This one seemed like it would be a little cleaner though. Maybe it's the fresh blue packaging, maybe it's the nice fruity sounding flavour, but I had some hope for this, even if I'm not the biggest fan of coconut.

I have to say this is pretty good. It doesn't have the sickly taste I've found with other Rockstar cans, it's pretty clean and fresh, and the pineapple and coconut are very noticeable. It is predominantly coconut, which is a bit of a shame, but it's all very well represented, so I'm not mad. This is a refreshingly tropical energy drink, and probably one of the best Rockstar cans I've tried. Keep it up, guys.

My rating: 4/5

Sunday 8 January 2017

Today's Review: Plumrose Bacon Grill Bacon Roll

I'm not one to frequent the tinned meat aisle, because the term "tinned meat" makes me feel slightly dead inside. But I gazing upon the canned goods in B&M, I figured I'd search for the most horrible looking offering and plunge into it head first. Not that I could do that, because my head wouldn't fit in the tin. So here we have some bacon grill, or is it bacon roll? The pictures show it in a roll, so is it a bacon grill designed to help you emulate a bacon roll? The answer to these mysteries obviously lay within.

Ah, the answer is it's a non-descript block of "meat" that doesn't seem fit for anything. I know I wasn't expecting anything from this, but I still ended up disappointed. As you may have surmised, this doesn't taste like bacon. In fact, it doesn't taste like much at all, there's a faint hint of something Spam-like, but really it's just a block of chewy, slightly meaty stuff. I expected to be disgusted by the flavour, but this is just especially bland. So if you're after a flavourless, processed lump of foodstuff, by all means hunt this down. I won't be cracking open another can of meat for a while though.

My rating: 0/5

Saturday 7 January 2017

Today's Review: Dove Strawberry & Cocoa Almond

Here's an interesting little bag of chocolate treats I picked up in B&M. Dove is a chocolate produced by Mars that is pretty much Galaxy by a different name, but in this bag it's draped over some other stuff, so this isn't your average chocolate bar. Here we have cocoa dusted almonds, and chocolate covered strawberry flavoured cranberries.

Yeah, that's right, strawberry flavoured cranberries. I'm not sure why that's the case, perhaps dried strawberries were too expensive, but cranberries taste pretty good on their own, right? Why do you need to pump strawberry flavouring into them? As such, they're not the most authentic of fruity pieces, but there's a certain juiciness to them, so they're not bad. The chocolate on top is pretty good, nice and creamy, and it's layered on satisfyingly thick as well. It does mask the taste of the fruit a little, but it's not a particularly bad thing. The almonds are an interesting addition. I'm not adverse to a nut, but the cocoa dusting makes these even dryer than just plain almonds, and while they do provide a nice hint of nuttiness, they don't really add much to the overall flavour, I think I'd rather have stuck with the chocolatey fruit pieces. This isn't a bad bag, but some of the stuff in there seems unnecessary. By all means hunt it down if you like your nuts and dried fruits though.

My rating: 3/5

Friday 6 January 2017

Today's Review: Fressers Chocolatey Covered Sandwich Cookies

Of all the snacks I've encountered in my European travels, one of my favourites has to be the chocolate covered Oreos. They haven't reached these shores yet, and I'm very sore about that, but popping into B&M the other day I found this alternative. They're Fressers Chocolatey Covered Sandwich Cookies. Now that's a catchy name. 

Now, as you can probably tell from the title, these are an imitation of the covered Oreos that cannot explicitly say so. You can probably also tell from the title that the stuff on top isn't proper chocolate, seeing as they've stuck a "y" on the end. Truth be told, the coating is pretty bad. It's a "cocoa milk" coating, and while it does have a little creaminess to it, it pretty much just tastes like cocoa powder. The cookie underneath is definitely not an Oreo either, but actually it's not too bad. It's somewhat softer than a regular Oreo, giving it a cake-like texture, and that actually works in the coating's favour, as the cocoa taste combines well with the soft texture to give an all round chocolate cake experience. Not a great chocolate cake experience by any means, but the innards make up for the shortcomings of the outer shell, and it evens out to a decent enough effort to replicate those fantastic covered Oreos. Until those come out over here, we're left with these, but it's not such a bad thing.

My rating: 3/5

Thursday 5 January 2017

Today's Review: St. Helier Lemon

Do you like San Pellegrino lemonade? Of course you do, but you've gotta admit it's a tad pricey. If only we could have the same experience for a cheaper price. Well, B&M are attempting to have you covered with this lemon beverage from St. Helier. It looks just like it, right down to the little foil bit on top. Also the can is taller, but whatever, I know what they're going for.

This stuff isn't bad actually. It's quite tart, and I'm not sure I can put all that down to the lemon juice, because there's some kind of weird after taste in there. It is pretty refreshing though, and the lemon gives it a nice crisp edge. It's not as good as the San Pellegrino, but it's a decent enough alternative. Slightly cheaper by the single can, and it's pretty nice, so it's worth trying out.

My rating: 4/5

Wednesday 4 January 2017

Today's Review: Cadbury Egg 'n' Spoon Oreo

It's the beginning of January, so that means it's time for Easter! I know there will be several exasperated groans of despair around the country, but I don't mind picking up some Easter themed treats this early, it means I won't consume them all in the Spring and slip into a coma. This year we see another addition to the Egg 'n' Spoon range, these nice little eggs have become ubiquitous in the Easter season, and they even managed to churn some out for Christmas too (but they were a bit rubbish) These eggs are of the vanilla mousse variety, but with some Oreo bits thrown in, because the world isn't full enough of Oreo products as it is. Still, these looked promising, although I just noticed it says "wash spoons before use". I'm sure that wasn't there last time I got a packet, have there been notable cases of people catching diseases from dirty Cadbury spoons? 

I'm sure there's less filling in these eggs than in last year's Egg 'n' Spoons, but that's how they get you, you could save one to compare, but how can any normal human being keep chocolate around for an entire year (well, nine months, but still). Anyway, I'm not too mad that there's seemingly less filling, because it's actually not that great. There are a lot of Oreo chunks in there, which is nice, but somehow the mousse seems... too dry? I assumed it would be creamy stuff in there, but it's a bit hard to swallow at times. It's got a nice enough combination of vanilla and Oreo flavourings, but it's not all that fun to eat. On top of that, the chocolate shell isn't great. They seem to be using different moulds this year, as there's a big old line around the middle of the egg. Maybe they're making it more accessible for those who can't get the spoon through the small hole you're meant to bite out of the top. I don't know, but it seems they're just skimping on the chocolate, and while it tastes alright,  and it's not that proper Dairy Milk that we fondly remember. All in all, this isn't a great outing for Cadbury. I'm hoping the formula of the other Egg 'n' Spoon varieties is about the same, but I guess we'll wait and see about that one. Meanwhile, please write a comment below if you've contracted an illness from an unwashed Cadbury spoon. We'll get to the bottom of this.

My rating: 2/5

Tuesday 3 January 2017

Today's Review: A Three Day Old Millie's Chocolate Chip Cookie

I just wandered into the kitchen, hunting for some form of sustenance, and lo and behold, I found a Millie's Cookie sitting there in a bag. The rest were polished off on New Year's Eve, but somehow this one remained, a child must have passed over their portion and then forgotten about it. It's now three days after the fact, so I figured I'd take the bullet on this occasion and eat the certainly stale cookie myself.

Turns out it's actually pretty good. Not the perfect cookie, but it's in a lot better shape than I thought it would be sitting pretty out in the open, I mean the bag wasn't even folded over. I know cookies can last a while, but I expected a lot more degradation in flavour than what I got. I guess that's where cookies have doughnuts beaten, a doughnut would have been pretty stale by now, but the cookie thrives. Good eatin'.

My rating: 4/5

Monday 2 January 2017

Today's Review: Lindt Lindor Orange

The dregs of Christmas chocolate are still hanging around, but apparently that doesn't stop me hitting the seasonal aisles to see what's been knocked down in price. This pack of Lindor wasn't, but I hadn't tried these before, so I figured I'd grab some. We all know Lindor are great, and the same for Terry's Chocolate Orange, so this seemed like a perfect combination of the two.

I was expecting the orange to be fairly intense in these, but actually it's a pretty good level. The orange flavour is definitely there, but is covered well by the chocolate and the truffle filling. It did get a little sickly after a while, but I assume that's because you're not really supposed to eat them all in one go rather than the flavouring being a bit off. No, this is a great addition to the Lindor range. I'm not sure how limited this edition is, but I'd like them to stick around. Great chocolate, creamy centre, lovely orange flavour. Very much like the baby of Lindt and Terry.

My rating: 5/5

Sunday 1 January 2017

Today's Review: James Chocolates With Hot Habanero & Smokey Chipotle

I think it's become clear to those that know me that I'm quite the spice fiend, as I received a pretty nice selection of chilli themed gifts this Christmas. Here are some chocolates infused with both habanero and chipotle, so I was expecting a fair bit of heat, maybe so much as to compromise the flavour.

You can choose between your chillies, which is quite good, and the difference between them is pretty noticeable. Each one has a nice base of creamy milk chocolate, it's of fairly good quality, and thankfully neither chilli takes it over that much. The habanero is actually pretty intense, a heat that builds up fast and lasts for quite a while after eating. The chocolate tones take the edge off, but this isn't one for the faint hearted. The chipotle is not as fiery, but it does provide a decent spice level. The smokiness doesn't transfer over all that much, so it's not perfect, but it's a better chocolate for those who don't want their head blown off. All in all this is a pretty decent duo of chilli chocolates. Good for those who want some spice, but not too much.

My rating: 4/5