Thursday, 31 August 2017

Green & Black's: Velvet Editions

First Impressions


What exactly does velvet mean in terms of food? Is it just a meaningless buzz word to draw us in? Or maybe it has a lot more substance? about it in terms of perhaps the connotations regarding the word velvet: luxury, the sublime, opulence, etc.
I don't know, but I feel as though I am about to find out with this new range from Green & Black's. The packaging is certainly luxurious, with its all new card cover, gradiated colour design and embossed gold writing. I really love these touches to the packaging, especially how they maintain this style throughout the range.

Green & Black's are committed to sourcing their ingredients, particularly their cocoa from ethical and sustainable means through the Cocoa Life program. Click here for more details!
I think this is an important message and ethos to have behind a company so large and built on a luxury image.

Both the mint and the raspberry hazelnut flavour are vegan friendly, free from artificial colours, flavours, and preservatives. The bars come in 90g so they are just 10 less than the standard bars, although you would probably struggle to notice its absence.






On To The Review


I shall start with the mint flavour because that is the first one that I tried. The chocolate was of a good quality, with a high cocoa percentage of 70%. This is pretty standard for Green & Black's and nothing to be too excited for. The excitement starts when you get to enjoy the melt and the enhanced flavour of mint shines through. I can only assume that the addition of peppermint oil is behind this luxurious experience. I really enjoyed this bar. The fresh and almost zingy flavour made it easy to enjoy and eat.

The raspberry hazelnut was a different experience I thought, certainly not a bad one, but quite different. The texture of the chocolate was smooth and delightful, but with an interesting texture due to the blended raspberry and hazelnut pieces. I really loved this, and thought that it helped to create little bursts of flavour. A very clever way of distributing flavour, whilst keeping the bar interesting. The tart berry was a great contrast against the rich chocolate, with a little earthiness with the hazelnut.

Final Thoughts


Overall, I really enjoyed this new range from Green & Black's, but I am absolutely devastated that the salted caramel flavour is not vegan! Obviously, I'm pretty happy that I have two flavours to choose from, so I can't complain too much, especially because they were so delicious!
I would definitely give these a massive thumbs up, and look forward to any other future flavours that they are bringing out!



Rating - 8/10

Calories - 619 per 100g

Buy Again - Yes!




Sunday, 13 August 2017

Tesco FreeFrom Millionaire's Dessert

First Thoughts


Tesco, are absolutely on fire at the moment what with all their specifically designed and targeted Free From products. It is really quite refreshing to have quite so many vegan friendly, or gluten free (if that is indeed the issue you are faced with), items so readily available in supermarkets! 
I know what you are probably thinking. There are absolutely blooming LOADS of FreeFrom products available now, but the issue that I have with many of these, is that they are so difficult to actually get hold of, and really rather expensive a lot of the time for a one time try with the possibility of them just not being that great. 
So, for these to be so affordable and easy to get hold of, I must commend you Tesco, jolly good show! What I am even more impressed with, is the size of the whole range. Seriously, there is so much now available, and I am trying to get through all the various products available to review. 

On To The Review


Salted caramel layer topped with biscuit and a chocolate mousse.A rich and indulgent dessert of digestive biscuit made with oats, a rich salted caramel sauce and topped with a luxurious dark chocolate mousse


I like the packaging here. It is really snazzy how they have given it a luxurious feel with the clear plastic pot. It adds a nice edge to the dessert which quite you dont find often with FreeFrom products, with their packaging usually being pretty bland and boring if I'm honest. Tesco have totally created a fabulous overall appearance to the pudding. I love that you can see the layers of the pudding aswell with the clear pot, another lovely little touch from the Tesco product design team (seriously smashing it out of the park guys!)

The top layer is a super thick chocolate ganache. This was undoubtedly my favourite layer by far. It was incredible! The taste was rich and luxurious, it melted wonderfully in your mouth and you could really appreciate the quality of this vegan alternative. The harder chocolate layers worked wonderfully with the caramel. The caramel was rich, and I'm sure this was one of the coconut based parts of the pud, because I could definitely taste coconut undertones to it. 
Now, the biscuit base was a tad disapointing. I found it to be quite cakey, and it didn't really taste anything like shortbread beause it was simply too sweet. I think that it needed a slightly salty flavour in order to balance the rest of the sweetness. Perhaps that is my personal preferences, but I think that it needed a lot more crunch and substance to it, because this could have easily been a show stopper of a pud.

Final Thoughts

 

 

Overall, I really did enjoy this. Lets be honest, what isn't to love? You've got caramel, chocolate, and a somewhat biscuitey base. I am actually kind of craving this now after writing this review, so it must be good to manage that! 
I can't wait to see what else Tesco bring to their range, and I have my eye out for some very exciting new vegan goodies on the market, so stay tuned to find out more!

Rating - 8.5/10

Calories - 244

Buy Again? - Going to have to!

Sunday, 6 August 2017

Hotel Chocolat Tiddly Pot Dark

First Thoughts



I'm going to be honest here. I have never actually tried anything from Hotel Chocolat before, despite having religiously used them as my go to for presents! Utterly ridiculous, I know, but as of today, all that has changed. I'm not entirely sure why I have put this off for so long. Perhaps because I wasn't quite sure what vegan chocolate they had on offer, and if it would indeed, be worth the hype or as wonderful as everyone says it is. 
I opted with something simple, an adorably named, 'Tiddly Pot'. The name alone had me won over if I'm telling the truth, well, that paired with the simply beautiful pakaging. I love the swirls and how they are quite fun and frivolous, whilst still being adult enough that I can feel uber sophisticated whilst munching these... Or maybe that is just me?
The little pot is a good size, not too large, so this could be a fabulous evening treat, or something to pop on your desk to munch throughout the day (or perhaps all at once). 



On To The Review


The pot was well filled, impressively so actually, no gaping voids where chocolate should be! There was a subtle smell of cocoa, I enjoyed this and quickly began to tuck in! The chocolate is undeniably of an excellent quality. The melt was almost divine, releasing flavour and a taste sensation as the chocolate melted more, and more. I am actually shocked at how well they melt, and how smoothe the melt was. The whole munching was completely and utterly luxurious. The subtle undertones of vanilla were wonderful, this managed to alleviate the bitterness which dark chocolate can have, and instead intensified the cocoa flavour. 



Final Thoughts

 
I really enjoyed that they were small drops of chocolate rather than a big bar type of thing, otherwise I end up eating far too much, far too quickly! I don't know why I haven't tried Hotel Chocolat before, but I am going to ensure that I try as much as possible now because if a simple tiddly pot can be so incredible, then I cannot wait to find out what other delights they have to offer!



Score - 9.5/10
 
Calories - 537 per 100g
 
To Buy or Not To Buy? - YES

Thursday, 3 August 2017

Nush Almond M*LK Dairy Free Yogurt

First Thoughts

What an absolutely brilliant brand name! I could not help but smile when I saw the name, it is short and catchy, with a fun feeling to it. In other words, utterly delightful! 
Another little detail, that I couldn't help but notice and instantly love. Instead of using the typical astrix, they use a lovely little almond instead. This is done in order to legally get around calling it 'Milk' (Click HERE to read the article!). 

Nush keep their packaging minimalist and easy to take in. I personally am a fan of this, as it doesn't make it an effort to read, whilst still being aesthetically pleasing. I decided to find out a little more about Nush as a brand, because if I'm totally honest, I knew absolutely nothing. So I ventured onto their website and did a little reading.




The Milk

Our delicious rich and creamy Almond Milk Yoghurt is made using our own artisan almond milk, freshly prepared each day in our factory. We make our own almond milk so we could control how much almond the milk contains. Unlike shop bought almond milk that can contain as little as one percent almond, plus many unfavourable fillers. Our milk contains a very high concentration of almonds and truly lives up to its name.
We do not add anything but almonds and filtered water to our milk.
This is then mixed with vegan yoghurt cultures to ferment and produce a rich and creamy, live dairy free yoghurt that we believe to be one of a kind.


I know that I have prattled on quite a bit about the product itself, but I feel like this brand, seeing as it is quite new or unknown (at least to me), deserved a bit of explanation. I always enjoy things like that anyway, leave a comment down below if you would rather less prattle, and more review!


On To The Review

The yogurt was incredibly thick and creamy, something which you do not often find with vegan yogurts. I have found this to be particularly true when it comes to nut M*LK yogurts, so I am very impressed by the thickness alone. This thickness instantly created a luxurious feel, that worked beautifully with the naturaly rich flavour of the blueberry. The blueberry added a sweetness to the yogurt that balanced the ever so slightly tart base flavour of the yogurt itself. I enjoyed this because it prevented any hint of the yogurt tasting artificial (a major irritation of mine!). 

The serving size was quite hefty, and cdertainly left you feeling satisfied without the bloat. There is no rubbish in these, and only natural ingredients. I actually really enjoy this fact. I've noticed that quite a ot of vegan products recently have a lot of crazy sounding ingredients, and I do realise, that just because something isn't natural, does not mean that it is bad! 



Final Thoughts

Overall, I really quite enjoyed this yogurt. It was one of my favourite high quality vegan yogurts, which the price tag did indeed reflect. At £2 this is a bit of a pricey thing to try and risk not liking. Thankfully I thoroughly enjoyed this because it felt like a delicious treat to have every now and then. 
I would absolutely love to try their other flavours of yogurt because their Caramel and Hibiscus sounds incredible!





Score - 8.5/10
Calories - 125 per pot
To Buy or Not To Buy? - Definitely worth a try!

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