Thursday, December 10, 2009
KitKat Mild Bitter Mini (Okashi no Machioka exclusive)
In last Friday's post on Okashi no Machioka, I mentioned that there is an exclusive KitKat for sale at their shops. This is that very number. I do wonder just how "exclusive" it is, and whether or not it may show up at other outlets. It's certainly possible that the Machioka people will sell their stock to others. I guess it's also possible that the people who re-sell Japanese items to foreigners can buy up some of these and offer them. If any of my readers see these at other shops or can acquire them through mail order, please leave a comment and let me know.
As for the candy itself, I had seen it on a previous visit, but skipped it because of the necessity of buying 14 mini bars for a sampling. When it comes to minis, I usually try and locate a single one being sold at convenience stores for 40 yen. Since this is an exclusive, there was no chance of that, so I picked up a bag for 279 yen ($3.10) at Okashi no Machioka, and hoped that it was going to be enjoyable.
Each bar is 12.3 grams (.43 oz.) and 66 calories. Two fingers of these short mini fingers are about the same size as 1.4 regular KitKat fingers. The chocolate coating on these seems firmer, more brittle and flakes more easily than other types of KitKats. This is likely because there is less butterfat, milk, or milk products in the darker chocolate coating. This also means that they melt less readily than other types of KitKats I've encountered in Japan.
The smell is of dark chocolate, though it's not a deep scent. The bars are crispy and the chocolate has a nice snap. The chocolate coating sits cooler on your tongue than milk chocolate. The flavor is a very mild dark chocolate flavor with so little bitterness that I'm not sure that these have earned the name "mild bitter". They are actually mild dark chocolate rather than bittersweet, and that suits me just fine as I am not a fan of strong dark chocolate.
While I really liked the combination of the wafers, cream and mild dark chocolate, I think some people may find these to be too little variation on the regulation milk chocolate bar. The main benefit of this is that the chocolate flavor is a little more pronounced, the bar a bit less fatty, and the texture crisper. It's quite a tasty KitKat, much as plain KitKats are, so I wouldn't hesitate to buy it again. I'm just not sure I can recommend that anyone else go out of their way to track it down or pay more for it as an import.