Wednesday, March 17, 2010
My readers may (or may not) have noticed that I haven't reviewed many Japanese KitKats as of late. There are two reasons for this. One is that Nestle Japan has slowed down their release rate a bit now that the peak studying season is over and parents might be less inclined to buy KitKats as forms of encouragement for students prepping for exams. The other is that I believe I have come down with Japanese KitKat Fatigue Syndrome (JKFS). That's when you sample so many of these bars that they all sort of run together.
It doesn't help that Nestle is starting to recycle flavors at a record pace. When my husband brought home this latest bar and plonked it on my desk, my first thought was of the Okashi no Machioka special "mild bitter" bar. That bar was a dark chocolate bar, as is this one, and was mild bittersweet chocolate. It was fine, but nothing to write home about... not that I ever actually write home anymore since I have Skype, and not that I'd ever write about KitKats. I've got other boring details of life to put my family to sleep with.
Incidentally, I love the bold design of this bar's box. At first, I thought it might be some Grand Prix-related release because the checkerboard pattern reminds me of car racing, but I didn't read about any connection between this bar and racing on the KitKat web site. There may be one, but I've missed it if that is so.
Fortunately, this bar has bigger flavor teeth than the mild bitter mini bars that I reviewed before. It has a stronger dark chocolate flavor tempered with sweetness. It smells very good in a way that shouts "chocolate" more loudly than a regular bar. It's missing the usual milkiness, but has a similar sweetness level to the regular KitKat bar. The chocolate is also slightly firmer than usual as one might expect from a bar with less milk. These are 97 calories for 2 fingers, which puts them a few calories lower than most conventional KitKats.
If you like dark chocolate, but don't like it as strongly on the bitter side, this may be very appealing to you. These bars were released on March 15, so they'll probably be around for awhile and you can get them at any of the major convenience stores for 100 yen ($1.11). I can't say that this is a "don't miss" type of bar, but it really is quite good as a variation on the standard milk chocolate KitKat. It doesn't stand as a novelty Japanese KitKat, but works well simply as a semisweet chocolate candy bar.