Monday, October 29, 2012
Morinaga Coffee Caramels
My brother-in-law is not a coffee drinker. For some, that sounds suspiciously like a form of heresy. For others, that makes complete sense as not everyone goes for what the Tick referred to as "that bitter black urine." He, my brother-in-law, not the Tick (because, oddly, I don't have conversations with fictional characters about coffee... about other matters, perhaps, but that is between me and my psychotropic medication), says that he thinks coffee smells good, but he doesn't like the taste. Of course, Starbucks endeavors to fix that problem for most people by creating blended drinks full of milk and sugar that mask the flavor of the elixir of wakefulness and expand our waistlines.
When I approach anything coffee-flavored, I think about the appeal from two sides. First, how will "real" coffee drinkers (the kind with hair on their chests and shaking hands) feel about it? Second, how will coffee wusses feel about it? With this caramel, I'm pretty sure hardcore coffee fiends will be left in the dust. It's coffee flavored, no doubt, but it's mellow, sweet, milky, and delectably buttery. One thing I can say about Morinaga's large line of caramels is they never skimp on the fat. That being said, it may distress some to know that the primary ingredient is corn syrup followed by sweetened condensed powdered milk, more powdered milk, and then vegetable oil. It's only late in the list that things like "coffee" and "butter" show up.
However, this isn't about food purity. It's about taste and texture and Morinaga generally does a very good job turning out a smooth and tasty blob of sticky goodness. Sometimes they fail on the flavor front, but this is not one of those times. If you like lattes, frappucinos, or other sweet coffee beverages and aren't going for a pure coffee experience, these should be in your pocket for a sweet fix. If you're the kind of person for whom black is the only acceptable color for your coffee, you'll probably be disappointed in the coffee flavor intensity, but still enjoy the fatty richness and sweetness on the whole.
I got this candy courtesy of Sakura Box (that means "free") as part of their "monthly candy bag" which I reviewed the Friday before last.