Friday, 29 August 2014

Paul A Young Chocolate Selection

Whilst I was at Paul's Heal store trying out his Salted Caramel Cream Tea I also got the chance to pick up a range of some of the chocolates he has on offer at the minute, a selection of 9.

Paul A Young Chocolate Selection

Paul A Young Chocolate Selection

Rum & Raisin


Paul A Young Chocolate Selection

It looked very elegant from the exterior with it's gold dusted shimmer - there was quite a strong alcoholic flavour emerging from this chocolate, with definite notes of rum, I didn't however pick up a lot of raisin. Not really my cup of tea because I'm not a huge fan of alcoholic chocolates but I can imagine if you were then this would definitely be one for you!

Cigar Leaf Caramel

Paul A Young Chocolate Selection

I was really intrigued to try this chocolate; I was told by a couple of members of staff in the shop that this was their favourite chocolate and I can see why. A deliciously smoky caramel in a dark chocolate shell it's exiquisite. If you've tried Paul's Sea Salted Caramel then you know how good his caramels are and this is no different, the caramel is almost spicy. Definitely something a bit different in terms of your take on a normal caramel but delicious nonetheless.

Olive Oil
Paul A Young Chocolate Selection


An olive oil truffle; something that at the forefront sounds a bit peculiar and not something you might naturally tend towards. Once eaten you realise how well this works; the olive oil creates a ganache so beautifully creamy and smooth that it melts in the mouth instantly. The flavour has a slight savoury note to it, a bit like Paul's Marmite chocolate, just not as intense.

Hazelnut Praline

Paul A Young Chocolate Selection

Any readers of this blog will know that I absolutely love a good praline chocolate; this one was absolutely beautiful. Just the right balance between sweet and nutty with a lovely creamy smooth praline texture. Rich and delicious.

Rhubarb Caramel

Paul A Young Chocolate Selection

Another take on Paul's classic caramel, this time using rhubarb. The flavours work so perfectly well here, the sweet caramel paired with the tart and vibrant rhubarb; its fresh, fruity and tart yet sweet at the same time.

Lemon Cheesecake

Paul A Young Chocolate Selection

In the same mould as Paul makes his Sea Salted Caramel chocolates we have the Lemon Cheesecake; this was right up my street. The lemon cheesecake centre was gorgeous both in terms of texture and flavour, zingy, fresh and packed with lemon flavour, with a gorgeous light cheesecake texture. I could quite easily have eaten another couple of these.

Pimms Truffle

Paul A Young Chocolate Selection

I had quite high hopes for this chocolate; such a quintessentially British product the idea of Pimms in a truffle, I thought, was great. I think it may just boil down to me not being a huge fan of alcohol in chocolates again, or maybe it was the fruity Pimms flavour in chocolate that I just didn't feel worked. Others may enjoy it but this one wasn't for me.

Passionfruit

Paul A Young Chocolate Selection

I love passion fruit as a flavour profile and this definitely didn't disappoint; a gorgeously creamy smooth texture. Sweet, vibrant and tropical. This added a great contrast to some of the deeper, richer chocolates in the box.

Kalamansi

Paul A Young Chocolate Selection

A delicious, fresh, fruity vibrant chocolate. This was lovely and refreshing and had just the right amount of sharpness.

Taste - 8.5/10 - A great, interesting selection of chocolates.
Texture - 8.8/10 - Delicious, the olive oil chocolate was of particular mention.
Appearance - 8.2/10 - All of the chocolates look stunning.
Price - 7.6/10 - I believe a 9 piece box is priced at £15.50; great for a special treat or gift.
Overall - 8.3/10 -  Something for everyone.
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WHO FOR?Great for a gift or if you fancy treating yourself to some higher quality chocolates.

WHERE TO BUY?Any of Paul's stores across London.

Wednesday, 20 August 2014

Paul A Young Salted Caramel Cream Tea

I was lucky enough recently to get the chance to try out Paul A Young's Salted Caramel Cream Tea that he has just launched at his store at Heal's off Tottenham Court Road; after being deprived of being able to try many of Paul's delights living up north it was safe to say I couldn't wait to try this out!

Paul A Young Salted Caramel Cream Tea

Paul has baked a brown sugar scone that he serves with Rodda's Clotted Cream and his own Salted Caramel Sauce complete with a wide selection of teas for you to choose from and one of his world famous Salted Caramel chocolates.

Paul A Young Salted Caramel Cream Tea

If I go for Afternoon Tea, yes I'll eat the scone but it's always the pastries that I most look forward to  - however this twist on it combines the best of both for me; it's sweet and different enough with the addition of the salted caramel sauce as opposed to jam that it appeals to my inner pastry/cake lover but yet the actually texture and flavour of the scone is still there to appeal to those who crave a good scone.



Paul A Young Salted Caramel Cream Tea

 The Salted Caramel sauce is rich, thick and sumptuous with that slight hint of salt; the cream thick, indulgent and delicious and the freshly baked scones baked directly at Paul's Heal store just top the whole thing off - oh and let's not forget the tea; although I opted for a classic green you can also get a cocoa nib tea if you're fancying something a bit more "chocolate-y"; although of course you do have Paul's delicious Sea Salted Caramel chocolate to finish things off.

Paul A Young Salted Caramel Cream Tea

Priced at £12.50 it is slightly expensive for a scone/tea/chocolate but there's no doubt that the products are high quality and offers a nice middle ground for those who don't want the full Afternoon Tea experience but fancy something on the lighter side.


Taste - 8.4/10
- An alternative take on the classic scone/jam/cream.
Texture - 8.4/10 - Lovely light, fluffy scone, thick indulgent caramel sauce and a lovely clotted cream to mellow things out.
Appearance - 7/10 - Not really much to comment on in terms of appearance. Presented nicely.
Price - 6/10 - At £12.50 it is on the tad expensive side but for a nice treat it's great.
Overall - 7.5/10  - I much preferred this to the usual take on an Afternoon Tea scone.
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WHO FOR?
If you're in the area and fancy a bit of a snack after a busy day shopping then this is great.

WHERE TO BUY?
Paul A Young's store in Heal's off Tottenham Court Road.

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Discover Chocolate Blueberry & Vanilla White Chocolate Bar

As you may remember we recently reviewed one of Discover's chocolate bars - Milk Chocolate with Salted Popcorn & Peanut; now we have one of the white chocolate offerings they are producing. However instead of being sweetened with Stevia this bar is sweetened with Maltitol; for those of you that don't know malitol is a sugar alcohol subsitute; however unlike Stevia it isn't "natural" and does contain some calories. I think it would have been great to have seen this bar sweetened with Stevia as in the milk chocolate bar; maybe that's something that will be worked on by Discover in the future.

Discover Chocolates Blueberry & Vanilla White Chocolate

So not so great on the sweetener front,but for those looking for a bar alternative that doesn't contain sugar in the form of sucrose then how does it eat and is it tasty?

Discover Chocolates Blueberry & Vanilla White Chocolate

In fact it's actually a really good white chocolate bar and a lot better than the majority of white chocolate bars I've eaten made with proper sugar!! The melt it delicious, smooth and creamy with lovely hints of vanilla and a good tart fruity punch added from the freeze dried blueberries.

Discover Chocolates Blueberry & Vanilla White Chocolate

Malitol is around 75-90% less sweet than sucrose, meaning that thankfully, unlike a lot of white chocolate bars you may have tried this bar isn't ridiculously sweet nor does it evoke that horrific throat burning sensation that I often bang on about.

Discover Chocolates Blueberry & Vanilla White Chocolate

Overall it's actually really good and even standing up against its pure sugar competitors I would rate this bar higher; taking it on face value it's a pretty darn good bar of white chocolate and would recommend it to either those looking for a sugar substitute bar or those who just fancy a good bar of white chocolate.

Taste - 8.2/10 - A delicious white chocolate bar in its own right.
Texture - 7.4/10 - Really smooth creamy melt with a nice chewy texture added from the dried blueberries.
Appearance - 7/10 - Looks pleasant enough.
Price - 7.8/10 - £1.60 for the bar, affordable and accessible.
Overall -7.6/10 - A lot better than expected and a pleasant tasting white chocolate bar.
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WHO FOR?
Those looking for a sugar substitute bar or those who just fancy a good bar of white chocolate.

WHERE TO BUY?
You can buy this bar online here.