... as you know dear reader, I am not a reviewer, I like to cook, talk and write about food and anyway there are plenty of restaurant and product reviewers out there with their low-quality photography and pithy opinions... I am a lover of food however and I know what I like (and don't like) ...so send me a product and i'll give you a review... i'll cook with you, bake with you or just plain old eat you... and i'll be honest, without being bitchy... and that's the way I do it.
so... last month I won the 'we should cocoa' challenge with my Builders Tea Cake... (must have not read the challenge properly because I had no idea they were going to pick a winner... so that was an extra surprise) and the lovely Katie from Matcha sent me a box of their China Tea Chocolate Selection as a prize...
...as my previous paragraph states, I don't normally review stuff but these chocolates are so exceptional that I couldn't just let them go un-praised...
The bright pink box contains 16 chocolates all with a tea flavour. Matcha pride themselves on using artisan quality white, milk and dark chocolate infused with rare teas...
Phoenix Honey Orchid - Dark chocolate square of dark chocolate ganache infused with Phoenix Honey orchid tea, an Oolong tea with flavours of honey and lychee
This was a very satisfying dark chocolate, with that intense crumbly earthiness that really rich dark chocolate has but it was cut through with a subtle tea and lychee flavour to sweeten it. It was also beautifully decorated.
Mint & Green Tea - Milk chocolate square of milk chocolate ganache infused with Mint and Green tea.
This was The Viking's favourite but then he favours a mint tea. The great thing about this was that it wasn't too sweet and although the combination of mint and chocolate is a classic, the inclusion of the floral green tea notes took it above and beyond an ordinary chocolate.
Lapsang Caramel - Dark chocolate heart filled with a caramel flavoured with Lapsang tea.
So, I love a caramel chocolate and this was a very good one, nice and subtle Lapsang taste but with that smokiness that is quite distinctive to tea.
Jasmine Silver Needles - A white chocolate shell filled with white chocolate ganache infused with Jamsine Silver Needle tea.
There is a reason this chocolate has won a 2 gold star great taste award and if Katie fancies sending me a box of these on a weekly basis I really wouldn't say no, or ever grow tired... I simply adore white chocolate and I love Jasmine tea so this combination was always going to be a winner but it was the pure and natural Jasmine taste that really impressed me... it didn't taste fake at all (you know how sweet things can often have that nasty fake taste) and I loved it, a lot.
China Rose & Raspberry Caramel - Milk chocolate heart filled with a caramel flavoured with an infusion of dried pink rosebuds and the season's best China black teas, blended together with raspberry puree.
To be honest, this was the only let-down of the whole box... too sweet for me and too many flavours... could have just had the rose and tea... it didn't need the raspberry as well which took it into the more sweet and sickly realm... the caramel was sweet enough and didn't need the extra sweetness.
... and there you have it... my first chocolate review... to be honest I'm just chuffed to have won and I love the 'we should cocoa' challenge anyway... so it's a little extra reward to win such delightful chocs!
... don't forget you still have plenty of time to enter this months chocolate and lime 'we should cocoa' challenge and of course, how could you forget the Belleau Kitchen Random Recipe 'Number 18' challenge...