29 Aug 2013

New Cadbury Dairy Milk Mousse Snowman

If you've been to a supermarket in the last few weeks then you've probably noticed the start of the inevitable Christmas landslide of products being piled up, mainly in the form of large tins of chocolates. It's a shame that Autumn seems to be skipped altogether with this influx, but even I couldn't resist the lure of the Cadbury Dairy Milk Mousse Snowman.

The chocolate itself doesn't look like a traditional snowman, especially given the lack of facial features. The Santa hat on top is a bit slouchy and looks a bit like a flat cap! The detail on the scarf is very good though, a feature that links into the theme for the rest of the Cadbury Christmas range for 2013. Apparently, Cadbury will be "putting on it's Christmas jumper" by introducing a "knitted" look to it's packaging over the festive period.

At first I thought the Snowman filling was going to be an aerated one, like those in the Dairy Milk Bubbly range. However, this "soft vanilla flavour mousse" seems very similar to the "fluffy milky mousse centre" that filled the vanilla Cadbury Egg 'n' Spoon. The Snowman's mousse centre is very soft and fluffy with a deliciously creamy white chocolate, rather than just vanilla, flavour, enveloped in a classic Dairy Milk chocolate. It may not be the most exciting combination for Christmas, but it's certainly a very tasty one. Overall, it's a good product, but I can't help thinking that Cadbury missed a trick by not making these Snowmen white chocolate on the outside!

I will have to go back to Co-Op to get a photo of the stand that these were on, it was a full-on Christmas display. Does anyone out there (apart from review bloggers of course!) really buy Christmas products so early? I'd love to know your thoughts on this!

Grocery Gems Verdict: Cadbury Dairy Milk Mousse Snowman

RATING: 8 out of 10
Buy them again?: Yes - but nearer to Christmas next time!
Nutrition (per 30g Snowman): 165 calories
Vegetarian: Suitable for Vegetarians.
Purchased: Co-Op.
Price: 2 for £1.00.

28 Aug 2013

Ribena Mango & Lime and Pineapple & Passion Fruit

September is fast approaching but the hot weather seems to be holding out a little longer in my part of the world. It's been a lovely sunny couple of days here so I've loved trying out these tropical Ribena flavours, Mango & Lime and Pineapple & Passion Fruit. These were released earlier this year, and were recently sent to me for review;

I was very pleased to see that both drinks are free from artificial flavours and sweeteners, and contain real fruit juice and added Vitamin C.

Mango & Lime: I love mango based fruit juice drinks so I couldn't wait to try this one. As you would expect from Ribena, this is a squash type drink, so it's very thirst quenching. The flavours are light and extremely refreshing, predominantly of the mango and orange juice, with a very subtle citrus zest.

Pineapple & Passion Fruit: This one was absolutely delicious, and surprisingly my favourite of the two - I don't usually go for pineapple juice. The Pineapple & Passion Fruit Ribena just has such a sweet tropical fruit flavour that makes it extremely enjoyable and summer like. Perfect for a warm day.

I've often bemoaned the lack of interesting jelly flavours (or Jell-o for any US readers) in the UK, beyond the basic orange, strawberry, raspberry etc. There are often more interesting flavours available in other countries (I recently bought a passion fruit jelly mix from a local Portuguese grocery store), so I was very interested in this recipe for turning these tropical Ribenas into a jelly dessert. Definitely an idea I'll be giving a go soon!

Pineapple, Passionfruit & Raspberry Jelly


• 500ml Ribena Pineapple and Passion Fruit
• 200g raspberries
• 5 gelatine leaves (or vegetarian substitute)
• 100ml boiling water
• 3 tablespoons cold water


Break up the gelatine leaves into small cm squared pieces. Put in a large plastic
jug with 3 tbsp cold water to dissolve. Tip: To help with dissolving you can hover
the jug over a saucepan of boiling water and stir.
Pour 100ml of boiling water into the jug followed by the Ribena. Stir.
Scatter a few raspberries into each glass and pour the jelly mix into the individual
glasses, filling up about ¾ way to the top. Use cling film to cover.
Leave in the fridge for 4-6 hours and enjoy! Serves 4-5.

Attributed to Emily Coates, Recipes and Reviews

I received this product in order to write an honest review and all opinions expressed are my own. 

Grocery Gems Verdict: Ribena Mango & Lime, Pineapple & Passion Fruit

RATING: 9 out of 10.
Buy them again?: Yes - great to find a squash drink that doesn't have artificial sweeteners.
Nutrition (250ml)
103 calories.
Purchased: Available nationwide.
Price: RRP. £1.19p for 500ml.

27 Aug 2013

Around the World - Sweden: Plopp Chocolate Bar

Plopp is a very popular soft toffee centred milk chocolate bar from Sweden, and one that I've always wanted to try - although I'll admit it's purely because of the funny name. To British ears this is probably one of the worst names for a chocolate - I'm sure no one wants to have the word plop in mind when they're eating a chocolate bar.

Plopp is made by a Swedish confectionery company called Cloetta, and I would guess that the distinctive packaging and fun design on the chocolate itself, has remained unchanged for quite some time. Please leave a comment below if you know any more about this.

Once we'd all finished having a good ol' laugh about the name (juvenile I know), we found that the chocolate bar itself is very tasty. The outer chocolate has a sweet edge and decent enough flavour. The inner soft toffee has a very unique and moreish taste, with added vanilla in there too. It's quite sugary but still utterly delicious. The sweet centre would probably get a bit cloying after a while, but since everyone in my family loved the flavour, I shared them out and found that a couple of pieces was more than enough to satisfy my sweet tooth.

Grocery Gems Verdict: Plopp

RATING: 8 out of 10.
Buy them again?: Yes!
Nutrition (50g)
235 calories.
Purchased: I won them in a competition, but they're available from import stores.
Price: Usually around £1.35p for 50g bar.

24 Aug 2013

Stick Menu @OyatsuCafe - Maxim Matcha Latte & Maxim Caramel Macchiato

Oyatsu Cafe have launched their very own Stick Menu of individual powdered drinks, which is a great way of trying the great Japanese "stick" drinks without having to buy a whole box of Maxim or Blendy. I choose five drinks, the Maxim Matcha Latte and Caramel Macchiato, and the Blendy Stick Tea Au Lait, Cocoa Au Lait, and Espresso Au Lait.

I decided to start with the two Maxim drinks because I was most curious about trying the green tea based Matcha Latte!

The drinks are made up just like any other powdered sachet drink, although I had to turn to Google for help translating the instructions. The method is; for a hot drink use 160ml of hot water and for an iced drink use 80ml of hot water and 4-5 ice cubes. I'd recommend using a fairly small cup to ensure a strong flavour, or two of the sachets if you want a larger drink.

Just look at that verdant colour - it looks like one of those super healthy green smoothies, rather than a hot drink. Once I added the hot water, the drink starting to froth up and revealed it's bright green colour. The aroma was immediately of the matcha green tea powder. Despite being called a Matcha Latte, this drink doesn't actually contain any coffee. The taste is a deliciously sweet with a lovely green tea flavour, and it's creamy without being too milky in flavour. I wasn't sure if I was going to enjoy this Matcha Latte but I absolutely loved it, I'll definitely be keeping this one in mind for the future. It's unusual but delivers a satisfyingly sweet and warming drink.

The Maxim Caramel Macchiato lives up to it's name as a coffee based drink. My husband absolutely loved this one. It's all about the caramel, and the sweet aroma immediately fills the room once the hot water is added. The coffee flavour is full bodied and easily satisfies a caffeine craving, whilst the caramel is creamy and deliciously sweet. I'm sure this one would taste great as an iced caramel coffee drink too.

Check out some of the other flavours in the new Oyatsu Cafe Stick Menu. It's a lovely way to discover the different flavours. I'll be reviewing three of the Blendy Stick flavours soon. The Tea Au Lait sounds especially good as it's based on Indian style tea - can't wait to try that one!

23 Aug 2013

Chia Pod Review (Whole Foods Market)

Whenever I head to the Nespresso store in central London, I always take a look at the Whole Foods Market opposite. I'd seen these Chia Pods featured in a local newspaper and had wanted to give them a try. They're an interesting take on the so-called chia seeds craze. Chia seeds have been hailed as a superfood, especially for runners, because of their high protein, omega-3 fatty acids, antioxidants and mineral content. I have no idea if these claims are true or not, but if you want further information then check out THIS article on the BBC News Magazine website.

The pudding inspired Chia Pods contain only three ingredients - coconut milk, chia seeds, and real fruit. They're made by Australian based The Chia Co, and come in a few fruity flavours; Mango, Banana, Blueberry, and also a Vanilla Bean version. Whole Foods Market didn't have all of those flavours (I wanted to try the Vanilla Bean) so in the end we chose the Banana and Mango Chia Pods.

Chia seeds are very small black seeds, a bit like poppy seeds in appearance. Combined with liquid they tend to go soft, and almost gel like, as they absorb it. I enjoyed the texture from the soft seeds as it creates a creamier experience; there's no danger of crunchy seeds getting stuck in your teeth here! However, this unique gel like consistency may be a problem for anyone who's slimy-texture-phobic. My Banana Chia Pod had a very simple and unfussy flavour of blended banana and coconut milk. The seeds themselves do not have a particularly strong taste, adding just a hint of nuttiness. The Mango Chia Pod was not as sweet as the Banana version, and seemed a little bit blander overall. However, it was still enjoyable and extremely filling. In fact it was only when I got home, quite late, that I realised I hadn't eaten anything else apart from one Chia Pod, I just wasn't hungry at all. For a continual grazer like me that is quite something!

There are also these packets of Chia Seeds available from the same company. They're useful for taking home and adding to your morning cereal, oats, smoothies, salads, bread - really anything you fancy.

Grocery Gems Verdict: Chia Pod

RATING: Banana - 8 out of 10, Mango- 7 out of 10.
Buy them again?: Yes.
Nutrition: Banana 161 calories, Mango 149 calories. 
Purchased: Whole Foods Market.

Other reviews:
The Chia Co - Chia Oil

22 Aug 2013

Hello Kitty Ice Cream Lollies Review

When I reviewed the Star Wars Stormtrooper Ice Lollies I should have also mentioned that there was a girls version available from the same company; these official Sanrio licensed Hello Kitty Tutti Frutti Ice Cream Lollies.

Usually Hello Kitty is known for her lack of a mouth, but with these lollies she has no eyes or nose either. Actually it's probably a very wise decision to eshew recreating Hello Kitty's face in the ice cream. It didn't work out too well for those uni-browed Stormtroopers after all. These Hello Kitty Ice Cream Lollies on the other hand whilst they have a fairly basic appearance, are also quite cute looking.

The ice cream has quite a soft and fluffy texture rather than being overly creamy, which makes these quite a light treat. The Tutti Frutti flavour is not as exciting as it sounds. It has a vague fruitiness but it's quite to pin down exactly what fruit it could be (no clues from the ingredients either). The most I can say is that the flavour does have hints of banana and strawberry flavour in there. Surprisingly the overall ice cream is not too sweet or sugary, and they were pleasant enough as a cold snack.

 It's interesting to note that these are made in Slovenia and imported to the UK. They are free from artificial colours, flavourings and preservatives, and are suitable for vegetarians.

Grocery Gems Verdict: Hello Kitty Ice Cream Lollies

RATING: 6.5 out of 10.
Buy them again?: Maybe.
Nutrition: 66 calories

Purchased: Iceland.
Price: £1.00.

20 Aug 2013

Boursin Cheeses Review

I was recently sent a selection of delicious cheeses from Boursin; Garlic & Herbs, Sun Ripened Tomato, Onion & Chive, and Black Pepper. I've always been a fan of the Garlic & Herbs Boursin cheese but I have to admit I hadn't realised it was available in other flavours. It seems that when it comes to cheese I'm not my usual new-spotting self, preferring to keep to my trusty favourite variety.

The original and most popular Boursin flavour is the classic Garlic & Herbs. It has a superbly creamy flavour coupled with a slightly crumbly texture. The garlic is light and fresh tasting, and is not overpowering at all. It's one of my favourite cheeses for serving simply with some crusty bread.

The Sun Ripened Tomato, Onion & Chive flavour was a revelation to me. I'm not sure why I've never tried this cheese before but it's a fantastic combination. The tomato and onion flavours are so fresh tasting and give this crumbly cheese an innovative twist. My children absolutely loved it too, they said it was a bit like a pizza flavoured cheese!

Lastly, but my new favourite, is this Black Pepper flavour. I love black pepper so once again I have no idea why I haven't tried this cheese before, but I'm so glad to now be introduced to it. There is a generous amount of full flavoured black pepper throughout the soft cheese. It's got a fantastic kick to it, but the peppery flavour is perfectly balanced by the creamy cheese, creating a thoroughly enjoyable experience.

Boursin has joined together with Lisa Faulkner to create a summer recipe collection using all of these cheeses. Recipes can be found online and include;

Garlic & Herb Chicken Ballotine, 
Tomato, Onion, Chive & Leek Tart,
Wild Musroom Tagliatelle with Garlic & Herb Sauce,
Black Pepper Hotcakes,
and Baked Salmon Fillets with Fennel, Tomato, Onion & Chive.

I have to admit I've never used soft cheeses in my cooking, always preferring to enjoy it on crackers or bread, but these recipes have given me some new inspiration!

I received this product from their PR representatives in order to write an honest review and all opinions expressed are my own. 

Grocery Gems Verdict: Boursin

RATING: Garlic & Herbs - 10 out of 10, Sun Ripened Tomato, Onion & Chive - 9 out of 10. Black Pepper - 10 out of 10.
Buy them again?: Absolutely.
Nutrition: 406 calories per 100g. 
Purchased: Available at most supermarkets.
Price: £2.35p for 150g.

18 Aug 2013

Krispy Kreme Coconut Ice & Lemon Drizzle Cake Doughnuts

It's been almost a year since I last had a Krispy Kreme doughnut but the lure of this latest Doughnut of the Month, the Coconut Ice, was too appealing for me to resist. It's described as being filled with a smooth coconut filling & hand dipped in the Krispy Kreme signature glaze, and sprinkled with coconut flakes.

I haven't always been a fan of Krispy Kreme's flavoured doughnuts, and most of the time prefer to keep to the delicious simplicity of the Original Glazed doughnut. Coconut is also an easy flavour to get wrong and can be quite disgusting if it's too artificial tasting, so I was equally interested and worried about trying this Coconut Ice doughnut. Luckily there was nothing to be concerned about here, this doughnut is pure coconut dreaminess. The coconut flavour is not overpowering but is still flavourful enough to satisfy any coconut fan. The filling is creamy but not too much so. It's actually quite light, with lots of sweet and satisfying coconut flavour. The super soft doughnut and sugary icing on top finish things off perfectly.

The Lemon Drizzle Cake doughnut is also a new variety for the summer, so of course I couldn't leave without purchasing one of these too. It's not the most attractive of doughnuts, I don't think that the sprinkles in that particular shade of green were such a good idea... Regardless, it's actually a very tasty doughnut. The base is a classic Original Glazed ring doughnut, topped with a creamy lemon frosting, a tangy lemon curd, and lime flavoured sprinkles. The topping is very thick and creamy, and is full of sweet lemon flavour. I didn't expect to like this doughnut but turned out to be absolutely delicious. It's not really like a lemon drizzle cake though, it's more like a rich lemon buttercream cake.

Find these for a limited time at Krispy Kreme in the UK.

Grocery Gems Verdict: Krispy Kreme Coconut Ice & Lemon Drizzle Cake

RATING: 9 out of 10 (Coconut Ice) 8.5 out of 10 (Lemon Drizzle Cake).
Buy them again?: I won't buy them again - but I definitely want to!

Purchased: Krispy Kreme Store.
Price: Approx. £1.70 each.

17 Aug 2013

New Twix Mix

When I reviewed the Mars Mix a few months back, I may have been a tad negative and bored by that so-called new product. It was, after all, a simple rebranding of the previous Mars Planets but with all the crispy ones evicted. The Twix Mix however, is a slightly more interesting prospect. Even though I haven't eaten a Twix in awhile (well there was a White Chocolate Twix last year but I'm not sure that counts), they are still one of my favourite chocolate bars.

The Twix Mix, just like the Mars Mix, is made up of milk chocolates based on the bar in question. In the case of the Twix Mix this simply means caramel chocolates and biscuit chocolates, which it has to be said are much smaller than in the Mars Mix version. It's impossible to tell which ones are which from the outside, but by grabbing a few there is usually a caramel and biscuit one in there somewhere - and the combination is extremely delicious.

I loved both of these little chocolate bites, especially the creamy caramel. The chocolate is of course very sweet, but the biscuit and caramel work together so well and create a very enjoyable chewy and crunchy snack. I've finally found a share bag that all of my family can enjoy (raisins and Maltesers are a no go area in this house). Happily, this bag was enjoyed by everyone, with no complaints. It might not be the most innovative product of the year but it's one that is easy to love.

Grocery Gems Verdict: Twix Mix

RATING: 8.5 out of 10.
Buy them again?: Yes.
Nutrition (per 35g)
: 175 calories.

Purchased: Tesco.
Price: £1.00p for 140g sharing bag.

16 Aug 2013

Around the World: South Korea - Lotte Pepero Almond & Chocolate

Lotte is an extremely popular South Korean food manufacturer and these Pepero sticks appear to be their version of the Glico Pocky sticks. I've reviewed the excellent Pocky Almond Crush a few months ago so I was interested to see how this Pepero Almond & Chocolate would compare. It's also the first time I've featured anything from South Korea - perfect for my Around the World challenge (I'm still not at the half way point yet!!).

The Pepero Almond & Chocolate has quite simple packaging. There is one inner bag filled with the chocolate covered sticks.

The sticks themselves certainly look good with plenty of crushed almonds embedded in the outer chocolate. The pretzel stick has a basic flavour and the chocolate layer is fine too. The almonds are slightly disappointing as they didn't really have an almondy flavour, they are more of a generic nutty flavour. They're not as outstanding as the Pocky Almond Crush but given that they are much cheaper it's probably not a fair comparison. These Pepero sticks are still a tasty snack and a complete bargain for the price.

I bought these in Chinatown but I've since seen them in the World Foods section of several supermarkets including Morrisons and Asda.

Grocery Gems Verdict: Lotte Pepero Chocolate & Almond Sticks

RATING: 6.5 out of 10.
Buy them again?: I'd try more from the range.

Nutrition: 189 calories for 36g (whole box).
Purchased: Loon Fung - Chinatown. 
Price: £0.89.

15 Aug 2013

Tate & Lyle British Inspired Golden Syrup Sugar & Muffins!

Tate & Lyle have combined two of their most famous products, cane sugar and Golden Syrup into one unique sugar blend. This Golden Syrup Sugar is part of a new Taste Experience range of eight world inspired Fairtrade sugars, with many distinctly different exotic blends, such as a Mayan Inspired Golden Caster and a Caribbean Inspired Light Muscovado. Each one boasts a light, medium, medium rich, or full bodied flavour, with unique tasting notes and textures.

The British Inspired Golden Syrup Sugar is described as a medium bodied rich that is beautifully distinctive with a luscious, lingering sweetness. I was very pleased to receive a sample of the Golden Syrup Sugar along with a delightful porcelain teacup from Tate & Lyle. As soon as I opened up the package, the aroma from the sugar was completely different to an average cane sugar. It's rich and golden, with a dense texture similar to a muscovado sugar, but with a much sweeter treacle scent.

I decided to make some Golden Syrup & Oat Muffins by using this recipe HERE but adapting it a bit. Since I was already using a golden syrup sugar I only added one tablespoon of extra syrup. I also added oats and oatbran to the flour to give the muffins a bit more texture.

I love the Minton Vanessa Bone China cup and saucer that was sent to me - tea tastes so much better from this pretty porcelain rather than my usual mug! The muffins were also extremely enjoyable. They weren't super sweet, as they might be if actual golden syrup was used. The golden syrup flavour here is quite subtle, but makes these muffins richer and more flavourful than if standard sugar had been used. The Great British Bake Off will be back on our screens next week (Tuesday 8pm BBC2) and I'm sure I'll be inspired to try more from this Taste Experience range in a bid to add more interest to my baking :)

The British Inspired Golden Syrup Sugar is available at Tesco, Waitrose, and Ocado in 325g packs.

14 Aug 2013

Beyers Caramelicious Slab Review

My last review from the gorgeous selection of chocolates I was sent by Beyers Chocolates, the largest independent chocolate manufacturer in South Africa. I've previously reviewed their Chocolate Couture Selection and Amarula Chocolates. This Caramelicious Slab is part of the Beyers range of squared chocolates, which includes some divine sounding flavours such as; Cookies & Cream, Caramelised Almond, and Espresso Coffee.

The packaging is lovely as always, something I have seen across the Beyers range.

The Caramelicious Slab itself is a solid square of chocolate with a simple swirl of caramel on top. It's described as a milk chocolate with special Beyers toffee and a crunchy caramel crisp. The milk chocolate is 35% minimum cocoa solids.

I've always been highly impressed by the flavours in all the Beyers chocolates I've tried so far, and this bar is no exception. In fact I think this Caramelicious Slab has managed to top them all! It may look fairly unassuming but this caramel swirl is one of the most delicious caramels I've ever tried. The texture is partly soft but still manages to hold it's shape. The caramel flavour is absoluely sublime, so creamy with rich buttery notes. I loved the Beyers milk chocolate also, it's full of cocoa flavour, without being too sweet, creating an more intense chocolate experience then might be expected. Within the chocolate there are also little caramelised nibs which add some extra texture and crunch to the bar without detracting from the overall smooth flavours.

Another fantastic chocolate bar from Beyers and I highly recommend giving their range a try. I hope they bring more of their bars to the UK under their own name, although they already make chocolates for some UK brands.

Grocery Gems Verdict: Beyers Caramelicious Slab

RATING: 10 out of 10.
Buy them again?: Yes, I'd love to try the rest of this Slab range.
Nutrition: No info. 

13 Aug 2013

Disney Monsters University Ice Lollies

These Monsters University Ice Lollies were released last month to coincide with the UK release of the Disney Pixar film of the same name. They're made by R&R Ice Cream, owners of brands such as Fab, Skinny Cow and Kelly's of Cornwall, who have also released other Disney themed ice lollies in the past. I like the fact that the lollies, whilst fairly basic looking, are blue and green in colour - very fitting for the Monsters Inc theme.

They're described on the box as blue raspberry flavour ice lollies with vanilla and lime centres. The outer blue layer is hard in texture, like an ice shell around the inner ice cream, and has a very subtle generic fruity flavour. The inner vanilla ice cream is quite fluffy and creamy, the usual kids ice lolly stuff. The contrast of the hard icy outer layer and soft vanilla inside reminded me of the classic kids Fruit Split ice lollies. Then there is an extra burst of lime flavour from the bright green core. The taste here is quite strong and sweet, a bit like undiluted squash, although it is offset by the plainer outer layers.

My kids however, didn't enjoy the flavour of the lime centre, which was a bit too concentrated and syrupy for them. I still think they're good value at £1.00 for 4 lollies and they're worth a try if your kids are Monsters Inc fans. I've happily eaten one or two (I'm obviously a lot less fussy then my kids!) and I find them nicely refreshing. Each lolly has only 58 calories and is free of artificial colours, flavours and preservatives.

Grocery Gems Verdict: Disney Monsters University Ice Lollies

RATING: 5.5 out of 10.
Buy them again?: Probably not.
Nutrition: 58 calories

Purchased: Tesco.
Price: £1.00.

11 Aug 2013

New Cadbury Cola Pretzel Honeycomb - Dairy Milk Marvellous Creations

Something seriously strange is going on at Cadbury HQ. I'm thinking their water supply has been tampered with or perhaps they've been taken over by a mad scientist. It started out innocently enough with Cadbury plundering the Milka back catalogue to bring us such delights as the Dairy Milk with Oreo bar. Things rapidly progressed as the new releases kept coming, until finally the end seemed to be in sight when Marvellous Creations presented us with a Jelly Popping Candy Shells chocolate bar. Surely the madness had reached it's peak? I've now realised that this was all merely a distraction before Cadbury unleashed the apparent abomination that is a Cola, Pretzel, & Honeycomb themed chocolate bar upon us all!

My husband has a theory that wackily themed bars such as this one are nothing more than a Victor Frankenstein inspired recycling of whatever confectionary is available, joined together to create a new monstrosity. He may be right since at least two of the ingredients in this bar (honeycomb pieces and pretzels) already exist in some of Cadbury's products. Two ingredients sorted! But surely they now need something new and different to give the old parts a new lease of life...

Cola Flavour Nuggets! These are small bits of jelly cola sweets (basically cola bottles) which have been scattered throughout the bar, making up 8% of the ingredients, along with the 4% salted pretzel pieces and 3% honeycomb bits. The last time I tried cola and chocolate together in a snack, in the form of the Rocky Fizzy Cola bar, the result was completely vile and inedible. The flavour in this Cadbury version is, thankfully, completely different. The cola is quite sweet, with a subtle tangy edge, and actually suits the creamy Dairy Milk chocolate well.

The salty pretzel pieces and toffee sweet honeycomb add an extra flavour and crunchy texture to the bar, which means the cola nuggets don't dominate the overall flavour. The result is slightly strange but surprisingly enjoyable. There are enough normal components within the chocolate to keep this from being too unusual tasting. After all, it has the three basic food groups that are needed to sustain life; sugar, salt and cola.

Grocery Gems Verdict: Cadbury Marvellous Creations Cola Pretzel Honeycomb

RATING: 7.5 out of 10.
Buy them again?: Possibly.
Nutrition (25g)
125 calories, 6.5g fat, 14g sugars.
Vegetarian: Suitable for Vegetarians.
Purchased: Asda.
Price: £2.50p for 200g bar.


Tayto Advantage Oven Baked Whisps Review

Earlier this year I was lucky enough to be try some of the crisps from Northern Ireland's premier crisp brand Tayto. I have seen some multipacks of Tayto crisps for sale in my local Asda, but I was still quite surprised to spot these Advantage Oven Baked Whisps in a local 99p Store. Knowing the high quality of the rest of the Tayto brand I quickly snapped them up!

I bought a multipack with six packets, three each of two flavours - French Onion and Texan Grill. The packaging is quite sterile and obviously targetted at those watching their weight. Regardless, the flavours manage to sound a bit more interesting than the usual low calorie options.

These corn snacks have a light and slightly puffed texture. The Texan Grill variety is full of seasoning and extremely tasty. It's a lovely barbecue flavour that's different to the usual meaty based barbecue flavoured crisps. This has more of a barbecue sauce influence - quite tomatoey and smokey but still very sweet.

The French Onion is also well seasoned with flecks of visible herbs. Again the flavour is very sweet and moreish. I don't normally buy the half-empty packets of crisps made for the diet market, as I'd rather go for a kids brands like Pom-Bear if I want a lower calorie option. These Tayto Whisps however are different, the packets are FULL of crisps. The flavours are sweet and delicious and will easily satisfy any crisp craving.

Grocery Gems Verdict: Tayto Advantage Whisps

RATING: 8.5 out of 10.
Buy them again?: Yes - I've already been back!
: 99 calories per pack.

Purchased: 99p Stores.

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