Some days, I’m all about the thrill of the new. Sure, most of the chocolates in my post-travel stash are technically new, seeing as I haven’t opened them, but they’ve been in my company for so long that they feel familiar. Imagine you work at a coffee shop patronised by regular customers. Then imagine it’s a spring-time Saturday, and you’re bopping away to a free concert at the Botanical Gardens. Suddenly, you spot one of the regular [coffee] customers, and you start smiling as if you’re great friends. But, of course, you quickly remember that you don’t know each other at all. Imagine that sense of the banal-known-yet-actually-unknown. I feel that way about some of my long-stashed chocolates.
So it was with an unjustified (in terms of my usual dark-leaning tastes) amount of glee that I discovered, via the stupendous Kath, that Lindt has recently released four new chocolates to the Australian market.
Of these four, one piqued my interest. (Plain milk, milk with whole hazelnuts, and milk fruit and nut – I abjure you*.)
Lindt Swiss Gold White Chocolate with Almonds
I realise that I’ve only blogged one other white chocolate here so far: the wondrous Vestri’s White Chocolate with Pistachios. I’m not anti-white chocolate on principle, but there simply aren’t enough quality (or bizarrely-flavoured) white chocolates out there for me to do tasty, tasty battle with. (That said, El Rey’s Icoa, Askinosie’s whites, and Vosges’ d’Olivia are well worth going a round or two with.)
If Lindt’s white chocolate had merely incorporated whole almonds, I would have said thanks but no thanks. Plain nuts with plain chocolate bores me. Luckily for Lindt, for me, and for you, this chocolate is peppered not only with whole roasted almonds, but with almond brittle. Behold:
Lindt’s Swiss Gold White Chocolate with Almonds has a clean and crisp aroma of fresh cream, tempered with subtle hints of roasted nuts (funny, that). I was pleased to see that the brittle was evenly dispersed throughout the chocolate, as were the browned and thereby well-roasted whole almonds (see photo below).
The taste of this chocolate isn’t particularly complex, but there’s something endearing about its simplicity. The flavours consistently call to mind fresh cream and milk, yet not in the sense of any overwhelming fattiness or thickness in the mouth. Instead, this chocolate tastes like fresh, cold, crisp, and naturally sweet milk, and like cream lightly whipped with a dusting of icing sugar (this is me disregarding, for the moment, that I don’t like token cream splotches on my desserts.)
The almond brittle provides crunchy textural contrast and bursts of toffee sweetness, while the whole roasted almonds are almost enough to make me rethink my plain-nuts-in-chocolate aversion. Spectacularly crisp and full-flavoured, the tending-towards-savoury roasted almonds work as a great foil to the sweet chocolate. In fact, the almonds somewhat overwhelm the white chocolate’s subtlety, but no matter. I quite enjoyed the respite from unwavering milky sweetness.
White chocolate, in any form, will never replace my super-dark chocolate love (did I mention I have a Lindt 99% in my stash?), but this version certainly placated my desire for novelty.
Also, my wonderful father bought this for me. Dad? Thank you muchly.
* Darn tootin’ that’s a Sookie Stackhouse reference. But just so you know, I’m also halfway through Bleak House. Take that, high/low culture divide.