Ah eventually I have got round to reviewing something from Mr William Curley, notably one of the best chocolatiers in the UK it was about time that I got round to sampling some of his range; for many months I had been kicking myself for not picking up some of his range at the Chocolate Festival at Southbank that I visited but oppurtunity knocked again when William came up to do a talk at the first smaller chocolate festival of its kind to take place in my home town of Newcastle and I seized the oppurtunity. After going to William's talk and thoroughly enjoyed a tasting selection of his chocolates he agreed he would send me some of his chocolates up for me to sample and when they arrived through the door I was more than excited.
The first product I decided to try was, of course, the Praline Feullantine bar, described as a crispy praline wafer with toasted Piedmont Hazelnuts encased in milk chocolate, how delicious it did sound and what with a large amount of William Curley's chocolates being produced from Amedei chocolate I couldn't wait to taste and see what quality tastes awaited me!
The bar itself is wonderfully presented, it certainly glows with luxuriousness from the box it is presented in to the gold wrapping even down to the unique take on the design of the bar almost looking like a branch from a tree split into various sections happily waiting to be snapped off, I loved it.
If I had to describe the flavour of this bar I would probably say fresh would be the word that sums it up best, it wasn't the most amazing praline I have ever tasted but it was still very good with the flavours of the Piedmont hazelnuts giving a wonderful fresh nutty flavour that blended well with the creamier milk chocolate. You could certainly tell that it wasn't your usual commercial praline chocolate with no overwhelming sugar notes whatsoever, letting the pure praline creamy nutty flavour dominate the bar.
Nevertheless I prefer the textures of my pralines to be rich, creamy and melt in the mouth, to leave me with a warming snuggly feeling almost and unfortunately I just didn't get that from this bar. I know that it was meant to be a Feullantine bar with crispy wafer pieces inside but I felt it was all just a bit too much crunch and not enough cream and would have preferred a smooth richer texture rather than a praline that I felt that I had to crunch and munch my way through.
Ok, so it wasn't the most amazing of pralines I've ever tried, it didn't really have me saying wow, and there would be a few things I would change about it if I was trying to create my "ultimate praline" but at least it actually tasted of nuts unlike so many sugar laden pralines nowadays and I still did thoroughly enjoy it. If you want to deviate away from your usual pralines and try something a bit different I would recommend this, it may not be one that I would go back to but I definately think it is worth a try just for the pure freshness and quality that oozes from this bar.
Taste - 7.6/10 - Not the best praline I've tasted but wonderful and fresh tasting and thankfully no strong sugar flavours.
Texture - 7/10 - I know that it was meant to be crunchy but I felt there was just a touch too much wafer in the bar that seemed to dominate it.
Appearance - 8.8/10 - Gorgeously presented, loved the look and feel both the bar's packaging and the bar itself gave.
Price - 6.7/10 - Priced at £3.75 for a 45g bar it is quite expensive for what some people may be willing to pay but you have to remember it is made with Amedei chocolate and may be worth trying for a special treat.
Overall - 7.5/10 - Enjoyable but not amazing.
If you wish to take a look at the rest of William Curley's range you can visit his website here.