Saturday, 2 November 2013

Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleeksters

So here we are, in November, the clocks have gone back and we are well and truly into Autumn. Although Christmas chocolates have been on the shelves for a couple of months ago its important not to forget other delicious Autumnal chocolate delights you can get your hands on!
Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster
I was lucky enough to be sent this Autumn Sleekster from Hotel Chocolat; consisting of 28 chocolates & 13 different types there is something for everyone.

Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

Pistachio Praline - 7.3/10
Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

This consisted of a pistachio praline flavoured with rose & cherry pieces in a white chocolate cup. Normal pralines are usually hazelnut so it was nice to try something a bit different; subtle but deliciously creamy with the rose hints coming through nicely to give a background floral flavour.

Apple Strudel - 8.8/10
Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

By far one of my favourite chocolates in the box, an apple truffle topped with a cinnamon & walnut praline this tasted like Autumn in chocolate form! The apple truffle added a lovely refreshing flavour to the chocolate which contrasted perfectly with the deeper spiced praline. The crushed amaretti biscuits on top finished it off with a perfect crunchy texture!

Salted Caramel Praline - 9.4/10
Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

My favourite chocolate! This was absolute heaven; if you love your pralines you are going to adore this! The texture is incredibly smooth with a gorgeous slightly salted almond praline & a salted caramel topping. I could have quite easily eaten a box of 28 of these!!

Praline Pumpkin - 7/10
Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

It's lovely to see a novel but delicious chocolate in this box; Hotel Chocolat's classic hazelnut praline wrapped in white chocolate dyed orange. It is a much sweeter praline to to the others due to the white chocolate coating, so it will go down well with those with a big sweet tooth!

Milk Praline Acorn - 8.6/10
Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

Again a beautifully crafted chocolate praline made to look like an acorn. Filled with a hazelnut praline this is a much richer praline compared to that of the pumpkin; the balance between nutty/sweet was ideal for me and shows how good of a praline Hotel Chocolat make!

Treacle Tarts - 7.2/10

Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

Compared to your usual liquid caramel the Treacle Tart offers a much deeper experience; a richer, thicker & gooier caramel that felt oh so indulgent. Topped with a circular shortbread biscuit to finish it off meant that there was a lovely texture contrast between runny/smooth & crunchy!

Burnt Caramels - 6.9/10
Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

Similar to Treacle Tart but a runnier caramel encased in dark chocolate; quite nice and the dark chocolate means that overall it never becomes too sweet/sickly.

Egg & Brandy Truffle - 3.8/10
Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

Although I've given this a low score I felt that I couldn't review it fairly as I really don't like alcoholic chocolates & this one certainly packed a punch! I was hoping I might have liked it as I am quite partial to a bit of eggnog...well an eggnog latte over the winter period. However this was just a bit too much for me; if you're partial to a booze filled chocolate opt for this one!

Sloe Gin - 3.2/10
Unfortunately my camera deleted the photo of these when it was transferring them to my laptop but -
Again, extremely alcoholic; even more so that the Egg & Brandy truffle; good rich milk chocolate but the boozy after burn was again too much for me!

Mulled Port - 5.2/10

Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

Considering this was an alcoholic chocolate it wasn't all that bad! There was a lovely orange + spice flavour from the Pimento, whilst the texture of the filling was wonderfully smooth. Although I probably wouldn't specifically choose this one I can say that it was definitely executed well.

Irish Whiskey + Cream - 5.7/10
Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

When I first tasted this chocolate I thought that I may have eventually found an alcoholic chocolate that I'd liked! The initial taste is gorgeously creamy milk chocolate truffle but the aftertaste from the whiskey put me off slightly; however I can see that whiskey lovers will adore this!!!

Blackcurrant Bombe - 7.4/10

Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

A blackcurrant ganache encased in white chocolate; lovely contrast between sweetness from the white chocolate & sharpness from the blackcurrant offered up a well balanced delicious chocolate.

Blackberry Truffle - 6.9/10

Hotel Chocolat Autumn Sleekster

Although not as nice as the Blackcurrant Bombe this was still a lovely chocolate; the truffle filling was creamy & smooth with good fruity notes that paired well with the dark chocolate exterior for a rich yet fruity chocolate.

Overall I think this was a lovely box of chocolates; especially one that would be great to share with the family as there certainly is something for everyone in here. Even if you're not a fan of alcoholic chocolates, like me, I would still recommend it as the other ones are so good they completely make up for not being a huge fan of the ones containing alcohol!

Taste - 8.5/10 - Hotel Chocolat's chocolates are always great; the only let down was my disliking for the alcoholic chocolates, but this is just personal preference.
Textures - 9.4/10 - Textures are spot on.
Appearance - 9.2/10 - Beautiful.
Price - 8/10 - Priced at £23 they work out at less than £1 per chocolate! Pretty good value.
Overall- 8.8/10 - Delicious
A great selection for the whole family.

In Hotel Chocolat stores or online here.

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