Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Sparkling Strawberry Kit Kat

It's strawberry season in Japan. Well, technically it will be strawberry season in January but Nestle thinks that December is close enough so we have not one but TWO strawberry flavors out right now. I'll be reviewing the other one later. Today it's the Sparkling Strawberry Kit Kat.

I'm not sure what is supposed to sparkling about these strawberries. The front of the box suggests something carbonated - I guessed champagne. And it did have some fizzy powder in the creme, similar to the Ramune Kit Kat, but it didn't really sparkle in the way I had hoped. No edible glitter or champagne flavored creme.

The Sparkling Strawberry Kit Kat is 99 calories a bar and comes in a box of two. It was white chocolate and pink colored. It definitely smelled like strawberries but it was the fake kind. The taste was also of the fake strawberry variety. The chocolate was a very tart strawberry flavor. It reminded me more of the strawberries I eat back home in America, that need a little sugar sprinkled on them, rather than the really sweet strawberries I get here in Japan. I prefer the sweeter variety so this extra sourness was not something I really enjoyed. The addition of the fizzy powder didn't do much in the way of making it fizzy but may have contributed to the sourness because I remember liking the Strawberry Kit Kat I tried back in May.

Overall, I give this one a lower score. It was too sour and there are several other strawberry Kit Kats out there that I like better. Now maybe if it had really sparkled...

Final Score: 4

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Strawberry Cheesecake Kit Kat - Yokohama Limited Edition

I recently took a trip up to Tokyo to visit a friend. I warned her before I came that I would be hunting Kit Kats so she wasn't surprised when I insisted on going in every conbini we came across. Although a fat lot of good it did me since I didn't find a single one I didn't already have. I had better luck in the train station though. They had lots of regional specialties on sale for those travelers looking for some last minute omiyage.

A few of them I had already tried, like the Soy Sauce Kit Kat and the Wasabi Kit Kat. And then there was the Sweet Potato Kit Kat that looked similar enough to the Roasted Sweet Potato Kit Kat that I didn't think it was worth the money to try it again. (If anyone has tried this one and wants to let me know if I made the right decision that would be great!)

But they did have Strawberry Cheesecake Kit Kat, which although it is doing very poorly in my poll, I just couldn't pass up. They actually had two choices available. The large box of 12 for 870 yen or a smaller box of 5 for 370 yen. The smaller box is actually made for mailing to your friends, which I think is a cute idea. I know I like getting candy in the mail!

The Strawberry Cheesecake Kit Kat is a specialty of Yokohama. With 69 calories a bar, this Kit Kat is another white chocolate Kit Kat but unlike the other strawberry varieties I've tried, it wasn't pink colored, just plain white. This is similar to how the Blueberry Cheesecake Kit Kat looked. Unlike the Blueberry Cheesecake Kit Kat though there was more of a noticeable strawberry taste although I still could do with a little more cheesecake flavor than what I got. What little there was tasted more like yogurt although it did a good job of balancing out the sourness of the strawberry flavor that I've tasted in other Kit Kat strawberry varieties. Overall it was a good snacking experience. I won't have any trouble finishing off my little mail pack. (Sorry friends you won't be getting any Kit Kats in the post anytime soon.)

Final Score: 7

Friday, December 11, 2009

Kit Kats I won't be eating anytime soon :-(

As hard as I try it is impossible for me to try every Kit Kat flavor available in the world, but luckily there are some other amazing bloggers who pick up the slack. Here are two reviews of two Kit Kats I won't be able to try anytime soon due to lack of availability.

Kit Kat Mild Bitter from Japanese Snack Reviews is a special edition Kit Kat that is so special it's only sold in one store in Japan. Too bad too because I would love a dark chocolate Kit Kat.

Peanut Butter Kit Kat Chunky from Snack Love is a British Kit Kat so that makes it hard to get here in Japan.

Check them out!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Whole Wheat Kit Kat

Whole wheat isn't that popular here. If you want three pieces of suspiciously light colored "wheat" bread at the supermarket be prepared to pay twice as much than you would pay for six pieces of bread whiter than Wonder Bread. Darker breads are on the top of "Foods I miss from home" list. So I was surprised to find a Whole Wheat Kit Kat in Japan.

The Whole Wheat Kit Kat is a Kit Kat Bar, so instead of two smaller fingers you get one large candy bar. I'm not a huge fan but chocolate is chocolate, right? This one happens to be milk chocolate and is a regular Kit Kat in everything except that the wafers are made with whole wheat. To be honest though there is little difference between a wafer made with whole wheat flour and one that isn't. It's not quite as sweet and there is a slightly different taste to the wafers (slightly more wheaty...wheatish?) but it's minimal. I might not have noticed if it wasn't this Kit Kat's selling point.

Still, because it was so close to the original, it makes for an excellent snack. And you might even be able to fool yourself into thinking it's healthier since it's made with whole wheat. That's what I told myself as I ate the entire thing in one sitting.

Final Score: 9

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Wasabi Kit Kat - Shizuoka Limited Edition

I was in Shizuoka two weekends ago and because I almost left my luggage on one train and had to sprint back to get it before it left without me, I missed my next train and had to hang around the station for an extra 30 minutes or so. And that's when I came across the Wasabi Kit Kat - a Shizuoka special.

Wasabi is known as the Japanese horseradish and has a strong flavor that can open your sinus cavities if you have a cold. I'm personally a fan. I like it with my sushi and sashimi. And apparently most of it is grown on the Izu peninsula in Shizuoka.

But while I like it with sushi, I never quite imagined it as a Kit Kat flavor. Although there is a precedent for adding spicy things to chocolate. There is Mexican Hot Chocolate, a favorite of my friend Kristin. You can buy bars of Hot Chili Pepper Chocolate. And then there's my hometown speciality - Skyline Chili - secret ingredients: cinnamon and chocolate.

The Wasabi Kit Kat comes in a box of 12 like the other regional specialties and each bar is 69 calories. They are light green in color. They smell sweet like white chocolate but with a hint of wasabi underneath. But while the scent is subtle the flavor is not. This Kit Kat doesn't pull any punches when it comes to the wasabi, with wasabi flavored chocolate and wasabi flavored cream between the wafers. The sweetness of the white chocolate and wafer battles it out in your mouth with the hotness of the wasabi. It's just shy of being too much wasabi. Any more and you'd be grabbing for your water.

For me, it was a little too much. If I had that much wasabi with my sushi I would probably dial it back a bit and I would have liked less here as well. In fact, I don't see myself finishing this box anytime soon. I didn't even finish the two bars I usually eat when writing a review. But it was definitely interesting to try the spicy and sweet combination. I sometimes complain that some of the crazy flavors of Kit Kat are too sweet but this definitely wasn't one of them. I would be interested in trying some more spicy chocolate combos.

What do you think? Do you like your chocolate spicy?

Final Score: 4