Is Christmas really only a little over a week away? I haven't watched a single Christmas movie or listened to my Christmas playlist a single time. But then again, I have had my tree up since the day after Thanksgiving and I have had all of my Christmas shopping done for weeks. Now I just need to get in some last Christmas chocolate reviews.
In going through Theo's Christmas chocolate bars, naturally I came to the Cranberry Orange last. I don't necessarily love cranberries and I don't favor orange in chocolate, either. I'm with Jess in Primeval: "That's just weird" (and then Becker brings her back a Milka bar, definitely much preferable to orange chocolate). So bear all of this in mind during today's post.
We have the same trendy style of packaging as in the Peppermint Stick bar last week. Same usual chocolate bar style, except that this time the back of the bar is studded with cranberry pieces showing through the surface. The aroma is of orange oil--I'll let you decide whether or not that's a positive trait.
The orange flavor comes first, then you get the sweet dark chocolate (the cocoa content is only 55%). The cranberries come as the last element, mainly after the chocolate has melted and the cranberries are left around for you to finally chew and taste. The catch is that they're freeze-dried. I had been expecting the chewy flavor of regular, dried cranberries--but freeze-dried is a completely different texture and one that I'm not really welcoming. If there is a specific reason for using this type of berry, I don't know what it is.
Overall, this bar is much sweeter than I was expecting. The chocolate is sweet and the orange gives the effect of being sweet and yet the cranberries don't really come in at the timing that would add a tart element to the sweetness, given that they only come in last. I would likely prefer that the chocolate be at least a 65%, instead of the 55% cocoa. I know that they want to keep it light and not too dark or intimidating since this is a happy, seasonal, flavored chocolate--but a richer or at least less sweet chocolate likely would balance things out more.
I can't say that I did mind the orange as much as I might have expected; it still, however, isn't my favorite thing in the world. And since I didn't care for the type of cranberries in here, this bar wasn't really a winner for me. Try it if you like orange in chocolate; otherwise, this is one that you can take or leave.