Thursday, 3 December 2015

Trying Japanese KitKat flavours!


Last weekend, my boyfriend and I had a chance to sample some interesting Japanese delicacies, such as the sweet and tangy azuki sandwich and the soothing hochija tea... Actually, that statement is only half-true! I was recently gifted a box of Japanese KitKats, which included eight different flavours of the popular chocolate biscuit (you can purchase this selection at japancentre.com for £11.55 - not sponsored!). I'd always been curious to try the more exotic KitKat varieties, especially the really unusual ones like wasabi and green tea. My boyfriend and I both sampled these one by one, noting down our thoughts and first impressions. Some of them were good, some bad; but it was definitely a fun experience! 


Ichimi Chilli - This is a combination of my two least favourite things - dark chocolate and red chilli. It tastes very bitter at first, but then you can feel a slight tingling on your tongue from the chilli. Honestly, it turned out to be a lot less spicy than I expected, which was a relief. I think a lot of people would really enjoy this, but it wasn't for me. My boyfriend agreed that it didn't really taste of red chilli, but more like regular dark chocolate with a slight, spicy edge. 

Amaou Strawberry - Strawberries and chocolate? Yes please! We were both quite excited to try this one, and knew that it would probably end up being a favourite. This KitKat has a pleasant, fresh strawberry scent to it, and it tastes just like strawberry-flavoured yoghurt or ice cream. It's really delicious, and I can see it being quite popular in Britain, if it were available here. 

Azuka Sandwich (Sweet Bean Jelly) - This one smells like roots, dirt and earth. Definitely not the best first impression, although thankfully, the flavour itself wasn't anywhere near as bad. It tastes similar to regular dark chocolate, but without the bitterness. We didn't hate it, but it was pretty bland and uninteresting. Definitely expected more from a flavour like this! 

Hochija Tea (Roasted Tea) - This is probably the worst one we've tried. It tastes and smells like old, bitter tea that's been left in a cupboard for about thirty years. Perhaps it's the 'roasted' part that gives that impression, but honestly, it was awful and we didn't manage more than one bite. It's very earthy and bitter, and just doesn't taste like a KitKat should. My boyfriend compared trying this to literally biting into a teabag. Definitely not an impression you want a a food product to make! 


Otona Matcha (Green Tea) - As a huge green tea lover, I was really excited to try this. Unfortunately, it ended up tasting more like white chocolate and lemongrass than freshly brewed tea. It's sweet and unusually herbal, which isn't a combination that works for me. Interestingly enough, my boyfriend, who normally can't stand green tea (or any kind of tea for that matter), really enjoyed this one!

Uji Matcha (Green Tea) - This is very similar to the Otona green tea KitKat, but slightly more sweet and less herbal-tasting. It's quite delicate, just like regular white chocolate with a hint of something I couldn't quite put my finger on (maybe it was the green tea?). My boyfriend found it to be quite bland in comparison to the Otona green tea KitKat, comparing the flavour to a bland mix of white and milk chocolate. 

Wasabi - This one smells like horseradish mixed with white chocolate, which is definitely not a good first impression (although I guess you can't expect a wasabi KitKat to smell pleasant, anyway). The flavour is very unusual, but not in the way we expected it to be. It doesn't have the spiciness of a real wasabi sauce (the red chilli KitKat was more spicy than this); but it's very sweet and herbal at the same time. It's difficult to describe this flavour, and as much as it's unique, we didn't really like it. 

Shinshu Apple - This one smells just like sour, apple-flavoured sweets! The apple and chocolate combination works a lot better than I expected, although the flavour itself isn't anywhere near as intense as the scent. Imagine eating a bar of milk chocolate whilst sipping on apple juice - that's exactly what this KitKat tastes like. It's probably not for everyone, but I personally loved it! 

Overall, sampling these was a fun experience and we both really enjoyed trying out some new flavours. For the most part, these KitKats ended up tasting a lot less intense than we expected, which was a good thing (especially in the case of red chilli and wasabi). Our favourite one out of the whole selection was the Amaou Strawberry, which tasted just like a fresh strawberry youghurt and chocolate. The worst one was definitely the Hochija Tea, which was unpleasantly bitter and old-tasting. 

Let me know if you enjoy these kinds of posts, and would like to see me try more unusual/exotic foods!  

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