I must not be a Valentine’s Day person; I very nearly didn’t get to any chocolates for the holiday this year. Then when I finally pick something up, it is nothing comparable to the all-out Hotel Chocolat offerings that have been gracing the site.
Not that I believe I could have found anything to compare had I tried. What I did find looks like a Terry’s Chocolate Orange, but sounds like Ferrero Rocher. On the contrary, however, it is a milk chocolate strawberry ball, not orange, and the name is Ferrara, with an “a” not an “o.” How fortunate, since I’m not keen on orange chocolates, to find an orange shape without the orange. Ferrara also makes dark chocolate, toffee crunch, and of course, milk chocolate orange balls, along with chocolate-covered oranges and imported Belgian chocolate bars.
The pink and gold box didn’t promise me much, but I had a change of heart on pulling out the chocolate sphere. Wrapped in shiny red foil, it looks as tempting as Snow White’s apple. Ferrara tells you to “burst, then enjoy,” but like Terry’s, the pieces don’t come apart with ease. I gave up after a few whacks, not wanting the neighbors to think I was mad, and still only found less than half of the pieces broken off. A coaxing knife of fingernail breaks the rest off. Still, I’d hardly think banging chocolate on the counter is romantic.
After opening up the orange/ball/apple, I had it sitting at my desk for a while, through which I found that it has a very appealing aroma. Not all fresh strawberries, but not too artificial, either. The pieces all have one of ten prints on them, like a rose, cupid, and an “Only You” heart. Not the most classy-looking designs, but they are details. Going along with my “better than I’d expected” comments, is the taste. Same strawberry set with milk chocolate, which I’d put a bit above average. You do need some sort of a sweet tooth, but the effect isn’t sickly-sweet. Instead, it’s a yummy treat.
This isn’t the sort of Valentine’s gift to make a statement, yet it has enough of a market. Maybe in a group of presents, for someone who wouldn’t want to be tempted by too much chocolate, or for a younger couple. I’m certainly glad it found its way to me.