Before we continue with this, I feel I ought to pout this particular item into perspective.
Yes, it’s THAT big. Like Dom’s milk chocolate, strawberry and puffed rice creation, this weighs in at a slightly over-the-top 650g. That’s an awful lot of chocolate.
It reminded me of an occasion in my youith when my girlfriend at the time told me she ‘only wanted a card’ for her birthday, so I went out and bought one of those oversized, metre-square greetings cards/ It’s larger than life, ridiculously over the top, and possibly more than one person should be given.
As you can see (using the new Chocablog 20p piece standard measurement), it’s a fairly hefty slab of dark fruit and nut chocolate. Hotel Chocolat’s 70% cocoa house blend, combined with Raisins, hazelnuts, pecan and cherries, or should I say ‘The thrilling crunch of hazelnuts and pecans, as well as the succulence of raisins and the thrill of cherry pieces.’ Hmm – I’m not sure I’ve ever been thrilled by fruit and nuts, and isn’t the use of ‘thrill’ and ‘thrilling’ in the same sentence a little lazy?
This lacks the intricacy of the Fruity Affair heart, and the black and red packaging and no-nonsense seal suggest that this is possibly aimed at the male recipient. None of your girly pink chocolate here, oh no.
As for the chocolate itself, well it’s a very well made, absolutely enormous bar of posh fruit and nut. You’ll either love it, or you won’t. The chocolate is (as one might expect) excellent, and the nuts are crisp and full of flavour, The cherries add a little zing and chewiness to the overall taste experience, making it probably one of the best fruit and nut combinations I’ve had in a long time. The packaging is luxurious, with rich, deep colours and a very subtle rose motif that shouldn’t offend the more macho among us. It also has a decent shelf life, meaning that it will; probably keep you going until Easter. At almost £30 it is something of a grand gesture, but I reckon it’s better value than a fistful of roses, and will certainly provide more pleasure.