If a chocolate company ever earned the epithet ‘troubled’ surely it has to be Kshocolât. Over the past few years we’ve had our hands on quite a few of their products, and I think it’s fair to say that they’ve not been well received. It’s also fair to say that we weren’t the only people to greet Kshocolât with a degree of indifference. The company went into receivership just about a year ago, but was saved by Bon Bon Buddies, a company better known for theme branded chocolate novelties and gifts. Indeed, until a little over a year ago BBB weren’t involved in manufacturing chocolate at all.
This particular box has apparently been produced in collaboration with John Lewis and claims to represent ‘something totally new and different’. Whether these predate Hotel Chocolat’s cocktail collection, I couldn’t say, but they’re obviously not unique. Marketed as ‘a perfect girls’ Friday night in in a box’, the flavours are (clockwise starting at twelve o’clock) Margarita, Irish Coffee, Mojito, Cosmopolitan and Strawberry Daiquiri. There are two white and two milk chocolates, the only dark chocolate being the Irish Coffee ganache.
The cocoa content of these chocolates isn’t at the top of the scale; white chocolate at 26%, milk at 33% and dark at 60%, but that isn’t necessarily an indicator of quality or flavour. The following statement on Kshocolât’s web site does position them as a premium brand though, and having read this, my expectations went up a notch or two.
“Kshocolât is an international luxury chocolate brand created for the ultimate in indulgence. Our passion is to make the best luxury chocolates from the finest ingredients with irresistible flavours that taste simply delicious. Our range of chocolates treats and gifts make perfect presents for your loved ones or even yourself, for those moments when only the most luxurious will do. We are proud of our stylishly indulgent treats, so we’re sure you’ll enjoy every mouthful.”
Having tasted my way through these chocolates, I have to say I disagree with a number of those claims. The chocolates seem fairly generic, almost as if Kshocolât were still packaging chocolates made elsewhere. The flavours of the fillings are obviously made with the correct alcohols (according to the ingredients list) but seem to come across as somewhat lifeless. For example the Margarita came across as ‘alcohol with lime’ and the Mojito as ‘alcohol with mint’ surrounded in chocolate. The chocolate was as good as you’d get in most supermarket ‘Finest’ or ‘Best’ collections but it really isn’t ‘the most luxurious’ and to claim otherwise is something of a nonsene.
With a retail price of a shade under twelve pounds, they’re at the top end price wise, but for a few pence per piece more you could be eating William Curley or Paul A Young chocolates, and they just can’t compare with that level of quality, taste or freshness. I can’t help thinking these are overpriced. They’re not unpleasant, just fairly average, and fairly average isn’t going to cut it if you’re trying to convince people to buy at premium prices.