The first surprise comes when you split open the wrapper and discover that the contents are a remarkably similar colour to the packet. It’s made with white chocolate (as seems to be the norm) and has quite a powerful apple aroma. Make that VERY powerful. A deep sniff of this KitKat actually put me off for a few minutes, it was so strong.
Popping a piece into my mouth was quite a shock – when I breathed in it was almost like I’d inhaled the fumes from some sort of solvent! A series of unnatural flavour/aroma compounds assaulted my palate, something akin to a mixture of perfume, hairspray and adhesives with a hint of sugar. After the initial burst of man made scariness there is a hint of sugar and chocolate in there somewhere, but it can barely compete with that initial rush of unnatural apple overkill. It was only once I’d finished eating that more of the flavours revealed themselves.
Once I’d eaten the thing and my palate had cleared somewhat I did find that what was left behind did taste like carrot and apple, but at this point I was ‘running on fumes’ as it were – breathing the flavours rather than tasting them.
I can’t say I liked this at all. I can’t even say “It’s mad, but you ought to taste it to discover how mad it is.” I wouldn’t recommend it to anyone unless they were looking for examples of bad confectionery for some project or other. Shockingly awful.
If there’s one thing that stands out about this KitKat, it’s the aroma… no.. smell. Even before you’ve had time to take in the fact that the bar is orange, you’re greeted with the smell of apples. Not vegetables.
Unfortunately, the smell is so strong, there’s no way it could be real apple. I didn’t hate it quite as much as Simon, but let’s just say if you like Glade air fresheners, you’ll probably love this.
This KitKat IS actually made with real “fruit juice” and “vegetable juice powder” (or so the English ingredients list sticker would have me believe), but it still tastes entirely artificial. Like cheap apple-flavoured candies, complete with slightly strange aftertaste. There’s a little bit of carrot flavour there, but not much. It also contains cocoa mass and cocoa butter, but I didn’t pick up anything chocolatey about it at all.
That said, I couldn’t bring myself to hate it entirely. It’s a candy bar, not a chocolate bar. I could see young kids with a fondness for artificially flavoured fruit candies going for this, but I’m not sure how many of them will be attracted to the leading-vegetable-juice-maker co-branding. So in that sense, this one is a bit of a failure.
But at the same time, I’m glad that Nestlé make a bar like this. It’s not going to be to everyone’s taste (or most people’s taste for that matter), but the fact that they can make it and then just move along to the next new flavour is what makes Japanese KitKats so interesting.