Arnott’s Bites – Mint Slice

June 8, 2017 at 21:21 | Posted in biscuits | Leave a comment
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Arnott’s are at it again, fiddling with old ideas. Apparently they have re-branded the ‘Chocolicious‘ range simply as ‘bites’, and also changed the flavours. In shocking news, it seems the dark chocolate version is no more. This is a tragedy, as it was by far the best one. However, in more cheery news, the Mint Slice is now honoured with the chocolicous bite treatment.

To be honest, I was never a fan of the whole ‘chocolicious’ thing, a rather unfortunate portmanteau¬†that I previously blasted as ‘try hard and derivative’. ‘Bites’ is more to the point, although I now feel rather nostalgic for the old packaging, which I think did look more classy than the new, rather utilitarian design.

Enough of all that – how are the new Mint Slice versions? Well, the Mint Slice, as you will know, I believe to be Arnott’s finest creation. So I was pretty excited about these. The individual elements – the chocolate, the biscuit and the peppermint cream – are all there. But the proportions are way different. The chart below will give you the idea:

That’s a lot of chocolate. Chocolate dominates in this new format. That’s not all bad, as it’s Arnott’s delicious high quality dark chocolate, but it does rather unbalance the texture a bit; there’s not really enough biscuit to give textural contrast and structure. These are good, but not as good as the original. I’m going to give them an eight out of ten.

Tim Tam Choc Mint

February 13, 2017 at 15:20 | Posted in biscuits | Leave a comment
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tim-tam-choc-mintWow! A whole new set of Tim Tam flavours have been launched. And with funky packaging too!

This new range has been ‘inspired by Gelato Messina’. For those of you who have not heard of Gelato Messina, it’s a posh ice-cream shop, and currently flavour-du-jour of the hipster classes. Move over Zumbo; this is the new cool in desserts. Arnott’s have clearly read the zeitgeist, ditched the patissier extraordinaire, and hope to ride the gelato craze.

There are four new flavours: Mint Choc, Coconut and Lychee, Black Forest and Salted Caramel Vanilla. Now, you may be excused for thinking that sounds all a little familiar. Arnott’s have previously ranged Mint, Coconut, Black Forest and Salted Caramel versions of Tim Tams. Indeed, some of those flavours were apparently created by the great Adriano Zumbo himself, so it must be a bit galling to not only be dumped in favour of an ice-cream parlour, but for them to steal your flavours too.

It was the Mint Choc I tore into first. To be honest, I was super-excited. The previous Mint incarnation of Tim Tam was, in my opinion, one of the finest Tim Tams ever made, and I was hoping that this would be the same biscuit, dressed up to capture those oh-so-fickle millennials.

tim-tam-choc-mint-biscuitWell, sad to say, it is not. it is similar, to be sure, but not the same. Instead of the rich mint cocoa filling of the original, this one has a slightly green-tinged cream that smells rather like the junior Chillikebabs’ toothpaste. It certainly has a minty taste, but a more creamy, almost vanillary version. To Arnott’s credit, it does actually taste quite a bit like Mint Choc ice cream. And it’s by no means a bad biscuit; they are quite yummy and easy to chomp on. It’s just not quite up to the high benchmark set by the original (which I went all out and gave 10/10 for). I’m going to give these a highly creditable 8/10. And Arnott’s – please bring back the original mint ones…

Tim Tam Dark Mint

March 11, 2011 at 09:18 | Posted in biscuits | 3 Comments
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Great excitement! Stop the presses! On an expedition to the supermarket last week, I found something new and exciting in the biscuit aisle – a new line of Tim Tams featuring dark chocolate. Obviously Arnott’s have taken heed of my advice around dark chocolate, and decided to expand their repertoire. There were two different varieties on offer, both decked out in a sophisticated livery; ‘Mint’ and ‘Run and Raisin’. I chose the mint, although you can be assured I will be returning to the Rum and Raisin variety in a future post.

I chose mint as I was intrigued to see how it fared against the Mint Slice. The Mint Slice is awesome, and I’ve rather controversially declared that I prefer it to the Tim Tam. However, could this preference be overturned by this new minty Tim Tam?

The first thing to note is that, in common with other ‘prestige’ varieties of Tim Tam, you only get nine in a packet, as opposed to eleven. This just rankles a bit with me, to be honest. Come on Arnott’s, give us a fair go and give us a full pack every time.

Once past that small disappointment, the Dark Mint Tim Tam is revealed to have an alluring minty aroma. It’s classic Tim Tam; thick dark chocolate enrobing two crumbly biscuits sandwiched together with a rich cream. The cream filling is not white, like the Mint Slice, but a rich mint-flavoured cocoa cream.

And they are good. Very good indeed. The balance of mint and chocolate is just right and the biscuit and cream filling work together perfectly. Oh yes, these are very good. Maybe even the best Tim Tam I have tasted. They are very rich, and very moreish.

Are they better than the Mint Slice? Now that’s a hard one. The Mint Slice is, after all, a classic. But these new Tim Tams have a richness that the Mint Slice lacks; a real air of decadence. Goodness, I just don’t know where to go with this one. I think I am going to have to declare it an honourable draw, with the sheer chompability of the Mint Slice on the one hand and the richness of the Tim Tam Dark Mint on the other. These will definitely be featuring on the Chillikebab family shopping list…

Mint Slice

June 12, 2010 at 10:26 | Posted in biscuits | 4 Comments
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What do you get when you cross an after dinner mint with a biscuit? Answer: Arnott’s Mint Slice. This is a very classy biscuit. A rich chocolate biscuit base, topped with peppermint cream (flavoured, as the pack proudly proclaims, with real peppermint oil) and finally enrobed in smooth dark chocolate. They even look classy, with their smooth chocolate coating and even layer of mint cream. Am I sounding like an advert? Apologies if I am, but I do rather like these biscuits. Indeed, to my mind they are nicer than the Tim Tam (there, I said it!), although I have a feeling I’m going to regret mentioning that.

Despite their richness, this is a biscuit that it is extremely easy to eat a whole packet of. Sit down with a packet of Mint Slices, and – whoooof! – they are all gone. I’m not the only person to comment on this; several friends have made the same observation. Indeed, it’s got so bad in the Chillikebab household that we have to have two packets of Mint Slices in the fridge, labelled separately for Mrs Chillikebab and myself. Mrs Chillikebab has such self control she can eat perhaps one or two biscuits at a time, and make a packet last for week. Occasionally I can make a packet last two days, but that’s very rare.

I’m going to go all out and give these a ten out of ten, although I’m not quite sure where that leaves me should an even better biscuit come on the scene.

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