Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Pret’s Milk Chocolate

Having watched the London Marathon at the weekend there is now talk in the Moss household of a possible father and son entry into next year’s event.  I try to put him off by suggesting that he shouldn't be taken in by all those smiling faces and funny fancy dress outfits! Just consider the pain and fatigue that your body will have to endure for at least a week afterwards. But he’s not listening to a word I'm saying he’s lost in the magic that is the London Marathon. Looks like two more lambs will be led to the slaughter if we’re lucky to get in! I think I may have pulled a muscle already.

Pret A Manager, probably one of the most popular and prolific sandwich eateries in London and most of the UK departure lounges. Pandering to the daily needs of the banker, lawyer or humble office worker in earnestly looking for an early morning fix of porridge or a quick sandwich or salad in the afternoon. I actually approached Pret back in 2008 to see if they would be interested in my Rainforest Alliance chocolate bar. At the time they weren’t interested and even went so far as to say that chocolate bars didn’t perform well alongside their existing range of snacks. Interesting to see how trends have changed a few years on.

The Packaging: Pret never seem to disappoint with their packaging and their catchy ‘strap lines’. Purple is not exactly a cutting edge colour but it looks very presentable. To quote, Milk chocolate – Full of melt-y, chocolate-y loveliness. Yum.  The wrapper is 100% recyclable. Fortunately, their product always tastes as good as the packaging looks.

The Chocolate: To quote, “Milk chocolate – Full of melt-y, chocolate-y loveliness. Yum” Apparently the chocolate is made in a tiny chocolate kitchen not far from the Pret office. This particular milk chocolate has a cocoa content of 36%. I’m not sure what types of cocoa beans are used in this blend but it is made from a unique recipe. I’m guessing this is a blend of Forestero cocoa from West Africa. Interestingly Pret make a statement about their chocolatiers being passionate about trading fairly. From the sale of every bar they make a donation to organisations that support and empower West African farmers to get the best prices they can for their crops. ‘Passion Fact No 10’

The 20g bar is divided up into four equal pieces adorned with the Pret star. There are some tiny holes in the surface of the bar but it is a bright and well presented. There is a pleasant woody aroma coming from the chocolate which gives me hope that this is going to be good. The chocolate melts easily and it is certainly creamy and smooth. In terms of cocoa flavour it is a little thin for my liking.

For me it requires a little more cocoa loveliness to really impress and when you consider the bar retails at 99p for 20g, that equates to £4.95 per 100g, it is a pricey little snack. In terms of presentation and ethical practices I'm happy to award a score of 8/10 but only 6/10 for flavour it just needed a little bit more for my liking. Overall a good effort. I didn't notice if they had a dark bar but I hope they do. On another point have Pret reduced the size of their Love Bars?

I recently wrote a piece on the new range of Nero bars from Peros which is aimed at a similar market. Follow the link below if you'd like to read it....

Posted by Rich the runner!

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