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Can you really compare a¬†Hotel Chocolat¬†390g Easter egg with a dozen egglets for ¬£26¬†with one¬†from¬†Thorntons¬†that weighs 320g and costs ¬£6.50 (or ¬£4.33 each if bought on their 3 for 2 offer) but which can be personalised with some icing? Is the¬†experience¬†the same? I think not. They’re completely different eggs for¬†completely¬†different types of people.
You only have to look at the wonderful hat-box type of packaging from¬†Hotel Chocolat¬†to know it’s a class apart. Just on the visuals if I bought my wife this box she’d be thinking ‘wow, he knows what I like’, but if I bought the¬†Thorntons¬†ones she’d be thinking ‘haven’t his clients being paying’. That’s not a criticism on Thorntons at all, but just reflects on the different approaches that the two companies have.¬†Hotel Chocolat¬†has become the company you buy from if you want to make an impression and Thorntons one ¬†you’d go to if you wanted to save money. Well, that’s how I see it anyway.
How great it looks is obvious. There’s just so much attention to detail. I love the black ribbon tied into a bow. There’s branded sellotape holding the lid on and when you open it up the egg isn’t just ‘plonked’ inside, but it’s purposely laid on angle like sliced meat in fine restaurant. The egg is also wrapped in sturdy light ‘gold’ foil which gives it yet another layer of sophistication.
But there is one bit that¬†Thorntons¬†does come out on top with, and that’s the thickness and consistency of the chocolate. With theirs it was a pretty standard 5mm all the way around, with some odd extra dollops on the inside. But this one ranges from 2mm at its thinnest point to 10mm at the very outer edges where the egg has been rested to set. From the base it fairly quickly reduced from 10mm to about 5mm and then, on mine at least, it has half of the egg between 2mm and 4mm.
A mitigating factor, and probably a very important one, is that I actually prefer the chocolate with the¬†Hotel Chocolat¬†egg. It’s sweeter and has a more interesting flavour profile. The¬†Thorntons¬†is bland and a touch ‘wooden’ in comparison. This one is rich and does ‘zap’ your taste-buds as you bite into it.
With this Easter egg you also get a variety of six different flavours of mini eggs in the form of their egglets. You’ll get two each of Raspberry & Sour Cr√®me; Plain Praline, Runny Slated Caramel, Mango¬†Cr√®me br√Ľl√©e; Caramel Praline and Ginger & Dark. Combined they all have wonderful flavours, the ginger one I’d prefer to have more heat, but it is consistent with the rest of the eggs. The raspberry and sour cr√®me strangely managed to combine some intense fruitiness with some mild, creamy flavours that I found very pleasant, if a touch acidic.
So which would you prefer to¬†receive? To be truthful, and if I was only getting the one or two Easter eggs, and I wasn’t consuming forty or fifty of them a year, then I’d want to get one from the¬†Hotel Chocolat¬†range – probably the¬†Dark Fix egg.