Thursday, January 20, 2011

John Kelly Chocolates: Hawaiian Sea Salt Caramel Fudge Bites

As a regular reader of several chocolate, candy, and dessert blogs, I’ve heard quite a bit of buzz about John Kelly chocolates. Apparently, they are out in the Los Angeles area. As I have an upcoming business trip to that area, it seems like a place to check out.

Before I even got that chance, somebody gave me a package of Hawaiian Sea Salt Caramel Fudge Bites as a gift.

I mean seriously. Wow. Now I’ll know for myself whether it’s worth the stop during my trip.

A quick look at one of the fudge bites reveals that the sea salt isn’t very evenly distributed, which likely means that some bites wind up being quite salty while others lack bites. I generally prefer uniformity throughout a chocolate creation, but wasn’t about to let that stop me from checking out the chocolate itself.

The interior is surprisingly not very sweet, which differentiates it from most fudges. It is best described as a cross between a ganache and a fudgy brownie, and while the creation title notes that this is a caramel fudge bite, little caramel flavor is evident.

That being said, the interior is still soft, sweet, and subtly chocolaty, and is surrounded by a smooth, semi-sweet chocolate that gets just a bit lost between the fudgy interior and the decorative coarse salt. I was, however, quite impressed with how well that surrounding chocolate meshed with the texture of the soft interior, as there was no cracking of the couverture during the multiple enjoyable bites.

I remain undecided about stopping by the John Kelly shop in person. These fudge bites were pretty good, but I was disappointed by the lack of advertised caramel flavor and the uneven distribution of the sea salt.

Have you ever had anything from John Kelly? What did you think?

16 comments:

  1. I LOVE the new sea salt trend. Brilliant!

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  2. This looks plenty delicious to me. I love a not-too-sweet chocolate!

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  3. Never had John Kelley chocolates, but I would definitely try some! =D

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  4. I love the review! As you know, I'm a huge fan :) But to be honest, I haven't had them in a while! You can buy them at Neiman Marcus, so I'm not sure you have to be in LA to get them! Have a great trip!!!

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  5. I think if you're putting the words fudge, caramel, and sea salt on your product, you're creating some high expectations. I bet I would love these even though I tend to prefer chocolate on the sweeter side.

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  6. I have never heard of this company.I really like caramel so I would definitely want to be able to taste it along with the chocolate.

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  7. Ah, see, this is a truffle more likely to convince me to give up the occassional bar in favour of truffle tasting ;)

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  8. These sounds great!! I really really want one right now despite the lack of caramel! If you decide to stop by, it will be great to read about!

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  9. @BethIt was pretty good - definitely liked the fact that it wasn't a sugar bomb.

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  10. @fitchocoholic All chocolate is worth trying. All.

    Except maybe Hershey's. We know that stinks.

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  11. @Dessert Darling Maybe I'll just drop by a local Neiman's - but you know, there's something to be said for being in the flagship shop. I'm scouring your blog for my must-hit-spots.

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  12. @Evan Thomas It is true that I went in with high expectations, for those reasons and because of what I'd heard about John Kelly. Maybe if I'd gone in with no expectations, I'd be jumping up and down with glee.

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  13. @Alicia@ eco friendly homemaking It's big out in CA, though it can be obtained in other places. I was certainly expecting a little more caramel.

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  14. @Hannah It's kind of a non-traditional truffle. Nice and dense, though.

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  15. @Debbie B. We'll see what happens - I only have limited time there, and LA has many great chocolate stops. My hope is that the John Kelly store has more to scope out if I do get there.

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