Monday, December 28, 2009
Kit Kat: Wasabi (Limited Edition)
As soon as J-List started tweeting that they had wasabi flavored Kit Kats, I had to buy some.
Wasabi is that lump of green stuff that is served next to sushi. It's a type of horseradish that is finely ground and mixed into a paste. It is also extremely hot...to most people, anyway. Personally, I can eat wads of it plain.
While most Americans tend to think of it only as a garnish for sushi, I am one of those odd people who think it's good on everything. Seriously. I have used it on sandwiches of all types, I've smeared it on pepperoni pizza. I have made compound butter with it. One of my signature dishes is a grilled (or broiled) wasabi-crusted salmon.
So a wasabi candy? Hell, yeah!
Here in the U.S., Kit Kat (made in this country by Hershey) doesn't give us many flavor options. However, our East Asian friends get their Kit Kats (made by Nestlé, as are the rest of the world's) in a rather amazing array of flavors. Yes, the Kit Kat universe in Asia is indeed vast compared to ours. In the case of Japanese Kit Kats, some of the flavors are so specialized that they are only available in certain areas of the country. (For example, this flavor was from Shizuoka.) I wish the U.S. would do more limited edition flavors on products in general. I think it would be really interesting to have regional editions of things here...but, onward...
The box that I got contained twelve individually wrapped packets, each containing two mini Kit Kat fingers. The chocolate is a white chocolate that has been flavored with wasabi. The color of the finger is a light boogerish green. When you sniff the bars, all you really get is the sweet sugary smell of the white chocolate. If there is something hot and spicy hiding in there, it is kind of an olfactory ninja.
Biting into the bar does toss a little throwing star of flavor at you. There is no mistaking that there is wasabi in the bar. Not only is it in the white chocolate, but wasabi also flavors the thin layers of creme sandwiched between the wafers. But rather than being strong and potent, or even a little hot, it tastes like you took the teeny-tiniest little bit of wasabi possible and immediately chugged a glass of milk with it to cover the flavor. The essence of the wasabi is present -- there's no mistaking the flavor -- but what you really taste is the strong milky, sweetness of the chocolate. I didn't get the slightest hint of the heat that I love.
Still, even without the heat, I loved the flavor. It was a different way to have something I am already crazy about. I am glad that Nestlé went with white chocolate (even though I am not a fan as a rule) rather than a dark or a milk. The white chocolate kept its sweetness but allowed the wasabi flavor to come through. I think a darker chocolate might have overwhelmed it. I blew through several of these little packs in a really short time.
Check out Jen's review here from her site Jen Ken's Kit Kat Blog. Jen found the bars to be much hotter then I did. Jen's review is also mentioned on The Impulsive Buy Podcast #10.