“ Brand: Butlers / Type: Praline „
A friend of mine brought these back from Ireland recently. The bars were costing approximately 1.50 Euros each, quite expensive considering the present exchange rate. They are neatly packaged and indeed do project the appearance of a luxury chocolate, although I don't regard them as such. They are not so easy to find in the Britain but I believe Waitrose have been known to sell them on occasion.
Butlers' Milk Chocolate Hazelnut Praline Bar is a chunky 75g milk chocolate bar. There are six chunks to each bar and inside each one, surrounded by smooth soft praline, is a whole crunchy hazelnut. The hazelnut praline centre is a mixture of powdered nuts and chocolate. Generally speaking Praline is made from ground up sugar coated nuts that have been mixed with chocolate to form a paste. Praline filled chocolates have become popular in recent years. Thornton's do a lot of them.
Personally I don't like this creamy mush very much. I'd rather just have plain chocolate. Of course I ate a whole bar just to test it and I can imagine some will be more than satisfied with this smooth sweet but not so chocolaty confectionary. For me though it was a little to sweet and it would have been quite sickly if it were not for the crunchy hazelnut in each block.
Another thing I don't like about these bars is that they contain vanillin. This is an organic compound extracted from the vanilla bean. However, synthetic vanillin, instead of natural vanilla extract, is sometimes used as a flavouring agent in foods, beverages, and pharmaceuticals. There is no indication hat type of vanillin exists in this bar. A lot of the dark chocolates in Aldi contain his substance. I try to avoid chocolate containing vanillin.
Milk chocolate (sugar, full cream milk powder, cocoa butter, cocoa mass, emulsifier: soya lecithin, flavour: vanillin), hazelnut paste, plain chocolate (cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter, emulsifier: soya lecithin, flavour: vanillin), hazelnuts, butter oil.
This is my favourite Butlers chocolate bar! And yes, I have tried them all!
First for the technical stuff:
The bar costs Euro1.50 and weighs75g.
Ingredients are as follows:
"Milk chocolate (sugar, full cream milk powder, cocoa butter, cocoa mass, emulsifier: soya lecithin, flavour: vanillin), hazelnut paster, plain chocolate (cocoa mass, sugar, cocoa butter, emulsifier: soya lecithin, flavour: vanillin), hazelnuts, butter oil.
This product contains cow's milk, soya and nuts"
No nutritional information on the bar - and none that I can see on the website.
The packaging is stylish, as with all of the Butlers bars. A simple white wrapper with the Butlers logo embossed in gold. A simple photo of the product on one end, showing the bar outside and inside!
These bars are nice and chunky, and one is plenty to satisfy a chocolate craving.
The bar is encased in a thick layer of Butlers milk chocolate, and inside is a rich and creamy hazelnut praline. Inside each square of chocolate, there is a whole hazelnut - giving a crunchy, nutty, smooth, rich mixture with each bite.
Definately worth a try - if you like chocolate and if you like nuts!
(This review is also on Ciao)
Butlers' Milk Chocolate Hazelnut Praline Bar is a chunky chocolate bar. Each bar weighs 75 grams and is individually made with a hazelnut praline centre. There are six chunks to each bar and inside each one, surrounded by the soft praline, is a delicious hazelnut.
Praline is a mixture of powdered nuts and chocolate and the praline used in this confectionary is made to an old family recipe.
What makes this product different and a little more expensive than other similar ones is that it is handmade to a recipe that has been used at the Butlers' factory, in Ireland, for many years. I have to admit that this is certainly a quality product and one that all serious chocoholics will want to try.
The first challenge when it comes to reviewing this chocolate bar is actually being able to find one to buy. I searched everywhere and believe me, I am one of the world's best at 'chocolate shopping' but I had no luck. I did discover that I could order these online in boxes of 12 but £16.18 plus £8.50 delivery for chocolate seemed a bit extravagant.
I then discovered that these are available widely in Ireland but a quick trip to Cork to buy one was also out of the question. According to the Butlers' website these chocolate bars are available at Waitrose but we don't have those at my end of the country, either.
Most airports sell them in their shops too, but I couldn't quite manage a quick trip to Cyprus or somewhere nice and warm so that I could pick one up in the duty free shop on my way through. The idea was appealing and I even toyed with putting the trip down as expenses on my tax return. After all, I am a self employed writer, so research and essential tools are allowable.
Anyway, while I was dreaming about that one my brother announced that he had to go to Cork on business. He brought me half a dozen Butlers' chocolate bars in a selection of flavours. (Yum!)
***Packaging And Pricing***
There is nothing over packaged, or fussy about the wrapping on this chocolate bar. It is wrapped in gold coloured foiled paper and has a plain white sleeve over it. The sleeve has a picture of chocolate covered hazelnuts at one end. The brand name is written in what looks like script.
There is very little else on the wrapper except for the country name (Ireland) and the weight of the bar (75grms.)
This plain wrapping is tasteful and simple but it gives the impression of something pure, fresh and personal. It says 'simple', 'fresh', pure and I think it is very cleverly designed.
The cost of these bars fluctuates depending where you purchase. The ones that brother brought from Cork cost him 10 Euros which is a good bargain. They are round about £1.38 in UK, if you can find them, or you are lucky enough to have a Waitrose near by.
If you buy from the website (details to follow), they will cost you more than £2 each when you add the postage to your purchase.
***The Senses: Taste, Smell And Texture***
A bar of Butlers Milk Chocolate Hazelnut Praline Chocolate is a real treat for all your senses.
The smell makes your mouth water as you unwrap the bar. That rich sweet aroma of quality creamy chocolate is mixed with a sharper trace of cocoa. (I could hardly wait to eat it.)
The taste of this is rich, milky and sweet but not so sweet that it makes your mouth 'curl up'. The hazelnuts are crisp and crunchy and the praline mixed with then gives a rich, sumptuous taste.
If I was tasting wine instead of chocolate I would say that the first taste is a clear milky, creamy one, with an undertone of praline and the hazelnut excites the palette as the flavours mingle to give well rounded taste sensation. (In other words, I like it.)
The smell is unmistakeably chocolate even before you open the wrapper. It smells sweet and slightly milky and I could also smell the hazelnuts before I popped the first chunk into my mouth. It smelled so good that I thought I would eat it all, but I couldn't. It was far too rich for that.
The texture of the bar as you hold it in your hand is firm, thick and substantial. There are parallel lines along the top of the bar which give a finely ridged effect and add the texture you would expect from a handmade bar. Two chunks of this are enough at one sitting, even for this confirmed chocoholic. (I did eat some more a couple of hours later though).
In the mouth the chocolate is smooth and silky. It took a while to get the chunk of chocolate to melt and reveal the taste and texture of the hazelnut beneath but this only added to the satisfaction of eating it.
***Nutrition And Health***
There is no list of contents on the wrapper but some Nutritional information and advice is available on the Butler website.
All Butler's products may contain nuts because they are manufactured in an area where nuts are used. It is very important to be aware of this if you have a nut allergy.
It is generally accepted that it is the cocoa mass in milk and dark chocolate that causes migraine in those who are susceptible to it. Butlers recommends that their white chocolate may be a good alternative because it doesn't contain cocoa mass.
Butler's milk chocolate which is used in the Hazelnut Praline bar contains 32% cocoa solids and 20% milk solids.
Butlers do not make diabetic chocolate and they are concerned about the safety of diabetic chocolate products which often contain huge amounts of sweetener in place of the sugar and this too raises blood sugar levels.
All products made by this manufacturer are suitable for vegetarians but not vegans.
Ms Bailey Butler started this company in 1932, in Dublin. In 1959 it was bought by Seamus Sorenson who continues to run it as a small specialised chocolatier. In 1984 the Butlers brand name came into being.
Their first retail outlet was opened in 1989 in Dublin. Then in 1998 their website came into being and they started to sell directly to all parts of the world. The following year the idea of the chocolate café was born.
In 2000 their flagship Butlers Chocolate Café opened at Dublin Airport, so don't forget to look in if you are there.
***Where To Buy***
Butler's products are widely available in Ireland and you can find them in shops in Belfast, Dublin, Cork, Limerick and just about everywhere else.
In UK they are not so easy to find.
As well as Waitrose and Airport duty free shops, there are few other places to buy these chocolate bars. However, you can call Butlers customer services.
(0044) 01 264 333 393
If you give them your postcode they will tell you the nearest outlet.
You can also buy directly from their website:
If you are lucky enough to live in London you can also enjoy all Butler's products at Butlers Chocolate Café: Westfield Shopping Centre, London.
When you go into the café and order a coffee, they give you a free chocolate. Sample a hazelnut praline, white chocolate, or whatever takes your fancy. Purchase chocolate if you wish.
You will also find similar cafes all over Ireland and in New Zealand.
I have now eaten three of the Hazelnut Praline Bars that I had. It's hard work writing a review and I had to keep reminding myself of the flavour and texture of this chocolate.
It is quite expensive but not ridiculously so. I love the creamy texture and the taste is totally different to any other chocolate bar I have tried. I'm a fan of Thornton's but this is much better.
I particularly like the fact that the chunks are quite big so I can let them melt in my mouth. This is the ultimate chocolate experience and I would say that this brand is now my absolute favourite.
I shall ask everyone I know who goes to an airport to bring me some back. Never mind the duty free booze, bring me the chocolate.
A very grown up chocolate and definitely not suitable for children. Tell them they won't like it!