With Valentine's day loomimg her is one way to woo your loved one!
We are told that we should tell our loved ones daily that we love them. Easy to say perhaps but do we mean it? If they give me a box of Baci then I know they do!
You may only be one person to the world, but you may also be the world to one person. An Asian proverb quoted on a little slip of paper inside a Baci chocolate. A chocolate we are told, that is wrapped in love. Just right for Valentines Day, so if you havent bought your loved one something nice DO IT QUICKLY! Or just treat them anyway, these are a lovely present and the equivalent of a kiss!
I only had a tube containing 6 chocolates but you can buy bigger boxes! My tube is red with gold stars and has name BACI and Nestle logo, it is nicely curved at one end, very stylish. There is a picture of the delicious chocolate and the little message. On the back clear nutritional values are stated and a little about the actual chocolates.
Baci ( pronounced with an Italian accent should sound like Bar-Chee) is named after the Italian word for KISSES and has helped people express their love since they were created in Perugia in 1922. As you un-wrap the gold tinfoil with red writing, you smell the lovely dark chocolate, and see the message inside the wrapper. There is a message of love that will touch any heart according to the box! Friends, relatives and lovers alike. Of course the chocolate is special too and as I bite into my second one I will describe the sensation.
I nearly popped it in whole, because my mouth is just big enough! It is 3cm in diameter and is dome shaped to a height of 2.5cm. -( the chocolate not my mouth! )but I bit into the chocolate to check its filling. There is a very wafer biscuit cup filled with a chocolaty hazelnut aerated filling. Similar to Aero but more dense with a whole roasted hazelnut sitting on top. The whole sweet is covered in a good layer of rich dark chocolate.
Mmmm. Delicious a lovely dark chocolate flavour mingles with the delicate hazelenut filling and although the wafer biscuit is really thin there is a lovely flavour plus the crunch of the nut. A good all rounded mixture of flavours and textures.
A tasty treat, but I found I needed another one just to get more of the flavour! It is very light and not sickly at all, as some rich chocolates are. Although we are discouraged from listing
ingredients I discovered the layer of chocolate is described as a blend of milk and plain, and the ingredients all sound very natural, except for the emulsifier no nasty E additives. There are 20% of Hazelnuts using both whole and ground. There are 59 cals in a sweet and 3.9g of fat for those of you on diets. Obviously no good if you dont like nuts or have an allergy, but as a way of saying I LOVE YOU then its definitely top of my list. These were a gift but I think they are about £1.20 a packet of six.
Another message says, Love doesnt make the world go round. Love is what makes the ride worthwhile!
Some people say chocolates are better than sex! I'm off for a "snogging session " with my box of Baci! As I sing "A kiss is just a Kiss!"
I can remember a time when I used to await the yearly visits from a colleague from Italy with baited breath. Dont get me wrong, shes done nothing to fall out of favour with me, and I still truly enjoy meeting her, but she no longer can bring me one of the few real Italian treats. Actually, she can, but now that treat has been purchased by the chocolate mogul Nestlés. I am speaking, of course of what was once Italys own and exclusive Peruginas famous Baci chocolates.
To be totally fair, Nestlés hasnt removed the Perugina name from these chocolates, nor have they actually changed the products themselves. Its just that when I get Baci today, its no longer a very special, only from Italy treat.
What are Baci? The word baci (pronounced BAH-chee) is Italian (duh!) meaning kisses. Ah, but viva la difference from those tiny t*rds made by the dreaded American Hersheys! Baci chocolates dont just taste different (thank goodness), they also dont look even slightly similar. First of all, Baci are more than just a dollop of chocolate covered in metallic wrappings. No, Baci are much more complex than this, considered by Italians as the chocolates of love, we all know that theres nothing simple about love, dont we? So why would a chocolate called kisses be a simple blob, right?
Baci chocolates contain at their pinnacle, a whole, roasted hazelnut. This nut nestles itself on top of a small mound of smooth, whipped chocolate filling which is neither mushy nor stiff, and contains tiny pieces of chopped hazelnuts inside. This filling is not too sweet as many fillings of this kind can be, but rather seems nicely to combine with the nutty flavour of its crunchy companion. Hugging these two things together is a lovingly draped blanket of dark chocolate. This dark chocolate is less sweet than the filling, and has a slightly woody undertone which nicely compliments the hazelnut, without any acidic tang that some dark chocolates can have. This slightly toothy dark chocolate covering is the exact midway point in texture between the whipped filling and the hard nuts. All in all, a three way treat - crunchy, creamy and slightly chewy in texture with the three great tastes of roasted hazelnut, dark chocolate and whipped milky chocolate filling. If there ever was a perfect marriage of tastes and textures, this certainly would be it.
But thats not all that makes these lovelies so loveable. These sweets are about 2cm in height and about 1.5cm in diameter, so theyre not very large, however, theyre easily double the size of one of those dastardly US wannabies. Id say that theyre just about a mouthful - not too big and certainly not too small (like you-know-whos). Of course, you know what they say - more than a mouthful is a waste. And if we all know what this slightly rude statement is referring to, Id say that these actually look like well how can I put this delicately? Lets see well The American Heritage Dictionary would describe this as the small projection near the center of the mammary gland containing the outlets of the milk ducts through which young mammals obtain milk from the adult female. Got it? Good (and if not, youll find a translation in the Technical Stuff, below).
These are also very romantically wrapped in silver foil which is scattered with lovely dark blue stars all over it. And when you tear away that foil you will be greeted with a fairly pungent chocolate scent - one that is almost peppery in its initial stages and after a second or two youll get that lovely smooth chocolate smell that has just a hint of the warm aroma of roasted nuts. It will be almost impossible to not pop this directly into your mouth and gobble this down immediately. However, to really experience this properly, I suggest that you take a good bite out of this, making sure that your teeth go exactly half way through that nut. In this way youll be able to get all three tastes and textures at one time, while also getting a good look at what youre munching away at.
When you do this, the dark chocolate will begin to mingle with the whipped filling in a glorious lather. As you crunch into the bits of nuts youll feel your mouth almost explode with sensory enchantment. Soon, youll get that tingling sensation at the back of your mouth that signals that your body has moved into gratification mode. As this slides down your throat, youll get that soft feeling at the back of your tongue which will highlight the rich chocolate flavour and carry more of the aroma to your olfactory senses. If this isnt a moment of heaven, I dont know what is.
Inside the foil youll not only find these scrumptious morsels but youll also find a slip of paper with some kind of message. No, its not a fortune, its a love note, or rather a quote that talks about love. Apparently, the idea for this came from one of the chocolate makers habits of wrapping his hand-made chocolates in messages of affection that were given to his object of desire, who apparently was a master chocolate maker in her own right. Todays tiny missives are included in these confections and are translated into several languages (I think the last ones I had were in Italian, French, Spanish and English). Reading these notes has always been part of my attraction to this product.
It was these nodules of love that made Perugina famous throughout Europe. And it was Nestlés greedy hands that bought it out in order for its fame to spread and be available for purchase world-wide. While thats not really all of a bad thing, it does seem to be a bit of a let-down to pick up something that was originally made with such emotion and sentiment and find out that its now part of a huge, cold conglomerate. On the up-side, this does mean that more kinds of these delights are now available to the public and a wider audience will be exposed to their pleasures. Under Nestlés investing umbrella, there are now two types of Baci chocolate bars - a 1.5oz mini-bar and a 4.4oz large bar. The only thing that bothers me about these bars is that the hazelnuts are only chopped up in them, and not allowed to be full and whole as in the original Baci love-dots.
Id have to say that one of the reasons why I always loved these is because they were a total experience. They were fun because of the notes, they were exotic because they came from the lovely hills of Italy, they were fancy because they came from a small confectioner (not so anymore) and they were delicious because they well, they just were. And you know something, even though theyve been bought up by one of the big boys, I guess they still are just as fun, exotic, fancy and delicious as they always were. So if you come and bring me Baci, youll still be assured of getting kisses from me in return (but keep your hands off my Baci!).
Thanks for reading!
*(yes, I mean it looks a bit like a nipple).
the full history of this chocolate can be found at
and the products are at
and you can even get the Baci brochure at