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The Nestle Crunch Crisp is the latest product I've found in the Crunch range which also includes little balls of crunch pieces ('Buncha Crunch'), a caramel layered bar, a coconut topped one and your standard white, milk and dark chocolate crunch bars. You can see the full range here:
I have a try anything once attitude, especially when it comes to chocolate, so even though it was just before 7am when I was in the 7eleven (not a mistake...in Mexico 7elevens are open 24 hours), I bought this to keep for later, in case I never saw it again...
Imagine a KitKat: nice, crisp wafer covered by milk chocolate. Actually, think of a KitKat Chunky, where you get multiple layers of wafer. Now think of a Crunch bar, with its crisped rice pieces covered in milk chocolate. Combine the two, and you have a Crunch Crisp bar.
The bar gets thumbs up for its packaging, as it only has one layer which is an eye catching metallic blue, and which tears open easily from with end.
This chocolate bar itself has an astounding 7 layers to it, but still isn't all that chunky since they're miniscule layers. There are three layers of wafer, stuck together with two layers of chocolate cream. The bottom of the bar is a layer of smooth chocolate, and the top is a layer of crisped rice infused chocolate. In other words, it's a chocolate wafer with a crispy top.
I was looking at the number of layers before I ate it because the bars are massive - 49g - which it more than I really wanted to eat for a snack after lunch, so I broke it into two and kept a piece for later. The bar snapped neatly, without splintering or shattering into crumbs, and it also gave me the chance to examine what was inside.
The wafer they use is white and has no particular flavour, though is probably supposed to be vanilla. However, using this against the darkish chocolate cream makes the bar look more appealing, and also shows the care with which it has been made, as the lines of wafer and cream were perfectly even throughout.
Taking a bite, I was pleasantly surprised by how the two parts worked together. I love KitKats, but have never thought "Hmm, what this needs is a bit of a crunch" while eating one. They work fine as they are, so I wasn't too sure whether this would be an improvement or a step backwards in the chocolate stakes. The wafer was very crisp, which isn't always the case with cheaper wafer products (like some shops' own brands) but it was nice and moist too.
The bar had a very definite chocolate flavour to it, but the wafer and the rice pieces helped neutralise this a bit so it wasn't sickly sweet, despite the chocolate coating and the lashings of chocolate cream inside. I also liked the bit of a kick the crisped rice pieces added to the overall taste. However, I would definitely say this one is more crispy than crunchy due to an imbalance between the several layers of wafer and chocolate cream, and the relatively thin crunchy top, with its sole layer.
Generally, wafer bars like KitKats are quite light, and more biscuity than chocolate bars. This one, however, is a hearty bar thanks to the extra top layer, and I had a satisfying chocolatey snack by eating only half of the bar. Sure, I could have eaten it all, but I didn't need to, and at 249 calories per bar, splitting it into two snacks pleased my waistline too.
Having eaten both halves now, and contemplated going back to the shop to buy another bar, I can safely say this is a great addition to the Crunch range. In fact, though I've eaten them before, I was never that fond of the slightly boring standard Crunch bar. These ones, on the other hand, are definitely worth a look. My only complaint is the size of the bar, as it would be so easy to eat it all in one go. At almost 50g it is a good 10g bigger than what I consider a 'big' chocolate bar (like a Hershey's Extra Creamy), and if I could change one thing about these it would be to reduce the size to between 30 and 40g, so I could scoff the lot in one go. It's a funny size, because it's not a massive bar big enough to share with friends or family either. I paid 75p for my bar which is a lot, but then it is bigger than most, and I was shopping in a convenience store where everything costs a little more.
If you can't find this in the shops, you could always try to improvise it yourself by combining bites of KitKats and normal Crunch bars, but I just don't think it would be the same. Alternatively, these are currently readily available in the UK on eBay or from AlwaysDirect.
Allergy alert: among other things you may or may not expect, this bar contains ground peanuts. It's the smallest quantity ingredient listed, but for allergy sufferers, you'd still not want to risk it.