Another one of the fascinating bars which I was fortunate to receive from Swiss chocolate company Frey- the Frey Chocobloc Dark- is a dark chocolate cousin of (and a significantly smaller version of!) the Chocobloc Milk that I took a look at not so long ago. You’ll remember it- it was the behemoth which put a couple of inches on my biceps just carrying it around. Whilst the flavour concept is the same here with the Chocobloc Dark, this weighed in at a much more normal 100g.
Even though this weighed 100g, it was the size of a small-ish bar of chocolate that you’d buy for yourself (i.e. a 50g or whatever bar) which gives you an idea of how dense this really was! It wasn’t much bigger than a Mars bar or something, but when you picked it up, it weighed twice as much as your brain expects it to. Weird. But in a good way; it’s the polar opposite to when you buy a Milky Way or Mars Flyte which look decent sized but you then find out are gone in the blink of an eye because they’re so airy. (By the way, don’t get me started on the Mars Flyte- what an utterly pointless bar of chocolate!
The bar is ‘Dark chocolate with almond-honey-nougat’ which is obviously exactly the same as their Chocobloc Milk…but with dark chocolate. Shocking I know! I have tried Frey’s dark chocolate once before with their odd but kind of good Dark Lemon and Pepper bar, and it was decent. I have to mention it again too (I’ve said it before but it continues to amaze me) that Frey are the number 1 chocolate company for sales in Switzerland. I just can’t get my head around how Lindt are behind Frey in their own back yard, but have a giant market share here in the UK where Frey are totally absent.
The outer appearance was very pleasant as has been the case with everything of theirs I’ve reviewed to date. It’s clear, classy and aesthetically attractive- a job well done.
The cardboard container feels terrific in the hand; safe and high-quality. The chocolate experience very much starts from the moment you look at and pick up a bar, and companies like Frey and Zotter consistently give off such a great first impression. It’s like speed dating when buying food- it might be utterly horrible and cheap…but if it looks good, the chances are you’ll give it more of a chance to shine. Appearances are important and the subtle splashes of gold give the Chocobloc Dark a bit of added wow factor. Stuff which overdoes the gold colour is normally rank (a crass generalisation I know) but used correctly like this, it looks great. The only decent bar of chocolate in a horrible gaudy gold wrapper than I can think of is the Wispa Gold.
The dominant smell here is very much the earthy, semi-bitter dark chocolate. Whereas the much lighter Chocobloc Milk has allowed more of the soft sweetness from the almond-honey-nougat to come through, the dark chocolate base here was much stronger and bolder meaning it killed off any of the other scents.
That meant that, whilst the dark chocolate itself smelt rather nice (a decent, cocoa-led dark chocolate is almost irresistible to me) it meant that the overall smell was a little plain and one-dimensional being frank.
I always have fun- with Frey’s Chocobloc bars and with Toblerones too- snapping off pieces. Having to break off a piece always gives a brilliantly satisfying snap. I wonder why the brain is stimulated by crunchy sensations so much more than soft ones with food; soft bars of chocolate like Wispa and Areos are nowhere near as exciting to me for whatever reason.
The first flavour that you get here is the richness and darkness from the chocolate base. It is semi-sweet and semi-bitter, and VERY different to Frey’s milk chocolate. I enjoyed the stronger and more powerful flavour but the melt was a little rough though I have to say. This is a credible although not exceptional dark chocolate; a well rounded flavour with a slight acidity to it.
Following on from the prominent cocoa taste is the sweetness from the honey. It is a pleasant contrast to the slightly bitter dark chocolate, with the luxurious buttery flavour coming through well.
And the final dimension to the Chocobloc Dark, after the dark chocolate and honey sweetness have been and gone on the tongue, comes in the form of a scattering of nougat pieces. They’re slightly chewy in texture and offer an ever so small amount of sweetness.
Frey’s Chocobloc Dark was not a bad bar of chocolate, but it didn’t quite excite me like Frey’s other bars I’ve tried have done. The dark chocolate here is just a little too strong relative to the almond-honey -nougat and drowns it out slightly. As the dark chocolate is fairly tasty, this doesn’t ruin the bar at all; in fact dark chocolate lovers will really dig this. But I felt that the Chocobloc Milk variety allowed more of the background flavours to shine through and therefore offered a bit more for my tastes.
So, it’s perfectly enjoyable but just a little one dimensional in flavour in my opinion. I’d definitely eat it again, but I preferred their Chocobloc Milk.
As very few of you seem to have read/seen much about Frey (I’ve had emails and comments from readers who are very curious about them and their produce) I’m delighted to say that from Monday, I’l do a ‘FREY WEEK’! I’l publish a new Frey review every day of next week, and bring you as much information and as many photos as I can. (I’l still do a review on Friday as normal too of course.)