After yesterday’s rather poor limited edition bar from Mars which turned out to be the near enough identical twin of the regular Snickers, I’m delighted to actually have something a bit more different today on day three of Snickers Week. The Snickers Dark. I’ve never tried Mars’ dark chocolate before I don’t think, as their Mars Dark (or Midnight Mars or whatever it is called) has never appealed to me much. Hopefully the product will be more exciting than the More Nuts bar anyway.
The Snickers Dark doesn’t come with a product description on the packet per se, but I don’t think you need to be a rocket scientist to figure out the concept behind the bar. It’s an American import, which I bought from an import shop in Meadowhall, Sheffield for about £1.50 I think. Pricey at a couple of times the cost of a normal chocolate bar, but not outrageous at all.
Value wise, you do get slightly less bang for your buck with the Snickers Dark though. This weighs in at (a VERY precise!) 51.9g which is half a dozen grams lighter than a regular Snickers bar. I’m not entirely sure why Mars decided upon 51.9g as the intended weight for the bar…why not 52g?! But that’s their call, and I bet if you knock 0.1g off every Mars Bar that you sell, you end up making millions more in profits every year without anybody noticing. Well unfortunately I’m a bit of a Poirot Mars (well, I don’t have a moustache and I’m not Belgian but the rest of the comparison still stands) and I’m onto your game!
Mars’ dark chocolate has actually got a moderately good reputation on the net amongst bloggers and reviewers. As mentioned, I’ve never eaten it and so can’t comment for a few paragraphs more, but Americans in particular seem genuinely impressed with it.
The oddest thing about the Snickers Dark was without doubt the choice of colour for the wrapper by the way. Mars have chosen a lilac or off-blue kind of colour to use for the packaging, and that doesn’t seem quite right to me! There are two reasons why I think that- 1) The Snickers brand is (in my opinion) slightly more orientated to men rather than women…lilac is not renowned for its masculine qualities! And 2) It’s a Snickers DARK. Why not pick a black/darker wrapper to tie in with that?!
As you can see, Mars’ dark chocolate that they’ve used to enrobe this Snickers Dark in isn’t all that dark. It is certainly darker than the ordinary Snickers coating, but it looks to be a ‘safer’ choice from Mars; a dark chocolate which won’t be too harsh or bitter…basically the type of chocolate that you might describe as towards the lighter end of ‘semi-sweet’.
And that is how the Snickers Dark smelt as well. It was noticeably different from the milk chocolate varieties reviewed so far this week with a slightly stronger cocoa notes in place of the regular milky smell. And it is actually pretty good. No, it’s better than that, it smells nicer than the milk chocolate Snickers for me. The dark chocolate combines really nicely with the savoury roasted peanuts.
So the fundamental difference here is the dark chocolate. And it is a credible attempt at dark chocolate from Mars- not as great as many of the previous reviews I’ve read of it, but not bad at all. It is, as you’d expect, semi-bitter, but nicer still is that it has a roasted and very savoury taste too which is perfect for a Snickers product as it combines excellently with the roasted peanuts. So the dark chocolate is not even close to what I’d class as outstanding or exceptional, but it is a good twist from Mars on their regular milk chocolate coated Snickers.
The nuts, caramel and nougat are much the same as with a milk chocolate Snickers, but the overall emphasis changes slightly as a result of the darker chocolate covering. With a milk chocolate Snickers, the flavour focus is more on the contents of the bar- the peanuts and the nougat are the strongest tastes you’ll get. But with the Snickers Dark, even though the portioning of the peanuts, caramel and nougat are exactly the same, the dark chocolate is a more dominant taste and is far more than just a ‘coating’. It is a strong flavour in its own right.
After the Snickers More Nuts bar yesterday which was a pitiful attempt at changing the regular Snickers, I’l certainly say that the Snickers Dark is a much better ‘variety’ product in that it is markedly different in appearance and flavour. It’s a shame that I had to buy an American product to get that though, rather than Mars UK actually trying something innovative for once!
I actually think that dark chocolate lovers would prefer this to a traditional Snickers- the dark chocolate is relatively good and very strong in flavour. I personally like the Snickers Dark but found that the dark chocolate was just a bit too prevalent for my tastes as they drowned out the other flavours a little in the end. But like I say, this is a decent attempt from Mars US to update the milk chocolate Snickers and I’m quite sure that this sells very well in America. As for me, I’l credit Mars for their attempts but stick to the regular Snickers.