I kept seeing the Whatchamacallit so thought it was time to review it. Is the name great or is it unbelievably stupid? Well I’m still not entirely sure! It’s quite true that people do frequently use ‘whatchamacallit’ as a noun. And Hershey’s decision to bring out a follow up bar (which has now gone to Chocolate Heaven with the other deceased bars like the Fuse and Champagne Crunchie) called the Thingamajig was equally clever/horrific. You can’t deny it’s catchy though. Because even when you forget the Whatchamacallit bar, you end up using the bar’s name trying to remember the bar’s name. It’s brilliant- like a beer called beer or a cheese called cheese…you just can’t forget it.
When I say ‘I keep seeing it’ I mean in both real life and the cyber world. I’ve come across it in numerous import shops over the past few months and shunned it, but thought that it was finally time to buy it and review it having read the thoughts of Hannah as well as seen Marcus’ ChocItOut video (watch it- I’m a big fan of ChocItOut!)
Hershey’s Whatchamacallit is a relatively light 45g, but a delicious sounding combination- ‘made with chocolate, peanut flavoured crisps and caramel’.
Just an early downside though. This isn’t technically a chocolate bar. It’s legally a candy bar. The difference? Well the ‘chocolate’ here is actually ‘mocklate’ in that there is no cocoa butter in it meaning Hershey can’t legally sell it as a chocolate bar. Now I’ve eaten similar ‘mocklate’ before and it was….well, disgusting and virtually inedible. So I’m a bit reluctant to eat it at all. But needs must.
The ingredients list reads like a bit of a horror show. 1) Sugar. 2) High Fructose corn syrup. 4) Partially hydrogenated vegetable oil. 5) Partially defatted peanuts…mmmmmm, gotta love those partially defatted peanuts! 6) Vegetable oil.
In other words, organic and natural this bar is not. In fact it’s probably a prime example of everything that is wrong with the modern day mass chocolate market- those ingredients (well, maybe not so much sugar- that’s pretty normal) are all deliberately chosen to cut down costs of production.
In my opinion, I’d rather eat something which is slightly more expensive but a little less… chemically. That’s just me though. And the fact that Hershey have been selling this bar for more than three decades indicates that a LOT of people disagree with me.
The wrapper has a charm about it. It looks undoubtedly dated; like it’s somehow come out of the 1980’s with an off-cream colour and tired looking logo…but I sort of like it. It’s like that drunk granny dancing at a wedding- sure it’s embarrassing to look at and you feel a little for it/her…but it’s also harmless and sort of fun.
The Whatchamacallit doesn’t smell fun though. It has the DREADED fake chocolate aroma about it. The word chocolate is actually being generous… it’s a weird, synthetic, chemically kind of sweetness which a few American bars have. It doesn’t even have a peanutty edge- the totally dominant smell is gross ‘mocklate’. But onwards I proceed.
I seem to have an ability to take some of the worst products I review and make them look attractive. So I urge you not to pay too much attention to the enticing photographs above which show smooth, golden caramel luxuriously stretching like you might see in a TV advert. Because whilst Hershey’s Whatchamacallit isn’t inedible, it really isn’t great either.
It breaks with a super crunch- the crisped rice is done nicely and each bite is a pleasant mix of dry and slightly nutty crisps with the smallest amount of chewy caramel. But the caramel doesn’t bring any flavour to the bar whatsoever, probably because it’s the most hilariously small portion I’ve ever seen. What’s up Hershey? Are you afraid you’re going to run out or something?!
The peanut crisp, as I say, has a slight nutty flavour to it but nothing particularly strong. And the tiny amount of caramel and inoffensive but bland peanut crisp is beautifully enrobed in the chocolate. Which sucks. And that isn’t just me being prejudiced- I wanted to give the chocolate a chance. I really wanted it to be nice. But it was awful. Absolute crap.
Despite the pretty intense criticism, I’ve actually had worse overall bars. Whilst each individual element of the Whatchamacallit is pretty lame, it actually works slightly better as a blend. Each bite has a crunch and then a chew which works relatively nicely.
It just falls down on the flavour though. The caramel and peanut crisps are at best weedy whilst the chocolate is gross.
The Whatchamacallit didn’t do a lot for me personally as I’m sure you can tell. But I think it might actually work for some people who like their bars to be more about texture than strong flavour- the crisp pieces and chewiness from the caramel are decent to gnash away on.