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Home / Doug's Chocolate Republic  /   Review: Cadbury Caramello

Cadbury Caramello 
Posted: 25 October 2010    7.0 
Cadbury Caramello The Caramello is not a loser. Quite the contrary, it's very good medium quality chocolate.    
Avg price/gram: USD 0.019   Cocoa %: 26  Size: 220g  Australian chocolate 

How could I have guessed that caramel-filled chocolate bars would lead to a war (of words only so far) between two previously friendly nations?

Aussie Dave was supplying me with dozens of Whittaker bars for sampling at the Republic.  I asked him to send over a Whittaker's Milk Caramel bar.  He said he was unable to locate one and instead mailed over a Cadbury Caramello block.  When other keen Chocolate Republic fan Alabama Al heard about Aussie Dave's failure to deliver a Whittaker's Milk Caramel, he exploited his network of redneck contacts in New Zealand and Australia to get a bar to me pronto, mocking Aussie Dave and Australia in the process.  An infuriated Aussie Dave launched a complaint at the U.S. Embassy in Canberra.  Alabama Al was then called in for questioning by CIA personnel in Birmingham and responded by mailing a hate letter to the Australian Embassy in Washington.  The last I heard, the U.S. was threatening to withhold the sale of various American-made fighter jets to the Australian government.  I love caramel-filled chocolates, but an international skirmish over who mailed me what?  I suppose there've been even worse reasons for starting a war.

Part of the reason that the incident escalated as far as it did, I think, was that Australia's national treasure, Cadbury, knew it was in for a licking by its arch rival New Zealand, pissed that its Cadbury factory in Dunedin had been shuttered and all Oceania chocolate manufacture relocated to Oz.  New Zealand's home grown brand, Whittaker, stepped up.   Both chocolates compete at the same price point in the Australian and New Zealand markets, yet increasingly in the last year, when Cadbury Australia altered its formula to cheapen it, then humiliated, changed it back, Whittaker's New Zealand has taken a nice sweet bite out of Cadbury's Australian market and made native New Zealander's, even ones who'd long since emigrated, proud to be Kiwis again.  

The Cadbury caramello recipe differs slightly depending upon size.  The 55 gram and 220 gram bars both have 26% cocoa solids (like all Cadbury Australian milk chocolate) and 28% milk solids.  But the 55 gram bar is 33% caramel and 67% milk whereas the 220 gram bar is 30% caramel and 70% milk chocolate.  A taster can barely tell the difference.  Doug's Chocolate Republic suspects that the slight differences are due to the shape of the chocolate.  The amount going into each portion is likely to be different depending on the size of the bar, and the proportions have been slightly altered to balance out this difference in serving size.  Hey, it's a theory!    But it all becomes irrelevant next to the New Zealand giant.  Whittaker's offers 33% cocoa solids, 30% milk solids, and 36% caramel, outperforming Cadbury on every measure that counts. 

Cadbury's caramel contender is sweeter than its New Zealand competitor.  That's about the only place it "outperforms," and the sweeter flavor is probably prevalent just to cover up the cheaper ingredients and lower cocoa solids.   The Caramello is not a loser.  Quite the contrary, it's very good medium quality chocolate.  Cadbury Australia's milk chocolates, overall, are upper tier in the range of world Cadbury brands.

Aussie Dave offered multiple apologies for sending on this poor cousin.  No apologies necessary.  On the cheap end, a Caramello could even be a way to say you're sorry. 

If you liked reading this, consider savoring these reviews:
 Jacques Grand Cru 72 from Belgium -- 72% cocoa solids
 Duc De Praslin Peru 64% from Thailand -- 64% cocoa solids
 The Complete Chocolate Republic Index

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The Harry Dandruff Universe

  Australia Cadbury has a milk chocolate caramel bar known as Caramello. Is Australian chocolate good, asks Doug of Chocolate Republic at Doug's Republic?