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Home / Doug's Chocolate Republic  /   Review: Ritter Sport Whole Hazelnuts

     
Ritter Sport Whole Hazelnuts 
Posted: 29 November 2011    6.5 
Ritter Sport Whole Hazelnuts This bar tasted too sweet.  Ritter really isn't such a great brand. I believe they succeed in Thailand because they're able to price themselves at a local level per gram while remaining European made.   
Avg price/gram: USD 0.023   Cocoa %: 30  Size: 100g  German chocolate 
       


They say, whoever they are, that you learn something new everyday.  Yeah, that's probably true, although they never bother to continue saying if that new thing you learned today was worth learning at all. 

Let's take something I learned 2 days ago when I bought this Ritter Sport Whole Hazelnuts block.  I had stopped into the 7-11 on the way to a larger mini-mart to buy a few packs of matches and plastic glasses for a Korean dinner party we were having that evening.  My eyes grazed across the chocolate shelves like they always do.  Was there a Ritter Sport Whole Amonds?  Nope.  In its place was this Ritter Sport Whole Hazelnuts.  It cost the same, contained the same cocoa solid content and the same percentage of hazelnuts as the other bar had almonds (23%), and I thought it would taste roughly the same. 

Wrong.   The Whole Almond was a nice slightly above average chocolate bar packed with almonds.  This bar tasted too sweet.  Recall in my review of the Alpine Milk that Ritter had made this one too sweet.  Each bite got subsequently worse.  Now I'm sure the base Ritter uses for the Alpine Milk is the same one they're using for the Whole Almonds and the Whole Hazelnuts, yet the chocolate's overly sweet taste only seemed to come through with the Whole Hazelnuts.  I know I'm not imagining this.   Since Dietrich Edelweiss mailed me my first Whole Almonds bar, I've purchased it again locally and felt it still deserved the original rating I gave it.  So something else I (re)learned that day:  the change of one very simple ingredient, from an almond to a hazelnut, can drastically alter the overall taste of the final chocolate bar. 

And how can I forget yet one more thing I learned:  Ritter really isn't such a great brand.  I believe they succeed in Thailand because they're able to price themselves at a local level per gram while remaining European made. The Ritter Bar appears more expensive than the Malaysian made Von Houtens and Cadburys, but that's only because those Asian-made brands are packed into smaller sizes of around 40 grams, whereas the Ritter Sport, like its European brethren, most commonly come in 100 gram sizes.  I'm supposing the Asian-made chocolates are set to their market-clearing prices, that locals regularly stop into the shops to buy them at those prices.  Ritter deceivingly looks expensive to the teen choco addict wandering in for a sugar fix.  But it doesn't take him long to figure out that if he buys one Ritter and eats it to satisfy two cravings, he's paid the same as he did for two regionally-made bars. He gets the European "quality" for free.

I haven't been back to Germany in twenty-one years, so I don't know where exactly Ritter fits on the pecking order of chocolates over there.  We had a German over to our Korean dinner party and I asked him what a Ritter Sport bar cost over there.  He said USD 1.20.  I find that difficult to believe.  Low grade Hershey made bars in an equivalent 100 gram size sold in the U.S. wouldn't sell for as cheap as $1.20.  But if we accept what he said as true, then Ritter is definitely operating on the low end in its native land while trying to entrance the Thais as a chic, higher quality import.  This is not unlike the policy pursued by McDonald's, Burger King, and Kentucky Fried Chicken in Thailand, who come off to the locals as cool foreign operations offering "imported" food at a premium, but are, in actuality, bottom-of-the-barrel mass food producers giving Thais heart disease. 

If you love Germany and hazelnuts, stick to Ritter's Dark Hazelnut.  Their dark chocolate is so much better.  If you hate Germany and hazelnuts, picket the nearest German embassy and litter its ground with hazelnuts. 10% littered hazelnut content will suffice.

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 The Complete Chocolate Republic Index


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Fascinating Ideas You Could Care Less About

  Germany is home of the Ritter company, makers of adequate German chocolate. The German Ritter Sport bar is found worldwide. Recently Doug tried the Ritter milk chocolate with whole hazelnuts. The chocolate republic welcomed Ritter in and Doug of Doug's Republic said it was okay