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Home / Doug's Chocolate Republic  /   Review: Lindt Les Grandes 33% Hazelnuts Milk

     
Lindt Les Grandes 33% Hazelnuts Milk 
Posted: 25 July 2011    8.0 
Lindt Les Grandes 33% Hazelnut Milk To me, paying the extra for the Les Grandes is like paying the extra for the fries with your burger. The burger on its own is good, and so is the burger with fries. No one can make am absolute statement that the burger with or without the fries is superior. Sometimes you want fries and sometimes you don't.    
Avg price/gram: USD 0.036   Cocoa %: 31  Size: 150g  Swiss chocolate 
       


They say you don't get something for nothing.   Lindt proves it, as I will soon explain.

One of the early bars I reviewed for the Chocolate Republic was Lindt's Swiss Gold Milk Hazelnut, a bar exclusive to Australia.  Exclusive is a great exaggeration here, so Australians shouldn't feel so flattered.  Yes, the name Swiss Gold Milk Hazelnut is exclusive to Australia, but the milk chocolate in that bar and the hazelnut content is duplicated exactly in Lindt's 100 gram Swiss Classic Milk Hazelnut available all over the globe and on some different planets, too.  Same bar, different wrapper.   You could just as well be talking about Presidents of the USA here.  Same meaningless rhetoric, different face.  

My wife snagged this bar at the import market the other night.  I warned her not to buy it because I have no will power when it comes to Lindt milk chocolate bars crammed with any kind of nut.  Although I'd never officially tried this bar, I warned her that choosing it was dangerous, because I'd already tried that Swiss Gold Milk Hazelnut, which looked nearly identical, and that former bar was done and dusted within 20 minutes.      

Lindt is purposely confusing on their wrapper by listing, in the English ingredients section, 44% dark and 22% milk.  Does this mean 44% cocoa solid dark chocolate and 22% cocoa solid milk chocolate -- or does it mean 44% of the total bar is composed of dark chocolate and 22% of milk chocolate?   My taste buds didn't taste any dark chocolate in this bar, and the front label calls this 150g MILK.  The Thai label didn't help put the matter to rest, listing 11% cocoa mass and 11% cocoa butter.   I had to look among one of the obscure Eastern European languages which still uses Roman letters to see that this bar contains the same 31% cocoa solids as the Swiss Gold.

There are a few tiny differences between this bar and that 'exclusive' Australian confection.  First, this bar contains slivers of caramelized hazelnuts in addition to the standard bits of hazelnut.  And second, this bar contains a lot more hazelnuts. With the Swiss Gold, hazelnuts constituted just a fifth of the bar.   With the Les Grandes, hazelnuts comprise a third.

So surely this bar must be better, you insist.  No s--t, Sherlock.  Of course it's better!   And if it cost the same per gram, I'd be advising you to round up every Swiss Gold Milk Hazelnut and burn it -- or rather melt it for fondue -- at the stake.  But the Les Grandes version, while containing more in every bite also comes with a 40% higher price tag for each of those bites.  I'm not so convinced that shelling out that extra cash justifies all those extra calories you'll be padding around the waistline from sackloads of more hazelnuts. This Swiss Gold on its own was no slacker.

To me, paying the extra for the Les Grandes is like paying the extra for the fries with your burger. The burger on its own is good, and so is the burger with fries. No one can make am absolute statement that the burger with or without the fries is superior.  Sometimes you want fries and sometimes you don't. Or an even better analogy, consider Les Grandes the more upmarket model of a car you already enjoy driving. This upgrade has the same chassis, engine, and maneuverability as your beloved roadster but has better seats and interiors. If you're paying 40% more for the superficial changes, you may decide the original is quite fine after all.

If you liked reading this, consider savoring these reviews:
 Godiva Milk Chocolate with Macadamia from Belgium -- 31% cocoa solids
 Duc De Praslin Costa Rica 38% from Thailand -- 38% cocoa solids
 The Complete Chocolate Republic Index


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