/ Doug's Chocolate Republic /
Review: Monoprix Gourmet White Chocolate With Speculoos
Monoprix Gourmet White
Chocolate With Speculoos
Posted: 18 February 2015
Speculoos are a European cultural item, a thin type of biscuit made with butter, cardamom, ginger, cloves, and other spices and meant to be consumed on or just before the St. Nicholas Feast in early December. Another way of looking at this bar is as a French version of a cookies and creme. My gripe is with the white chocolate. It just ain't very good. When
I see the word gourmet in the title, I am conditioned to expect a bit more.
price/gram: USD 0.019
Cocoa %: 25*
* Estimated cocoa butter content
Another inexpensive French
brand shows itself on Thailand's supermarket shelves. A
little back story is probably in order to illustrate where
this bar is coming from.
Monoprix is a major upscale
French retail chain located in approximately 85% of French
towns with populations over 50,000. Monoprix was
jointly owned by two other huge French conglomerates until
one bought the other's shares out in 2012.
One of those French giants, the Casino Group, owns the Big C
superstores in Thailand and elsewhere in Southeast Asia.
You can connect the dots. Casino places more of their
French merchandise on the shelves of Thailand and one of
those placements is Monoprix Gourmet's chocolates..
Monoprix Gourmet is
Monoprix's in-house brand and is almost unheard of outside
the Francosphere. This is exactly the kind of bar I want to sample and make known or ridicule in the Anglosphere.
The bar I picked is the
brand's White Chocolate With Speculoos. Speculoos?
Yeah, I wondered what that was, too. I typed it into
my translator and the translation came back as speculoos,
too. But speculoos is a real word, honest! Speculoos are a European cultural
delicacy, a thin
type of biscuit made with butter, cardamom, ginger,
cloves, and other spices, shaped into animals typically, and meant to be consumed on or just
before the St. Nicholas Feast in early December. The
St. Nicholas Feast was a new one for me as well.
Belgium, Holland, and Germany are the big speculoos lovers.
France either loves them along with the others or just makes
this bar intending to export them to those three countries.
Another way of looking at
this bar is as a French version of a cookies and creme.
Cookies and creme incorporates chocolate cookies, similar to
Oreos, into white chocolate. Monoprix Gourmet decides
to go pro-European for their bar and include something no
one outside of Europe has ever heard of.
Does it work? I have no
problem with the speculoos, and I'd consume them even if
December were months away. My gripe is with the white
chocolate. It just ain't very good. When I see the
word 'gourmet' in the title, I am conditioned to
expect a bit more.
On the other hand, this bar
isn't being hawked for gourmet prices either. The big
fault then is what the hell is this bar trying to be?
A gourmet experience at bargain prices? Too bad
the only gourmet thing about this bar was the word 'gourmet'
in its title.
It's hard to recommend a bar that's cheaper than Lindt, more expensive than
Hershey's Cookies 'N' Creme, and worse than them both. Next time I'm in Europe, I'll pick up my speculoos a la carte.