February 14, 2013

Valentine's Day with a Milky Way heart

I love it when candy scrawls sweet nothings on its surface.
The evening may be barreling toward a close, but I wouldn't let Feb. 14 slip by without sending my loyal readers a valentine. A day inflated by big candy (for the record, I borrowed that sugary term from @SeinfeldToday on Twitter) shouldn't be passed up by any semi-serious food blogger.

Since I embody the term semi-serious, let's jump right in. This Valentine's Day has the critique taking a look at an interesting sweet tabbed the Milky Way Simply Caramel Heart. The 1.1 oz. yellow package caught my eye a few weeks ago, and I've been saving it for today.

Unwrapping reveals a molded piece of caramel-filled chocolate shaped like a two-heart tombstone with the words "Be Mine" emblazoned across the bottom. It's an attractive cocoa concoction, even if it raises an important question: Is this a Milky Way heart, as the wrapper claims, or is it Milky Way hearts?

Two distinct heart shapes are clearly visible. Yet the chocolate is a single molded smooth chunk with nary a seam to be found. Maybe we can call it a hybrid, consigning it in that hazy gray zone heretofore reserved for the age at which daughters can get their ears pierced. Maybe Milky Way should have just gone with a single-heart design, rendering this an academic discussion instead of the exceedingly practical one it's become.

Biting into the hearts -- or the "Be Mine" banner -- unleashes a river of caramel that's as free-flowing as caramel can be without causing frustrating deluges. It's sweet. It's sticky. It's a miniature version of a Milky Way Simply Caramel bar, which I called "one giant gravity well of caramel" in an April 2010 review.

That bit of self-valentining narcissistic quoting aside, I can tell you that I wasn't the biggest fan of the Milky Way Caramel bar. After about three bites the time of wine and roses ended, and the eating experience turned into a slog of sugar. It was just too much caramel.

Too much is a problem the heart version of the candy solves. Perhaps by coincidence, perhaps by design, it's about three bites. And they're an enjoyable burst of flavor.

A quick nit to pick before it's time to assign a very-special red construction-paper spork rating. The structural integrity of the Milky Way Simply Caramel Heart needs work. Upon my first bite, the entire top started caving in. My second bite tore off the remainder of that top, leaving an exposed boat filled with caramel. Things would have been better if we had more chocolate to balance it all out.

My love isn't blind to those problems, so I'll dock the heart by a spork and a half. Three-and-a-half sporks out of five.

No comments:

Post a Comment