A good friend of mine writes a blog called "For the Love of Candy" which focuses on reviewing different types of candy. From classic, everyday favourites, to local delicacies, she has an impressive talent for taste-testing sweet treats. Her site is currently on hiatus for a short while, but she'll be back. In the meantime, I wrote a review of my own, inspired by her site, that I felt like sharing.
Starbucks Vanilla Truffles
In recent years, I've become very picky about candy; I eat very little of it, and I pretty much only go for fine dark chocolates. But, every once in awhile, something new will catch my eye.
Starbucks Vanilla Truffles are probably the most difficult to locate candies I've ever encountered. I bought a box from Wal-Mart in December that had expired in August, which wasn't a good first impression. I kept looking for them wherever I went, though, and was surprised to find that no one else carried them. I couldn't even find them in any Starbucks stores, so I figured they were discontinued. But, I stumbled across them at Wal-Mart on a recent shopping trip, and they were from a fresh shipment!
The overall composition is fairly simple: Dark chocolate for the outer shell, with a natural vanilla truffle filling. Being a fan of dark chocolate and vanilla, I couldn't resist.
The packaging is kinda over-the-top, as with most things Starbucks does. They come in a highly figured folded box that stays closed the same way a McDonald's french fry sleeve holds its shape, I'm not really sure how to describe it better. There are about a dozen truffles inside, individually wrapped in gold foil with a twisted top, and the make beautiful additions to a decorative candy bowl.
The dark chocolate shell is pretty underwhelming. It looks generic, like something you'd find in a Russel-Stover assortment, and doesn't have a very strong flavour. It's about on-par with Hershey's Special Dark. The vanilla filling is a bit more noteworthy. It's not tooth-achingly sweet, with a texture similar Oreo filling, and it has a spectacular vanilla flavour that really stands out. There's no chemical overtones, just pure vanilla goodness. It even has vanilla beans inside.
As with most candies of this type, the whole is far greater than the sum of its parts. When the shell and filling are combined, it creates an amazing flavour that I've never come close to tasting before. The chocolate and vanilla compliment each other almost perfectly, and the texture is smoother than the silkiest fine chocolates I've ever had. It's truly an experience to be savoured.
Since these are so surprisingly rich, it's difficult to eat more than one at a time (at least, for me it is). But, one is all you'll need. It's like a fine gourmet meal; if you eat it all the time, it'll become mainstream, but if you eat it only once in awhile, it'll be quite memorable.
I highly recommend these to anyone who appreciates fine chocolates (not that cheap Hershey's stuff), you will not be disappointed. Good luck finding them, though; I searched for them at Starbucks locations in six states (plus a couple in DC) and couldn't find any, but your local Wal-Mart apparently has a chance of carrying them.