Saturday, May 3, 2008

Candy Review: Mint Crunch M and Ms, Snickers Adventure Bar, Pop Rocks Chocolate Bar

Comestible Type: Candy
Procured at: Walgreens
Limited Time: The Snickers Adventure Bar and Mint Crisp M&Ms are definitely limited time. No word on the Pop Rocks bar.

  • Mint Crisp M&Ms
  • Snickers Adventure Bar
  • Pop Rocks Chocolate Bar
The latest attempt to revive a long-deceased franchise is the new Indiana Jones movie, which I am going to see as I am a horrible sucker for all the Lucasfilm franchises, be they game, movie, book, whatever. I have probably personally financed a whole couch in George Lucas' palatial abode. Regardless, the resurrection has brought with it the host of expected merchandise tie-ins, not the most insignificant of which is Mars, which has brought two of its larger candy brands to bear on the expected summer blockbuster - Snickers and M&Ms. Instead of just branding the candy with the logo and calling it done, they've opted to release - or perhaps re-release - actual new versions of the candy, which I'm reviewing here for you today.

The Mint Crunch M&Ms are, initially, extremely off-putting. They come out of the bag in two shades of green and a white, and while they each bear the trademark "m", some have Incan-style ziggurats, small other markings, and things I generally assume are meant to evoke imagery from some forgotten temple. Some are even missing the marks entirely, which I assume is from the next issue: these things are seriously irregular. Each one of the things varies in size, shape, and look, which might have made me think I got a bad batch except for that I got two, and both of them look like this. It's no big deal in the long run, it just makes you look twice.

They taste good, though. Instead of being filled with peanut, peanut butter, or whatnot, they're filled with something not unlike the center of a malted ball, without the taste. The mint taste is pretty prevailing, and there's not much chocolate to it until the mint taste fades. If you like the mint Three Musketeers, you'll like these.

The Snickers Adventure bar can perhaps be seen as a flavorful takeoff on the standard Snickers bar. There's not much different about it, with the exception of the nougat filling, which has gone from ye olde standard nougat to something quite exciting, with "exotic spices and a hint of coconut". I don't know about the exotic spices, but there's more than a hint of coconut to the new flavor profile. It's not overwhelming, and it pairs well with the nuts and the lighter caramel load of the bar. It's a little lighter in color, but other than that the cross-section of the bar looks just about the same. If you like coconut and nuts, go for it. If not, give it a pass. Not that hard a decision on this one, but I thought it was pretty delicious.

While in the checkout line at Walgreens, which is a remarkable store if only for its rather diverse candy selection, a display caught my eye. Pop Rocks made a slight resurgence in the early years of this decade, and now they're apparently trying to shake things up a bit by releasing a chocolate candy bar. I couldn't let the chance to taste it go by, so I grabbed one of these as well, and am kind of glad I did.

The color of the words "POP ROCKS" on the label is red, so I had this lurking fear that the actual Pop Rocks inside would be cherry - not that chocolate and cherry is that bad a flavor combo, but I can't see it working with the popping and etc. It turns out they're flavorless, and are just little sweet lumps of fizzing goodness. They're pretty well-spread throughout the bar, so the initial impression upon bite is that of a Crunch or Krackel. Then the trademark Pop Rocks fizz kicks in, and the whole things becomes a lot more like an action-packed chocolate soda (such things exist). The package contains two bars, roughly four inches long, and divided into three sections each, so even if all you're after is the novelty value, you can get one and have enough to share. Looking around a little online seems to indicate there's a Mega Bar out there, which I assume is just more of the same.

All three are pretty decent candies, and I recommend giving each a try before they vanish from store aisles.

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