Walnut Whip: Chocolate of the Week #6

An old-school classic, loved by kids and their grandparents alike.  Indulgent vanilla fondant filling lies within a rich whirl of Nestlé milk chocolate, topped off with a whole walnut. Launched in 1910, this is Nestlé’s oldest product and its popularity shows no sign of waning – a million walnuts a week are used in the production of Walnut Whips, and one is eaten every two seconds in Britain!

An interesting aside – Walnut Whip’ is Cockney rhyming slang for ‘kip’, meaning sleep.

Available from ‘Carry On Tea & Sympathy’, our produce store next door, for only $2 a go. Well worth a try!

Galaxy Caramel: Chocolate of the Week #5

The femme fatale of the chocolate world. Each piece of delicate chocolate is waiting to erupt with silky, smooth caramel. Indulge in a piece or five and feel your mouth become luxurious coated and your taste buds tickled by the butteriness of the Galaxy milk chocolate and the honeyed sweetness of the caramel within.


It would be completely unprofessional of us to not draw attention here to the fierce debate that exists in the confectionary world around the differences between milk chocolates commercially available in Britain. We’ve already discussed Cadbury Dairy Milk, and this offers an example of Galaxy milk chocolate. For the meantime, we’ll let you make your minds up, but me thinks a whole separate post on the relative merits of such things is in the pipeline…

Sunday Roast!

A blogpost on Sunday? Are you flipping joking?! We’re at home enjoying our Sunday Roast and you should be too. If we hadn’t had a glass or two too many of red wine and weren’t snoozing in front of reruns of some great British comedy, we’d probably tell you about what a joyous, soul-warming, family-orientated meal this is, rooted deep in the days of British history when meat was a luxury and a week’s hard work out on the fields made it taste all the better. If there’s one rebuttal to the argument that Brits don’t care about food, this is it. So join us, or order in. We serve beef, chicken or lamb with Yorkshire puddings and all the trimmings, and will deliver the lot. You can order online or give us a call on (212) 989-9735. Now let’s mention what day it is tomorrow…

Double Decker: Chocolate Bar of the Week #4

Ah, the Cadbury Double Decker – what a fine example of a chocolate bar. This is the big honcho of English candy bars, the godfather if you will. For contained inside its distinctive orange and purple wrapper is everything you could ask for from a helping of cocoa indulgence, and more.

Named after the iconic London buses, the Double Decker is composed of two layers. Down bottom is a layer of Rice Krispies, bound together by a silky chocolate mixture.  On top is a layer of thick, chewy nougat, flavored with a touch of coffee. The whole thing is then coated in Heaven’s Nectar, aka Cadbury Dairy Milk chocolate.

The Double Decker is a meal in a chocolate bar. It deserves respect. Put some time aside, brew yourself a cuppa, make sure you’re hungry and… Enjoy!

Flake: Chocolate Bar of the Week #3

For ‘Chocolate Bar of the Week’ #3, we have chosen the Cadbury Flake.

Made from pure Cadbury milk chocolate, what makes the Flake stand out is it’s, ahem, flakey consistency. Cadbury claim the process behind the distinctive crumbly texture is a well-guarded secret, but we did some digging, and it seems the bar was invented in the 1920′s, inspired by excess chocolate spilling over the edges of moulds and setting hard. Biting into one can be a bit of a mess but is well worth it, with the delicate shards accentuating the creaminess of the milk chocolate.

The Flake is now a firm favorite both in the UK and here at Tea & Sympathy. In England, Flakes are often served with Mister Whippy ice cream, in what is known as a ’99′ – a true icon of British summertime:

We also highly recommend dipping them in your tea, but remember, timing is of the essence here!

Smarties: Chocolate of the Week #2

Our Smarties are NOT like your Smarties. Oh no no no, we are not talking about the chalky pastels that pass for ‘America’s Favorite Candy Roll’, but instead the delicious sugar-shelled chocolate buttons from Nestlé, cousins of M&M’s if anything.

Smarties have been in production since 1882, originally sold as ‘Chocolate Beans’. They now come in eight colors (red, orange, blue, green, yellow, pink, violet and brown) and constitute of a crisp, sugary shell encasing a buttery nugget of chocolate. Utterly delicious and lots of fun – Smarties tend to be a firm favorite with the kids.

Not to get too philosophical about a chocolate pellet, but Smarties are a very quintessentially British ‘treat’. Over to Bill Bryson for further explanation:

“And the British are so easy to please.  It’s the most extraordinary thing.  They actually like their pleasures small.  That’s why so many of their treats – tea cakes, scones, crumpets, rock cakes, rich tea biscuits, fruit Shrewsburys – are so cautiously flavorful.  They’re the only people in the world who think of jam and currants as thrilling constituents of a pudding or cake.”

We feel Smarties fit perfectly into this classification.

And did you know, the technical name for the shape of a Smartie is an oblate spheroid… As well as easy to please, it turns out we Brits are actually quite boring as well. We really can’t work out why you all want to marry us so much?!

The pre-2006 technicolor Smarties. Responsible for many a Brit's first narcotic experience.

Since 2006, Smarties have been proudly ‘free of artificial colourings and flavourings’. Keep it a secret, but we kinda preferred the neon shades of yore – especially as there was a longstanding rumor that if you ate too many blue smarties, the dye would send you crazy!

Cadbury Dairy Milk: Welcome to ‘Chocolate Bar of the Week’

From here on in, every Sunday, we will be showcasing one of our favorite chocolate bars for all you lovely readers. We could pretend that there was something noble in this; that we were educating our American customers, and anyone else who cares to follow us, on the intricacies of British confectionary. But this would be – what is known back home as – cobblers. The long and short of it is that we love chocolate. We love eating it, we love talking about it, and we love blogging about it. We want to share our passion, and hope you all get the chance to experience the joys of these small, but perfectly formed, chocolate delights.

HEAVEN!

For those who know about these things, there is only one obvious place we could start this cocoa adventure, and that is with the Cadbury Dairy Milk. What is slightly less obvious, but so fantastic that we have to show you STRAIGHTAWAY is the recent Cadbury Milk advert that aired in Britain, in which a gorilla plays drums to Phil Collins’ ‘In The Air Tonight’:

The admen behind this cult classic claim that the advert invokes the joyous experience of eating a Dairy Milk. While this might sound mad to those of you who have not tried one of these little wonders, we understand entirely.

Cadbury Dairy Milk is arguably the most popular chocolate bar in Britain. In production since 1905, it is estimated that 65% of all British adults will buy at least one a year. There’s no surprise here: each bar contains a glass and a half of milk, ensuring the chocolate is distinctively creamy. This is where lies the major difference between British and American Cadbury’s, the latter being produced by Hershey’s and containing corn syrup in place of sugar and milk which compromises the flavor. As with all our products, our Dairy Milk bars are imported from the UK and Ireland, so you are getting the real deal. Once you’ve had a square or two or eight, it’s hard not to get hooked and once you are, no other chocolate will do.

Dairy Milk Buttons, Dairy Milk Fruit & Nut, Dairy Milk Whole Nut, Dairy Milk Golden Crisp, Dairy Milk Mint Crisp and Dairy Milk Caramel make sure that this a hard addiction to break – you have been warned!

Many a chocoholic would argue that setting the bar this high from the off leaves us nowhere to go next week. You’ll have to wait until next Sunday to see what we come up with.