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Aurosó Chocolate has launched a range Of honey ganache chocolate bonbons in time for the run up to Christmas.
Produced using local Spring Honey from Honeys of Henley, Oxfordshire's Aurosó Chocolate has unveiled four varieties of bonbon - Mandarin Balsamic; Apricot Morvenna Rum; Blackcurrant Lemon Verbena; and Lemongrass Ginger.
In keeping with the original range of low sugar luxury chocolate bars, these bonbons feature RaiseTrade Madagascan dark chocolate in both the shell and ganache. Recipes creatively incorporate natural ingredients that results in sugars levels between 1g and 1.3g per bonbon, which translates to around 8.5% to 11% sugar levels on average - exceptionally low for chocolate bonbons I'm sure you'll agree.
The Spring Honey from Honeys of Henley is processed in small batches using traditional methods. The bees enjoy a diet of wild plum and cherry blossom, resulting in a rich, floral honey.
Following on from the collaboration with Somerset Cider Brandy, these chocolate bonbons also make use of artisan ingredients. Besides the Oxfordshire honey, Aurosó Chocolate also uses Morvenna Spiced Rum from the Cornish Distilling Company in Bude, Cornwall, plus a 12-year Modena balsamic vinegar courtesy of London's Vinegar Shed.
Aurosó Chocolate's Catrin Burr kindly sent over a beautifully packaged bundle of her new chocolate bonbons for me to experience first-hand.
Aurosó Chocolate Honey Ganache Chocolate Reviews
Aurosó Chocolate caters for the discerning customer who values the whole experience of luxury low-sugar chocolate from start to finish. So, it's only right that I first discuss the packaging.
The six-piece boxes all follow the same clean lines, with one slight difference on each box.
The crisp white linen-textured boxes proudly display a large Aurosó Chocolate logo in gold-foiled print on the lid. They look luxurious and feel it too.
A coloured ribbon is affixed to the top right hand corner of each lid, displaying the flavour combination contained inside the box.
The rear of the boxes features a large sticker, detailing the ingredients and nutritional information. The label also states that Aurosó uses reduced sugar recipes that are dairy-free, free from soy lecithin, and free from artificial colourings. The recipes may include traces of nuts, seeds, fish, sesame seeds, eggs, dairy, soya, celery and mustard as these ingredients are used in the same kitchen.
Lifting off the lid on the boxes reveals an informational card that includes details of flavour notes, the origins of the honey, and a bit about the Aurosó Chocolate brand. This is a lovely - and helpful - addition, especially if you are gifting these bonbons for Christmas.
Lift off the cushion pads that protect the chocolates during transit to reveal them in all their glory. Each chocolate bonbon exhibits an unbelievably shiny mirror-like exterior that dazzles and teases.
A muted colour palette of rich reds, greens, purples and oranges adds a pretty design to each bonbon. Coloured using natural ingredients, this particular selection of refined colours really suits the grown-up chocolate flavours in this particular collection.
Mandarin Balsamic Bonbons
Aurosó Chocolate Mandarin Balsamic dark chocolate bonbon ingredients:
Mandarin, balsamic vinegar and black cardamom ganache filling (53%) (Madagascar cocoa beans, coconut butter, cashew butter, honey, balsamic vinegar (3%), mandarin infused olive oil, salt, black cardamom seeds (0.02%), red mandarin essential oil (0.02%)), cocoa butter with natural colourings, dark chocolate coating (47%) (Madagascar cocoa beans, cane sugar, Madagascar cocoa beans, cocoa butter). Cocoa solids: 100% minimum (ganache and shell); 85% minimum (shell).
- Flavour notes: A 90% dark chocolate shell hides a honey, Greek mandarin olive oil, Modena balsamic vinegar and black cardamom ganache.
- Sugars: 1g per bonbon (8.5% on average)
- My thoughts: For those of you who are concerned, this doesn't taste vinegary at all. It does, however, have a complex flavour that might be too heavy for some to enjoy and fully appreciate. Mandarin comes through immediately before drowning beneath a deep, dark, and almost savoury flavour. There's a nutty, buttery quality that comes through in the mix, along with a mildly bitter finish. Into the aftertaste, I picked up a rich cocoa flavour along with a bitter undertone, and fleeting glimmers of mandarin.
- Verdict: This bonbon will be too complex for some. This rich and indulgent bite combines sweet citrus with a savoury flavour from the Modena balsamic vinegar and black cardamom. I feel the intricacies of the olive oil and honey are dwarfed by the other dominant flavours here.
Blackcurrant Lemon Verbena Bonbons
Aurosó Chocolate Blackcurrant Lemon Verbena dark chocolate bonbon ingredients:
Blackcurrant, lemon & verbena ganache filling (53%) (Madagascar cocoa beans, coconut butter, cashew butter, honey, blackcurrant powder (2%), extra virgin olive oil, salt, cubeb pepper, lemon verbena essential oil (0.01%)), cocoa butter with natural colourings dark chocolate coating (47%) (Madagascar cocoa beans, cane sugar, Madagascar cocoa beans, cocoa butter). Cocoa solids: 100% minimum (ganache and shell); 85% minimum (shell).
- Flavour notes: A ganache of honey, blackcurrants, organic lemon verbena oil and Javanese cubeb pepper inside a 90% dark chocolate shell.
- Sugars: 1.2g per bonbon (10.5% on average)
- My thoughts: Another complex one, there's a lot going on inside this chocolate bonbon. I expected full-on blackcurrant flavours but these are more refined. Floral flavours first appear, that morph into blackcurrant mid-way. There's a citrus element that peeks through at the end, along with the floral notes again. This bonbon has a rich, slightly bitter finish with a rich cocoa aftertaste with glimpses of blackcurrant and citrus notes. Texturally, there's a mild crunch in this bonbon.
- Verdict: A mix of floral notes and berries gives this bonbon a fruity flavour, while the dark chocolate adds depth and richness. It's quite a complex flavour with a lot going on in one bite.
Lemongrass Ginger Bonbons
Aurosó Chocolate Lemongrass and Ginger dark chocolate bonbon ingredients:
Lemongrass and ginger ganache filling (53%) (Madagascar cocoa beans, coconut butter, cashew butter, honey, extra virgin olive oil, salt, ginger essential oil (0.03%), lemongrass essential oil (0.02%)), cocoa butter with natural colourings, dark chocolate coating (47%) (Madagascar cocoa beans, cane sugar, Madagascar cocoa beans, cocoa butter). Cocoa solids: 100% minimum (ganache and shell); 85% minimum (shell).
- Flavour notes: 90% dark chocolate shell containing a dark chocolate ganache of honey, lemongrass and ginger oils, and Anglesey sea salt.
- Sugars: 1g per bonbon (8.5% on average)
- My thoughts: Ginger comes through in the initial aroma and immediately on biting into this bonbon. Lemongrass follows closely behind, but allows the ginger to dominate, and I think that's to its credit. The oils are used sparingly to allow a clear and coherent perfume without the fiery heat you'd expect from the ginger. The rich dark chocolate introduces a mildly bitter, dry finish, rounding the flavours nicely. There's also a notable floral quality to the flavour that is perhaps imparted by the honey.
- Verdict: I love the clear and concise flavour of this bonbon, and I like how the flavours dance harmoniously together without feeling the need to overpower. Tamed by the dark chocolate, this bonbon balances sweetness against bitterness, to create a rounded flavour.
Apricot Morvenna Rum Bonbons
Aurosó Chocolate Apricot and Morvenna Rum dark chocolate bonbon ingredients:
Apricot and Morvenna Rum ganache filling (53%) (Madagascar cocoa beans, coconut butter, cashew butter, apricot powder (3.8%), honey, Morvenna Spiced Rum (2.7%), extra virgin olive oil, salt), cocoa butter with natural colourings, dark chocolate coating (47%) (Madagascar cocoa beans, cane sugar, Madagascar cocoa beans, cocoa butter. Cocoa solids: 100% minimum (ganache and shell); 85% minimum (shell).
- Flavour notes: 90% dark chocolate shell surrounding a dark chocolate ganache of honey, apricots and spiced rum.
- Sugars: 1.3g per bonbon (11.1% on average)
- My thoughts: The flavour of the Cornish rum sits front and centre and it releases a tame warmth, rather than a fiery kick as it intensifies in flavour. The rum is therefore not overwhelming, as it often is in other boozy chocolates. By contrast, this is refined and elegant, and befitting of a luxurious chocolate bonbon. A fruitiness develops at the end as the apricot comes through, and I detected nutty notes in there too. A mildly bitter finish with fruity, nutty notes rounds off this chocolate delight, while the rum flavour gently dissipates.
- Verdict: Without a shadow of a doubt, this is my favourite bonbon in this collection. The rum lends its flavour without its notorious burn, which allows the apricots and nuts in the mix to shine alongside. This is rich, indulgent, and well-balanced.
Aurosó Chocolate Honey Ganache Bonbons Review
RRP: £10.00 | Aurosó Chocolate | Shop now
Beautifully presented, luxury dark chocolate bonbons with a diverse collection of ganaches made using artisan ingredients alongside local Oxfordshire honey. Expect complex yet well-balanced flavours inside elegant dark chocolate shells. Definitely check out the Apricot and Morvenna Rum bonbon!
Where to Buy Online?
Single flavour boxes of bonbons are available to purchase online via the Aurosó Chocolate website here (£10 for 6 (70g); £19.50 for 12 (140g)).
The brand has also launched a larger 32-piece box containing all four flavours in time for Christmas (£49). Called the 'Aurosó Chocolate Solitaire Box', the bonbons can be used to play a game of chocolate solitaire. The company has partnered with Jaques of London to offer a discount on Solitaire boards to use for this game. You can find the details here.
Have you tried these Aurosó Chocolate bonbons yet? What did you think of their flavours, and which is your favourite? Let me know in the comments below.