Thursday, January 10, 2013

Review: Fiber One 90 Calorie Chocolate Caramel & Pretzel Bar

Caramel and chocolate...yum.  Caramel, chocolate and pretzels?  Even more yum, so when I saw boxes of Fiber One 90 Calorie Chocolate Caramel & Pretzel Bars at Kroger being advertised as a new flavor, I knew I had to grab a box off the shelf to add to my growing collection of Fiber One reviews.  The fact that they were on sale for $2.49 for the box certainly helped as well, because I'm a price shopper more often than not and I'm not sure I would have bought these if they were at the regular price, whatever that was.  Each bar is 0.82 ounces and is obviously 90 calories.  It also contains 20% of your daily fiber, so it'll help you out down there too.

Being that there was a picture representation of the bar on both the front of the box and also on the wrapper, there wasn't a lot of mystery involved in what this bar would look like.  I will say that the pictures on the box and wrapper were reasonably accurate with the exception of the caramel drizzle on top of the bar.  The drizzle was not as thick or as plentiful as advertised, so that was disappointing.  What wasn't disappointing or any sort of shortcoming was the smell of the caramel because it was STRONG.  I love caramel, so I was okay with that, but I was a bit stunned by it.  The rest of the bar is made up of a chocolate base and then the actual meat of the bar is a mix of puffed wheat cereal, large chunks of pretzel (think rods) and a pretty fair amount of semi-sweet chocolate chips.  When you look at this bar in its totality, you can tell they are packing a bunch of ingredients into a small package.  Impressive.

After I took my first bite, the two things I could taste immediately and most predominantly were the caramel and also salt.  The caramel was of the burnt variety, which made it seem saltier than it probably was and then the pretzels also added additional salty flavor to the bar as well.  That caramel was also overwhelming and almost unappetizing as well.  I prefer my caramel flavor to be of the sweet variety and this definitely was not that.  The chocolate chips and the chocolate base really had no flavor whatsoever and just added a coating to the salt, which I supposed tamed it a touch.  Without that, I can only imagine how incredibly salty this would have been.  As for how the bar chewed itself, it was remarkably soft and that includes the pretzels, which had very little crunch.  Ever had a pretzel that's been sitting in a humid place for a long time?  If you have and know what I'm talking about, that's how these pretzels were.  They obviously tasted like pretzels, but they had no crunch to them at all because while this was meant to be a chewy bar, it could have used crunchy pretzels to break that up and prevent it from being too soft.

Buy It or Fly By It?  Too much salt and too much burnt caramel and for me, that does not make for an appetizing bar.  It's okay in a pinch, but when thinking about something that I'd want to purchase again, I just can't get on board with this one, so it gets a FLY BY IT rating.  Perhaps a person that craves salty foods would feel differently about that, but for me, it won't be a box that I'll be purchasing again.  It's disappointing too after what sounded like an incredibly awesome mix of flavors.


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