Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Review: Kashi Chocolate Almond & Sea Salt with Chia Chewy Granola Bars

Today's review brings a bit of entertainment to me as I get to add another review to perhaps the most tortured review catalog on this blog.  Good products, horrible product, mediocre products...Kashi has had them all.  Their surprisingly large (to me) catalog of reviews have no consistency, so it's that unpredictable nature that makes this review of this Kashi Chocolate Almond & Sea Salt with Chia Chewy Granola Bars a bit exciting heading in.  I picked up a box of six of these all natural bars at Kroger for $2.75 and each bar in the box weighs in at 1.2 ounces with 140 calories and six grams of protein.  For such a small bar, that's a surprising amount of protein to me, but I'm sure it's because of the inclusion of the almonds.

As you can see above, the bar starts off with Kashi's standard granola mix, but in this case, there are some chia seeds mixed in as well.  It's an all natural mix, so that helps all those health fanatics out there that subscribe to the natural movement.  I personally don't care because my body exists purely on chemicals.  Anyway, mixed in with that granola and chia mix is a healthy helping of cube shaped chocolate squares, some moderately sized almond halves and also some sea salt.  In terms of smell, the chocolate in this bar smelled delicious coming out of the wrapper.  When I took a closer whiff, I could smell that sea salt emanating out of the bar as well.

When I took my first bite, it was obvious that calling these chewy granola bars was very appropriate, because they were absolutely that.  With that chew came the occasional pop of the essentially flavorless almonds and then the melting decadence of the semisweet chocolate cubes.  I wish they had been sweeter, but beggars (or reviewers) can't always be choosers.  The main question I had going into tasting this bar was how the sea salt would behave and quite honestly, it was odd.  I tried out multiple bars and while some had a strong taste of sea salt that made this extremely dry, others only had a mild taste of sea salt that accented the chocolate and made this quite tasty.  It was strange that the flavor was so all over the board.  Either way, the salt flavor did linger in the aftertaste, but as I wrote, the strength of that flavor varied from bar to bar.

Buy It or Fly By It?  I'm really conflicted by this one.  Some of the bars were fairly solid since the salt flavor was tame, while others were not good because the salt flavor was just way too much, so it's tough to make a final call on this one.  But, since that is my charge as a product reviewer, I do have to give a final call on this one so I'll give it a BUY IT rating because even with the overly salty bars, it was still a fairly decent snack.  Like I said, some were better than others, and that's why I give it that positive rating.  Now, if you are a big fan of that sweet and salty flavor mix, I think you'll find this one quite enjoyable.


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